About a month ago, I was the recipient of a PayPal chargeback from my initial invoice for a project. My client had a full and functioning website that I designed but her complaint was I only half-finished the website, which was completely untrue. It looked like I might not be getting any compensation for my hard work since PayPal is notorious for siding with the buyer.
But, I did win. It was stressful and disappointing, but I did not suffer any hardship. Apparently, this chargeback issue does not only apply to only website designers. It applies to all remote service providers and digital product providers. So how in the world did I win a chargeback when it was looking very unlikely I would? I know this information will be helpful to anybody who does business online and uses PayPal, so here goes.
- Don’t be lazy
PayPal gives you an opportunity to tell your side of the story, so matter how busy you are, and how tedious it may seem, give them your side of the story. Do not blow it off or you will be out of your hard-earned money by default. They give you a deadline to do this, so don’t miss it.
- Use an attachment, such as a PDF, to detail your side. The area to write your side online is too small and not enough room to go into detail. Write your side of the story in a PDF document so you can attach it to the resolution area.
- Use contracts and service agreements
I had an agreement saved and filed which said she agreed to all my terms. If you do not have a contract and service agreement it will come back to you. I made sure I attached our service agreement in this PDF.
- Use video
I went ahead and made a Zoom screen share video showing my client had a full and functioning website, going page by page showing just that. I saved the video and uploaded it to YouTube, making sure the privacy settings were set so only one with a link to the video can watch it. I attached the link to the video in my PDF as further documentation that she did indeed have a full and functioning website, not a half-completed one.
- Be cordial
I tried to settle the matter and asked her to withdraw the chargeback. I did not resort to name-calling or anger. When that did not work, I went ahead and created my documentation. Sending a little bit of light and love via Reiki energy helped too. I also sent some to myself. I am certainly no angel. I was angry and disappointed and felt like I was being cheated. But, when you think about it, how is feeling resentful going to help? It is not.
That is how I won the chargeback. I think the lesson is to be more careful about who I do business with. When you get a gut feeling and a voice in your head about someone, listen and do not go further. Just go into trust that the right people who will benefit from your work and treat you fairly will find you. And so it is.