The holiday shopping season is usually the busiest time of year for eCommerce retailers. However, the period after the holidays can be just as busy – and if your holiday returns policy hasn’t been updated or is lacking, you’ll find yourself (and your warehouse) in a serious jam.
Your ability to manage returns is an extension of your fulfillment capabilities. If you can’t successfully manage return logistics, customers are more likely to take their business somewhere else.
4 Steps to a Manageable Holiday Returns Policy
Hassle-free returns are a key driver behind customers’ buying decisions. How can you ensure you’re providing a seamless, headache free holiday returns policy? These steps will help you avoid becoming a Grinch with your customers:
- Create prepaid return labels. Customers don’t want to be responsible for buying and printing return labels. Include prepaid labels in the original shipment, with directions for return. To make it even simpler, print labels that can be returned via different carriers. Customers simply place the label on the package and drop it off with the most convenient carrier.
- Automate warehouse return processes. Nothing bogs down returns like relying on manual warehouse processes. Automation cuts down on the time it takes to receive and catalog returns – and it’s more accurate. Returns accepted in a quicker fashion means customers won’t wait as long to receive refunds.
- Use real-time reports to monitor return status. A lack of visibility into returns creates major bottlenecks. Use warehouse technology to generate real-time, up-to-the-minute reports regarding returned merchandise. As soon as products are received back in your warehouse, send customers an email or text message to let them know their return is being processed.
- Make sure you have enough staff on hand. As automated as your warehouse might be, human intervention is sometimes required to keep things running smooth. Make sure you have enough warehouse workers staffed right after the holidays to handle the influx of returns. If you don’t have enough personnel, work with a third-party logistics provider who can fill staffing gaps.
Create a Seamless Holiday Returns Policy With Dotcom Distribution
At Dotcom Distribution, we know the holiday season is a make or break time for eCommerce retailers. We’re no strangers to the pre-and post-holiday rush, which is why we help brands scale their backend processes to execute a flawless holiday returns policy. Staffed by experienced personnel, our warehouses and fulfillment centers use the latest technology and resources for inventory and return management.
To learn more about how Dotcom Distribution’s logistics and fulfillment services can help during the holidays, contact us today.