Five Ways to Improve Returns Processes

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The ability to efficiently manage product returns is critical to customer satisfaction and a brand’s bottom line. According to Statista, 16.5% of all online sales in 2022 ended up as returns. More than 10% of those returns were deemed fraudulent. With the rise in B2C and B2B eCommerce sales, lowering the cost of managing product returns, keeping customers happy, and keeping fraud at bay are all urgent goals for forward-thinking companies.

How to Improve your Returns Processes

Improving returns processes come with unique challenges: How can you make customer returns easy, minimize the cost of processing returns, and stay vigilant to preventing returns fraud? Read on to learn 5 ways to achieve these goals, leverage returns management solutions, and improve returns processes.

Create an effective and simply returns policy

Your return policies should be easy to find: Be sure to post it in multiple places on your website, including the footer and on the checkout or cart page. An effective returns policy should include:

  • Details specific to your company’s needs, deadlines, and realities (don’t just copy another company’s policy!).
  • Ensure the policy is easy to read and understand. Avoid legalese and vague phrases.
  • Include detailed information about the conditions for refunds or credits, along with reasonable timelines.
  • Provide contact information for customers to reach out with questions. 
  • Train customer-facing team members on the policy and empower them to make decisions according to customers’ specific situations.

Provide accurate product descriptions & images

One of the most sure-fire ways to reduce returns is to have comprehensive, detailed and engaging product descriptions that include:

  • Reviews on the feel, quality and performance of the product.
  • Detailed sizing guides that are specific to the brand. Include body size dimensions so consumers can compare and shop for the best fit.
  • Several images of the product in use. If apparel, include the item on models of different sizes.
  • Videos provide a view of an item in use or in motion.

Reduce return fraud with a returns management platform

Nearly every company is dealing with some type of return fraud. Chances are that if you accept returns, you’re probably accepting fraud. False returns, duplicate returns, items purchased with a stolen credit card, or faked electronic devices are just a few examples.

A returns management system will help you improve return processes and catch criminals before they drain your resources.

  • Create and enforce consistent return rules and policies across your network (including partner 3PLs).
  • In-depth product details (including item weight) can be used to compare the returned item and ensure no internal components were removed. This is especially important for electronics that have many small (and expensive) components.
  • Match the serial number of the return with what the customer purchased to ensure the exact same product – and not an older model – is being returned.

Leverage advanced technology for real-time tracking

Accurate tracking is essential for improved returns management. Once a return is initiated, warehouse teams should have clear visibility into incoming returns so they can staff up appropriately. This is especially important during the peak season for returns, which occur right after the holidays.

  • Get visibility into the entire returns journey
  • Scale staffing quickly for faster returns processing

Optimize asset & inventory management

With optimized asset and inventory management, you can minimize the cost and resources that go into returns. Returns management solutions with asset management capabilities will help you capture value from returned assets.

  • Implement technology, tools and processes that optimize the reverse supply chain.
  • With better management, you can recoup the value of returned assets, improving margin and reducing waste.

How ReverseLogix can Help Improve your Returns Processes

ReverseLogix is the only provider of an end-to-end returns management system (RMS) that orchestrates and optimizes returns for both B2C and B2B organizations. Point solutions only address one step in the returns process (like customer portals); but our RMS manages the entire lifecycle of the return, from start to finish.

Automated & streamlined returns management process

With ReverseLogix, your B2C or B2B customers can initiate returns from any location through an intuitive online portal. Custom rules streamline return decisions, such as automating the approval of straightforward returns based on specific rules.

Our RMS can be configured to take in complex rules and auto-route products based on those rules – including those specific to a facility or store location. Read more about auto-routing here.

Integration with existing systems for seamless operations

Pre-built integrations give our customers immediate ease and value. Our integrations include POS systems, ERP, WMS, OMS, TMS and more. See our wide range of out-of-the-box supply chain software integrations and eCommerce integrations!

Real-time analytics for data-driven insights & decisions

Because ReverseLogix integrates with other systems and orchestrates the entirety of a product return, it provides users with unprecedented levels of useful data. You can answer questions such as:

  • What are our return rates?
  • How much are returns costing the company?
  • What is the cause of high return rates? Is there a product defect?
  • Will it cost more to repair the item or ship the customer a new one?

ReverseLogix RMS can be deployed in owned facilities or partner 3PL locations, tying data together from across your network. Users can ultimately prevent returns before they start with the help of ReverseLogix.

Customize your return portals to fit business needs

Customer service doesn’t stop at the sale. Research has shown time and again that a bad return experience drives away customers, but a good experience strengthens their loyalty.

The first step in a great B2C or B2B customer experience is making returns initiation fast and easy. With ReverseLogix, you can:

  • Fully customize the returns portal to match your company brand.
  • Give customers the option to immediately repurchase or exchange an item.
  • Set up rules to instantly refund or credit certain customers (such as loyalty program members).

“We’ve seen a massive difference in giving customers the returns portal. They love how easy it is and how they can always see the status – and it costs so much less for us to manage.”

– ReverseLogix Customer