Retail businesses have entered quite a competitive atmosphere now. They are continuously striving to meet the ever-increasing demands of the consumers and to set themselves apart from the rest of the competitors.
It may come as a surprise but return policies are playing a significant role in store’s success nowadays. In fact, the stores that are offering flexible return policies are building a loyal customer base as consumers share that they feel more “secure” purchasing from them. Consequently, flexible return policy has emerged as a powerful tool that can help a store stand out from the competition. Some of the major benefits of this that we have come across are:
Prominence amongst other similar stores in the market.
Ability to build customer loyalty.
Ultimately stay ahead of the competition.
You may be wondering “how can a store win so many perks simply by allowing customers to return anything they want whenever they want?” Let us show you!
- Improved Customer Support Service
Stores that are offering flexible return policies portray the impression that they put customers’ needs first thus creating an environment where a buyer feels welcome and “heard”. The positive shopping experience that this generates ultimately enhances customers’ appreciation of the brand.
For example, customers love Walgreens return policy as it allows them to return anything within 30 days of purchase. Moreover, there is no limitation that the return must be made to the store where they originally purchased the item. You can take the product to ANY Walgreens store and your case will be dealt with!
By allowing returns without imposing strict checks and requirements, the store creates a sense of trust and demonstrates their commitment to providing customers with a satisfactory shopping experience. You can expect the increased satisfaction levels to pay back the store through positive word-of-mouth referrals which has to be the most effective form of marketing in any era.
- Competitive Advantage Over Other Retailers
As we mentioned before, the competition amongst retail stores in niches like jewelry, ecom and more is fierce. Therefore, clever businessmen are continuously thinking of ways or elements that can act as key differentiators and attract customers through strategies that other retailers are lacking.
One thing is for sure: Customers look for convenience and offerings that can help with risk reduction as they shop. What could serve this concept better than letting the buyers know “You can always come back and request a refund for the purchase or ask us for an exchange if you don’t like the particular item.”
If a customer is given the choice to purchase from a store that has a rigid return policy or one that offers a flexible return policy, he or she will likely choose the latter. Needless to say, brands can position themselves as a location that provides hassle-free shopping destinations through this strategy and gain a significant competitive advantage over others in the market.
- Fool-proof Way To Generate More Sales
Aren’t we talking about customers returning something to the store? Then how can this help generate more sales?
Well, the math is rather simple. Customers do not generally walk into other stores for new purchases. Even after the return, they either opt to purchase something new at the same store or simply exchange the product.
Moreover, when customers feel confident in their ability to return/exchange, they are more likely to make a purchase later on too. The reduced purchase risk motivates the buyers to try out new products or make higher-value purchases, knowing that they have the flexible return policy as a safety net to use whenever they want. Consequently, this will help the store boost its sales and revenue.
- It Conveys a Positive Brand Image
Flexible return policy shows that it is committed to customer-centric values. It also communicates that the store cares about how satisfied a customer is with their shopping experience and that the retailer is willing to go an extra mile to ensure that customers only have positive reviews to share about the store.
Moreover, the positive brand image not only solidifies customer loyalty towards the store but also attracts new customers who value such store policies and prioritizes shopping with the brand that promises such flexibilities.
- It Reduces Overall Costs
Did you know that flexible return policies can help reduce overall costs for the store and improve its operational efficiency as well? The return policy encourages customers to return items within a designated time window and the stores can then calculate or manage the inventory more effectively.
Furthermore, a flexible return policy can help mitigate the costs associated with customers complaints, negative reviews and potential chargebacks.
Customer experience is crucial for the success of any retail store and that is why they work tirelessly to ensure customer satisfaction at all times. All in all, flexible return policy has become crucial for the stores to use to their advantage.
By putting the customers’ needs first, a store can set themselves apart from competitors, attract new customers, and build long-term relationships. The benefits of a flexible return policy extend beyond customer satisfaction. Some of the perks that the retailers could aim for include increased sales, better data collection, positive brand image, and increased operational efficiency. Accepting a flexible return policy is a strategic move that can help a store stay ahead of competitors