1) What are Automated Ecommerce Returns?
As an eCommerce retailer, you know that returns can be a major pain point. It’s time-consuming to process returns manually. It can be challenging to track which items have been returned and why. What if you could automate this process?
It is now super-easy to streamline your online store’s return process. Thanks to technological advances, you can make returns easy for you and your customers. Ecommerce automation can be a game-changer for online businesses.
Automated ecommerce operations reduce the need for human intervention. This frees up your workforce allowing them to focus on more strategic tasks. Automating your returns can also help to improve efficiency and accuracy while reducing costs. Returns are one area where ecommerce automation can be particularly beneficial.
Automating the return process helps ensure that returns are processed quickly and efficiently. It also makes sure there is minimal disruption to the business. Automated returns turn manual tasks into rule-based workflows. These workflows are then executed at the precise moments they’re needed, with actions activated by either a trigger or a condition.
In addition, automating returns can help to generate data that you can use to improve your ecommerce business. It can help you analyze and identify areas where customers are unsatisfied with the product or service. Overall, ecommerce automation can make significant contributions to your online businesses.
2) When do you need to Automate your eCommerce Returns Process?
Let’s face it. A large number of shoppers jump on the online discount sales bandwagon. Their purchase behaviour is driven by reckless spending. Impulse shopping has become the norm of eCommerce.
Easy and free returns have removed post-purchase regret. This has caused return rates across all categories of eCommerce to catapult sky high. But when do you need to automate your returns? Here are a few key indicators.
2.1) Struggling to Stay Afloat
A critical sign is when your store’s return processes become riddled with errors. Or your unmanageable returns volume leads to delayed refund fulfillment. It is probably a good idea at this point to bring in the power of automation. Automated returns can help move the returns process quicker and with greater efficiency.
2.2) Large Volumes
When business is booming and so are returns, your workforce may not be accurate in their tasks. A prime example is sorting through your high volume of returns. Errors in sorting can lead to all manners of issues, including a collapse in customer service quality. Automating your returns will keep your customer satisfaction stable at the least, if not improve it.
2.3) Policy- Related Issues
The limits in power of authority and ability of your manual workforce may restrict your returns policy. Customers expect services such as quick and hassle-free returns and refund processing as the norm. Restrictive policies could have you losing customers. But lenient policies could have you losing money. By bringing in the power of automation, you can make returns work for you and your customer.
3) What are the Various Types of Returns Automation?
Returns management is a critical part of the retail process. It can have a major impact on customer satisfaction. In order to create a seamless returns experience, retailers need to have a well-defined strategy in place.
This strategy should consider all of the rules, processes and policies that generate and process a return for your customer. It should also consider the systems and workflow used by the retailer. These processes are used to receive, grade, and complete the return. By automating returns management, retailers can reduce errors, speed up turnaround times, and improve the overall customer experience.
3.1) Returns Apps Software
Returns Apps provide a user-led online portal for returns. These portals allow a customer to apply for and process a returns request. However, they need to adhere to a set of rules as formulated by you in your returns policy. Cost-effective and low on commitment, these apps are easy to implement.
3.2) Returns Solution Software
Returns Solutions offer pretty much the same service as returns apps. However, they also support more complex returns policies. They also protect your business against most types of returns frauds. And while return apps only allow shoppers to request returns, returns solutions help you manage and process them once they reach your 3PL or warehouse.
3.3) Operational Returns Software
Operational returns software enhances the efficiency of operations while lowering costs. It uses data analytics to bring down your rate of returns. This category of software treats the cause of returns at the root. And helps you reduce your return rate.
3.4) Post-Purchase Returns Software
Post-purchase returns software focuses on customer experience by concentrating on the returns portal. These types of software often include built-in capabilities. They can generate order status updates. They can post information to customers. These softwares can also monitor exceptions, as well as provide connected platforms for consistent tracking.
4) Where can your eCommerce Returns Process be Automated?
Various verticals that fall under your eCommerce returns operations can be automated to maximize their potential.
4.1) Customer Support
It is no secret that customer support can be time-consuming. Brands spend hours each week responding to customers. Chatbots are automated tools that can help deliver real-time responses to customer questions. Over 60% of shoppers rate their conversations with a Chatbot as a neutral or positive experience.
Automated systems help monitor ticket resolution times. They notify support teams when an assigned ticket remains unresolved for a certain number of hours. In this manner, they help ensure all inquiries are handled promptly and efficiently.
What’s more, automated customer service is often more accurate than human-powered customer service. The reason being it can draw from a vast pool of data to provide the most relevant information.
This can lead to an spike in customer satisfaction levels, as customers are more likely to receive a timely response to their inquiries.
4.2) Cross-selling and Upselling
Losing money on refunds when it comes to returns? Upselling and cross-selling are incredible options that will help you transform them into returns for store credit. With cross-selling, your store can display complimentary products to customers. These products are generally related to what they are currently viewing on your eCommerce store or based on items that they already have in their cart.
Upselling, on the other hand, encourages the purchase of a higher-end product than someone initially intended to buy. Designed to increase order value, both tactics can be automated for an effective way to boost sales without putting undue pressure on customers.
Businesses can make it easy for customers to purchase exactly what they need while recouping returns losses. They can do this by offering automated suggestions for complimentary products or highlighting special deals on upgraded items.
4.3) Email Marketing Automation
In the cut-throat landscape of the eCommerce business, it’s more important than ever to focus on holding on to their customers. Acquiring a new customer costs almost six times more than it does to retain an existing one.
On average, 10% of all online orders are returned. This is rising as customers are becoming more comfortable buying items sight unseen. Retailers can easily build customer loyalty and keep them coming back for more. It is simple to do this by staying in touch with customers via automated emails.
4.4) Requesting Customers for Reviews
Customer reviews are crucial to your store’s success. Almost 90% of customers check out customer reviews before they make a purchase. The problem lies in getting these reviews. Not all consumers will leave them proactively. And reaching out manually isn’t scalable.
Automated ecommerce tools can help you obtain customer reviews at scale. You can also be notified when a negative review is left so that you can address it quickly.
4.5) Processing Returns
Returns have the reputation of being a gigantic pain, and rightly so. Over 80% of online shoppers have stated that they will abandon any retailer who has subjected them to a miserable returns experience.
An automated returns process can help to alleviate some of this pressure. It can make it easy for customers to return items and keep the whole process as streamlined as possible.
Automated returns help you reduce the turnaround time from receipt of returns to restocking and resale. They help in generating prepaid returns labels. They sync data between your CRM, inventory management system, and courier. They also keep your customers informed regarding the status of their returns.
In addition, automated returns can help cut down on the cost of processing returns, making it a win-win for you and your customers.
5) Why do you need to Automate your eCommerce Returns?
Returns management is an essential part of any retail operation. Automated returns systems can help to streamline the process and make it more efficient, but it is important to remember that returns management starts with the customer.
When a customer is not satisfied with a purchase, they need to be able to return the item and receive a refund easily. Therefore, retailers need to have a clear and concise return policy that is prominently displayed. In addition, automated returns systems can help to speed up the process by automatically processing the return and issuing a refund.
However, it is highly crucial to remember that the goal of returns management is to provide a positive experience for the customer. Ultimately, this means making it easy for them to return an item and receive a refund without any hassle or delay.
Implementing automated returns management in your reverse logistic operations helps you reduce data entry and processing errors. It also allows you to delegate your manual task force to operations requiring their supervision and expertise. Automated systems can help to improve accuracy and compliance with return policies.
When customers return items, automated returns systems can track the return and ensure it is processed quickly and efficiently. This can help reduce customer frustration and ensure that the business handles returns promptly.
5.3) Reduced Cost
An automated returns process can help your business reduce costs associated with processing returns. It can also significantly cut down the time needed to process a return, leading to reduced labor costs. Additionally, automated systems can help to keep track of inventory and reduce the need for manual input.
5.4) Customer Experience
Automated systems can also help to improve customer satisfaction. They provide faster turnaround time and reduce the chance of human error. By streamlining the return process and automating it, businesses can provide a hassle-free experience for customers. This reduces the amount of effort and time needed by customers to return an item and businesses to process them.
5.5) Cut down Paperwork
Automated returns management can bring a number of benefits to a company. A big bonus is the elimination of paperwork and invoices. For example, if a company uses electronic shipping labels, the need for paper return labels can be eliminated. While saving the company time and money, electronic shipping labels also reduce environmental impact of paper bills.
5.6) Greater Control
Automated returns systems can track return activity and identify patterns. This gives businesses more control over their work and provides detailed insights into customer purchasing patterns. In addition, automated systems can help businesses avoid liability issues regarding defective products or incorrect customer information.
6) How can ClickPost help with Automating your eCommerce Returns?
Being able to process your eCommerce returns quickly and efficiently is essential to keeping your customers happy. With ClickPost, you can automate the return request process, making it easy for customers to return items based on your preset return policy rules. In today's world, convenience is key, and we help you deliver it.
Our automated logistics allocation for reverse pickup enables you to select the right shipping partners for your reverse logistics and pickup needs based on pre-configured rules. ClickPost automatically generates Airway bills and shipping labels and sends pickup requests to the shipping partner. This allows you to optimize your shipping partners for your specific reverse logistics and pickup needs, improving efficiency and reducing costs.
Non-pick-up reports are automatically generated when a pick-up attempt is unsuccessful. ClickPost liaises between the shipping partner and customer to find a suitable solution for the problem. This helps to quickly resolve any issues that may have caused the pickup failure and ensures successful pick-up. Additionally, these reports help identify any trends or patterns emerging regarding failed pickups.
With ClickPost's easy tracking system, you can keep tabs on all of your returns quickly and easily. Our system integrates with different carriers so you can see all of your return data in one place. This visibility helps you reduce the chances of inventory getting stuck in transit. This means you can intervene where needed to make sure your returns reach you soon.
Although returns are an inevitable part of doing business, they don't have to be as painful as we know them to be. Automating your returns process can make things run more smoothly and efficiently while also lowering costs. As a bonus, it can also greatly impact your customer’s returns experience by making the entire process faster and easier.
1) How does automation help eCommerce?
Automation helps eCommerce businesses improve customer experience through actions and solutions executed with accuracy and speed. This allows businesses to focus more on areas that need their attention.
2) Can you automate an eCommerce business?
Many processes involved in an eCommerce business can be automated. And process or task can be automated to kick in as and when needed. These processes and tasks can follow a set of rules defined by the business.