Avoiding Chargebacks & Fraud with Zen Cart

Credit card fraud, chargebacks and PayPal disputes can cost your business a great deal of money! These simple steps will help you manage these dangerous areas in your Zen Cart store.


Building trust when you are not in a face to face transaction is difficult. However, there are some simple things you can do to help build trust from your website.

  • Put your phone number in the header, large and easily noticeable.
  • Use security seals in notable locations.
  • Post reviews, testimonials and feedback.
  • Link your business’ social media pages in notable locations from your website.
  • Use microdata to deliver search engines and other platforms your business, location and contact information.
  • Use large, detail product images and clear and detailed descriptions.
  • Make sure you make pages like shipping info, privacy and such easy to find.
  • In addition create pages like security, returns, cancellations etc that are more topically narrow and easier to understand.

Building trust not only helps prevent chargebacks and fraud, but also increases conversions… So these steps save money and make money!

Zen Cart Configurations

There are many items you can configure and edit in your Zen Cart that will help you better manage and avoid costly chargebacks and fraud.

  • Whatever gateway you are using for credit cards make sure:
    1. You have them setup your information in such a way that people can easily locate your phone number and business name from their credit card statements. Most credit card companies truncate this information, so phone number first. If it’s easy to call and check, you can avoid a chargeback….. If you let it go through and the chargeback is started, you will no longer be able to refund it!
    2. Setup all gateways, including PayPal to email you suspicious or erred transactions instead of just logging them. When you get these emails, don’t ignore them, call the customer and inquire why they had difficulty. Then, if it feels wrong, trust your gut, cancel and refund the order.
    3. Make sure you install a signature confirmation module, such as this one to charge/not charge, but require a signature upon delivery for large orders. Your merchant bank and PayPal make have different amounts for which they require it, use the lowest one for all transactions. PayPal is currently $250, but check here for more info.
    4. If you are using Authorize.net enable the fraud detection suite, it’s worth every penny!
  • Make sure you are using an SSL for your checkout, contact and search pages to avoid hacking and protect shopper’s information.
  • Edit your shopping cart page, checkout and other high priority pages with clear and concise directions.
  • Make real certain you are saving your admin logs when you clear them out.
  • Post on each product page and in the fo0ter which payment options you accept.
  • Limit the number of addresses a shopper can create in their address book. This makes it more difficult for them to test addresses in checkout with a stolen card.


  • Whatever shipping service you are using, make certain they are doing address verifications.
  • Make certain to update the shopper from the Zen Cart order page, so it is logged, if they are to be any delays, backorders etc.
  • Ship packages within 7 days of the order whenever possible.
  • Provide tracking for every single package you send.
  • Pack your orders securely and safely. If you think this is too costly, compare the cost of the bubble wrap to even one $50 chargeback fee. Not to mention, many shipping companies require specific packaging materials to reimburse you if the shipment is damaged.

While there is no bulletproof method, common sense and awareness will help you avoid these costly chargebacks, PayPal disputes and fraudulent transactions.