As a dropshipper, you might have considered dropshipping returns, or rather returned merchandise to be a headache for the supplier, not you. That’s actually a wrong thought to begin with. Why? If you’re the point of contact for the clients, and they’ve got a poor experience while trying to return an item, it becomes your headache.
With third of all orders placed online being returned, it’s worth investing time in avoiding many returns. In addition, creates a seamless experience for clients when they occur.
Based on research, 65% of returns are the e-tailer’s fault, not the customer’s. This means either the wrong product was forwarded, it did not meet the customer’s taste, or it was damaged.
Now, as a dropshipping retailer who doesn’t have contact with the inventory, you might be inclined to assume this is out of your hands. Whichever, lets examine the ways in which one can avoid returns or/and make the return process as simple as possible.
For surety, returns can be a huge chance to retain customers by providing excellent customer service.
How Can You Minimize The Amount Of Returns On Your Site?
- Showcase The Item Accurately
While operating an online store, you must be consistent in discovering ways to build trust with your clients. Perhaps, this begins from the very moment the shopper visits your site and sees a product. The images and information shown must be accurate and honest. More so, ensure that your suppliers provide “HIGH RES” images with various views along with vivid description that fits the product. Now, for instance, if the description states “lace detail,” ensure that there’s an image to back it up. This will not only provide affirmation for you as the retailer blindly selling that product, however, it will further decrease the opportunities for return by aligning expectations.
A Description copy is equally crucial and greatly influences buyers. If your supplier issues insufficient descriptions, you should always be free to edit to create more engaging text. Lets take for instance, these four words have been defined by current studies in behavioral economics, psychology and neuroeconomics to appeal to consumers primal instinct. Integrate them into your copy to develop a personal relationship with your client.
- Display Accurate Sizing
The main demerit for consumers for placing orders online and one of the biggest influencers on returns is lack of a fitting room. If you cannot provide your clients a chance to try something on before placing an order, ensure to provide the virtual equivalent.
Displaying correct dimensions can result to informed purchases and avoid variant size orders. To avoid a return, you can also ensure to have size charts readily available so as to enable clients make an informed purchase.
How do you go about this? You can start by asking your suppliers for the accurate dimensions of each item.
When A Return Occurs, How Do You Make It Simple?
- Frequent Communication
Never miss out on the unique opportunity to provide excellent customer service. If you succeed in offering a seamless experience, you will likely see this customer return. While many of the logistics may be out of your control, the client is dependent on you. Seldom can one over communicate with an anxious customer awaiting confirmation on the return or exchange. More so, always be proactive in your emails and try as much as possible to reach out just before they do so in order to reduce complaints.
- Clear and Easy to Find Return Policy
The most vital thing is to publicly issue a vivid return policy. This doesn’t only aid in minimizing misunderstandings and mix ups but going forward, attract more sales.
Since clients are actively in search for return policies, it’s a chance to impress your audience with clear and concise text. Now, if you’re working with suppliers that have different policies, you should decide on the one you would like to enforce for your e-commerce store and remain consistent across the site. It can be too frustrating/confusing for users to have different return policies for items, even if it means you may be stuck with some inventory once and a while.
- Step By Step Shipping Instructions
As a dropshipper retailer, you have two options. You could either have the products returned to you or have them shipped directly back to the supplier.
If you decide to receive the return items, consider having your shipping address clearly stated in your policy. This self service approach makes it appear consistent for your audience, however it means you’ll be responsible for re-selling the returned products. Also be ready for the logistics involved with holding inventory.
In case you decide to have the items sent back to the brand, there is more customer service involved. Have all your suppliers addresses ready to go so as to immediately provide the return address for your customer.
If you’re not ready to provide free shipping on returns, try offering free shipping on exchanges as a means to foster another purchase and retain that revenue.
- Stipulate Time Frame
For protection, consistently take the supplier with the shortest window of time allowed for returns and cut it in half. For instance, if one company offers 14 days for returns, you can offer 7 days for your customers so as to have at least 7 days to get it back to the supplier.
Well, it doesn’t really matter what the time frame is, as all you’ve got to have is one, not just one but a clear one.
To wrap-up, you should start approaching your return policy as a chance to increase sales. Paying attention to what is effective and what isn’t is a strong tool that is frequently misinterpreted as a hassle but should be approached as a method to generate more revenue.