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Yes! Comprehensive Returns Management is Vital!


December 15, 2021
5 MIN READ
Vinculum
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Vinculum
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ECommerce sales increased by 30% in 2020. Increasing sales will also lead to higher customer expectations and higher returns.

By clearly stating your return policy, you can ease the nerves of nervous shoppers. You can even gain customer loyalty through this added level of transparency.

Furthermore, there is more opportunity to embrace returns as a strategy for lowering customer acquisition costs, increasing customer retention, and enhancing customer lifetime value.

Why is return management critical?

Retailers and consumers alike rely on the returns management process to ensure successful e-commerce exchanges. An adequate returns management solution can benefit both parties. Here’s how:

  • Retail returns management.

Retailers lose money on returns, and returned goods hurt conversion rates and profit margins. The cost of inefficient processing and reverse logistics can lead to retailers overspending at up to 20% without a robust returns solution in place. However, a good return policy can drive growth when appropriately positioned.

  • Returns management for shoppers.

You may be surprised to learn that 68% of shoppers check a store’s return policy before placing an order. Most consumers will not return to a retailer again after having a painful returns experience, but most returning shoppers are also the most likely to buy and keep. Of those returning items, 82% are repeat customers.

Making the return process as simple as possible is essential to put shoppers at ease and boost your bottom line.

With a transparent return policy, you can accomplish this easily.

By following these five return management tips, you can reduce refunds, increase LTV, and cut costs.

    1. Provide custom recommendations to improve exchange rates
      Offering tailored recommendations can help you retain more sales while maximizing your exchange rate. For apparel and accessories, this is especially helpful.Many shoppers will return shoes if the size is wrong, for instance, when they buy running shoes. Rather than simply offering a refund, suggesting a size up can retain more revenue.
    2. Make customer service less of a hassle for shoppers.Reducing the number of unnecessary customer service calls regarding returns is another way to cut costs and improve the customer experience. You no longer need confused and frustrated shoppers calling your customer service line after the returns process has been automated with software.Customers frequently ask for refunds when the warehouse is still inspecting or processing their items, causing them to wonder where their refund is.
    3. Provide a variety of return options for shoppers to choose fromWhen it comes to returns, consumers want transparency and options. A variety of return methods – in-person drop-offs, automated shipping labels, etc. – will go a long way toward meeting customer needs.Making it difficult for a customer to return an item will leave a wrong impression sooner than you might think. An in-person option can be a game-changer when a startup does not have physical stores or an omnichannel brand only has a few storefronts. Next time, clients may decide to shop elsewhere if all they have to do is queue up at the Post Office.
    4. Aggregation and reusable packaging can reduce shipping costs.It is not just the environment that benefits from sustainable packaging. Lower shipping costs are another advantage, and reduced shipping costs are achieved by using recyclable or eco-friendly packaging.HP, for instance, reduced its packaging materials by 29% by sourcing fluting and liners from responsibly managed forestry. As a result, the new packaging weighed less than their old packaging, reducing shipping costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
    5. Restocking can be made easier with intelligent processing.When your returns process does not include processing returned items, it won’t solve your returns challenges. The fulfillment of orders and processing returns are often viewed as competing priorities for retailers with limited warehouse space.In business logistics, it will either be restocked or sent back to the manufacturer or supplier or written off altogether, depending on the reason for the return. Your finances and inventory may be affected by this decision.

      Customers may call customer service after not receiving their returns if they are unhappy with the process.

      Intelligent processing software can simplify restocking. When 13% of holiday purchases are returned to retailers after the holiday season, such efforts are particularly vital.

    Your returns process must be transparent to manage costs and expectations. Make sure your policy is clearly explained on your website and easy to find. Consumers are more likely to return their purchases if their policy is known upfront. Keeping customers loyal to your brand is also an essential step toward establishing trust.

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