Selling ebook with paypal with no refund policy, is it possible?

19 replies
Hello,
I want to sell digital eBook through paypal on my own site. The cost of
digital ebook is $9.95.
I have a stated clearly on sales page in bold that "we will issue no
refund once digital ebook is purchased. No refund under any circumstances & all purchases are final" even if I mentioned on sales page do they still get refunds from paypal? if yes, what is the time frame that they can ask for a refund.

I am going to implement maxmind for fraudulent transaction.is it enough? if not what we can do to avoid frauds..
I have heard some horror stories of chargebacks & refunds..any help in this regard will be appreciated
#ebook #paypal #policy #refund #selling
  • Profile picture of the author tehnolife
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    Paypal terms say that you can get a refund within 45 days. So, even if you have said that you don't give refunds, the customers can ask paypal for them.

    Another thing is that paypal gives refunds only to tangible goods, not to digital ones. So , if someone opens a dispute, you can tell paypal that is a digital item and they will close the dispute in your favor.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnCalvinII
      Originally Posted by tehnolife View Post

      ... paypal gives refunds only to tangible goods, not to digital ones. So , if someone opens a dispute, you can tell paypal that is a digital item and they will close the dispute in your favor.
      That's one of the nice things about paypal, no downloading the product and then demanding a refund. I've only had it happen once but as soon as paypal found out it was a digital item, that was the end of it.

      I think you might be going a little overboard with your no refunds wording though. A simple "All Sales are Final" or "Since this item is a digital download all sales are final." Something along those lines.

      What you have now - in your post - would make me wonder about the quality of the product since you are putting so much emphasis on no refunds.
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    • Profile picture of the author faceblogger
      Originally Posted by tehnolife View Post

      Paypal terms say that you can get a refund within 45 days. So, even if you have said that you don't give refunds, the customers can ask paypal for them.

      Another thing is that paypal gives refunds only to tangible goods, not to digital ones. So , if someone opens a dispute, you can tell paypal that is a digital item and they will close the dispute in your favor.
      Thanks for this!
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    • Profile picture of the author brandonline
      Originally Posted by tehnolife View Post

      Paypal terms say that you can get a refund within 45 days. So, even if you have said that you don't give refunds, the customers can ask paypal for them.

      Another thing is that paypal gives refunds only to tangible goods, not to digital ones. So , if someone opens a dispute, you can tell paypal that is a digital item and they will close the dispute in your favor.
      Thank for your useful information, i had been in this situation before. Sometimes like they just want a free product.
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  • Profile picture of the author lotsofsnow
    If you do not want to give a refund on digital goods sold via PayPal, then you don't have to. PayPal will answer any dispute about a digital download with "Too bad for you buyer, but your money is gone...". They use different working though.
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    • Profile picture of the author Prady N
      Thanks guys for your prompt reply. It's really helpful.

      I really believe in giving good product & customer service but as the traffic type is incentivized fraud rate might be too high.. i.e the reason I am concerned about refund rates & charge backs. However your expert comments are helpful & I will put no refund policy in a manner suggested by
      John & JMSD

      Also I am going to implement maxmind credit card fraud detection to avoid
      fraudulent orders..you guys have any suggestions?

      still if people really want refund for genuine reason & they email me..I will be happy to give them refund
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  • Profile picture of the author JMSD
    Originally Posted by yogk31 View Post

    Hello,
    I want to sell digital eBook through paypal on my own site. The cost of
    digital ebook is $9.95.
    I have a stated clearly on sales page in bold that "we will issue no
    refund once digital ebook is purchased. No refund under any circumstances & all purchases are final" even if I mentioned on sales page do they still get refunds from paypal? if yes, what is the time frame that they can ask for a refund.

    I am going to implement maxmind for fraudulent transaction.is it enough? if not what we can do to avoid frauds..
    I have heard some horror stories of chargebacks & refunds..any help in this regard will be appreciated
    As has already been suggested, a more tactful rewording of your terms would do much to ensure that you do not frighten off your prospective customers when all you are attempting to do is to alert them to your fair terms of service.

    You could say something like "I (or We) would like you to be happy with your purchase. However, before placing your order, please read our terms regarding our Returns and Cancellation Policy relating to digital products."

    In your TOS, state that "Digital products are non-returnable and non-refundable. We regret, therefore, that once the product has been puchased by you, your order may not be cancelled or refunded. If, however, you experience difficulty accessing or downloading your purchased product, then help is available - please see your purchase invoice/receipt for our support contact details." Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer!

    Although, by law, consumers do not have the same protection for digital product purchases as they do for physical products, it's never a good practice to refuse a refund when a request is made. Even if a dispute is raised with PayPal which is subsequently dismissed, it leaves a question mark with PayPal about you, the vendor. Receive enough such "disputes" and you may experience problems with PayPal.

    True, you will have a few of your customers downloading your product with the full intention of demanding an immediate refund whilst keeping and using the product but, in the main, purchasers enter into a transaction in the hope of getting the solution to their problem.

    I've requested refunds on four occasions in as many years from digital product vendors who used PayPal only. Except in one case where I was forced to raise a dispute via PayPal (and received a full refund for the digital product), I wrote a polite email to each of the vendors concerned stating my disappointment that their product did not meet with the expectations as laid out in their sales copy and requested a refund. In one case, I couldn't even access the download page and the vendor concerned couldn't even be bothered, until I raised a PayPal dispute, to respond to my plea for help.

    A full refund was made promptly and without any argument by three out of four merchants. In fact, each of those three insisted that I keep their product regardless of the refund as "compensation for [my] disappointment". But I declined as I did not consider that to be fair. Their goodwill gesture so impressed me, though (I, too, believe in maintaining goodwill with my customers), that I made a point of buying some other product from those merchants. So both parties remained on good terms and a short term loss/initial disappointment turned into long-term gain by vendor and customer respectively.

    Rogues exist online as well as offline. Just sell as many ebooks as you can and raise your price a little to factor in losses due to unscrupulous customers attempting to exploit the system.
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  • Profile picture of the author Christophe Young
    I don't think it's necessary to implement all these fraud detection measures. If you have a good product, you'll have a low refund rate and that's just part of the business.

    I was really worried about refunds and fraud too when I first started, but after a while I found out that most people are honest and fraudulent purchases are pretty rare.
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  • Profile picture of the author jiantastic
    Paypal will mostly flag your account if you get too many buyers requesting a refund. Digital or not Paypal can and will refund the buyers. I've had money ripped from my Paypal account because 3 buyers decided to get a refund for an eBook I sold. eBay/Paypal just gets worse every year for sellers. Alert Pay works really great for me
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  • Profile picture of the author christopher jon
    You'll run into problems with credit card purchases, those refunds seem to trump all policies.

    I suppose you could avoid this by accepting paypal only and not credit card purchases through paypal but this could potentially lose you some sales.
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    • Profile picture of the author linkbeasts
      Originally Posted by christopher jon View Post

      You'll run into problems with credit card purchases, those refunds seem to trump all policies.

      I suppose you could avoid this by accepting paypal only and not credit card purchases through paypal but this could potentially lose you some sales.
      That might be different depending on the bank. I ordered a product I did not get, tried many times to deal with the company to get said download, failed at that so went to the credit card company who promptly told me that as i paid through paypal, even though I used my CC to do it that paypal ended up acting as the " bank " and that they couldn't touch the matter. ( I used my Bank Of America CC, and even asked for a higher level CSR to speak with and I was told the same deal ).
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  • Profile picture of the author amritrr
    I seriously did not know that there is no refund for digital goods. Is it written somewhere on Paypal's site? And would web designing fall under digital goods? Though we never had any charge backs ever for web designing but it did happen quite often for domain bookings. We have stopped taking payment through Paypal for domain bookings.
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  • Profile picture of the author Newbieee
    yes, for paypal there is no guarantee refund for digital goods. unless the seller issues it. if not, paypal will be in favor of the seller.

    so you can just say refunds under certain circumstances like accidental multiple orders.

    or something like that.

    sometimes peoples brower screws up and makes multiple orders, you got to understand that.

    =)
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  • Profile picture of the author sal64
    So for $10...is your ebook so good that you don't give refunds?

    Looks like you have figured out the best way to get no refunds...

    Make no sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Thornhill
    If you concentrate on creating a solid product and provide excellent customer service refunds shouldn't be an issue.

    You obviously have your reasons for not offering a refund but I would imagine this would hurt sales big style.

    People like to be reassured just before they hit the buy button that if they are not happy they can get their money back.

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author Newbieee
    yup, i agree, in this modern day of internet marketing refund is a must.

    on the other hand its hard to balance refund VS competition.

    meaning people can take the product refund it but use it against you, adding to your competition.

    there are those people around.

    but then again if you are refunding clickbank stuff then its not your fault. lol
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    Just had a refund request for one of my eBooks. I'm holding out as it's obviously a digital product and my PayPal account is in good standing, but I guess it depends which member of PayPal staff handle the dispute.

    While I've granted refunds in the past, this customer has asked for a refund after 3 weeks. I'd say that's taking the **** given that I'm selling a WSO type thing for less than $10.

    Ah well, I've been around long enough to know the Internet is full of jerks.
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  • Profile picture of the author JeanneLynn
    I don't think this will be possible. The customer can always cry to their credit card company.

    If I were selling an ebook, I'd be more concerned about the shady websites that share ebooks and cheat the authors out of their money.
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  • Profile picture of the author kochtgr
    I suppose it's possible but you would have more sales if you had a refund policy and third party company like clickbank to back it up...
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