Permanent Jewelry Business Strategy – Refund Policy and Tips – Orion Micro Welder Tutorial

 Permanent Jewelry Business Strategy – Refund Policy and Tips – Orion Micro Welder Tutorial

Should I give an unhappy customer a full refund? New business owners in the permanent jewelry industry ask me this very question. They are new at welding and still getting the hang of it. Here are my thoughts on Permanent Jewelry refund policy and tips.

This video answers the question posed to me recently.  The business owner had sold and welded a bracelet for a customer who left.  Shortly afterwards, the customer returned because the jump ring broke – the weld was not secure.  The client did not want a re-weld and wanted a full refund instead.  The business owner wanted to know whether she should give the money back. The chain has already been cut and it would have taken only seconds to re-weld.

Here are my thoughts:

1) Permanent jewelry is a new thing and many customers do not have confidence that it will stay welded.  So, their skepticism and desire to get their money back is understandable.

2) If it breaks within a short period of time, it is a clear sign of poor workmanship . The responsibility is on you, the business owner.  You should stand behind your product and offer complete customer satisfaction.

3) Apologize and offer a more secure re-weld and an extended period of time. Therefore, if it breaks again within that period, you will give them a full refund.  This would allay any concerns about workmanship and the customer would be more willing to accept the re weld.  If they refuse, it is only good business practice to offer a full refund.

4) Another situation occurs when the customer returns after a week or more. If the chain is all stretched, or the break is not at the jump ring, then it is likely that the person had it caught on something and broke it.  This can happen to any piece of jewelry and not a defect of the product or your workmanship.  In this case, you can refuse a refund or reweld. However, is good business practice to offer a discounted repair or discounted new bracelet.  You have absolute discretion.

5) I ALWAYS advise to check your weld. Take two pairs of pliers, holding either side of the weld and trying to twist/break the weld.  You can use some force, but just bring it back flat, and make sure it is very secure.  If the weld passes the twist test, it will not break apart – it is permanently bonded.  This will avoid all sorts of hassles and the customer can see that you are quality and detail oriented.  Win-win.

6) Note that if the chain had just left your store and the customer wants a refund, despite it being cut, you can clean and re-sell it, or offer in your “Build your own Quilt Bracelet” idea.  Nothing has to go to waste.  If, however, it’s been more than an hour, it is considered worn and you should not sell it as a new chain.  The time frame is just a guideline – perhaps you can time in minutes.

7) As with all refund policies, nothing is hard and fast – you should always use discretion especially with permanent jewelry. You can also decide to change it if ever becomes abused.  As a business owner myself, I like to take the long-term view on things.  It is ok to lose money sometimes, even if I don’t like it and it’s not my fault.  It is more important that I can take pride and comfort in knowing that I am running a good business and offering joy and value to my customers.  This seems like a simple and cliche thing to write, but time has proven that businesses with terrible customer service, or ones that are stingy or cheat, do not stay in business for long.