You can issue refunds or process exchanges either by finding the original sales transaction and refunding it (refund by reference) or by creating a new sale and converting it to a refund (an ad hoc refund). For more accurate and thorough record-keeping, we recommend refunding from the original transaction whenever possible.
A refund or exchange in Lightspeed Retail involves:
- Finding the sale to refund
- Selecting items to refund
- Adding items to exchange (optional)
- Processing a payment
For instructions on how to do a refund or exchange in the POS mode of your Retail POS app, please see Refunding and exchanging on your iPad.
1. Finding the sale to refund
Refunding the original sale is helpful for your record-keeping and it can help you eliminate fraud. It can also prevent you from refunding discounted items at full price. You can find the original sale by:
- Scanning your customer's receipt
- Searching your customer's name
- Searching your customer's item
If you can't find the original sale to refund, simply click Sales > Refund and skip to 2. Selecting items to refund.
Scanning your customer's receipt
You can scan your customer's receipt in two areas:
- The register
- The sales history view
To scan your customer's receipt at the register:
- From the main menu, click Sales > Refund.
- In the Item field, scan your customer's receipt. The original item(s) that they purchased appear(s) in the Refund tab of the register.
To scan your customer's receipt in the sales history view:
- From the main menu, click Sales > Sales history.
- In the search bar, scan your customer's receipt.
- On the side panel, click Refund or exchange.
The original item that they purchased should now appear in the Refund tab of the register.
Searching for your customer's name
If your customer doesn't have their receipt, we recommend searching for your customer:
From the main menu, click Sales > Refund.
In the Customer field, enter your customer's name or another of their searchable details and click Search. If your search has a unique match, your customer will attach to the refund automatically. If your search has many results, click + Attach to Sale next to the correct customer account.
To open your customer's account, click Edit to the right of your customer's name.
From the left menu of your customer's account, click Sales.
- Using the available fields and filters, search for your customer's item.
From the search results, click the sale ID associated with the item.
At the top of the screen, click the grey Refund button. The original item(s) that they purchased in the sale appear(s) in the Refund tab of the register.
Searching for your customer's item
If your customer doesn't have their receipt or a matching sale in their customer account, we recommend searching for the item itself as your third course of action:
From the main menu, click Reports > Lines.
- Using the available fields and filters, search for your customer's item. If you're having trouble finding their item and original sale, you can narrow and investigate your search results based on the following questions:
When did you purchase this item?
- Select a specific date or date range from the date field.
Did you purchase other items in the same sale?
Items that were purchased on the same sale will have the same sale ID. This question is helpful when the item was purchased on multiple sales in the same day.
What payment type did you use?
You'll be able to see the payment type(s) used at the time of the sale if you click the sale ID and click Payments on the left menu. You can also use the Received payments report if you prefer to filter by payment types. This questions is also helpful when the item was purchased on multiple sales in the same day.
- Do you remember the name of employee that helped you?
- You can use the Employee filter to narrow the search results.
From the search results, click the sale ID associated with the item.
- At the top of the screen, click the grey Refund button. The original item(s) that they purchased in the sale appear(s) in the Refund tab of the register.
2. Selecting items to refund
In the Refund tab of the sale, select the item(s) to refund in one of the following ways:
Clicking: Click Refund to the left of the item description. The original quantity purchased is automatically entered. If required, adjust the quantity of the item(s) to refund by entering your desired negative quantity.
Scanning: In the Item field, scan the item(s) until you see your desired negative quantity.
Optionally, click Show Notes to leave a receipt note or internal note. If you're leaving an internal note, you can also tap Add time to add a timestamp (your name, the date and time).
3. Adding items to exchange (optional)
If during the refund your customer wants to purchase items as well, you can create an exchange by adding items to the Sale tab. The register will calculate the difference between the Sale and Refund tab and clearly display whether you owe your customer a refund (sale Total is a negative value) or your customer has a balance to pay (sale Total is a positive value).
To begin an exchange:
- Follow the previous steps to add the items being refunded to the Refund tab of the sale.
- Switch to the Sale tab.
- Add the items being purchased to the sale tab either by scanning them in or searching for them.
- Adjust the quantity of each item to the desired amount if necessary.
You will then have a Sale tab with all of the items being purchased, and a Refund tab with all of the items being returned. The Total will show the balance due or owing after factoring in both tabs. In the case where an item is being exchanged for another item of the same price (but different size, for example), the balance will be $0.00. Complete the sale to adjust your stock quantities for all items involved in the exchange.
Along with adding items to an exchange, you can also sell or recharge gift cards.
4. Processing the payment
If your exchange's Total has a positive value, the payment type window will be green, and you can simply process the payment as you would when making a sale and skip ahead to section 6. Printing or emailing the receipt (optional).
If your refund or exchange's Total has a negative value, the payment type window will be orange, and the refunded amount may be subject to certain restrictions based on:
- the payment type(s) and amount(s) on the original transaction.
- the Refund As setting in Settings > Payment Types.
For example, if $100 of a $200 sale was paid for using the Credit Account payment type and that payment type can only be refunded as Credit Account according to its settings, you will have to refund your customer at least $100 of the total $200 refund in the form of store credit.
If you are refunding from the original transaction (refund by reference) and it was paid for by credit card, depending on your payment processor and the time elapsed since the transaction took place, you may see the original credit card used to pay for the transaction displayed as a payment type to refund to. Selecting this card and completing the refund transaction automatically sends the funds back to the card.
Refunding to a credit card with Tyro
The payment processor Tyro does not support refunding directly back to the card that was originally used for the transaction. Instead, select that you are refunding to a credit card and swipe/enter the credit card in question.
The same is not true for debit cards, however. If the original transaction was paid for by debit, you will have to refund to a different payment type, such as cash; refunding to a debit card is not possible with most payment processors. If you are using the P400+ payment terminal with Lightspeed Payments, you can refund to a debit card.
Refunding is a great way to reverse a transaction while maintaining a record of both the sale and the return. However, sometimes the preferred result would be if the transaction had never happened in the first place. In cases like that, you can void the transaction.