E-commerce returns management: Best practices for 2022

January 4, 2022
E-commerce returns management: Best practices for 2022

Online retail is growing at double-digit rates, and returns remain a constant theme in e-commerce – for better or for worse.

For many online stores, returns can mean time-consuming communication with customers via telephone inquiries or emails asking about the returned item's status and their refund. Therefore it's necessary to develop a strategy to optimize returns – i.e., make the process faster and more transparent, efficient, and sustainable. These best practice tips can help you future-proof your returns process in 2022.

Transparent returns reduce customer inquiries

Call center teams, customer service, shipping, or other departments are often tied up answering the same question of “How can I return my item?”. Avoid unnecessary inquiries by explaining the return process step-by-step on your shop website so customers can quickly initiate the process on their own. And be sure to provide this information in the local language of each shop.

Avoid unnecessary inquiries by explaining the return process step-by-step on your shop website.

Digitize the returns process

Many online stores include printed return slips and pre-printed labels in their shipments, which results in extra costs and resources. However, by setting up a digital return portal, you can save money and help make the returns management more sustainable. And you increase the convenience for customers. Customers can initiate a return with a few clicks and create or download a return label. Automated status notifications and a mobile tracking page also help keep customers satisfied by enabling them to track the status of the return and their refund.

by setting up a digital return portal, you can save money and help make the returns management more sustainable.

Offer flexible return options for more customer satisfaction

You can use the return process to build customer loyalty with the proper attention. Know the expectations regarding returns and the delivery preferences of each of your target markets. That means figuring out if you need to offer customers the ability to have their returned items picked up from home, for example, or if they can drop off returns to a parcel store. 

Save costs by bundling returns

With an intelligent solution for bundling returns, you can significantly reduce costs. The principle for success: returns with the same destination are initially stored in the national hubs of local carriers. There, they are bundled into larger groups and then collectively sent to the final destination. Bundling returns is also a great way to reduce CO2 emissions and lower the carbon footprint of your e-commerce operations.

Optimize your returns solution with Seven Senders

Seven Senders can help you establish a cost-effective and customer-oriented returns solution. Use the functionality of Tracking, Notifications & Analytics to ensure a positive returns experience for your customers in each of your markets. 

Use our latest returns management checklist to see how your current return solution stacks up and find out how you can improve your returns strategy for more success in 2022.

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