Did you know that about 30% of all products ordered online are returned? According to the website Invesp, that’s about three times the rate of brick-and-mortar stores. For buyers, merchandise returns can mean disappointment and frustration. For sellers, there can be costs from shipping, handling, and restocking. Plus, you may not be able to sell the returned product at full price, if you can sell it all.
Sellers with a great return policy won’t get as many negative reviews, but the best policy for your business is to reduce merchandise returns in the first place. Newegg offers a 30-day hassle-free return on products sold and shipped by us, but your goal is for customers to keep (and rave about) what they buy from you. So, how do you reduce merchandise returns in the first place? Here are five ways.
- Add product images that show shoppers what they’ll get.
- Add product videos that show everything or explain key features.
- Add complete, accurate, and informative product descriptions.
- Get the order right the first time and get it there safely.
- Look at reviews and return merchandise trends.
#1 Add product images that show shoppers what they’ll get.
Why do brick-and-mortar stores have fewer product returns? It’s probably because buyers can see what they’re getting. One product photo is better than none, but consider taking photos from different angles, or while emphasizing specific features. For example, if you’re selling a laptop, take photos of the product while it’s open, closed, and from the front, back, and sides. Adding callouts with specific features, such as the webcam and USB port, helps buyers see what they’re getting, too.
Learn about Product Image and Video Policies and Guidelines on Newegg Marketplace
#2 Add product videos that show everything or explain key features.
If a picture’s worth a thousand words, what’s the value of a video? Whether it’s a 360° view of the product or an explainer video that shows how to use key features, you can reduce the rate of merchandise returns while standing out from other sellers. A basic video with a 360° view of the product might not seem like much, but buyers like being able to see everything all at once. Explainer videos can eliminate misconceptions, and buyers can more easily determine if a product is right for them. Learn how to create Sponsored Video Ads
#3 Add complete, accurate, and informative product descriptions
Retail Info Systems (RIS) reports that “a major culprit for the high number of online shopping returns is inaccurate or incomplete product information.” When you use Newegg’s category or subcategory templates, however, you download Microsoft Excel workbooks with pre-defined columns. You’ll need to enter information accurately, of course, but Newegg will warn you about any formatting problems when you upload the data. If you want to know what savvy buyers focus on, check out our buying guides.
#4 Get the order right the first time and get it there safely.
How do you enter orders, and how do you pick, pack, and ship? If you’re depending on manual systems, data-entry errors could be at hand (literally). It’s also a problem if products arrive damaged, a problem that Khaos Control says explains 20% of merchandise returns. When you use the Shipped by Newegg (SBN) fulfillment service, however, we’ll store, pick, pack and ship for you. If you need to include non-New Egg orders, we can help you as well with our automated multi-channel order fulfillment.
#5 Look at reviews and return merchandise trends.
No one likes to get a negative seller review but understanding why a buyer returned a product can help you to improve. Was the item too large or too small? Was the product description confusing? A review could provide the clue you need. Newegg’s Return Report is also an excellent source of information for data about returns and replacements. You can search by industry or subcategory, over a specific date range, and see both units and amounts.
Improve the way you handle returns
Return merchandise authorizations (RMAs) are a part of doing business, but they don’t have to cut into a bigger part of your bottom line. If you believe a return was in error, check out our Marketplace Chargeback Guide. Also, familiarize yourself with the details of the Newegg Return Service. Some returns may be unavoidable, but Newegg can help you handle them.