Jodi Lifschitz
Head of Content
Table of contents

Since the aftermath of the 2019 pandemic, online shopping has surged, offering a safe alternative for consumers and a lucrative opportunity for e-commerce merchants. With this shift,  Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) options like Afterpay have gained popularity, providing a flexible payment solution without immediate financial burden.

Why Afterpay Matters for Merchants

Afterpay, a prominent player in the BNPL sector, offers more than just customer base expansion. Understanding and navigating the complexities of chargeback and dispute management with Afterpay is crucial for your business's reputation and financial health.

What You'll Learn in This GuideThis guide aims to equip e-commerce merchants with strategies for efficiently managing Afterpay disputes, covering several key areas:

  • Afterpay’s Impact in E-Commerce
  • Effective Dispute Management
  • Refund Processes and Best Practices
  • Avoiding Common Pitfalls
  • Maintaining a Healthy Merchant Profile

Armed with this information, you’ll be prepared to tackle Afterpay disputes head-on, ensuring a smoother experience for both your business and your customers.

Afterpay's Role in the Evolving BNPL Market

The Rise of Buy Now, Pay Later

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) services, exemplified by Afterpay, have become increasingly popular as a flexible way for consumers to make purchases. This growth has been partly driven by economic inflation, which has spurred the demand for low-cost credit alternatives.

Global BNPL transactions are projected to grow significantly, with an expected increase of nearly 450 billion USD between 2021 and 2026. This trend indicates a substantial acceleration from the rapid expansion seen between 2019 and 2021. By 2021, BNPL captured a global market share of around three percent, with its strongest presence in northwestern Europe. For instance, the market share of BNPL in domestic e-commerce payments in countries like Sweden and Germany was notably higher than in global e-commerce.

Afterpay, aligning with consumer preferences for manageable payment methods, stands out in the expanding market. Understanding Afterpay's influence is essential for adapting to changing consumer behaviors and managing transactions effectively.

Step-by-Step Guide for eCommerce Merchants

Addressing Customer Disputes

When customers report non-receipt of goods, engage promptly and provide necessary tracking information. If unresolved within 7 days, the customer may file a dispute via the Afterpay app.

Steps for Customers to Raise a Dispute via Afterpay App

  1. Log In: Customers access their account in the Afterpay app.
  2. Navigate to Orders: They proceed to 'My Afterpay', then 'Orders', and review 'all orders'.
  3. Select the Order: They identify the order in question and click the 'more' button.
  4. Raise the Dispute: The customer selects 'goods not received' and follows prompts to provide detailed information, including any interactions with your business.

Your Role in Resolving Disputes

Once a dispute is raised:

  1. Review the Case: Assess the customer's claim and verify order details.
  2. Respond Promptly: Communicate through Afterpay, updating or resolving the issue.
  3. Process Actions: Issue refunds or update tracking information as required.

Cancelling a Dispute

Inform customers to cancel the dispute in the app if the issue is resolved.

Best Practices for eCommerce Merchants

  • Maintain Clear Communication: Always be transparent and responsive.
  • Keep Detailed Records: Document all transactions and correspondence.
  • Understand Afterpay Policies: Familiarize yourself with Afterpay's dispute resolution process.
  • Proactive Customer Service: Anticipate potential issues and address them before they escalate.

Managing Afterpay disputes efficiently is key for eCommerce merchants to ensure customer satisfaction and preserve a good standing with Afterpay.

Raising a Dispute Through the Afterpay Online Account

Apart from the mobile app, customers can also raise disputes directly through their online Afterpay account.

For Goods Not Received:

  • Log into your online Afterpay account.
  • Locate the order that hasn't been received.
  • Click on 'Get Help', then select 'Goods not received'.
  • Fill out the required information, including any correspondence with the merchant.

For Refund Not Received:

  • Access your Afterpay account online.
  • Find the order for which a refund is needed.
  • Click on 'Get Help' and then choose 'Refund not received'.
  • Provide all relevant information, including correspondence with the merchant and any tracking information from a returned order.

By following these steps, customers can directly communicate their concerns to the merchant, who will then receive the details of the dispute. It's important to include as much information as possible to ensure a clear understanding of the issue.

Merchant's Role in the Afterpay Business Hub

Merchants can manage disputes through the Afterpay Business Hub.

  1. Access Disputes: Log into the Business Hub and navigate to the 'Disputes' section.
  2. Choose an Action: Depending on the situation, merchants can accept the dispute, challenge it by responding to the customer, or indicate if they've already issued a refund.

Processing Refunds

First, merchants must process the refund in their system. This will reflect in the customer's Afterpay account and, if applicable, be returned to the card used for payment. The refund can take up to 10 business days, depending on the financial institution. Remember, returns are subject to the merchant’s refund policy.

After Dispute Raising

After a dispute is raised:

  1. Merchant Review: The merchant will review the case and respond with an update/outcome.
  2. Customer Action: The customer should go to 'Orders' in their app, find the disputed order, and click the 'more' button to access the return/refund option. This action informs Afterpay that a refund is expected, which can help adjust the payment due date during the resolution process.

Proactive Measures and Best Practices

  1. Enhancing Customer Engagement

Consistent and transparent communication with customers is essential. Responding promptly to inquiries and personalizing interactions can significantly reduce misunderstandings and build a strong foundation of trust. This proactive engagement is a key step in preventing disputes from arising.

  1. Implementing Product Quality Control

Monitoring and acting upon customer feedback regarding product quality is crucial. If data reveals consistent quality issues, consider tightening your quality control measures. This not only addresses immediate concerns but also enhances your brand's reputation and reduces the likelihood of future disputes.

  1. Ensuring Transaction Transparency

Accurate and thorough product descriptions, along with clear pricing, including all additional fees and shipping costs, are vital. Transparent transactions help set correct customer expectations, thereby minimizing the chances of disputes over misunderstandings.

  1. Streamlining the Purchasing Process

A smooth and user-friendly purchasing experience is fundamental. This includes everything from an easily navigable website to reliable delivery services. Simplifying the purchasing process reduces potential friction points that could lead to disputes.

  1. Providing Personalized Customer Support

Tailor your customer support responses and returns process by leveraging data to address common concerns proactively. Personalized support not only resolves issues more effectively but also demonstrates a commitment to customer care.

  1. Building a Proactive Business Culture:  

Equip your team with customer service best practices and regularly review customer feedback and dispute cases. This proactive approach helps identify common issues, refine processes, and prevent future disputes, fostering a customer-centric business environment.

  1. Preparing for Dispute Resolution:

Familiarity with Afterpay’s dispute resolution process is key. Ensure that necessary documentation, such as proof of delivery, tracking information, and evidence of refunds, is readily accessible. This preparation is vital for a swift and effective resolution of any disputes that arise.

Adopting these proactive measures and best practices is integral to minimizing disputes and enhancing the overall customer experience. Each element, from quality control to a proactive business culture, plays a crucial role in effective dispute management.

Understanding and Handling Afterpay Refunds

When handling returns, the initial step for merchants involves processing the refund in their system. Subsequently, this action is mirrored in the customer’s Afterpay account. If the refund entails returning funds to a customer's card, it will be credited back to the card used for the original payments. The timeframe for the refund to reflect on the card can extend up to 10 business days, depending on the customer's financial institution. It's essential for merchants to be aware that all returns are governed by their specific refund policy, which customers can typically find on the merchant's website or by direct inquiry. A clear grasp of this refund process is vital for effective dispute resolution and maintaining consistent customer satisfaction.

Chargeflow's Role in Streamlining Dispute Management

Autonomous Dispute Response Generator

ChargeResponse sets a new standard in dispute management as the world’s  first autonomous dispute response generator, setting a new standard in dispute management. By fetching compelling evidence from over 50 different data points and utilizing Chargeflow’s proprietary AI and machine learning algorithms, it crafts robust dispute responses without any human intervention. This process ensures that each dispute is addressed with the most relevant and persuasive evidence, increasing the likelihood of successful resolutions.

Full Automation in Dispute and Fraud Management

Chargeflow redefines the approach to handling chargebacks, disputes, and fraud with its highly efficient autonomous system. It dramatically reduces the time spent on chargeback responses by 99% and increases ROI by an average of 300%. This automation streamlines the dispute handling process and significantly boosts your business's financial health.

Chargeflow Alerts: Proactive Chargeback Prevention

Chargeflow Alerts leverage real-time dispute notifications, enabling merchants to proactively prevent up to 70% of incoming chargebacks. These alerts provide timely insights, allowing you to take preemptive actions to resolve issues before they escalate into chargebacks. This proactive approach is instrumental in maintaining a low chargeback ratio and remains clear of dispute monitoring programs like VDMP.

Exciting Integration Coming Soon

Stay tuned for the upcoming release of Chargeflow's integration with Afterpay, which will further enhance your ability to manage disputes efficiently. This integration will bring together Chargeflow's advanced capabilities with Afterpay's platform, offering an even more powerful tool for merchants in the BNPL space. Keep an eye out for this release to take full advantage of what Chargeflow and Afterpay together have to offer.

Summed Up

This guide provides key insights and strategies for mastering Afterpay chargebacks, emphasizing the importance of proactive measures and a deep understanding of the BNPL ecosystem. Effective dispute management is essential for protecting your business's reputation and customer satisfaction.

As eCommerce evolves, integrating tools like Chargeflow into your dispute management processes can keep you ahead. Chargeflow's autonomous solutions streamline dispute resolution and enhance efficiency, allowing you to focus on business growth while maintaining strong customer relationships. Be sure to stay tuned for the upcoming integration of Chargeflow with Afterpay, which promises to bring even more powerful tools to your dispute management arsenal. Explore Chargeflow's capabilities to transform your approach to managing Afterpay chargebacks.


Average Dispute Amount
Average Dispute Amount
# Disputes Per Month
# Disputes Per Month
Time Spent Per Dispute
Time Spent Per Dispute
You could recover
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1,000 hours every month with Chargeflow!
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