In business, what comes back to you is almost as important as what goes out. Whether your returning inventory is clothing, electronics, signed legal documents or one-of-a-kind medical samples, the way you manage it – your returns strategy – can mean the difference between profit and loss, and between winning or losing repeat customers.
In preparation for the peak shipping season, it's important to streamline your returns process in order to increase efficiency and business. Both improve the bottom line.
Customer loyalty, employee efficiency
In a Forrester Consulting study commissioned by UPS, ease of customer returns was key. Forrester found that a liberal returns policy can enhance the bottom line in the long run, as it dissuades fear of customer dissatisfaction and encourages consumers to "try again." Customers who are most likely to return items also tend to be the most active consumers, so your returns policy is likely to influence your best prospects. Plus, with Quantum View Manage®, a tool that provides visibility into the status of all of your outbound and inbound packages, you can see what returns are coming back to you before they arrive, and you can even staff up or down accordingly.
UPS offers three options for hassle-free returns. Here's how they can work for you.
1. Offer convenience with UPS Returns®. Making it easy for customers to return packages gets inventory back into circulation faster, or documents and critical business materials back sooner. With UPS Returns, you can make labels available to customers several ways. For example, you can include a return label with outgoing shipments, or enable customers to initiate returns from your website. And you can even have UPS e-mail a return label to the customer. It's up to you.
2. Stay in control of critical inventory with UPS Returns® Plus. When it's essential that an item be returned in a timely matter, you can send a UPS driver to get it, label in hand, with UPS Returns Plus. You can choose the level of service you need, with either one or three pickup attempts.
3. Put your best face forward with UPS Returns® Exchange. There's no better way to build loyalty than by replacing a returned item on the spot. And your customers can now enjoy that convenience without ever leaving their home or place of business. UPS Returns Exchange sends a UPS driver to deliver a replacement item and pick up the returned item on the same visit. The driver can even help repackage the return.
Your customers know the difference between adequate and excellent service – and often, your returns policy is among the most tangible representations of your commitment to customer service. With a solid strategy and the right service from UPS Returns, you can give them the excellence they're looking for and bring them back again.
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