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Rejecting Your Returns...

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Rejecting Your Returns...

Old 12-03-04, 01:47 PM
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Originally posted by renaldow
This is fairly old news... stores have been doing this for years. I don't know why people are getting upset about it, the average honest consumer will never be effected by it.
I believe KB toys started this process about 6 years ago.

It's aimed at deterring fraud....mostly the internal kind.

....and those of you who ever worked in retail, you know what I'm talking about.

Last edited by candyrocket786; 12-03-04 at 01:51 PM.
Old 12-03-04, 02:08 PM
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In many states, if a new item does not work as it's supposed to, the store *must* allow a return/refund. There are a few exceptions, but it's a pretty wide open consumer protection law.

I agree with calhoun07, based on those four categories, that's how I think of them. I return things that don't work, sometimes for the same thing, sometimes for another; and sometimes I just have buyers remorse. But I don't open it, and I don't abuse it.

I think things like returning clothes [especially kids clothes] for a different size or color, as long as the tag is intact and the item in like-new condition [except swimsuits of course, the health issue], should be immune to this kind of policy.
Old 12-03-04, 03:24 PM
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is this a whole database thing store-specific, chain-specific or is it nationwide?
Old 12-03-04, 03:50 PM
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According to the article I read in the Dallas Morning News, the database is nationwide.
Old 12-03-04, 04:45 PM
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I wonder if returns from online sales are included?
Old 12-03-04, 04:55 PM
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I believe, to an extent, in 'the customer is always right,' but certainly a company has to make money as well.

Is it just me, or does there seem to be a growing 'We're the *blank* company, we can do whatever we want/You're lucky we let you shop with us' attitude in the world of business today.

This thing, Best Buy's angels/devils, the networks shifting their programs, RIAA and Metallica suing its listeners, even the Dixie Chicks saying "Most of our fans are stupid redneck hunters" or whatever it was.
Old 12-03-04, 07:11 PM
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customer is always right worked until too many people took advantage of it

I can't speak for every product, but if you visit anandtech and some other PC forums there are a bunch of people that think it's their right to buy a product, push it past specs and then return it when they are bored or if it doesn't work as well as they think it should.
Old 12-03-04, 08:11 PM
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"The Customer Is Always Right" has got to be the most successful ad campaign ever, as it was originally used by Wollworth to promote his dime stores. It amazes me people expect all stores to honor an old ad phrase. Do you go to all fast food places expecting that they will all "Make It Your Way?"
Old 12-04-04, 03:52 AM
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Re: Re: Re: Re: Rejecting Your Returns...

Originally posted by RevLiver
However, they are required by law in most, if not all, states to post their return policy. Has anyone checked Best Buy recently to see if their return policy now mentions their actual policy? If it hasn't been changed, I'd expect to see legal action.
Check the back of your receipt to find Best Buy's return policy. I don't see how the existence of this sort of "tracking" database has any bearing on what is printed there.
Old 12-04-04, 04:30 PM
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I was trying to return a dvd I got as a gift to Toys R Us. Since it was a gift, the person took the stickers off such as the price but also along with all the others ones, the Toys R Us barcode sticker.

I tried to return it but since the barcode was different, as it was taken off, and even though I had a reciept they wouldn't take it back because it rang up as $0.00.

She said the manager wouldn't let me return it because since it rang up at $0 that there must have been a promotion or something where the movie was free. Whatever.

I don't think there was a way to get Spider-Man 2 for free.
Old 12-04-04, 06:26 PM
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Originally posted by calhoun07
"The Customer Is Always Right" has got to be the most successful ad campaign ever, as it was originally used by Wollworth to promote his dime stores. It amazes me people expect all stores to honor an old ad phrase. Do you go to all fast food places expecting that they will all "Make It Your Way?"
actually, I think that most Fast-Food places will "Make It Your Way."

I know for a fact that Burger King, McDonalds, and Wendy's will make food the way you want (e.g. no onions, extra lettuce, etc)
Old 12-05-04, 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Giles
for the record I know that Borders's keeps a record history of all and any returns, I should know I am surprised that I haven't reached my limit.
I don't know how Borders can keep track of it. I did a couple of returns with receipts, the cashier entered the store/receipt numbers on the receipt, scanned my returns and then refunded my money. Btw I paid cash, so I don't really know how they track the returns to the individuals
Old 12-05-04, 09:38 PM
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Was watching the news about, 1 person was upset about it, she left the item on the couter, stepped back and took a photo and told the clerk, look I made an attempt to return said item, it is in your hands now. You have now forced me to do a credit card charge back.
Old 12-05-04, 10:05 PM
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Doesn't bother me at all. I rarely return items, and when i have i've had no problems doing so. I'm glad stores are trying to crack down on fraud.
Old 12-05-04, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Evad
Was watching the news about, 1 person was upset about it, she left the item on the couter, stepped back and took a photo and told the clerk, look I made an attempt to return said item, it is in your hands now. You have now forced me to do a credit card charge back.
If its a legit return, I like this method!
Old 12-06-04, 09:25 AM
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This is interesting news which I hope is not true. I have always counted on unopened items being returnable according to their policy and what is written on the back of the receipt. I return 25-50% of the stuff I buy, but I probably buy more than the average person so keeping at least half of what I return should still make me an above average customer. A few weeks ago I received another set of BBY Preferred Customer coupons which (as usual) I didn't use because there wasn't anything I wanted during the valid dates, so you'd think I'd be a "devil", but I guess not yet.

Why do I return so much? Because I don't have time to make multiple trips to the store and research everything ahead of time. When I see a good deal that looks interesting or a new DVD release, and especially if I have a coupon, I make a trip Tuesday morning and buy a bunch of stuff some of which I'm not sure if I want. That way it's in my hands and I've locked in the price. Then I have up to 30 days to research the item, watch for better deals elsewhere, possibly rent the movie if I haven't seen it, and then return it UNOPENED if I change my mind. Since I go there on Tuesdays to buy something else (except when there's no new releases that interest me) returning something is not that big of a deal (usually 5 minutes in line).

If they change the return policy (at least on unopened items) then they will lose a lot of my business. I reserve the right to be wishy-washy. Since they won't PM Costco or online stores, I sometimes buy there and return the more expensive item. Now if every company and online store posted all of their deals for the next 30 days in advance, then I could select the best place to begin with and I'd have a lot less returns, but considering they hide that information to the last possible moment, I feel it not only proper but necessary to return things occasionally. One of the fundamental rules for capitalism to work is that information (pricing and comparison info) on goods and services need to be freely and easily available -- something which I find is often not the case. Well, that's my opinion on the subject.

Last edited by Manzana; 12-06-04 at 09:31 AM.
Old 12-06-04, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Evad
Was watching the news about, 1 person was upset about it, she left the item on the couter, stepped back and took a photo and told the clerk, look I made an attempt to return said item, it is in your hands now. You have now forced me to do a credit card charge back.
don't know if she will win in a cc chargeback since returns are subject to a store's policy. Not sure if the CC networks mandate that stores accept returns. There are a bunch of mom and pop stores in NYC that clearly say returns will be for store credit only, exchange only, blah blah.
Old 12-06-04, 12:04 PM
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Groucho's comment about the big screens is quite correct. Worse, I'd say, are the people in Menards and Sears who, after labor day, try to return their "used only once" barbecues.
Old 12-06-04, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Manzana
This is interesting news which I hope is not true. I have always counted on unopened items being returnable according to their policy and what is written on the back of the receipt. I return 25-50% of the stuff I buy, but I probably buy more than the average person so keeping at least half of what I return should still make me an above average customer. A few weeks ago I received another set of BBY Preferred Customer coupons which (as usual) I didn't use because there wasn't anything I wanted during the valid dates, so you'd think I'd be a "devil", but I guess not yet.

Why do I return so much? Because I don't have time to make multiple trips to the store and research everything ahead of time. When I see a good deal that looks interesting or a new DVD release, and especially if I have a coupon, I make a trip Tuesday morning and buy a bunch of stuff some of which I'm not sure if I want. That way it's in my hands and I've locked in the price. Then I have up to 30 days to research the item, watch for better deals elsewhere, possibly rent the movie if I haven't seen it, and then return it UNOPENED if I change my mind. Since I go there on Tuesdays to buy something else (except when there's no new releases that interest me) returning something is not that big of a deal (usually 5 minutes in line).

If they change the return policy (at least on unopened items) then they will lose a lot of my business. I reserve the right to be wishy-washy. Since they won't PM Costco or online stores, I sometimes buy there and return the more expensive item. Now if every company and online store posted all of their deals for the next 30 days in advance, then I could select the best place to begin with and I'd have a lot less returns, but considering they hide that information to the last possible moment, I feel it not only proper but necessary to return things occasionally. One of the fundamental rules for capitalism to work is that information (pricing and comparison info) on goods and services need to be freely and easily available -- something which I find is often not the case. Well, that's my opinion on the subject.
I think those return restrictions are targeted at those people who try to use the item once and then return it. When a store takes that return back they can't put it back on the shelf but to sell it as open box or something.

I sure don't hope they would limit returns on UNOPENED items as well. I'm in the same situation as my local BB is 40 miles away. If I find an item on sale that I'm interested in, I usually grab it first and do the research later. Driving back and forth is not an easy option. If I don't want it because of bad reviews or a better option available, I would just return it UNOPENED.

Last edited by eau; 12-06-04 at 04:57 PM.
Old 12-06-04, 05:57 PM
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I think there may be some confusion about the effects of a credit card charge back.

If you do get a chargeback, and most financial institutions will honor your request. They may ask for it in writing. You got your money back, and you may think everything is done. Hardly!

The merchant that the charge back went against may still have a legal claim against you for the money. They could try to collect the amount from you, or they could file a negative payment in your credit history.

The merchants find out about the charge back with in a day. They have your name, cc number, address on the card, and transaction number.
Old 12-07-04, 12:15 PM
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Does anyone know how stores will treat gifts with or witout receipts after Christmas. I have purchased some items at well known stores who I am reading are now dissallowing returns even with receipts. If stores are not going to be somewhat flexible after Christmas this will definately change my buying habits in the future. I agree that return items from other stores to capitalize on a price difference is shady but if you have a gift and want to exchange it without insulting the giver, I don't see why this is such a big deal.

Don't tell me how the admin costs the company millions when this is the cheapest form of advertising out there. When I worked in retail we had a 30 days after Christmas no questions asked policy and while the returns outweighed the sales the first few days, January ended up as one of our biggest months of the year. The B&M stores are going to squander the biggest advantage they have over internet retailers if they are too rigid.
Old 12-07-04, 12:52 PM
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Usually after Christmas they allow returns for store credit...If you are a habitual returner without receipt they will blacklist you..but who knows? It depends on the store.
Old 12-07-04, 02:03 PM
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I don't have a problem with cracking down against "fraudulent" returns or other attempts to "abuse" the return system, but the unfortunate aspect is that many legitimate returns will likely be refused the more restrictive the return rules get.

Any return program will have loopholes that someone will find a way to exploit, and it may well be that those who are hurt by the more restrictive return policies will not be the big exploiters but the average, legitimate consumer.

Of course, I'm on the other end of the spectrum in that I rarely return anything even if that item is not as advertised (or not working properly. The first DVD player I had was defective in that the subtitles were always on. I didn't return it even though I probably should have), so the stores have profited from people like me who simply don't want to bother with the hassle of returning something. If the system were completely foolproof, that sort of thing wouldn't have happened.

It's entirely possible that, despite the "fraudulent" returns, the stores have ended up ahead overall due to people who didn't return things they should have/could have.
Old 12-08-04, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Xbox69
Check the back of your receipt to find Best Buy's return policy. I don't see how the existence of this sort of "tracking" database has any bearing on what is printed there.

It doesn't have to mention the database. But if they are going to refuse returns on unopened products or refuse to exchange opened items for the same items, then they do need to update the wording on their receipts. Because I don't believe it states they reserve the right to refuse returns and exchanges. It spells out what can be returned/exchanged, how the refund is handled based on the payment method and that a receipt is required.
Old 12-13-04, 05:23 AM
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There was a story about this practice on the NYC local Fox affiliate 10 o'clock news Sunday night(the Fox I ge through Dish Network). The scope of the story was limited to the NY area, mostly it was a lot of upset random interviewees off the street.

Nice to see someone in the media paying attention.

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