Shopify customers have been asking for six years but still, do not have a usable store credit function in Shopify. Just search ‘store credit’ in the discussion forums and post after post, Shopify Guru’s says it’s ‘coming soon’ all the way back to 2012.
I run a brick and mortar store where we sell electronics. I have 10 employees; our average order value is $578 and we have 800-1000 orders every month between eBay and Shopify. It is a total accounting nightmare when a customer wants to exchange an item in-store. The current store credit function in Shopify is extremely error prone but also brings a tremendous risk of fraud. We also explored the ‘refund to gift card’ option but that as well has no controls to prevent errors or fraud.
To be honest; at this point is absolutely appalling what is supposed to be a premier retail sales platform does not have this incredibly vital and basic functionality.
With the current system, this is what happens.
Customer buy an item for $100
Customer returns the item and wants to buy a different item for $250.
We refund the original order to ‘store credit’ and restock the item.
We create a new order, add the customer and the item to the cart, select payment method store credit.
ANY DOLLAR AMOUNT CAN BE ENTERED!?!?!
There is absolutely ZERO ACCOUNTABILITY OR CONTROL when using store credit as a payment option.
This simple fact is insane.
Not only does this present the possibility that a customer service rep my accidentally enters an incorrect store credit amount but it also presents the opportunity for fraud if they knowingly enter more store credit that they should.
There is NOTHING to prevent a mistake; there is no accountability that the correct store credit amount for that customer was applied.
The same issue exists with the supposed ‘issue a gift card’ work around. You can refund an order to store credit and then sell a gift card using ‘store credit’ but again the amount of store credit available is completely made up. There is NOTHING tying it back to the customer, sale amount, etc. The sale rep can enter any amount they want. They can sell a gift card and use ‘store credit’ as a payment option without any accounting controls !?!? They can sit there and generate gift card after gift card using ‘store credit’ as the payment option without anything stopping them…
Lastly, even if you did use the store credit features there is one more major flaw. Here is an example
Customer buys an item for $100
Customer returns that item; uses store credit to buy an item that is $250. ($150 additional paid)
Customer returns again; they want to return the item for a FULL REFUND but the Shopify does NOT allow you to do it.
When you attempt to issue a refund; the refund page only allows you to refund the $150 additional they paid. The initial $100 paid on the first order can ONLY be refunded to ‘store credit’. The customer is expecting a full refund for $250. If you manually try to edit the refund amount to make store credit zero and cash refund $250 it prevents you from doing it. It keeps the MAX cash refund at $150. Seems crazy that the ONE PLACE there seems to be a restriction in place is the one place you don’t want it. The customer standing there and they are expecting a full refund. Now the accounting is totally off as we have to refund $250 in cash and have NO WAY to accurately record those funds coming out of the register.
This is definitely not the experience I was expecting from Shopify.
If you are a one or two person operation you might be able to operate like this but for any serious retailer that has multiple sales reps and a significant volume of transactions, this simply won’t work.
I know this will require you redesign how customer accounts are handled but this needs to be resolved already. Please take the necessary steps to put this into development ASAP.
Thank you for your time.
Hey, Frank & Rebecca.
Peter here from Shopify Support.
For starters, I apologize for the lack of response from our support teams when this post was initially created. While parts of my reply below may sound like a broken record, I do hope that I'll be able to provide some clarity into the issues addressed above.
Store credit is a way for merchants to sell or refund an order to the store's credit. This is a possible workaround to exchanging an item. With this method, the credit is not tied to a specific customer, which means it's not trackable like a gift card would be. For this reason, the amount entered can be equal to, or higher/lesser than the total amount being refunded. I do agree that allowing the amount to be higher than the total amount being refunded is a bit odd which I'll touch on a bit further into this reply.
As time has passed, our teams have released "exchanges" on our POS system. With the new flow, you can now select items for an exchange at the same time as processing a refund. You would select the items you want to refund, then select the item you want to perform an exchange for from the same screen.
Much like the workaround with offering store credit via a gift card, you can also refund exchanges to a gift card as well. This is a new feature on iOS POS 5.3 that is actually an exchange, not a refund. When performing a refund, if you're on the Shopify plan or higher with gift cards enabled, you will have the option to issue a refund to a gift card. This will create a refund to "exchange credit" then create a new order for a gift card for the specified amount with 'exchange credit' as the payment method. A physical gift card can be assigned to the exchange, or a gift card number can be emailed/printed on a receipt at a QR code / 2d barcode.
In terms of refunding an order that was initially paid with store credit, you can refund an order that was originally paid via credit card, back to the credit card - not an order that was paid for with store credit. Using the example from above, if you have an order that was paid for by credit card, and then refunded to store credit, that was then used to purchase a new order, you can't refund that new order that was paid by store credit back to a credit card. BUT you can refund the original order back to the credit card used.
In my personal opinion, I do agree that Shopify's POS could be more robust to better serve the merchants who rely on it every day. I know our POS teams are working hard on reviewing all the feedback submitted to them to look into what features we're able to add and what resources we'll need, to get them added. I can appreciate your frustration surrounding the lack of features, or issues with the current features, however, I can assure you that this post has been brought to our POS team so it can be reviewed in depth.
I do feel that the new exchange feature helps mitigate the issues you see with the store credit option, however, the store credit feature can definitely use some work. While we don't have any timelines on when further updates will be pushed out, I was informed that our teams are working on addressing these issues. Nevertheless, I do greatly appreciate you taking the time to provide your feedback, and I'm hopeful that these issues will be corrected in the updates to come.
All the best,
That is the most bass ackwards process I've ever seen. I've worked retail my entire life and that has got to be the single most idiotic and convoluted processing I've ever encountered. The fact that There is not a simple additional database field on the customer table called "credit" is mind boggling and seem like something that should have been done years ago.