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Retailers – Reduce Returns and Refunds

blog | 4 min read

Retailers! A Simple Way to Reduce Your Returns and Refunds This Christmas

The anticipation of a parcel delivery is something we have all learned to love this year.

As Christmas approaches and many of us remain in the domestic isolation that has become a signature of recent times, online ordering and home deliveries will soar in the weeks ahead.

If you are an online retailer, there is one thing that you can do today that will improve your Christmas business tomorrow. It’s quick, simple and cost-effective.

The answer is to integrate a simple and accurate address verification system into your ordering process. The good news is this can be done incredibly quickly, very simply and extremely cost-effectively. It can be achieved by adding as little as 3p to the cost of an online sale. Compare that to the real cost of a return or refund.

What’s the problem?

One of the major causes of delayed or failed parcel delivery is misaddressing. Very often this is because of errors created by shoppers themselves at the time of ordering. It is easy to get an address wrong by mistyping your own postcode or address, but at Christmas, the problem is made worse by the increased likelihood that customers might be entering other people’s addresses to send gifts direct.

By the time the error has been identified and the customer is querying non-delivery, it can be too late to solve the problem in time for Christmas delivery deadlines. This can lead to increased returns and refunds. In addition to the obvious cost, there is the added disruption of having to deal with the admin around these issues at your busiest time of the year.

Why is this important?

The emotions around Christmas mean that these customers can end up extremely unhappy and you could lose them forever. Pointing out that the mistake was the customer’s own fault doesn’t get the parcel delivered, or reduce the upset caused. It’s worth remembering that 71% of customers will not return to a retailer if they’ve had a bad experience.

A good address verification system will also make the ordering process easier for the online shopper, which is good to know because 72% of consumers claim that when online, ease of shopping is just as important as the product.

Keeping these online shoppers happy is vital – especially for the future. 73% of people will continue shopping with retailers they relied on during the pandemic and 31% plan to shop online more than they did before the pandemic.

How we can help

Hopewiser can help with a reliable and accurate address verification system which becomes an integral part of your ordering system.

The software is available as website plug-ins, desktop software or can be integrated into existing systems. In most cases it is incredibly simple, quick and easy to do.

For example, you could have free address verification software installed on every desktop and laptop within your business, all linked to one address verification account. All you pay for are the lookups that you use.

Alternatively, you could install our free Woocommerce or WordPress plugin and your website could be automatically verifying delivery addresses within minutes.

The simplicity and effectiveness of this approach means it is something every online retailer should be doing.

And the low cost per address lookup (from just 3p per lookup) will save you hours of time, chasing up missing parcels, dealing with unhappy customers, dealing with returns and issuing refunds at the one time of the year when resources are already stretched.

As a final note, if you use, or are thinking of using, Google to verify addresses, we would ask you to take a look at our article… ‘we don’t sell toasters’ – it might make you think again!

To find out more about how address verification could help your business this Christmas, just Ask Hopewiser, we’re here to help.

Sources

Ayden Retail Report 2020

, updated 24th November 2020.