How to Deal With Spikes in "Product Returns" During Holidays
Holiday shopping seasons especially Black Friday and Christmas are the time of the year that most businesses
are waiting for. This is because their sales increase during the holiday season.
Vendors are thrilled about the increase in sales, but they are also worried about the post-holiday returns.
Product returns are one of the hardest-to-manage escalating problems that have been
experienced by most vendors. In fact, the product returns problem existed long before
and will still exist and continue to grow especially in the consumer electronic industry. The issue of returned
products increases as a result of the Internet growth in which most consumers become
more comfortable buying items online. This can be prevented, however, if the retailer
knows how to handle the issues by either improving the services or using reliable
Product Returns Management software similar to
The expectation of consumers purchasing products online has risen, and choosing
the right product becomes more complex. This is one of the reasons why product returns
exist. In a way, returning products is normal, but if the number of returns spike,
the vendors should exert effort to cease or prevent the surge of product returns.
In order to achieve high performance, companies and businesses should comprehensively
address the issue. This requires transforming the system for it to become effective
and avoid the product return issue.
According to research, product returns cost manufacturers and online retailers billons
of dollars due to receiving, assessing, restocking, repairing, reboxing, and reselling
products. Likewise, surveys revealed that the return rate of products is increasing
over the years. That is why vendors should find ways to cut the costs and reduce
the prevalence of product returns.
Online shoppers return products for many reasons. Some customers said that they
have received wrong items, while others received damaged items. There are customers
returning products because they did not want them due to poor quality, or does not
fit them. Perhaps those reasons are the result of the fact that shopping online
does not allow the shopper to touch or see the product. Product returns pose big
problem to online retailers because they not only lose money, but they also lose
the trust of the customers due to an unhappy experience.
Despite the prevailing issue of product returns, many online retailers are unable
to address it for different reasons. First, online retailers think that addressing
the returns will cost their business. Second, businesses are focusing more on handling
the returns instead of preventing them. Lastly, most companies are utilizing the
so-called one-size-fits-all approach on the returns. These reasons will not help
in addressing the issue, rather it will aggravate and increase the rate of product
returns. Therefore, vendors should do action on how to prevent the spike of product
returns during holidays.
How to Reduce the Incidence Rate of Product Returns
Educate the customer
Proper knowledge of the customer before and after purchasing the item is important.
It can help the customer to have better understanding about the product he or she
purchased. Providing instructional videos can help in educating buyers on how they
can benefit from the product they bought.
Offer set-up and delivery services
Providing value-added services to customers can reduce the incidence of receiving
product returns. This can be a win-win situation because while the retailer is giving
value-added services, they can also generate additional revenue. Improving brand
image can help in reducing returns. Doing the right thing will not only reduce the
cost of the returns but also make customers happy and eventually boost the sales.
Proactive customer service
Assisting customers before they become dissatisfied and return the product. This
means that retailers should reach out to customers during the first 24 hour after
making the purchase. This way, they will know if the customer is satisfied about
the product and prevent the possibility of returning the item.
Offer multiple service options
Customers have different ideas when choosing products. They are not only choosing
what is convenient to them, but also how the product will answer their needs. Customers
are also very particular with the services. Customer support can be provided through
the telephone, the mail, or the web. Thus, retailers should ensure providing multiple
service options so that they can keep in touch with their customers and weed out
the possibility of returning the products.
Determine the impact of returns
Online retailers should follow metrics in assessing the problem and tracking the
trends just like manufacturers are doing. In addressing the returns, it is important
to start with a baseline to gauge the impact of returns. This way, they can identify
the cost-effective way of improving or introducing new approaches. Retailers can
use metrics such as return rates by item, length of time from the purchase, reason
of returning the item, manufacturer, and item class. Knowing this information can
help retailers to address and avoid product returns.
Utilize efficient product returns management software
Aside from those tips cited above, online retailers can also consider using product
returns management software that can help in handling and managing the returns.
This software is useful in improving the customer service, and at the same time,
help with the retention of customers. The software offers several features that
can make the process a lot easier, such as:
• Full visibility, reporting, and tracking of the returned product and the details
of whom and when it is returned.
• It helps in setting the rules including return date, dollar amount, and other
A product returns management software like RMAPORTAL
is a useful tool that provides flexibility on how you want to handle the product
return issues. The various features of the software can help retailers in improving
their services as well as their brand. Therefore, in order to avoid product returns,
retailers should ensure handling returns the right way not only during Christmas
holidays, but throughout the rest of year as well. RMAPortal's
easy and ready-to-use cloud based RMA processing software will help you manage your
product returns more effectively, and gain more customer loyalty.