In 2018, 45% of French consumers returned a product they purchased online, at least once. Managing returns can be a major asset of your e-commerce. Improved customer experience, brand image, and increased sales are the positive consequences of an effective return policy.
It is often imagined that the logistics stop when the package is delivered. But returns are just as important as the rest of the logistics process. From the creation of your return policy to the outsourcing of your logistics and the choice of packaging, there are many aspects on which you can stand out!
We will see in this article how returns can be both a gas pedal of your sales but also an element of unstoppable loyalty.
The return policy is made up of all the elements related to the return of packages:
It is important that you put yourself in your client's shoes to answer any questions they may have. In addition to saving your support team time, this strategy will reduce your customer's frustration and improve their logistics experience.
For example, you can formulate it as an FAQ:
Your return policy will not only improve the customer experience by avoiding surprises such as a paid return but will also reassure your customers about return times, for example.
All the decisions and policies of your e-commerce have an impact on your brand image. Returns can be a great tool to anchor your values.
For example, let's imagine that you are an e-merchant selling eco-responsible clothing, Made in France. Adapting returns management to your social and environmental commitments will improve your brand image, such as:
Creating a policy to your image in addition to improving your brand image with your customers and prospects will be a foolproof commercial asset.
You can communicate your commitment directly on your website, for example. Loom, a brand of eco-responsible clothing, commits to both a dissuasive policy and packaging as environmentally friendly as possible, which is highlighted on its e-shop through an article and photos:
The return policy is a real asset to build customer loyalty and acquire new customers, it is up to you to create it in the most attractive way but also to make it as accessible as possible: at the time of checkout, on the product pages, in the footer of your website ...
Let's take our example again. If your customer has ordered, received, and tried on his linen pants and realizes that they are too small, how will he return them?
You will have to explain to your customer what steps to take to return his product. Your goal: to reassure and retain your customer!
How do you do it? By making his return experience as easy and quick as possible!
A simple way to accompany your customer is to create several "guides":
1. The first one is to create a specific page that details all the steps (with the return time):
This page can be included in your follow-up emails and should be highly visible on your site.
2. Include a DIY ("Do it yourself") of the return process in your package. This is a guide that summarizes all the steps for a successful return!
Why not improve your brand image to boost your sales by carefully choosing the packaging of your packages?
There are different solutions for a more environmentally friendly package:
Choose recycled and/or recyclable materials: cardboard, kraft tape, Kraft to protect your products ...
Send your orders in packages that can be reused for returns. In addition to boosting your sales through your commitment to the environment, this choice will improve your customers' experience.
Let's take our example. Your customer who ordered a pair of pants that are too small will want to return the product. If you have opted for the classic packaging, your customer will have to tinker with the package to return the product, which can be frustrating, time-consuming, or even costly (if he has to buy a new box because he has opened his own box incorrectly).
The next step is to create a partnership with solutions that innovate in terms of ecological packaging. There are brands like Hipli that have designed a package that can be reused more than 100 times. It also allows your customers to return their products.
Thanks to this partnership, you will be memorable for your customers!
All these solutions, in addition to being environmentally friendly, have a commercial purpose: to create a craze for your brand! You will retain your existing customers and convince new ones.
One of the most popular trends today is the home fitting of clothes ordered online, especially with the closing of stores due to the pandemic.
Today, according to Metapack, about 41% of e-shoppers don't hesitate to order several pieces knowing that they will return a good part of them. While this is a very environmentally unfriendly practice, you still need to manage these growing returns.
In order not to be overwhelmed by this practice within your e-shop, at Biblue, we advise you to:
As seen previously, returns can be a fabulous way to boost your sales, but it is a very time-consuming part of logistics. It is possible to outsource only returns, as with Shoprunback. But you can also turn to a logistician who will take care of your entire logistics process, like Bigblue.
What would be the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing to a logistician?
Returns management, an underestimated step in logistics, can become your ally in acquisition and retention. Customer experience and brand image will be at the heart of your strategy to convince your potential customers.
An effective returns policy, well-chosen packaging, and the expertise of a logistician are the different elements you can work on at your scale to boost your sales in 2021.