972.415.3450 or 512.694.9146 Sally@PaymentOperationsGroup.com

Are we still looking at Chargeback Season Prevention Measures? Why Yes, we are! And thanks for looking with us!

Last time we discussed looking at sales during the holiday season that were not charged back to see if they might be charged back soon. That’s a bit of a guess but there were potential fraud activity flags we were looking for within an account base. Here, let’s look at a few trending flags – not specific to fraud, but definitely specific to your customer base.

Many companies are looking into what went well this holiday shopping season (i.e., what activities increased sales) and what needs improvement for the next holiday shopping season (such as which sales didn’t boost revenues as much as expected). How about adding a few chargeback-reducing reviews? For every sales-enhancing action, perform the chargeback contributing analysis for that same sales enhancer. Right now, you are starting to get enough chargebacks, refunds requests, and especially refunds to prevent chargebacks to begin identifying some trends.

  • What was your best rated product? Was that the product related to the most chargebacks/refunds? Perhaps the most commonly charged back item was one of great resale value or anonymity upon resale.
  • What email style uplifted sales? What email style was most frequently linked to sales now being reversed (for the click-through purchases)?
  • What coupon or deal generated the most site-wide buzz? Conversely, which deals or codes are most likely to be present on a charged back item?
  • What purchaser commonalities can be identified from those items being reversed now? Email layouts/Card Types/Issuer BINs/Purchase time of day/etc.

For the most part, it’s early enough in the season that you can get in front of some sales with all of the bad markers and prevent chargebacks against those items through whatever path you choose – rather than being fully reactive and having only moments to take action because the dispute is already in play. And do be a bit of a realist. If you had 10 sales to a single PAN and seven of them have charged back so far, what do you plan to do with those other 3?

What else can you do to prepare for potential chargebacks on these trends you found? Must you lose the value of the sale? Not necessarily. Other things you may choose to do include:

  1. Look at the same trends during last year’s chargeback season – how were those results across multiple months? Are there exceptions to this potential new rule?
  2. Look at your sales data – how can you prepare to resist the chargeback itself? Do you have information which could prevent/win-back a dispute? So many more Issuers are evaluating the information defined by Visa’s Compelling Evidence 3.0 program – do you have that data stored in easily retrievable places?
  3. Look at your chargeback response templates – are they up to date? Do you manage your own responses and have enough staff in those chairs even temporarily? Are the templates current/correct? Are the back-up staff trained in best practices for responding?
  4. Look at the trend itself – can you prevent it? Especially if it occurred over multiple years against the same combination of factors, can you build a review rule? Perhaps a new email promotion style could be less loss-triggering? Is it a good time of year to build new deal types less palatable to fraudsters?

As this year’s chargeback season goes on, keep watching trends on a daily or at least weekly basis. Don’t let the individual crises distract you from overall prevention, proactive investigations, and long-term changes for seasons yet to come.

 Payment Operations Group is a consultancy of Payment Professionals who ran away from home to join the circus. But seriously, if you would like to pursue a Strategy for your processing future or any payment engagement at all, contact information is provided below.

Payment Operations Group, LLC

Payments…Navigating, Educating, Strengthening.

Christine Wade



 Sally Baptiste