What You Should Know about Amazon’s Return Policy
Amazon has always been pro-customer, and its generous and easy returns policy is one of the best things about using the site. However, the policy has its downside.
Easy Returns Also Means Easy Bans
Most retailers have to have some type of a return policy in the U.S., even if it is just to state that they do not accept returns. The law varies from state to state, and may not even apply for purchases outside the U.S.
Amazon, however, imposes a return policy on all its retailers that is, frankly, generous to customers. In general, it says you can return anything you bought through Amazon within 30 days from the date of purchase.
The policy, however, specifies some exceptions. You can have as much as 90 days to return some items, such as baby items, from the date of item receipt. You cannot return perishable grocery and Amazon Fresh items, obviously, but you can still get a refund.
The great thing about this policy is how easy it is. You do not have to justify it, and in some cases, you do not even have to return the item.
However, you need to know that Amazon has a pretty strict--and according to some people, unfathomable--system of banning customers that use the returns policy a little too often. Amazon can deactivate categorically and permanently any account it deems abusive of these policies.
Amazon defends this practice by characterizing it as fraud prevention. That sounds reasonable enough as some people have abused the system to criminal proportions.
However, no apparent line is discernible separating the reasonable use of the policy and rampant abuse, and Amazon owes us an explanation. Those unfortunate enough to get the hatchet for returning “too many” items do not appear to share recognizable patterns of behavior.
Amazon knows how to take care of its customers most of the time. However, customer feedback indicates the need for more transparency in the banning process over its returns policy. It is not clear how Amazon decides who deserves to have their accounts banned. Online transactions are convenient, but lack of communication can be a problem.