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How to manage  product Returns and configure the "Return Merchandise Interface"?

Your store provides you with a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) module to help you manage product returns. With this tool the customer can initiate a product return and get a refund without having to talk or email you directly. All is done using the RMA interface.

How is this working ?
A customer comes to your store and purchases a product. Few days later, before or after he/she receives the product he/she wants to return it for a reason X. The customer then goes to your site, log-in into his/her account and goes to the ‘Orders history’ section. Then finds and displays the corresponding order. If the product can be returned the order/invoice displayed will have a link on top that says 'Create return'. The customer then clicks on that link and the RMA interface displays. The customer can then specify the reason of the return and what is to be done next, for example get a full refund, get a new product delivered,...etc.
When an RMA request is placed, you get an email notification. When you approve the request the customer will also be notified, he/she can then print an RMA slip and send it back with the product.

In order to use this module you need to first enable that module in the 'Modules' page, then configure the reasons that the customer can provide for the return and last you need to go in the product edit page to specify the number of days that a customer would have to place an RMA request if that that product is purchased.

Enabling the RMA module

To enable the ‘RMA’ module go to the modules page by selecting the ’Modules’ option from the ’OTHER SETTINGS menu section :
then select the RMA module check box :
then click the [Update] button at the bottom of the page.

Configuring ‘reasons’ and ‘actions’

These are the ‘reasons’ and ‘actions’ the RMA interface will offer to the customer. To configure these reasons, you should first select the ‘Returns’ option from the ‘ORDERS’ menu section :
then click on the top link ‘Add/Modify reasons’ :
the following interface will display :
As you can see above, a list of reasons were already provided by default. You can use this interface to add, modify or delete a reason according to your RMA policy.
To add or update the ‘actions’, select the top link ‘Add/Modify actions’ :
the following interface will display :
The RMA module already has some ‘actions’ configured. You can use this interface to add, modify or delete ‘actions’ according to your RMA policy.

Configuring the RMA module options

To configure the RMA module options, select the option ‘Returns options’ from the ‘ORDERS’ menu section, the following interface will display:
Using the three top check box selector you can decide whether or not to have email notifications to be sent when an RMA request is 1) created, 2) authorized and/or 3) declined.

The option ‘Order status for start of return period’ allows you to use the ‘order status’ as the time when the number of allowed ‘returned days’ will start being counted. If for example you have set the number of days to ‘30’ and set this option to ‘order processed’ then the count down from 30 to zero will only start when the status of the order is set to ‘Processed’. Some store have a policy to start this count down only when the customer has received the order. Some other store may have a policy to start the count down as soon as the order was placed so they would set this status to ‘queued’.

The last option you can configure is the link to your return policy. If you leave that field empty, the link to that policy will not be displayed.

Edit the product return time

To edit the product return time for a specific product, you should go into the admin product edit page, scroll down to the bottom and locate the field ‘Product return time (days)’ :
If the value is left to zero, then no return will be possible for that product.

Managing the return requests

To manage your received ‘return requests’ select the option ‘ Returns’ from the ‘ORDERS’ menu section, the following interface will display:
Click the [Search] button, the list of return requests will display:
Understanding the ‘Return’ status:


Return requested: That is the default status in which the return request will be as soon as it is placed by a customer.

Return authorized: You set this status if you want to approve this return request.

Return declined: You set this status if you want to decline the return request.

Return completed: You set this status when the return process is finished.

Removed by customer: This status is set when the customer decides to cancel the return request.

Issue a credit

When you set the status of the request to ‘Completed’ or ‘Authorized’ the system will allow you to issue a credit to the customer and will display an additional field with the amount to be credited like shown in the picture below:
When you click on the ‘Create’ link, a gift certificate will be created and sent to the customer. The link ‘Create’ will then change into ‘Created’. If you were to click on the link ‘Created’ then you would get a window with the gift certificate information like it is shown in the picture below:

Customer creates a return request

In order to create a return request the customer should log into his account and click on the ‘Orders history’ link.
The customer should then search, find and display the corresponding order detail/invoice page. The top of that page should display a ‘Create return’ link:
If the link ‘Create return” does not appear, it means that the return period has expired or that the corresponding product did not have any return period defined.
When clicking on the ‘Create return’ link the interface displayed could look like the one below:
The customer can select the item(s) to be returned, provides a ‘reason’ and and ‘action’ and then click on the [Create] button to submit the ‘return request’.

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