Buyers Refunds


#1

I’m recently experiencing buyers requesting refunds for items that have no reasons to be refunded, like graphics.

Envato must wake up on this some buyers that just purchase the file, then ask for a refund right away, and keep the file (because it’s not a physical object that you can return like at the store).

What is the reason to request a refund for a set of mock-ups or icons? None, they’re graphics, so if you purchased them it’s because you needed them:some items shouldn’t be refundable, the specifics are written everywhere, if something is not as the buyer expected is the buyer fault 99% of the cases.

The reason why we didn’t have a refund system for years is because people abuses it, so why is legit now


#2

At least the buyer should be forced to write a comment about the product in case of refund so the author knows if something is wrong


#4

Refunds should be possible only:

  • with a written explanation + screenshots of why the item is not working as advertised
  • refunds can be requested once a week per account
  • when a refund is performed the author receives as well the written explanation made by the buyer.

As things are right now they’re not working people requesting refunds for digital products is not something we should do and we know why.

Refunds must be occasional, rare and justified for the marketplace to continue


#6

We’re talking about refunds, right? Can’t you just deny the refund request?


#7

Refunds are a fact of life, and there are buyers that genuinely request a refund for a valid reason, in which case approving it is a must, otherwise they can dispute it with Envato and it will still be approved.

There are the rare occasions, when some buyers try to game the system, in which case as my colleague @baileyherbert stated, you can reject it.

Envato has both your back and the buyers back, in the sense that:

A legitimate refund request

  • Must be approved, a buyer must get what he is paying for!
  • Will be investigated, and approved by Envato if authors reject it, and if the item is broken or promises false features can result in the item being soft or hard rejected.

A fraudulent refund request

  • Can be rejected and reviews can be removed if they are blackmailing, which can also result in the suspension of the buyer
  • Will be investigated, and rejected by Envato as well if the buyer disputes it.

Things are simple mate! If the buyer is correct, then you must fix the reason he’s requesting a refund for, but you’ll have to approve that specific refund, otherwise, they are perfectly entitled to dispute it. It’s like getting a broken phone, you get a refund, then you can purchase the correct one later on, considering if an item is broken, if the refund is approved, they will not be able to download the fixed product.

If the buyer is trying to fraudulently get a refund, reject it, and escalate the matter with Envato.

But, let’s keep things positive! There are 99 buyers that are awesome for 1 that is trying to game the system. And that’s a great ratio! :slight_smile:


#8

“Refunds are a fact of life, and there are buyers that genuinely request a refund for a valid reason, in which case approving it is a must, otherwise they can dispute it with Envato and it will still be approved.”

Just no sorry, I already explained digital goods are not real life products: you can buy them and refund them in a click, no explanation needed, and you keep the product because is not physical, you don’t have to return it try to understand it. Maybe you’re not bad persons so for you is absurd that someone requests a refund, but these pirates just have 75.000 accounts in the ENvato market, they buy and refund constantly I don’t know why they allow it.

For 10 years our envato products weren’t refundable, probably now Envato can’t surpass Paypal’s bureaucracy.

Just write in the “Terms of Acceptance” these digital goods are not refundable for these reasons.

We can’t have our stuff bought for free because it is already distributed everywhere for free, just because it’s 3 files a month doesn’t mean is not important.

The rules are done by the marketplace if they decide you can’t refund, you just can’t that’s it, or you buy your stuff somewhere else.
Point


#9

If you go to a surgeon and he fails he’s not gonna refund you, just to make an example. And is not gonna be. Ever. some things are not refundable and we knew it back then

So if Envato is refunding now it might because it’s closing the market, or because they can’t protect it anymore so they just gave up the possibility to tutelate refunds.

Remember the Company that owns can do literally anything with their marketplace, if they accept refunding is because they want to, not accepting refunding might be more problematic for their bureaucracy.

I can understand that, but you’re The Company, this is your Market and You Envato make the rules.
We say No refunding? no refunding that’s it, this is our house, the buyers accept it in the Terms of Conditions when they subscribe, easy as that.


#10

They do not allow it. They block these accounts and have fraud prevention measures in place. Give the forums a search for “locked account” and you’ll see proof that there’s a lot of customers who get locked out after trying to purchase something. The issue is, how do you balance this in a way that real customers aren’t affected more than fraudsters?

Not true. Envato has always provided refunds to customers when appropriate. I believe they used to cover the costs for authors (in some circumstances at least), but the market has grown significantly, and now that authors are in charge of deciding refunds, authors should also pay for them.

They do not handle refunds like this anymore. Refund requests always go to the author first. You will always be able to see when a customer has requested a refund, and you will always be given the option to approve or decline it. Of course, if you decline it when they are within the refund terms, then Envato will step in and override you.

Perhaps you’re confusing refunds with disputed payments. Envato does not accept disputes, they fight them and try to get the money back for you, and they lock the accounts responsible immediately. Laws regarding bank disputes have not changed in the last 10 years.

There’s a very clear refund policy. You can see it here: https://themeforest.net/page/customer_refund_policy

I am genuinely confused. Just deny the refund requests if they aren’t valid. I’m not sure what you are thinking - the only typical valid reason for a refund request (unless your item is broken) is if they have not downloaded the item, in which case you should refund them.

Yep, you’re right! The rules are done by the marketplace. They decide what constitutes a refund, and if you don’t agree with it, then by your logic, sell your stuff somewhere else? I’d say the refund policy here is quite fair, though a bit strict, and already turns some potential buyers away as it stands now. Nobody is forcing you to approve refund requests if they downloaded the item. That’s very fair, in my opinion.

Enabled is not lying. There are indeed genuine cases for refunds. For example, a customer buys one of your items but meant to buy a different one that costs $10 more. This customer has not downloaded the item he bought, so you know he isn’t going to do anything malicious. Are you still going to deny his refund, and lose the $10 that you’d get otherwise? And if he did download it, just decline the refund request. Buyers are not allowed to get refunds if they downloaded the item, unless you (the author) decide otherwise.


#11

You can explain that when you get sued, like all other small companies that sell “non real life products”, Google Play and AppStore, refunds happen. This is life.

You’re not going to a surgeon. You’re purchasing a digital good.

Great idea! That will be the moment Envato will plunge to 0 buyers in 24 hours. Really? Purchase a broken app from the AppStore or PlayStore, pay 69$ for it and request a refund because it’s broken, then you get a nice message “Sorry, these are our terms. You’re not getting anything back!”

Yeah, I forgot that Envato Support just hired new born babies that only have a big green button that says " Approve refund! Buyer is right!" I rejected a few refunds that were “suspicious” and without probable cause, the buyer disputed it, he lost. I got one star, I sent a message to support, and poof, the one star disappeared.

Envato doesn’t just hand over cash to buyers back when they are not right. That’s where the terms come in place. You bought Red File that said it was red and when you opened it was blue and the author said that’s normal. Refund granted by Envato. You bought a red file, you downloaded it and opened it and it was red but you wanna get your money back so you invoke some weird reason? Refund rejected by Author and Envato.

red and blue files use for example, not actually referring to colors, just for comparison purposes


For a more detailed reply, check out @baileyherbert comment above. It’s quite brilliant. I’m just stating the obvious here. No refunds? Great! Class action law-suit over class action law-suit, over buyers leaving, over authors getting sued, over PayPal, Payoneer, Banks locking account, police getting involved for theft, and a lot of other beautiful stuff.

Because. A refund must be granted if an item is broken. Otherwise it’s called millions of ways, but in legal terms it’s called THEFT. Therefore, please, be a bit realistic! :slight_smile: If the buyer is right he deserves a refund, no questions asked.


#12

Hello everybody and hello Enabled and Giallo.
This discussion is very interesting and I understand both points of view, anyway I think the core of the matter is still untouched and is what Giallo is explaining more or less: we have for example customers that purchase a product, don’t even open the manual, try to install it in the wrong way and then ask a refund.
We ask what the problem is, ask to open a support ticket (we have people answering on the helpdesk so we don’t provide support on the forum) and they complain that is too much effort to open a ticket.
ANother very very frequent case is the increasing amount of customers asking for free customizations and work, then when you don’t do it they leave 1 stars for every kind of lame reason, masking the real reason (the fact they are not able to get free work from us) under fake reasons like product malfunctioning and so on.
I had to take tons of screenshots to proove this to Envato, and I was totally right in fact the 1 stars got removed.
This went on on they left again 1 star, got removed AGAIN.
See? THIS is being exploited and blackmailed from customers.
In the end I had to ask them to request a refund, just to break this loop, and this was an agency who got paid by their customers and their websites were finished, with our themes, and we got nothing more than a HUGE money loss (we answered in some cases more than 50 tickets for one customer, the average is 1 ticket every 15 customers).
So it should happen that once you get a rating deleted, you can’t post another one for the same product, otherwise they can do it FOREVER.

You see, this is the real trick.

And more and more customers are now using this trick, I was just quoting a couple of cases, but it seems that if I have time to loose and I’m a lame agency I can blackmail some author till the death or till he gets a brain stroke, because he will not be able to get rid of such mechanism.

I understand all the “market and customer rights” speech from Enabled and is 100% correct, but the system still has flows that customers are exploiting, and the Envato help is a very long and time consuming way of managing the cases.

Plus still there are mechanisms that can’t be handled (such as if I wanna stress some author till the death to have free work otherwise I leave 1star for fake reasons that Envato won’t delete cos they seems legit).

So I hope someone is putting some effort in order to evolve the situation, because actually is seriously not good.


#13

Exactly. The solution is easy and here here it is: you don’t allow it.

Let me give you a random example (and I could give you hundreds of them): if you don’t want somebody to do something bad in your business, you just provide a solution, a rule:

  • years ago people realized they hated smoke in public places, so we made it forbidden in public places: our public places in Europe are now better (even if I am smoker). Smokers were pissed at the beginning but they finally accepted it.

When you enter and subscribe at any Envato Marketplace you accept Terms and Conditions. In these Terms and Conditions you write that the products purchased are not refundable.

We don’t sell expensive products, we sell stuff to agencies, not poor people. We’re not a charity, we don’t offer services that should be refundable. You just give tools that our real customers don’t need. Your customers are top notch agencies around the World, not a 14 years old that purchase an Action and then ask the refund for it, just because he can.

Why would you refund a 3$ template to a Studio or a Company. Are you kidding me? Why these graphicriver or audiojungle files are even refundable!! I can understand for a website template, or something very expensive. But when you buy the vector drawing or a clipart why the hell is it refundable: you literally read the dimensions and see the picture before buying it, there’s no way you were looking for something else.

Is like you’re selling jokes for 5$ and once you told the joke you give back the 5$ to the customer, while customer is still laughing in your face :smiley: The only difference is that Envato still earns from the transaction, but not us.

Do you think that a studio that can risk to spend 50$ on a website template can’t afford the risk to not having it work properly? Are you out of your mind?? You just allowing kids and not professionists to download our stuff for free.

I’ve never been so weirded out about something as in these recent refunds that every now and then appears.

As soon as Envato stops acting stupid and being in denial about reality, the matter will be solved, but if more authors suffers about this I’m gonna leave myself as well.

So wake the f* up Envato Staff, get a good lawyer and resolve the situation, take a look into this with an Author perspective, and try to think why 10 years ago you didn’t allow refunds here.
I love you guys you’re the best Agency in the World, you can do everything you want and people will be at your side. But remember we post our products in your marketplaces because you should offer us Visibility and Protection and recently, you ain’t fu**ing providing any of those.


#14

I once had a very rude customer that asked for a refund after he gave me an 1 star rating and a very bad attitude.He wanted all 6$ that he paid for my item and,i tried to explain him that i can’t give him all that amount since i only earned like 2$. Sometimes people who buy items are just rude and actually i learned that they not even follow the help file.They just rush into stupid and rude actions.I buy and i will keep buying things from GR but,even if an item is not how it should be,i always try to talk with the author prior to give him bad attitude/comments or ratings!