was just ripped off...what you can do to avoid being ripped off yourself

26 replies
Just learned something new regarding Paypal I think Warriors who provide services should be aware of. It may end up protecting you from outright thievery of your services.

About a month ago I was contracted by a fellow Warrior (who has since then been banned) to provide him for page one rankings for a couple of highly contested keywords. Client asked me how long it would take to get to page one on Google for both keywords and I told him to count on three months. As luck would have it we grabbed him the rankings within a couple weeks of starting.

So the client enthusiastically gave us a glowing testimonial regarding how we were the greatest thing to happen since sliced bread. All's well at this point.

One week after receiving the clients testimonial I receive a phone call from the client who stated he was dismayed that he was not getting that much extra traffic from the rankings which were at #7 and #8. I told him that was because he needed to be in the top 3 to expect to get a boost in traffic. When he asked if I would guarantee him a top 3 position I told him it would cost extra as we priced the quote to include getting him to page one not in the top 3 positions.

The next day he filed a dispute with paypal asking for his money back. Ok I thought, I'll let the folks at Paypal deal with him.

Which brings me to the lesson portion of this post.

When I went to respond to the dispute the only thing Paypal wanted from me was the tracking information for the shipment. But given the fact that we provided a service we did not have tracking information to give them. Which equated in the customer getting his full money back.

Where I messed up was I had the client send me the payment direct to my paypal account instead of me creating a money request for the funds and sending it to him that way. If I had done that I would of been able to indicate that the payment was for a service rather than a product. Then if there was a dispute Paypal could of acted accordingly. But given the fact that the client sent the money direct as a payment for a product he was able to get all his money back because I did not have a tracking number.

Moral of the story?

If you're collecting large sums of money via paypal from clients for services rendered you need to do so via a payment request instead of having the customer send it to you directly.

I'm pretty sure the guy I was dealing with knew this and used it as an opportunity to rip us off.

Now I know it, and now you do too.
#avoid #offwhat #ripped
  • Profile picture of the author Gary King
    Wow man, sorry. Hopefully there are others taking the place of that one and making you even more cash.

    Thanks for the share, but don't focus on it - fire up that determination and go kick some butt.

    You could always build a site and out rank them...
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    • Profile picture of the author mattlaclear
      Originally Posted by Gary King View Post

      Wow man, sorry. Hopefully there are others taking the place of that one and making you even more cash.

      Thanks for the share, but don't focus on it - fire up that determination and go kick some butt.

      You could always build a site and out rank them...
      To be honest I was livid at the guy for several days. It's not about the money but the principle behind it. Fortunately our business is going very well so we haven't been effected negatively at all by this. Other than the time I have wasted fuming about it. This post kind of serves as my moving past it though.

      What I'm actually going to do is set up 3 pages that go after the same keywords. I'll pump them all to 1-3 and block him from the traffic that way.

      It never pays to rip off an seo guy who carries grudges.
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  • Profile picture of the author thebitbotdotcom
    That sucks. Thanks for the heads up man.
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  • Profile picture of the author jamjar919
    Thanks for the share.

    Although...
    You could always build a site and out rank them...
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  • Profile picture of the author chriswight
    Yeah, PayPal's protection (for buyer and seller) only deals with physical goods.

    I've heard some creative solutions over the years for this problem. One seller of software actually printed the source code and mailed it to the customer in addition to providing a download. That way there was always a tracking number, even for his virtual product.

    Asshole customers are part of being in business. As long as they remain in the minority, you'll be fine.
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  • Profile picture of the author MilesT
    Sorry dude. If its any solace, they guy hired you because he can't do it himself and will most likely screw up his site, lose his ranking and go broke.

    You may want to hold off building competing sites and just watch him fail on his own.
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    • Profile picture of the author SteveJohnson
      Originally Posted by MilesT View Post

      You may want to hold off building competing sites and just watch him fail on his own.
      Where's the fun in that?
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  • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
    This is to late to help but in thhe future, chose "other" for shipping and enter a random IP. Then in the notes, let them know the details.

    Also, in the future, do not allow an address. This is what causes it to ask for shipping details. You can set "not required" in the button.

    Garrie
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    • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
      I just called PayPal to confirm this (no offense, Matt) and they said that this would cover you with PayPal for any type of service, including coaching, etc. It won't prevent a chargeback but then PayPal will fight on your side.

      Tina
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      • Profile picture of the author mattlaclear
        Originally Posted by TMG Enterprises View Post

        I just called PayPal to confirm this (no offense, Matt) and they said that this would cover you with PayPal for any type of service, including coaching, etc. It won't prevent a chargeback but then PayPal will fight on your side.

        Tina
        That's what I thought. Though I didn't call PP to confirm. Thanks Tina!
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  • Profile picture of the author EA
    Sorry to hear this but thanks for sharing this story with us. People who fraud/cheat or are dishonest with others, they are fouls and plain out s u c k.
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    • Profile picture of the author cscarpero
      That sucks! Pay pal can really be frustrating. Time to go look at merchant accounts.

      Thanks for the heads up
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  • Profile picture of the author globalpro
    Also, you have the option of sending an invoice from PayPal which I will use for clients that seem a bit iffy.

    Thanks,

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    I always send money as a service, but then I don't contest payments either. Go figure. People like that give people a bad name. When the internet becomes self-aware, it will see us as viruses.
    PS- My dog would never do anything like that!
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter.J
    Yup, its a sad story that honest hard working folk has to watch over their backs every deal they make because of people like this. Sorry to hear about that, it sucks I can imagine but thanks for informing everyone else though.
    More people like you who make everyone else aware will reduce the amount of scum that we interact with.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan Axelrod
    I'd let it go, man.

    No need to try to outrank him. Vindictive SEO never helps anyone. If you can stomach it, still use his glowing testimonial for future clients in his niche.

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    • Profile picture of the author Amber Jalink
      Originally Posted by TMG Enterprises View Post

      I just called PayPal to confirm this (no offense, Matt) and they said that this would cover you with PayPal for any type of service, including coaching, etc. It won't prevent a chargeback but then PayPal will fight on your side.

      Tina
      I was actually going to say this same thing - I've had it happen to me in the past, well, a few years ago but their policy for that hasn't changed that I was aware of.

      What I did in that instance, was even though pp kept asking for a tracking #, I simply called Paypal directly regarding the dispute, explained that it was a service AND it was provided (had proof and emails), and they fought for me.

      I won the chargeback, and I've won any disputes over the years because of using this exact approach. (Not many, but over 10 years, there's probably been maybe 4)

      Always, ALWAYS keep your emails too, to prove you've done what you said you would.

      Amber
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      • Profile picture of the author mattlaclear
        Originally Posted by dimeco View Post

        I was actually going to say this same thing - I've had it happen to me in the past, well, a few years ago but their policy for that hasn't changed that I was aware of.

        What I did in that instance, was even though pp kept asking for a tracking #, I simply called Paypal directly regarding the dispute, explained that it was a service AND it was provided (had proof and emails), and they fought for me.

        I won the chargeback, and I've won any disputes over the years because of using this exact approach. (Not many, but over 10 years, there's probably been maybe 4)

        Always, ALWAYS keep your emails too, to prove you've done what you said you would.

        Amber
        Hi Amber...you're right a call directly to PP can usually alleviate a situation. This time however it didn't work so hot for us. We were told that we had to either supply the tracking number or provide the refund.
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    Out rank him and flip the sites. Make some money AND get a little revenge. Lol.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alfred Shelver
    Can you link directly to one of these payment requests or must you email them off.


    Originally Posted by mattlaclear View Post

    If you're collecting large sums of money via paypal from clients for services rendered you need to do so via a payment request instead of having the customer send it to you directly.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
      Cathy,

      Just go into PayPal and under the Request Money tab is where you can do this. Just check off the services button and there is a space to verify what that service is and any details, too.

      I passed this info on to a couple people I know who do coaching and have had people turn around and say it was "unauthorized". This would totally eliminate that problem.

      Tina
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  • Profile picture of the author TPFLegionaire
    Hi Matt,

    (note: I currently use Matt's services, very happy!)

    What you may want to do is amend your procedures to only build external links for your customer via a cheap info domain that you control and of course redirect the domain to the one of your client so link juice flow.
    That way, if there is something untoward done to you or someone wants their money back, you can withdraw that work and redirect it somewhere else.
    You would of course inform the customer before hand (many SEO companies use this trick but don't tell the end user) and have an agreed handover period for the additional domain, somewhat well in the future.

    I am sorry you have been scammed that way, if my endorsement of your services can help then let me know and I will gladly give you a testimonial and of course more orders from me as soon as I need them.

    Best of success
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    • Profile picture of the author mattlaclear
      Originally Posted by TPFLegionaire View Post

      Hi Matt,

      (note: I currently use Matt's services, very happy!)

      What you may want to do is amend your procedures to only build external links for your customer via a cheap info domain that you control and of course redirect the domain to the one of your client so link juice flow.
      That way, if there is something untoward done to you or someone wants their money back, you can withdraw that work and redirect it somewhere else.
      You would of course inform the customer before hand (many SEO companies use this trick but don't tell the end user) and have an agreed handover period for the additional domain, somewhat well in the future.

      I am sorry you have been scammed that way, if my endorsement of your services can help then let me know and I will gladly give you a testimonial and of course more orders from me as soon as I need them.

      Best of success
      Great idea. Most of the people we do business with are completely trustworthy though.
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      • Profile picture of the author Hanz
        Get him, matt!!!! Destroy him!!!! Don't let him get away!!! Revenge!!!!!!!! J/K. I guess it's just one of those things. Comes with the territory. I hope you're feeling better now.
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  • Profile picture of the author Clear Seven
    Hi Matt - Thanx for the advice and no need to hold grudges buddy you dont need to fall down to his level, all the best
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    PayPal should have rejected that dispute since it was a service. Another option would be to create a Buy Now button on your website where the client enters the amount to be paid. Then when you agree on a price, you send them to a link where they enter the price and pay you. No messing with requesting money and worrying about this dispute issue.
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