I have had quite the backlog from what is informally referred to as “Returnuary“, and invariably, I found a lower cost product, a Brother PT-D210 label maker.
Well, yesterday, I finally got to that lovely little label maker, only to open the box and notice that the customer didn’t return everything. Take a look for yourself and see if you can identify what is missing.
Can you tell what’s missing? I’ll give you a clue – the PT-D210 does not run on batteries…
Ok, I won’t hold you in suspense any longer – Its the power adapter! Of course, I’m looking at this and thinking to myself: Why would someone steal a power adapter? But it makes perfect sense. They are specific to a limited number of units, why buy a new one for $9.99, when you can buy a new label maker, take the adapter, and send the rest back in for a full refund, right?
Why I Always Inspect Returns
Well, first of all, it is common sense. Anytime you get something from Amazon, you should inspect it, to make sure all parts are there, and that it is legitimately what you sent in. If you do commingled inventory, well, you might get a mishmash of things, but if you do non-commingled inventory (which I recommend), then you should be getting the same product you sent in, back.
What to do if not all parts are there
Of course the simplest answer is often the right one. Document what is missing, document the return / removal documentation, including, if there was a removal packing slip, and then submit a case to Amazon. Much like asking for a gesture of goodwill, you want to keep things short and to the point. When I get around to submitting a ticket, I’ll likely go short and sweet, here’s the product, here’s the removal order, here’s what’s missing and approximate value. That’s it.
Returns are part of the game whenever you resell. But, returns should be in good faith, in that the products should have all the necessary pieces included. When they aren’t, its incumbent on the seller to highlight what is missing. Amazon usually does a great job at making a seller whole. Its a shame, because I’m not sure that they actually go after the buyer. Far too many times, I’ve had buyers do things that span the gambit between absent mindedness, like this case with the PT-D210, and outright stealing, such as a case where a product was returned pretty much stripped to the plastic, even a motherboard was missing. So my advice: Always inspect returns, and do it very soon after you receive them. You should have between 9-18 months to actually put in a ticket, but, why leave something for tomorrow, when it can be done today?
Please share your return stories in the comments.