Yep, it's happened again, that S7 I ordered ended up not coming, I just received this empty box...
It's remarkable how many times this happens, but here's how to get your money back, everytime.
There are four main claims you can say to amazon, they're:
Item never arrived
Simply call them, which is usually the best way as you can convey emotion which can convince the rep, you can do Live chat if you're nervous but it's more likely to fail as you cannot convince the rep as well via just typing.
When you call up they will ask for order number then security questions such as billing, phone, name.
Give them that, once you're past give them your scenario, here's an example:
"The courier just came with my order, I went into the kitchen and opened the box and nothing was inside! Just brown packaging paper... can you please help sort this for me?"
They usually ask questions such as "Was the box sealed?" Say yes, if you say no they will think the courier opened it, nearly always leads to an investigation.
Sometimes they ask you to contact the courier, so its a good idea to say:
"...I called the courier straight away and asked to speak to the driver, they told me I need to talk to Amazon as they'd be able to help me out."
That usually stops them from calling themselves, too.
Item never arrived
This is an easy one even when there is a signature! But for the first scenario we will talk about non signature items.
Much more common in the USA is where couriers leave items on front steps, porches ect, this means no signature and no proof you got the item, so when you speak to Amazon say:
"I was waiting inside all day for my delivery, I then got an email saying it's been delivered and left on my doorstep, I went outside and checked and nothing was there at all, I spoke to my neighbours and they didn't bring it inside either, could you please sort this issue for me?"
Now this is usually a failsafe way of getting your refund, there's no proof of you getting the item at all, however usually if you call straight away they tell you to wait 24 hours incase it still arrives, their reason is because couriers sometimes "accidentally" mark as delivered when it's still out for delivery, so if you're patient you can just wait a day.
If there is a signature, you can state it isn't yours, when you actually sign for it at the door use a different name, now you can claim you did not get it.
This is where you say you got something else than what you ordered, for instance if you ordered an iPhone you can say you received an iPhone case and not the item.
They will either:
Instantly refund/replace and say keep the item
Instantly refund/replace and start a return for the item
Say you need to return the item first and then receive a refund
Depending on your patience you could agree to the third, or just hang up and find another rep.
Here is where you just say you got your item but it's broken and unusable, if it's left on doorstep you can use that to your advantage: say it had rained and the item is soaked and not working, if not just say you cannot get it to work, electronics work best for this as you can say it's broken without there being a single cosmetic problem.
They'll usually refund/replace for you or they will ask for a return, a return is a problem as you do not want to send the item back, if they say that just call back and try with another rep.
Avoiding an investigation
There is always a chance you will be told there is no other option than an investigation, this chance increases by value of the item, they are usually avoidable.
There are a lot of ways to get out of them starting:
If you claimed Empty Box, you can always claim you want to speak to family members to see if they took the item out of the box, or that you want to call the couriers and speak to them and find out yourself, and for Amazon not to investigate until you have checked.
If you claimed Item Never Arrived, say you wish to wait another day incase the item turns up, or you want to check with your neighbours to see if they have it, and for Amazon to to investigate until you call back the next day.
If you claimed Wrong item, say you want to speak to the people in your house and see if they opened the box before you, and for them to not investigate until you call back.
If you claimed Broken item, tell them you want to test it again, and not to investigate until you've tried it out.
It's always important to say Do not investigate as otherwise they can do it, make sure the rep verbally says okay to what you're saying, Indians can be sneaky bastards.
You can also wiggle your way around more sympathetic reps (usually females) by saying:
"I really cannot wait for an investigation, this item is for a birthday problem for my child in [2/3] days, I simply cannot wait for the investigation as I need the item as soon as possible."
Usually this will mean they will just refund/replace without investigating, but it doesn't always work.
I hope this helps people with refunding, if you want any help with your own scenario feel free to PM me.