What is a return policy and why do you need one?
Return policies are the rules a retailer creates to manage how customers return and exchange unwanted merchandise they purchased. A return policy tells customers what items can be returned and for what reasons, and the timeframe over which returns are accepted.
Why have a return policy? Getting a return request can be painful both financially and emotionally.
Refunding a customer’s order can result in a loss of profitability, and knowing that someone disliked your product can be disheartening for business owners who strongly believe in the benefits of what they sell.
For these reasons, it can be tempting to ignore the reality of returns and exchanges and leave the mounting problem unaddressed.
The pitfalls of a poor return policy
Over time, however, customer complaints about your return policy can start to filter onto social media, showing up as comments under your ads or even in Google searches about your business. This is where a poorly implemented returns system starts to negatively affect your overall reputation as a business. If bad sentiment about the buying experience starts to spread online, it is likely you will see a drop in conversion rate.
Processing every return manually and dealing with customers on a case-by-case basis can also be expensive for your business operations and exhausting for customer service staff. If the time and expense to process a return or exchange isn’t monitored and optimized, it can even prevent you from scaling your business.