RMA Overview



An RMA (return merchandise authorization) is a numbered authorization provided by a mail-order merchant to permit the return of a product. Most online businesses have a policy concerning returns. Some companies allow only defective products to be returned; others allow any software to be returned if it is unopened.

How does an RMA typically work?

To return a defective product, a typical process is:

  • First, the customer must call or email a support person within the online business. The support person helps to determine whether the product is indeed defective. This usually involves the customer answering several questions and following the support persons directions for testing the product in question. If the support person feels that the product is defective, the support person issues an RMA. Some merchants allow the customer to send an e-mail message requesting an RMA instead of having to call.

  • Secondly, the customer must write the RMA number on the outside of the box that the product is being shipped in. It is important to mail all the original boxes, manuals, and any other items along with the product. If a return is sent without an RMA number, the merchant can return the product to the customer or charge a restocking fee.

  • The customer mails the product. Most merchants recommend using a shipping company that can track packages.

  • Finally, a credit or refund can be processed, or if the item is not fault or was not in the condition it was originally sent in, it can be returned to the customer and the RMA can be closed.I'

RMA numbers are important to both the merchant and customer. An RMA number tells the merchant that a return is being made and offers protection against fraudulent returns.

The customer can use the RMA number to inquire on the progress of a return. For example, if the customer hasn't received any information about the return, the customer can call the merchant and use the RMA number as a reference.

Please Note: In Neto, the RMA function is also used for any general credit being applied to an order, even if the goods are not returned. Different outcomes are used to determine whether items need to be returned to stock.


  • Last Modified: 23/11/2016