Disputed transactions – often leading to costly and time-consuming chargebacks – are a significant problem for merchants in all sectors of business.
The causes are various, and some disputes are tough to prevent or resolve.
But a surprisingly large number are due simply to customers failing to recognize legitimate transactions that appear on their credit or debit card statements.
So serious is the problem – literally millions of transactions a year – that both the major card networks have put in place programs to help merchants minimize the number of these disputes.
What is Mastercard’s Consumer Clarity Program
Essentially, Consumer Clarity is software created by Ethoca, a subsidiary company of Mastercard, which enables participating merchants to respond in real-time to customers who query transactions.
In addition to basic details such as your company name, address, and contact details, the software also allows customers to request further details of any transaction, including –
- the date and value of purchase;
- a description of item(s) purchased;
- details of expected shipping/delivery dates and carrier; and
- your business’ terms and conditions of sale, shipping, returns, and refund policies.
How it Works for Customers
Whether a customer wants to query a transaction directly with you or to raise it with their issuing bank, Consumer Clarity can help.
If viewing an online card statement a customer can simply click on an individual transaction to view all of the above details and more.
Likewise, if the customer raises the query with their bank, it will be automatically routed into your systems, allowing Consumer Clarity to provide all relevant details in real-time.
In both cases, helping and enabling the customer to recognize legitimate transactions will go a long way towards reducing chargebacks.
Helping You Avoid Chargebacks and Retain Good Customers
And it’s important to recognize in this context that not all chargebacks are suspicious or fraudulent.
Many are the result of honest mistakes or lapses of memory – and the number of these cases is only likely to increase with the dramatic increase in the ease and volume of online shopping – particularly during the frenetic buying of the holiday season.
So anything that you can do to resolve these issues before they turn into chargebacks will be of great benefit to you – both in reducing your costs and helping you to retain honest and valuable customers.
And even in the worst case, where a customer continues to dispute a transaction you believe to be legitimate, the data generated by queries referred to as Consumer Clarity can make a significant contribution to the success of your chargeback management program as a whole.
For best results, Mastercard Consumer Clarity should be integrated with your existing CRM and order systems. So if you need expert advice on how best to do this, please contact us here.
Our team of experienced experts is ready and waiting to help.