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Chapter 2: Missed Revenue Opportunity

Reduce Consumer Friction

Chapter 2: Missed Revenue Opportunity

parcelLab Returns Study Showed That...

60%

are willing to pay for product returns

would opt for an immediate voucher over a refund

asked for better product descriptions

Read the study

Every return order process creates additional customer touchpoints with the potential to drive engagement, traffic, and incremental revenue. Yet, retailers are often unable to leverage this opportunity. Here is why…

 

 

Friction

Reliance & Restriction

You may still be reliant on multiple third-party vendors to send post-purchase communications on your behalf. This severely restricts your ability to utilize returns touchpoints due to:

  • Lost buyer traffic
  • Limited or no control over your customer experience
  • No opportunities to drive revenue retention or repeat purchases

Friction

Inconsistent Carrier Data

Inbound scans are often inconsistent and contain multiple events and event-codes. If your data model does not accommodate this, you cannot utilize notifications like “carrier received” for example, which means highly valuable returns touchpoints have to be omitted from your communications flow.

Carrier notifications that end up in the customer's email Spam folder.

Friction

Data Segmentation

Even with full control over your post-purchase communications, there are often gaps in the integrity of segmented customer and/or order data that prevent you from suggesting alternative stock options, exchanges, or instant credits, for example. The opportunity to retain revenue and drive reconversion is lost. 

Push Notifications from Apple Pay and Carrier mentioning returns over an image of over the ear headphones.

Friction

Lack of Personalization

Without meaningful information about your customer’s order, you are unable to create relevant, personalized returns notifications and experiences. You have no way to leverage these high-value customer touchpoints in the heightened phase of engagement during a return.

Solution

Empower Consumers

Take control of your returns journey to significantly reduce the cost of your returns and maximize revenue opportunity. By integrating repurchase triggers, you enable your consumers to easily choose refund alternatives and make additional purchases.

  • Provide alternatives like discounts to minimize uneconomical returns
  • Simplify exchanges with alternative stock options
  • Offer instant credit options to retain revenue
  • Drive repeat purchases with personalized recommendations
  • Promote store returns to drive additional foot traffic
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Case Study: Specialty Women's Apparel Retailer

With an annual global revenue of over $2 billion, this retailer is reducing returns and improving both the customer experience and revenue retention rates with an embedded digital returns experience.

Then

Lack of Refund Alternatives

When customers wished to return a purchase, they were not presented with any refund alternatives, such as an exchange or store credit. Their only option was to return their purchase for a refund.

A return submission for suede-studded loafer that were too small and the customer selected to get store credit.

Then

No Repurchase Incentives

A customer seeking to exchange a product for a different size or style, for example, had to complete a return and place a new separate order. Not only was the process cumbersome, but there were also no incentives to encourage shoppers to make a repeat purchase.

Now

Size Guides

When a customer returns a product due to size, a visual ‘how to measure-up’ banner is displayed in their email communications and on their returns tracking page. It directs shoppers to a sizing guide, which helps them measure themselves correctly, so they can order a better size. This improves the customer experience and reduces the likelihood of future returns.

Product wrong size return reason - with size guide

More retail examples

Higher Conversion

Another well-known international fashion brand created four additional touchpoints per order by implementing a digital returns journey and communications. They leverage the conversion rate of each return touchpoint, which is up to three times higher than the outbound order journey equivalent, resulting in a 4% average conversion of digital returns visitors. 

More Retail Examples

Instant Credit Gift Cards

Shoppers returning purchases from this US smart home products retailer are offered instant credit gift cards. It allows the retailer to retain the revenue and actively promotes repeat purchases and customer loyalty – whilst creating a VIP experience for the customer.

More retail examples

Easy Exchanges

Customers of this multi-channel international fashion label looking for a different size or color can effortlessly exchange their purchases with a digital exchange flow that suggests product variations and alternatives, and displays live-stock availability to avoid disappointment.

Requesting an exchange for leggings in which the color was not as expected with the option to select a different color

Business Impact

Average Conversion Rate

for digital returns visitors

10%

Higher Retention

of customers using digital returns

Achieve Results Just Like These With parcelLab

Turn potential dissatisfaction into an opportunity for revenue retention and growth by digitizing your returns, warranty, and exchanges process.

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parcelLab retain logo

returns flow

Digital Returns Portal

Front-end digital experience easily embedded on your site by JavaScript snippet.

Track & Communicate

Enhance post-purchase engagement with personalized emails, and a page for return status.

Exchanges

Facilitate product exchanges for same-SKU variations like color or size through self-service.

Watchlists & Alerts

Instant Credit

Implement instant credit upon return initiation, package drop-off, or arrival for processing.

Personalization Capabilities

Drive web traffic and repeat purchases with hyper-relevant content to engage your customers.

Click & Collect

Store Returns

Offer retail stores as a returns method to drive customer traffic.

Custom eligibility icon

Custom Eligibility Rules

Create custom eligibility rules to minimize invalid returns, reinforcing your return policy effectively.

Order API Connection

Ensure best-practice data access with no compromise on data privacy.

multi label & split returns

Multi-Label & Split Returns

Handle complex multi-item returns requiring more than one label, returning to one or more locations.

Comprehensive RMA Sharing

Reduce manual warehouse processing and enable further automation.

Confirmation Page Survey

Collect customer rating and reviews on the confirmation page.

Frequently Asked Questions

What specific strategies can retailers implement to personalize the returns experience further beyond offering alternatives like vouchers or instant credit?

Retailers can enhance personalization in the returns process by using customer data to suggest replacements that match past purchase behavior or preferences and offering a seamless exchange process that encourages customers to select an alternative product instead of a refund.

How do retailers measure the success and impact of improved returns processes on overall customer loyalty and repeat purchase rates?

The success of an improved returns process can be measured through key performance indicators such as the return on investment (ROI) from retained revenue, customer retention rates, repeat purchase rates, and customer satisfaction scores.

What are the technological and operational challenges involved in integrating a sophisticated returns management system into an existing e-commerce platform, and how can they be overcome?

Integrating a sophisticated returns management system involves challenges such as ensuring data security, achieving compatibility with existing e-commerce platforms, and managing the logistical aspects of returns. Overcoming these challenges requires a combination of strategic planning, investment in technology, and possibly partnerships with logistics and IT service providers.

Maximize Returns, Boost Revenue

Transform returns into opportunities for growth and customer loyalty.

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