How To Deal With Lost or Damaged Items Without Losing Money

Today we have an awesome Shopify Hack to seriously up your customer service game while also netting you less profit loss per return/refund! This is an amazing trick that came to me out of the blue one day out the blue that has saved me TONS of money since it was implemented. I estimate my store has saved about 30-40% on returns since we’ve put it in place because it’s just that effective. It is super easy to implement with no extra tools or setup required.

Shopify Customer Service Hack

Instead of offering a refund or a replacement to a customer when something goes wrong (item damaged, lost in the mail, sizing way off, etc.) offer them either a refund OR a replacement + a free item of equal or lesser value of their choosing.

This trick is great because while the customer is given a choice, 90% of the time they will select the replacement + free item because it has twice the (perceived) value than the refund is worth. This way you don’t have to shell out money for a shipping label while leaving your customer frustrated, nor do you have to lose all of your profit and your product. The replacement + free item method minimizes profit loss compared to just handing out a refund, and it leaves the customer thinking very positively about your company.

If you sell T-Shirts on Shopify for $25, and you buy the from AliExpress for $8, you stand to lose -$34 after fees if you send the refund by itself, or -$26 if you get a refund from your supplier. If you send the customer a replacement + a free item, you will have a net profit of $1, or $9 if you get a refund from your supplier, and your customer is left feeling good about your company.

The vast majority of the customers’ I’ve had to implement this with have been so thankful for the free item, and some of them have even told me that they will tell their friends about the store because of this interaction.

Boom! That’s it. All you have to do is change up your customer service emails and you’ll be on your way to retaining more of your money and increasing your chances of repeat customers. Lucky for you, we’ve giving away the FREE email template we use for you use or modify so you can implement this money saving technique today today.

Customer Service Hack Template

Below is the template you can use to implement this cost-saving, customer-pleasing hack.


I am incredible sorry that you have received a damaged item. It is very rare that this happens as we take great pride in our quality control and fulfillment processes.

I would love to help make this up to you. I can offer you a full refund or I can have a replacement sent out along with an additional item of your choice for free to be shipped out ASAP.

Please snap a picture of the damaged item and let me know how you would like to proceed so we can make this up to you right away.

Again, please accept our sincerest apologies. We will do everything we can to make this right.




A Deeper Look…

Let’s take a more in-depth look as to how and why replacement + free item method is so effective

Let’s say you run a T-Shirt store, and Johnny buys a shirt from you for $25 that you source from AliExpress for $8 shipped. Johnny is super excited to get his shirt, but it unfortunately arrives torn. Johnny logs onto Gmail and sends an email letting you know how disappointing he is. You reply with your sincere condolences and offer a refund or a replacement + a free item.

Johnny is happy to have been respected enough to be given a choice, and selects the second option as it provides the greatest value to him. You order Johnny two more shirts, and open a dispute with your supplier to get a refund for the original damaged item. Johnny received his items and is very happy with your company and their customer service. In doing this, you have also effectively eliminated the risk of Johnny speaking negatively about your company to his social network. (Indeed, I have had many a customer who have become repeat buyers because of the free item. People love free stuff, don’t underestimate it.)

Offering your customer a free item + a replacement works out in your favor when compared to simply handing out a refund because not only is the customer left satisfied with two products they wanted, but you have significantly reduced your profit loss.

If we had given Johnny a full refund, we would have lost the $25 he spent, the $8 on the shirt, and about $1-2 in fees, adding up to a total of -$35, or -$27 if we get a refund from our supplier. By giving the Johnny a replacement + a free item, we end up with +$9, or +$1 if we don’t get a refund from the supplier.

The most cost-effective method in the immediate short term would be to just send out a replacement which would result in a profit loss of $0 if we get a refund from the supplier, but you risk alienating customer and may have to spend longer than expected in back and forth emails to get them to agree to it.


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