By incorrect shipping addresses, I mean the customer provided the incorrect shipping address at checkout, most commonly by leaving out their apt or unit number.
We use Shipstation which flags orders with unverifiable shipping addresses and they're about 80% accurate with it. Some addresses that they flag are just fine. While others, like one shipping to Canada but missing an apartment number, passed their check with flying colors.
What I've tried:
For orders purchased by credit card – If the address is missing information, I will email the customer up to 3 times asking for the missing information and then cancel the order if I receive no response.
For orders purchased by credit card – If the address is missing information, I will email the customer up to 3 times asking for the missing information and then just ship the order just in case the address is right. They will ALWAYS suddenly reappear once their package says it's en route back to us. The reply is usually something of an "oops, can you please resend?" Our refund policy in that instance is to refund the order less a restocking fee (shipping + transaction fee), and that's that.
For orders purchased via Paypal – If the address is missing information, the order is canceled immediately. Do not pass go.
What I'm considering doing:
Now, as I mentioned, Shipstation has only been 80% accurate with flagging potential address issues. I've been doing the leg work to double-check flagged addresses via google maps. But, I would like to streamline this process both for efficiency and to reduce expenses.
If I cancel everything that's flagged, some orders with good addresses will likely be canceled as well. And, some orders with bad addresses that go unflagged will still ship. We'll also be out of the transaction fees anyways since Stripe and Paypal keep them. Customers will email and ask what happened anyways, so that's not really efficient.
If I verify everything that's flagged, I will spend hours emailing customers and correcting addresses. And, some orders with bad addresses that go unflagged will still ship.
I get that this is "par for the course" in e-commerce land. Hell, I even see Amazon refunding some of our FBA orders because of undeliverable addresses/incorrect addresses.
Do you all have a process that's been helpful? Does a 2% rate of wrong shipping address sound normal?