One of the busiest times in eCommerce is quickly approaching and with increased holiday sales comes increased returns. Having a plan in place to handle these returns is crucial to ensuring your customers won’t encounter any issues in their buying journey. Experiencing an influx of post-holiday returns is inevitable, but there are a number of ways you can prepare.

  1. Extend your returns window
    If you normally have a time limit on accepting returns, consider extending this for the holiday season. By having a longer length of time to return products you’ll help reduce potential frustrations from shoppers, alleviate support requests, and show your customers your policies are transparent, fair, and customer-friendly.
  2. Simplify your return policy
    Your return policy has a big influence on whether a potential customer decides to buy from you or not. Offering a customer-friendly return policy can not only help to boost holiday sales but often leads to repeat business in the future. Make your policy simple and easy to understand. Don’t over complicate or change your policy based on the type of product or reason for returning as this can confuse customers and create additional stress around the holidays.
  3. Offer product exchanges
    A customer might have simply ordered the wrong size or color. If this is the case offering them an exchange instead of a refund helps to save the sale as well as increasing customer satisfaction.
  4. Leverage past returns data
    Monitor your customers returns behavior to recognize what is being returned and why. Understanding customers behavior before, during, and after peak holiday season can help you to optimize your merchandising and marketing plans. You can also use this information to help forecast the need for additional staffing or trends for the following year.

You’ll never be able to fully eliminate returns, but by improving efficiencies and reducing costs you’ll be able to make your customers experience as painless as possible.