eCommerce Return Policy

8 Pieces of Advice for an Effective eCommerce Return Policy

Your eCommerce return policy plays a huge role in the customer’s purchase decision. It can be said that for online shoppers, the return policy of the product matters more than the product itself. I mean, why not?

Over the Internet, you would see a lot of people complaining that they received a product completely different from what they ordered. And why would one take a risk of purchasing a product that could create trouble in return, if found defective or damaged?

Consumers are worried about getting a defective item, especially if they are making an expensive purchase. This is why they check for the product’s return policy prior to the purchase to ensure if they would get a refund or replacement if in case the product doesn’t come as described. And it is necessary because people cannot examine a product physically unlike in brick-and-mortar stores.

Wondering how to write an effective return/refund policy for your eCommerce website? In this article, I have put up 8 pieces of advice for an effective eCommerce return policy.

1. Do Not Use Any Hard Language

Avoid using language that makes it difficult for users to understand your return policy. Do not confuse them with words that make them search for a dictionary. Keep your language simple. Use plain English. Complicating your return policy will only bewilder your customers and restrict them from their purchasing.

2. Keep Your eCommerce Return Policy Up to the Point

Do not clutter your return policy. Be up to the point and keep it short, simple and clear. Your eCommerce return policy should make the shoppers understand about the return process in one go instead of making them go through a long and complicated paragraph to read. Clearer your return policy, easier it becomes for a consumer to place or return an order.

3. Offer Store Credits along with Refund and Replacement

Types of Return choice: Effective eCommerce Return Policy

Let your customers know what options do they have to compensate if in case they receive defective, damaged or a wrong product. The type of return choice can be a full refund of the product amount, replacement of the product, or store credits equivalent to the product amount.

Adding the option of store credits in your return policy not only makes your return policy convenient but also encourages customer retention as shoppers who opt for the store credits will surely visit your store again in the future to redeem them.

4. Specify who should be paying the Shipping Cost

Asking customers to pay the shipping cost when they are already dissatisfied with the product would not do any good for your business in the long run. It will affect customer loyalty, forcing customers to avoid shopping from your store in the future.

Do not surprise customers with an additional cost while they place a return. If you want the customer to pay for the shipping cost or cover it yourself, mention it clearly on your return policy so that customers have an idea beforehand.

According to Invesp, around 49% of online retailers offer free shipping.

5. Set Your Return Guidelines

Set proper guidelines regarding the product return in your eCommerce return policy to avoid any miscommunication between you and your customers. Specify the terms and conditions, falling under which the product will be considered for the return. For example, you can specify that the product shouldn’t be tempered or broken.

Do not forget to notify customers about the product packaging. Provide them with a checklist of the things they need to consider before they send an item for the return.

6. Specify the Time Frame

Specify a time period within which the return request can be raised. Generally, the time span is 30 days but some eCommerce websites have brought it down to 10 days. Also, specify the number of days within which the customers can expect a resolution for the placed return request.

7. Create a FAQ Page

A customer can have many doubts regarding the return and refund policy, even if you have covered almost everything on the return policy page. For this matter, a FAQ page for return can be an ideal way. Try to figure out every possible query a customer can have regarding the return process and mention them in the FAQ section. Doing this will make you deal with fewer customer queries through your customer support.

8. Highlight your Return Policy

What would be the point of having a return policy if your visitors or customers cannot find it easily? The more its visibility, more the effectiveness.

Make sure that your return policy follows your visitors. The best place to put it apart from the product page is on the homepage of your website, and also the checkout page.

In fact, it would be nice if you highlight the return policy in the order confirmation email that is sent to the customers. Try to promote it at maximum places so that it is easily noticed and visitors do not have to dig your entire website to search for it.

The Final word

Your eCommerce return policy reflects the image of your brand and tells how much you value your customers. You need to craft your policies well to make customers feel secure about the returns. If you deliver what you say as per your return policies, you are going to gain a lot of loyal customers. Take your time in structuring a good and effective return policy and see how well it fits on your eCommerce store. It will save you a lot of time and money.

Do keep in mind the above-mentioned tips for an effective eCommerce return policy.

Also, read:

8 Simple Tips to Reduce Product Returns in eCommerce

5 ways to Manage eCommerce Returns

Joe Parker

We boast of the best in the industry plugins for eCommerce systems and has years of experience working with eCommerce websites. We provide best plugins for platforms like - Magento, Prestashop, OpenCart and Shopify . We also provide custom module development and customization services for the website and modules..

One thought on “8 Pieces of Advice for an Effective eCommerce Return Policy

  1. Brilliant post,
    Return policy can be a potential business upliftment strategy. As a thumb rule, design a return policy that suits your business, rather than going with the market flow. Let us check details on what is a Return Policy and how can you write it effectively-

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