Wasn’t Banking On It Being A Holiday

, , , , , | Right | July 25, 2020

When customers pay online for their groceries, they are given an estimated total, our system adds roughly $15 to $20 extra onto that total because of items priced by weight, and the customer is charged the new amount. For example, if they’re given an estimated $100 total, they will be charged $120. Then, when we’re done shopping, we will pull from the amount charged and the difference will be refunded back to their card. If their total was $105, we will take that out of the $120 and they will get $15 back on their card. It usually takes three to five business days for the money to go back onto the card, but we will tell customers five to seven business days just to be safe.

The Friday before Memorial Day, we have a customer who paid online for her grocery order. We pull the amount we need and the process for the refund begins. On Memorial Day — Monday — she calls us.

Customer: “Where’s my money? I placed my order on Friday and the money still hasn’t shown back in my bank account!”

Me: “It usually takes five to seven business days for the money to appear in your account, depending on how fast your bank works.”

Customer: “I’ve never had it take this long before! I need that money!”

Me: “I understand, but it’s also a holiday weekend. The banks aren’t even open today.”

Customer: “I don’t care! It shouldn’t take more than three days! It’s never taken this long before!”

Me: “Business days, ma’am.”

Customer: “Huh?”

Me: “Business days: Mondays through Fridays. But again, because of the holiday, it might take a little longer than normal. If the money isn’t in your account by next Monday, I would call your bank.”

Customer: “So you haven’t even started my refund yet?”

Me: “We released the difference on our end on Friday; your bank just has to approve it. It should take five to seven business days.”

This seemed to satisfy the customer. She never called us back, so I’m assuming the money showed up in her account a few days later. Is there a better way to charge customers for online grocery orders? Probably, but I don’t know anything about IT or programming, so I don’t know how to make it better.

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