Having a streamlined returns process for your eCommerce retail site can benefit you in a number of ways, including improving customer retention and even creating strong customer engagement, which ultimately leads to return sales.
A really good returns process backed by an excellent reverse logistics team can make a dramatic difference in your number of sales and your bottom line.
If you’ve not designed your returns process to be easy, here are some ways to streamline it right now:
- Make it easy for your customers to initiate the process. So many eTailers seem to secretly believe that hiding the returns process will somehow make it impossible for customers to return their orders.What they’re really saying to their shoppers is “I’m not going to service you after the sale.” Instead of forcing shoppers to call or email for instructions, trust your customers and let them initiate the process through your website.
- Collect some basic information, but no more than necessary. It’ll help your returns management team to collect some information up front, but don’t force your shoppers to write a novel about why they’re returning an item.A simple form with basic information like their contact information and what they’re returning is more than enough to start the reverse logistics machine before the package even arrives back at your facility.
- Provide a return label or schedule a pick-up. As an eCommerce retailer, you need to be able to provide a helping hand with shipping. Giving customers a label they can print and stick to their package, or better yet, including one with every shipment, and even allowing them to arrange a pick-up from your shipper can make returns go faster.Instead of customers having to hunt for a UPS or FedEx drop-off site, a driver can pick up that box from their stoop tomorrow morning. Returns like this go faster, your customer get their credit faster, and that item returns to inventory faster. It’s a total win-win.
- Keep the customer in the loop. Ultimately, you can have the best, most streamlined returns process in the world, but it can still be a great big failure if you forget to include the customer.Like you, they want to know when their package is received, when it’s processed, and when their credit is due. Remember to include a customer web portal to ensure they’re able to access their shipment at any time, day or night.
Streamlining your returns process can make your reverse logistics process easier and your customers happier. Instead of waiting until the last minute, shoppers are more likely to send orders back right away, and you’ll know exactly what’s coming to your door with a quality returns process.