How To Refund and Process Returns for Etsy Sellers


Get a handle on your Etsy returns. Read on to find out:

  • Know The Rules Of Etsy Refunds
  • Should You Accept Returns In Your Shop?
  • How Does An Experienced Seller Handle Returns?
  • How To Set Up Etsy Shop Polices for Refunds
  • How To Process A Refund In Your Etsy Shop
  • How To Contact Etsy Support For Help

Know The Rules Of Etsy Refunds

As an independent seller on the Etsy platform it is essential that shop owners understand the rules regarding refunds, returns and exchanges. Luckily, Etsy has made these policies smooth and straightforward for the shop owner to set up.

Etsy tells us that each seller is responsible for their own individual policies in regard to conflicts that may arise with the buyer. It is completely up to you as the seller to determine if your shop will accept refunds. In this article you will learn how to set up your shop policies to make it easier for you and the buyer.

Before putting your polices into place there are a few points you need to consider.

Should I Accept Returns To My Etsy Shop?

Now that we know the choice to take returns is ours alone you must now make the choice: Should you accept returns to your shop? Here are some things to consider when making your choice about your policies.

NO: Choosing a NO RETURN policy for your shop

FACT: The shop owner sets their own shop policies for returns. As an Etsy Seller you may not want to offer a return policy. Some shop owners do not choose to take returns for their products sold. Many sellers make custom products. Accepting a return cuts deeply into the bottom line on custom items as they cannot be resold. In addition, some sellers fear that taking returns on any items may roll their business into the loss column fairly quickly. The cost of shipping and relisting fees are factored in the equation of bottom line profits.

YES: Choose To Accept Returns to your shop

There are shop owners that feel accepting returns are not an issue for their bottom line. Some buyers feel customer service is king. When offering returns it is simply just a part of doing business. If you are hoping for repeat customer some sellers feel taking returns is a necessity. If you choose to offer refunds there are several scenarios to consider. We reached out to some seasoned sellers to find out how they handle returns.

How Does An Experienced Etsy Seller Handle Returns?

We learned from some seasoned sellers on how they set their own return policies and why they put these policies in place.

Emily of Etsy Shop HairOfTheFrog tells us “it’s a personal choice, and luckily Etsy lets sellers make their own policies. The most important thing is to be clear with your policies. I have often found I can close a sale by reminding customers about my return policy. For example, if a customer messages me to ask a question about an item, I will answer their question, AND let them know that they are free to return any item. I have found that when I include this message, I am more likely to see a sale.” Great approach Emily. I like how Emily turns her return policy into a positive sales tool.

Rebecca of Rebecca Waechter Art explained it this way: “I think what you do will really depend on what you sell. I don’t allow any returns on Etsy unless it’s my fault. I’ll make an exception sometimes if something crazy happens and once every 5 years something will. With artwork on my website… absolutely no returns on custom work unless it arrives damaged obviously. I give plenty of photos and have tons of communication happening throughout the process. They can return non-custom work but there are many criteria to meet: The return shipment has to be postmarked within 14 days of them receiving the art. I have to receive it in the original condition that I sent it in. The return shipping is on their dime and I don’t refund the cost of the original shipping charge. It’s to your benefit to be specific. Every case is different, though. Sometimes you have to weigh the cost vs good customer service.”

  • Shop Owner: Lisa
  • Show Name: Home By Liv
  • Established: 2016

” As the owner of Home By Liv our Etsy shop has not seen many returns in our 5 years as sellers. The few requests for returns were based on the buyer simply changing his or her mind. Our policy is simple: If the buyer pays for the shipping back to us, we will issue a refund. This refund policy seems fair to us. Make sure you add your return policy to your shop settings.”

How To Set Up Etsy Shop Policies For Refunds in Etsy

Activating and posting your return policy within your Etsy shop is simple.

Follow the prompt below to turn on and off your shop policies regarding accepting returns and exchanges. These setting will also allow you to set the conditions associated with returns.

Manage Your Refund Settings in your Etsy Shop
  • Click on Shop Manager – Settings
  • Click info and appearances – Policy
  • Click on edit policies in home page
  • Click the “edit” icon ( top right)
  • Scroll down the page to “returns +exchanges”
  • Choose which options are best for your shop.
  • Click “Save” on the bottom.

How Do You Process A Refund In Your Etsy Shop?

We love that Etsy makes it effortless to issue a full or partial refund to your buyers. With just a few clicks you can issue your refund right to the buyer quickly. The prompt below will help walk you through the steps of a refund. Best of all the funds will be deducted right from your Etsy balance and sent to the buyer with Etsy’s automated system. Etsy will contact the buyer with the payment so you don’t have to manage the funds yourself.

Issue A Refund In Etsy
  1. On Etsy.com, click the Your Account icon.
  2. Click Shop Manager.
  3. Click Orders and Shipping.
  4. Click the  (ellipsis) icon next to the order you want to refund.
  5. Click Issue a refund.
  6. Select a Reason for issuing a refund and add an optional Message to buyer.
  7. If you want to refund the entire transaction, click the box by Issue a full refund. If you want to partially refund the transaction, enter the Amount to refund next to the item.
  8. Click Review refund.
  9. Click Submit.

Issuing a refund in Etsy is that simple.

How To Contact Etsy Support as An Etsy Seller

Although it’s your choice to accept refunds don’t feel like you need to go into it alone. Etsy’s support is here to help if you run into disputes with your buyers. There are several ways to reach out for assistance with Etsy support.

Contacting Etsy Support

Etsy offers support by phone as well as by e-mail. Unfortunately, they do not have a chat enabled for texting a representative directly. You can email at the address below or you can go into your shop settings and request by email and use their form to submit your request. If calling there are several prompts to pass through. Once you get to the correct department you have an option to have a representative call you back instead of waiting on hold.

Contact By Phone:

  • North America: 1-844-935-3879
  • United Kingdom : +44+800+011+9700
  • Australia: +61-1800-531-536

Contact By Email:

Support@etsy.com Reply time is 1-2 days

In Short

As an Etsy Seller make a choice about accepting returns to your shop that works for you. Once your plan is in place make sure you update your shop policies. Happy Selling! Here is wishing you no returns this year.

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