Returns management and reverse logistics are sometimes the elephant in the room for so many eCommerce retailers.
Even though customer satisfaction with these processes has increased modestly, they still have a long way to go to be on par with other aspects of eCommerce that absolutely delight customers everywhere.
Good Returns Policies Make Good Business
According to the 2016 UPS Whitepaper Pulse of the Online Shopper, only 67 percent of your shoppers believe you have a clear and easy returns policy.
That leaves a full third of your customers unsure about their purchases every single time they authorize their credit card with your store. A nervous customer is a customer that’s not fully engaged, and likely to find another retailer that can make them more comfortable with their purchase and with their returns management process.
A good returns policy can help your store in several ways, including:
- Increasing sales. When customers are certain they know what will happen if there’s a problem with their purchase, they’re more likely to make it happen.No one likes handling a return (and most people don’t even use the term reverse logistics), but allowing customers the option gives them the freedom to try a new product or line without worrying about what they’ll do if the item isn’t exactly what they expected. That extra incentive can mean a lot of extra cash in your till.
- Reducing customer service requests. Unclear policies can be costly in more ways than one.In fact, if your policies are confusing or vague, it means your customer service team will be handling a lot more requests for clarification. Instead of spending an endless portion of your budget on questions that could be easily answered by a good returns policy, take some time to spell out your returns policy in plain language that everyone can understand.
- Improving word-of-mouth referrals. Customers hate uncertainty, as they’ve shown time and again, so if a friend is having problem with an eCommerce shop because of a problematic returns policy or returns management process, you can bet that someone will recommend a similar store with a solid returns policy. If your store is the one with the clear returns policy, so much the better. Word-of-mouth is still a great way to earn business, especially as people continue to ask their friends and family about their experiences on social media.
Reverse logistics are slowly becoming more “front of mind” for eCommerce retailers than they have in the past, but there’s much improvement to be made before customers believe eCommerce businesses have really good returns policies across the board. Your company can lead the way in returns management by implementing a top-notch returns policy today.