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Tracy

How do you handle insurance/breakage reimbursement?

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Tracy    1

I've got a few wholesale customers who are I suspect are cutting costs at my loss. I pack my pottery very well... use a ton of bubble wrap, good cartons etc. I don't overload boxes. Customers are charged the cost of shipping, bubble wrap plus insurance. A few wholesale accounts repeatedly, order after order, call me with claims of breakage... which always amounts to the total of shipping expenses they were charged. Normally, I reship the broken items at my expense plus make the claim to USPS but I don't always get my loses covered. I'm getting tired of being burned by these accounts because I suspect the breakage is not true, just a way of not paying shipping charges.

 

Now I'm thinking of telling these wholesale customers that they must make the claim via USPS. Do any of you have experience with that? I'm not sure if that will do any good so perhaps this post is more of a vent than anything else.

 

Tracy

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JBaymore    1,432

Just state it in the terms of the deal as a part of your standard terms. Send the new terms out and give them 30 days to eitehr accept the new terms for the next shipment... or decline. If they balk...... drop the accounts and find others to replace them.

 

Yeah... if it works that way all the time... they are likely thinking they are very clever in the way that they are taking advantage of you.

 

best,

 

......................john

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GEP    863

Whenever a wholesale customer says that something arrived broken, I always ask them to send it back to me. Then I send a free replacement (I pay for replacement shipping too).

 

Nobody has ever refused to send back the broken items. If anyone refuses, then you know they are pulling your leg.

 

Mea

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Chris Campbell    1,088

Memories!@!@*@@%%@

I had a client that did that with every single order .... time after time her breakage matched the shipping costs. It was a good account and I was hesitant to call her on it until one day I was in the gallery in person and said I would love to meet her UPS guy because he must be the clumsiest one on the planet, none of my other orders every had breakage ... ha ha ha / big smile !!

Breakage stopped.

All I recommend to you is to somehow build in the costs and hide the fee and your problem might go away.

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Tracy    1

Thanks John, that's a great idea to send out a new shipping terms/agreement.

 

Mea, I'm sure these same customers would balk at having to pay for return shipping. Do you reimburse them? I suppose I could just have them photograph the broken pieces....

 

Chris, I wish they were closer so I could borrow your ups line!

 

Tracy

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GEP    863

Thanks John, that's a great idea to send out a new shipping terms/agreement.

 

Mea, I'm sure these same customers would balk at having to pay for return shipping. Do you reimburse them? I suppose I could just have them photograph the broken pieces....

 

Chris, I wish they were closer so I could borrow your ups line!

 

Tracy

 

 

The gallery pays for the return shipping. Usually it is just one item so it's not a big expense. I have in the past accepted a photo sent by email, that was proof enough for me.

 

Good luck ... it's never a good feeling when you suspect someone is cheating you. But I think you should trust your instincts when something feels wrong.

 

Mea

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Mark C.    1,805

I always have them file a claim thru my shipper UPS-I then get the check for the damage and work out the details with my client or shop or whatever-I would need a photo of the damaged pots if I did not trust them.

When they file sometimes they get an inspection of goods broke so that rules out funny business.

I have had very little issues with this-follow your gut feelings.

Mark

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Frankiegirl    3

Did you try asking for a picture of the whole shipment with packing material and all pieces including the broken ones? If it is a true breakage issue, this can help you see what went wrong. You can also use that image for the UPS claim.

 

If it is a manipulation to skirt shipping costs, this may help you see that as well. Either way, it doesn't cost a thing.

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AtomicAxe    19

I've got a few wholesale customers who are I suspect are cutting costs at my loss. I pack my pottery very well... use a ton of bubble wrap, good cartons etc. I don't overload boxes. Customers are charged the cost of shipping, bubble wrap plus insurance. A few wholesale accounts repeatedly, order after order, call me with claims of breakage... which always amounts to the total of shipping expenses they were charged. Normally, I reship the broken items at my expense plus make the claim to USPS but I don't always get my loses covered. I'm getting tired of being burned by these accounts because I suspect the breakage is not true, just a way of not paying shipping charges.

 

Now I'm thinking of telling these wholesale customers that they must make the claim via USPS. Do any of you have experience with that? I'm not sure if that will do any good so perhaps this post is more of a vent than anything else.

 

Tracy

 

 

Follow the rule of any sort of mail order company, they only accept damage replacement if you ship it back to the company, and normally after 3 times in one year they refuse to ship that way again.

 

If you don't change policy to the customer filling out the insurance claim ... increase your prices for those customers to buffer that cost. I do like the idea of the customer filing the claim, that is a great idea.

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Tracy    1

Many, many thanks for all the great replies. I am much bettered armed now and have a good plan to go with.

 

RDWolf, your story really had me laughing! Well, not the breakage part but how you handled it... very clever and EFFECTIVE! Thanks for sharing!

 

Tracy

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