Returns and Exchanges are the most dreaded aspect of eCommerce, but it doesn’t need to be. We’re here to tell you how you can transform your Return and Exchange Policy to work in your favor. A well-balanced Policy can increase customer loyalty and boost your sales.
Before we dive into how to write a great Return and Exchange Policy, let’s discuss what it is and why it is essential for your eCommerce business.
Return and Exchange Policy rules govern how customers can return or exchange unwanted products they have purchased from your eCommerce business. It includes the reasons for returns of merchandise and the timeframe over which returns and exchanges are acceptable.
Return and Exchange Policy can vary according to the nature of your business. What matters is that it’s prominently mentioned on your website and is easy to find.
According to research by Invespcro, customers send back at least 30% of products ordered online. You can’t possibly avoid returns or exchange requests from customers. Instead of looking at it as a loss, consider it an opportunity to convert an unsatisfied customer into a satisfied, loyal customer.
Having a Return and Exchange Policy in place will help you look at return requests from customers as an opportunity instead of a loss. We’ll tell you how to write a customer-centric Return and Exchange Policy that’ll improve your repeat purchase rate.
According to Narvar Consumer Survey on Returns in 2017:
Your Returns Policy depends upon the nature of your eCommerce business and the products you sell, but these topics are the basics of a well-balanced Policy:
There are a few factors that will determine the success of your reverse logistic strategy, especially when it comes to China:
The key is to be clear about your Return and Exchange Policy. The customer should know which products they can return and exchange. You can encourage your customers to exchange unwanted products for another product from your eCommerce business. Exchanging instead of refunding in full can decrease the financial impact on your business.
One way to encourage exchanges over returns is by offering to cover the cost of return. You should also have the option of return, but make the exchange option more tempting for your customer.
A product subject to “Final Sale” can’t be exchanged or returned. Usually, products sold at a discounted price are final sale products and don’t entertain returns. Determine what products are Final Sales for your business, and mention them clearly in your Exchanges and Returns Policy.
Your Exchanges and Returns Policy should be easily accessible for your customers, and Final Sale products should be prominently mentioned. Creating the right expectations for your customers through a prominent Exchanges and Returns policy will help them trust your brand.
Your Exchanges and Returns Policy should be customer-centric but not at your own expense. Loss due to returns in unsellable conditions can be more than you gain from the satisfaction of customers. Be clear about the acceptable condition of returned products.
Mention specific criteria in your Return and Exchange Policy to help customers know what to expect before purchasing.
For example, the Return and Exchange Policy of Chili mentions that returned products must be in perfect condition. The only exception is for products that have damage upon pick-up.
The period in which you accept a return request can vary according to the nature of your products. It doesn’t matter what your return and exchange period is. What matters is that you state it explicitly in your Return and Exchange Policy.
Return and Exchange Period can grow your sales through the trust and loyalty it builds in customers for your brand. The key is mentioning it clearly and prominently, so customers read it before making a purchase.
Here is an example of Best Buy’s Return and Exchange Policy, where you’ve stated the return period.
One strategic way to cover your loss and grow customer loyalty at the same time is to offer to cover return shipping costs on exchanges. You can deduct shipping costs on returns from the refund to customers, so they’ll be encouraged to exchange instead of returning.
Mention this in your Return and Exchange Policy so customers would know what to expect. EBay’s Return and Exchange Policy mentions that sellers pay for return shipping costs if the product is damaged or faulty.
Make the process of return as simple as possible for your customers. A customer-centric Return and Exchange Policy facilitates customers in what they want to do. If returning a product is as easy as it was to buy it, customers notice this.
They’ll subconsciously place your brand higher than your competitors with a complicated return process to discourage returns.
Make an automated system to process return requests which process and verifies returns quickly. An easy return process will encourage your customers to buy again from your eCommerce store as they’ll feel secure about their purchase.
Volcom outlines its return procedure clearly and aims at customer satisfaction through it. They have a three-step process that makes returning products as easy as buying them.
Returns are inevitable for every eCommerce business. However, you can make your returns management more profitable and easy to handle. You can think of your customer-purchased returns as an opportunity to enhance the quality of your products and build an exceptional brand experience
Learn how Fulfillment Bridge can help you effectively handle your returns among other logistics processes you need for a successful business. Click the button below and request a free demo.
We offer reverse logistics services for e-commerce businesses in China that want to maintain visibility and control throughout their supply chain. Our solution also helps with forecasting product demand, monitoring inventory levels, improving customer service, reducing costs of shipping products from one region to another, and more!
To learn more about how Fulfillment Bridge can help you with your reverse logistics, reach us via firstname.lastname@example.org or click the button below to request a quote.