A product return is something that neither the consumer nor the seller will want to experience. For the buyer, it’s an aggravation after the letdown of seeing the merchandise they ordered as no good and needs to be returned. For the seller, it can be a blot on the company’s reputation, as well as being a lost sale that entails a different kind of logistics.
The easiest way for companies to take care of their returned products is to engage a logistics firm that offers returns management services. They can be assured that return shipments will be handled quickly and efficiently.
This practice, known as reverse logistics, is the most efficient way for a product to return to the company that manufactured it in the best form possible. This allows the product or its materials to be reused, thereby minimizing the company’s loss.
Ideally, what sellers want is for customers to keep their product, whether it was bought online or from a brick-and-mortar store. If you’re a business owner, here are some tips to minimize or avoid product returns.
1. Make sure customers get the product with the right size.
With physical stores, this can be easily achieved as the customer can try out the product until they are satisfied with it. It would also greatly help if the staff has ample knowledge about the merchandise so they can satisfactorily answer all questions from the customers.
2. Provide clear and accurate descriptions of products.
This is particularly important for online stores, as would-be buyers won’t have any other means to tell if the product is right for them. Sure, great pictures taken from different angles will help to convince customers to buy, but specific (and truthful) details will help assure that they won’t be returning the product at any time.
3. Don’t overhype your product.
If your product promises a lot of things, like for example an equipment that’s “guaranteed to help people lose weight in just a week,” or shoes that can make people “run faster” or “jump higher,” you are setting up yourself for a lot of product returns because these claims are generally not realistic.
4. Ensure timely delivery.
It may not happen often, but there are instances when customers need their products to arrive at a certain time, usually because they are gifts for a special occasion. If your delivery is so delayed, there’s a good chance that the merchandise will be returned because it’s way past its usefulness. So make sure you are quite clear when you can make the delivery and better stick to it.
You may notice, though, that despite your best efforts, product returns remain a part of your business, and that can be a good thing because you can then prove to your customers that they can return anything they buy from you and get a full refund with no questions asked. That should make them become regular buyers.