The Small Business Guide to Returning Gifts on Amazon in 2023

As a small business consultant who regularly utilizes Amazon for supplies and gifts, I‘ve handled my fair share of Amazon returns. While returns can be inconvenient, Amazon‘s process is quite streamlined compared to other retailers. In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll draw on my expertise to walk through each step of returning Amazon gifts to save you time and hassle.

Locating Your Amazon Order Number

The order number is the key that unlocks Amazon‘s return system. Here‘s how to find it:

  • Check your order confirmation email sent immediately after you placed the order.
  • Sign into your Amazon account and go to Your Orders – the number will be there.
  • Look on the packing slip included with the item.

Don‘t worry if you can‘t locate the order number – Amazon‘s customer service can help you out. But having it ready makes starting the return much easier.

Order number location on Amazon order page

Having your order number handy is crucial for smooth Amazon returns

Selecting the Item(s) to Return

Once you have the magic order number, head to Amazon‘s Online Return Center. Click "Return Items" and input the order number. Up will pop a list of everything purchased in that order.

Put checkmarks next to each item you need to return by clicking the empty checkbox. Feel free to return multiple items from the same order simultaneously – Amazon will process them together.

Double check that you‘ve selected everything you intend to return before moving to the next step.

Choosing Your Return Shipping Method

After selecting return items, you‘ll need to pick how you want to get them back to Amazon. Here are the options:

Return by Mail: Print a free return label and drop off at USPS or schedule a pickup. This is the default option, but not always the best.

Amazon Hub: With ~500 locations nationwide, just drop off the package at a staffed counter. No box or label needed.

Kohl‘s: Free return dropoff regardless of packaging. Over 1,100 locations in 49 states.

UPS: Schedule a dropoff at a nearby UPS store or access point for UPS pickup.

I recommend comparing locations to choose what‘s most convenient for you. Amazon Hub wins on speed, but Kohl‘s provides flexibility if you lack packaging.

Return Method Speed Packaging Needed? Number of Locations
Amazon Hub 1-2 days Yes ~500
Kohl‘s 2-3 days No 1,100+
UPS 3-5 days Yes Thousands

Printing a Return Shipping Label

If you selected return by mail, you‘ll need a prepaid return label from Amazon. On the returns page, click "Print Label" and make sure your printer is ready.

Tape the printed label securely to the package, covering any old labels. I recommend also writing the order number somewhere on the box in case the label detaches.

Double check that the return address matches the warehouse your item shipped from, shown on the packing slip. Sending to the wrong return facility causes delays.

Packaging Your Return

Use the original shipping box and packaging materials if possible. If not, find a sturdy new box and use plenty of padding – bubble wrap, paper, or air packets work well.

Make sure all parts, accessories, manuals, and promotional items are in the box – Amazon can‘t process incomplete returns! Seal securely with heavy duty tape.

For fragile items, use extra bubble wrap and padding around all sides. Place electronics in their original electrostatic bags if you still have them.

Shipping Your Package

If using Amazon‘s prepaid label, simply drop off at any USPS location or schedule a free pickup. Otherwise, follow the directions provided for whichever return method you chose.

Hand the package off, then pat yourself on the back for a job well done – you just completed the hard part!

Tracking Your Refund

Once Amazon receives your return, allow 1-2 billing cycles for refund processing. You‘ll get an email confirmation when it‘s complete.

To check status, head to Your Orders and find the return – you can see its real-time progress. Most refunds go back to the original payment method.

For returns without a gift receipt, expect an Amazon gift card equal to the value. This typically takes 4-6 weeks after Amazon gets your return.

Pro Tip: Take a photo of the packaged return before shipping, just in case. It provides proof you sent it back in case Amazon claims they never received it.

And that wraps up the complete walkthrough of returning Amazon gifts! Just follow these steps and the process should be smooth and headache-free. Let me know if any issues come up – I‘m always happy to help fellow small business owners.