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By Returnalyze on July 14, 2023

Understanding Acceptable Returns vs. Unwanted Returns - Returnalyze

Returns happen, but knowing the difference between acceptable returns and unwanted returns can help you create targeted solutions that protect net profits.

Yes, top-line sales growth is a good thing. However, if you’re not taking returns into consideration, then your net revenue could be taking a massive hit. Fortunately, there’s a treasure trove of data from returns that can be leveraged to reduce return rates, decrease operating costs, increase customer lifetime value, and more.

So, does that mean that all returns are bad, and they should all be eliminated? Not necessarily.

Some returns are unpreventable but can create valuable opportunities to improve customer loyalty. On the other hand, some returns can be detrimental to net revenue, may damage a brand’s reputation, and are preventable. That’s why learning the differences and driving factors behind Acceptable and Unwanted Returns is essential. 

What Are Acceptable Returns?

When products are returned simply because customers don’t like them or they changed their minds, these transactions are known as acceptable returns. They’re acceptable because there’s very little businesses can do to predict or reduce them.

Sometimes customers happily make a purchase and then find that the product doesn’t quite fit their needs or that they simply don’t like it. In these instances, it’s simply a matter of the customer changing their mind. If they don’t like or want the product anymore, then facilitating that return is the best way to ensure they still have a positive experience. 

Multi-size orders (also known as bracketing for size) are also considered acceptable returns. Shoppers will purchase the same style in various sizes and return the sizes that don’t fit properly. This is often the case with retailers that carry multiple brands and/or with first-time shoppers who are unsure of fit and sizing. 

While providing more detailed sizing information can reduce returns related to multi-size orders, it’s also important for shoppers to find products in their ideal size for a positive customer experience. So, while bracketing for size results in returns, they’re considered acceptable since they can often lead to higher customer lifetime value. 

Unwanted returns should be reduced or eliminated | Returnalyze

What Are Unwanted Returns?

Unlike acceptable returns, unwanted returns should be minimized or eliminated entirely. While some unwanted returns are isolated, others can lead to loss of customer loyalty, damage brand reputation, and cause million-dollar losses. This includes returns due to:

  • Shipping Time Issues
  • Shipping Errors/Damage
  • Size/Fit Mismatch
  • Channel Errors
  • Wardrobing/Abuse
  • Product Quality Issues
  • Supplier Quality Issues
  • Inaccurate Product Info

For example, sometimes products become damaged during shipping, or a customer receives an item of clothing that wasn’t the size they ordered. While these types of returns do happen from time to time, they absolutely can be reduced. 

Sometimes, the driving factor behind certain types of returns can be resolved entirely. This is often the case with inaccurate or incomplete product information. Customers can easily become frustrated when the product they receive isn’t what they expected. If every customer has incorrect information about the product, then it’s likely that every customer who receives it will have a poor customer experience. 

Ultimately, these instances must be resolved for a business to grow and develop customer loyalty.

Partner with Returnalyze to Reduce Unwanted Returns and Increase Net Revenue

Fortunately, granular returns data not only identifies the different types of returns a business is experiencing but it can also be used to develop targeted solutions to resolve them. The Returnalyze Intelligent Dashboard gives you access to a number of datasets that can be cross-referenced to uncover what’s driving your returns.

In addition to in-depth analytics, partnering with Returnalyze comes with step-by-step guidance and analysis from our data experts. We’ll comb through the data to discover what’s causing returns and uncover opportunities to improve customer lifetime value, save on operating costs, and so much more.

If you'd like to see how our intelligent dashboard can help you take control of your returns, schedule a demo or contact our team today.

Published by Returnalyze July 14, 2023