A "chargeback" is the end result when a credit card customer successfully disputes a transaction that appears on their credit card bill. Customer disputes typically arise from dissatisfaction with the quality of merchandise or services received, merchandise or services not received, or a questionable transaction. A dispute creates a "retrieval" — the process of gathering transaction proof. When a cardholder disputes a charge, the merchant's account is debited for the funds in question while the transaction is investigated. An unfavorable outcome for the merchant results in a chargeback. Needless to say, this is a time-consuming and potentially costly process for small businesses. Fortunately, you can take a number of actions to prevent — or at least minimize — chargebacks. The first step is to ensure that you fully comply with the transaction requirements issued annually by the major credit cards. Typically, these require you to: * Obtain an authorization
* Have proof the card was present by swiping the card or by imprinting it on the transaction receipt * Solicit a signature from the cardholder and compare the signature to the back of the card * Indicate phone orders when applicable as proof of the customer's call In addition, follow these helpful hints to further reduce chargebacks: * Get an imprint whenever a card is manually keyed into a terminale. * Be sure that all of the transaction information shows up on the imprinted copy — including the amount, merchant name and location, and the cardholder's signature.
Verify that the number on the screen matches the embossed number on the credit card. * Compare the cardholder's signature on the sales draft with the signature on the back of the card. * Check additional identification if necessary.
* If the card is unsigned, request an additional piece of photo ID that has a signature, and have the cardholder sign the card. Otherwise, don't accept the card. * Obtain an authorization...
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