Over the past several months we have been introducing features that give authors greater control over how they manage their interactions with customers on Envato Market. Fundamentally, we want our authors to learn more with each customer interaction and let this knowledge shape each decision that they make, from marketing and item support, to how to create their products.
Today, we’re announcing that late next month, we’re going to be rolling out a number of new features on CodeCanyon and ThemeForest that allow authors more control over how they engage with refunds, disputes and ratings with their customers.
You can find an overview of the changes below, and what this means for you as an author in this Help Centre article.
1. We are creating a tool, through which authors and customers can resolve refund requests on the Envato platform. For an overview of the tool, check out this Help Centre article.
2. Authors will be able to directly manage a customer’s refund request, and will be be responsible for the decision to approve, or decline a discretionary refund.
Note: There are two kinds of refunds. One is known as obligatory refund, (ie: required by law) and the other is a discretionary refund (ie: your choice). Our legal eagles and the Envato Help team have put together a point of reference document to help you understand which is which. You can find that document here.
3. When an author approves a refund, the purchase will be reversed. Envato and the author will divide the cost of the refund in the same way revenue is divided for a sale.
4. When an author approves a refund, the customer’s rating for that item purchase will be removed, along with the customer’s rights to use and download the item.
5. All future ratings and reviews will now be public.
6. Customers will now be able to raise a dispute with Envato if the refund request is declined or if the request has not been actioned within 5 days
At their core, these changes stem from our desire to create a fairer system that equally acknowledges the responsibilities and implications on Authors, Envato and our Customers when it comes to refunds and their place in our marketplace.
Ensuring that the cost of a refund was divided in the same way as proceeds for a sale was important to us, but equally important was our desire for authors to understand, and ultimately be in control of the refund process itself.
Ratings were an important piece of the puzzle. Ratings exist to help customers understand the experience of purchasing and using the item. This was an opportunity for us to improve ratings towards that goal by allowing customers to read the reviews associated with ratings and allow authors to remove both the rating and review if the item had been refunded and disallowed for use.
Fundamentally, we believe that the more power we can give to authors to take greater control over (and learn from!) their interactions with customers, the more successful our authors will be in the long term.
How can I prepare for this change?
With power comes responsibility. And it’s important to know what your obligations will be after this change, so check out this Help Centre article to learn more. We also want to encourage our authors to be asking themselves a few important questions…
Firstly, what is my policy on giving customers discretionary refunds? Whilst the item promotion guidelines still apply (you still can’t promote your policy on your item pages), it’s good to think about this for consistency.
1. How might this policy influence a customer’s buying experience?
2. What will my process be for resolving refund requests with my customers?
3. How will I act on the feedback that comes from these requests?
Please take some time to learn about the new system, discuss the changes below, and be sure to reach out if you have any questions. We’ll be responding to new questions at the end of each Melbourne day, while there are new questions to be answered.