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How to Check if “Returned” Items are Actually Returned to Amazon FBA

Darrin Levine

As you get deep into your selling journey, and if you are like us, you probably aren’t surprised anymore about Amazon’s inability to let you know the ins, outs, dos, and don’ts. 

As you can imagine, there’s plenty of ways for Amazon to safeguard money from you, and It happens probably more often than you know. One of those ways is through a returnless refund, which is when a customer requests a refund from Amazon but never actually returns the refunded item.

According to Amazon’s seller policy, they are supposed to automatically reimburse your seller account when this happens, but they often “forget”. Much like their other reimbursement policies, Amazon is very much aware of their “forgetful” tendencies and knows that these are not being done 100% of the time, requiring managers to contact Amazon and remind them they are owed a refund. 

Amazon typically does send an email indicating a returnless refund has been initiated. Normally it has a subject line explaining that a “refund was sent for order”. Of course, it can be hard to keep track of every returnless refund email, but don’t worry, here are some manual steps you can take to review which orders were returnless refunds. Alternatively, you can sign up for our software for free, and receive a free automatic refund audit Instead.

 

      1. Log in to Seller Central and hover the cursor over REPORTS at the top of the screen
      2. Click on the PAYMENTS link under REPORTS.
      3. Click on the TRANSACTION VIEW tab
      4. From there, filter view by Refund, select the time frame and click update.


Now that we know what items have been refunded to your customers, we need to find out if the item has indeed been returned. Here is how to do that:

 

      1. Review the SKUs that have refunds and save them to a list. If you have the refund email from Amazon, you can use that information to check if Amazon returned the item or not. If you have one or any, you’ll want to check every order to make sure that the items were returned.

Note: If you have a lot of refunds this will take quite some time. However, we designed an automatic system that does this for you. You can sign up by clicking here.

      1. Now, under REPORTS click on FULFILLMENT. 
      2. On the left side of the column, in the Inventory section, click on the SHOW MORE option.
      3. Click on INVENTORY EVENT DETAILS.
      4. Paste the Merchant SKU in the search bar, make sure the event date includes the date of the purchase (or just choose LAST 365 DAYS if you’re not sure and click GENERATE REPORT.

From there you should see all of the activity this item has experienced. Here is how to

Receipt – Amazon warehouse has received this item from the seller.

WhseTransfers – Amazon moved the item to a different fulfillment center.

Adjustments – Amazon lost, damaged, or found your inventory.

Shipments – Item was shipped to a customer.

CustomerReturns – Customer returned an item to Amazon warehouse.

VendorReturns – Seller removed item to return it to them.

If the customer returned the item to Amazon, then you should see an entry for CustomerReturns and a positive number in the quantity column.

If you see any SKUs that do not have a positive number in the quantity column. You will need to create a case asking for them to review. 

I suggested something along the lines of: 

Hi Amazon staff, a customer with order ID 910830011141 was given a refund, but failed to return the product. I see 45 days have passed since his order, could you please provide me with a refund less Amazon fees? 

Order ID: https://sellercentral.amazon.com/orders-v3/order/111-8685436-1621825 

Inventory: https://sellercentral.amazon.com/reportcentral/INVENTORY_EVENT_DETAIL/0 

You’ll want to attach the order ID and the inventory event detail page link. 

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