Although product returns and exchanges are essential for any business because of customer service, they also can kill your business if you don’t know how to manage them. There are many ways that they can negatively impact your business, such as large front-end costs of product returns, bad customer experience and retention, customer churn, and bad brand image. Therefore, it is important to know how to make the returns rate within our control. These are five ways that can help you with this problem:
1. Changing To A More Liberal Returns Policy
A liberal returns policy allows the customers to purchase a product without any dissonance since they know the option of returning it later. At first, this way seems to have the opposite effect of what we are trying to do – reducing returns. However, the data show a different picture from what you think it is: most of the customers have a feeling of urgency with the typical Shopify returns policy within 30 days. The studies show that the longer you use a product, the more you feel attached to it (the endowment effect). Therefore, a longer returns window within 45-90 days will significantly reduce the returns rate.
2. Divide Your Customers
Although people often use segmentation for marketing purpose, most of the business does not know its application in reducing the product returns. Basically, segmentation is the same for both purposes: identify trends, behaviors, traits, and any useful metrics. These metrics would help the businesses make smarter decisions. However, since Shopify doesn’t have any analytics feature to save the returns data, the retailers should create they own database, spreadsheets, and workflows.
3. Including High-quality Images Of Products
The Shopify researches show that one of the most popular reasons for product returning is inaccurate images of the product. One of the drawbacks of online shopping is that you cannot touch, try, exam the products. Therefore, the detailed depictions of them are what will ease the dissonance of the customers.
4. Customer Feedback After Returns
The businesses should gather feedback from the customers whenever they return a product to understand the reasons. Although it is a difficult process for both sides. These feedbacks would be the key for the retailers to detect the problems, improving the shopping experience. The feedback can give you an insight look into the products, discovering the hiding bugs. An effective feedback should be broken down into related categories that will be useful for the business, like type of product, manufacturer, attributes, etc.
5. Data-Driven Marketing Strategies
In the modern world, the departments within a business support each other to achieve better results. In this method, the marketing department will provide support for your operations. The customers’ feedbacks will reveal the high-risk products, which the buyers are likely to returns. It also reveals the segments that are likely to return certain kinds of product. By providing these two types of information to the marketing department, the businesses can identify which products should be marketed in which regions, reducing the dissonance and returns volume.
The above tips should help to manage the returns rate of your business, which would definitely benefit your operation and increase your profit.