How to block fraud customers by suspicious email addresses in WooCommerce?

Category: How tos, Woocommerce, WooCommerce Anti-Fraud, WordPress

WooCommerce fraud isn’t a new thing. Spammers and hackers are all over the web, looking to intruder the private space. As a WooCommerce store owner, this is something that you must be aware of and even undertake measures to avoid getting trapped.

But how?

Before getting into the how part of the discussion, let’s have a small introduction to what WooCommerce fraud is.

A majority of the website managers consider WooCommerce fraud to be relative to website security. However, reality has a different tale to tell. Not only does it is not related to the security protocols but it is totally opposite. So, what does that mean??

What is a WooCommerce fraud and how is it different from the protocols of website security?

Website security is largely related to hackers entering the online store and accessing the data. On the other hand, WooCommerce could be anything from placing a fake order to canceling orders just before delivery. WooCommerce fraud includes fraudulent transactions but it isn’t limited to this.

Not sure how this works?

Let’s understand this through an example.

Consider that you have a WooCommerce store that sells aesthetic items other antiques to customers across the world. You have certain limitations on the area and add an extra shipping fee for delivery to places outside your country.

Recently, a customer placed an order worth $5k. A huge one and you are pretty much excited about the delivery of the same. You get your team working on the packaging and shipment of the product. Since it is a wooden product, you need to take extra care and have the handle with care label attached.

It takes around two days to ship the product. All necessary precautions have been taken and the product has arrived at the customer’s city. Surprisingly, you are one day ahead of the delivery date. Considering that you will delight your customer with faster delivery, the product is ready to be delivered.

As soon as the delivery executive reaches the address given, he tries to call the customer. And the voice reads:

The number you are calling is switched off

The delivery executive then knocks on the door asking for Mr. Robin but a lady comes out and denies anyone named Robin staying at the location. The executive tries to tell her that an order has been placed but she stays on her word.

After a couple of hours, you get to know about the situation and ask your team to connect with the customer. Still, the number isn’t reachable. The product is back at your warehouse.

So where’s the loss?

Even though you were not charged for the product, you spent a great share of money on packaging, shipment, and delivery of the product. Not to forget the time and efforts spent on getting the product ready to be shipped.

This is one case and might not matter much. But imagine facing a similar situation every now and then. Considering the popularity of WooCommerce stores and the number of orders witnessed in a day, these fake orders might cost you high. And this is why you need to be vigilant and take steps to avoid the situation from repeating in the future.

Wondering how to block orders?

The WooCommerce Fraud Prevention plugin by DotStore might interest you in this regard. 

Why is the WooCommerce Fraud Prevention Plugin?

True that WooCommerce has a wealth of choices when it comes to plugins, setting new features, adding themes, etc. However, the default store doesn’t allow you to block customers that seem suspicious or have been part of fraudulent acts in the past.

WooCommerce Fraud Prevention Plugin
Figure 1 – WooCommerce Fraud Prevention Plugin by DotStore

With the WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin, you can step ahead of the standard norms and embrace the vision of making your store fraud-free.

The plugin is powered by DotStore and has multiple features that give you the ease to block fraud customers on the go.

Features of the Plugin

WooCommerce Fraud Prevention Plugin key features
WooCommerce Anti-Fraud key features

Set rules to detect false orders

With this anti-fraud plugin, store managers can easily set up rules and conditions that help differentiate between fraud orders and the legitimate ones. The rules can be based on the city, the customer type, the order, or the products. The WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin is 100% customizable and can be used as per the needs of the business.

Block customers based on the shipping address

Whether it is the country or the city, the state, or a particular shipping zone, the WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin offers the flexibility to create rules based on all of the above and prevent customers from those regions to place an order.

Block customers at the registration/checkout page

The plugin has an option where you can select when to blacklist a customer. It could be either at the time of user registration or when a customer is placing an order. Depending upon the rule created, blocking customers at the registration or the checkout page is pretty easy.

Block user based on the name

Found someone with a particular name faking orders? Don’t worry, the plugin has an option where you can block a person by his name, preventing the same to place an order. Note: not all customers with a name would be a fraud. The plugin allows you to set custom messages to notify the blocked customers on the next step/process.

Block user based on their user role

Found your editor spamming the store with fake orders? The WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin has the provision where you can block users by their role, prohibiting them to make an order. The plugin has different roles listed ranging between the editor to the subscriber, the manager, etc.

Set custom messages

Another feature that makes this plugin an excellent choice for blocking customers is the ease of adding custom-fit messages for each of the blocked categories. You can have separate messages for each of the fields. For instance, blocking a customer at the time of registration could have a message like:

Sorry, this email address has been blocked. Connect #0123-2555222 to connect with our customer support team and resolve the issue.

How To Set up the WooCommerce Anti-fraud Plugin?

Wondering how to use the plugin?

Setting up the WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin is easy and doesn’t require you to have any technical knowledge. To begin with:

  • Visit the WordPress admin dashboard.
  • Login with the credentials and move down to the Plugins tab.
  • Click on add new and enter the WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin in the search bar.
  • Click on download and install the plugin.
  • Once done, activate the plugin to get started.

Once you have activated the plugin, you can use it to block fraud customers and prevent them from placing an order.

To help you understand how to block a customer based on the email address, let us walk down a hypothetical scenario.

Case One: Block Robin with the email address rob45454544@gmail.com

Suppose that a customer with the e-mail address  rob45454544@gmail.com is trying to place an order. Earlier the same email address has been used but the product went undelivered. Since it was the first time that a fraud transaction took place, you avoided the same.

Now Robin places an order and opts for cash on delivery. Three days later the product is out for delivery but the address appears to be wrong. There doesn’t exist any such block as listed in the address of the customer. You recognize the last incident and now you want to take steps to avoid such a situation from happening again.

The WooCommerce Anti-fraud plugin helps you do the same.

Process:

  1. Click on the plugin in the dashboard and select the name of the plugin.
  2. The page that opens will have multiple fields to be entered. Since we are blocking the customer based on the email address, we will scroll down to the tab that says email address. The field allows you to enter more than one email address at the same time. Separate each of them from a comma or you can upload a file with the list of email addresses that need to be blocked.
  3. Make sure you have selected the type. You can either select the registration checkbox or the checkout page. You can also select both of them to prevent the already registered users from placing an order with the said email address.
  4. Scroll down and add a custom-fit message that would be displayed at the time of blocking. Meaning that after blocking a customer, the plug-in would display a message notifying the customer about why has he/she been debarred from placing an order. For instance: Sorry, the said e-mail address has been blocked. Connect with the admin to know more about the issue and complete the process.
  5. Make sure you save the changes made before exiting the plugin page.

Following a similar method, you can block fraudulent customers from placing an order based on name, address, city, zip code, etc. Also, add a customized message for the same.

The Crux

Customers and orders are exciting, but it will be a bad experience if the order is not real. You may end up wasting money and efforts in packing, streamlining and delivering the order to the last-mile, just to find out that it was fake. So, block the suspicious users by their email address or using other details. Use WooCommerce anti-fraud Plugin.

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About Nimesh Patel

I am a Product Marketer and Growth hacker with expertise in the areas of Digital marketing; Search engine optimization (SEO), Email Marketing, Paid Campaigns on Facebook and Twitter, Content development strategies, Competitive Research & Analysis. Nimesh is Product Manager at theDotstore.com

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