5 tips to reduce your return rate

2023/02/07 4min read

5 tips to reduce your return rate

The return rate is a good indicator to measure the satisfaction of your customers, whether you are an e-merchant or a retailer. A high rate should alert you that it is time to take some actions to mitigate the situation. But then, what can you do to decrease the return rate of your e-merchant site? We deliver 5 tips to achieve this!



What is the return rate?

The return rate is an important indicator. It indicates the percentage of products purchased on your e-merchant site that are returned by customers. This KPI (Key Performance Indicator) is therefore very interesting to monitor customer satisfaction and also the quality of your products. 

If you observe a high return rate, it may mean that your customers' expectations are not met by your products, either because of a quality problem or because the products do not correspond to what they thought they were buying. It can be interesting to isolate this rate by-product to identify the most returned products. 

Keep in mind that this rate can vary significantly depending on your activity and the period (after Christmas or during/after the sales for example). 

To benchmark yourself with the market, you should know that the average  ecommerce return rates hovers around 20-30% in 2022 (B-Stock Solutions).

For all retail goods, the return rate reached 16.5% in 2022 (National Retail Federation - NRF & Appriss Retail, study conducted in the US with 70 retailers).



How to calculate a return rate? 

To calculate a return rate, you need to divide the total number of returns by the total number of sales, then to multiply the result by 100 to get a percentage.

Return rate = (total number of returns / total number of sales) x 100.

For example, if your company made 100 sales and 10 of them were returned, your return rate would be 10%.

Return rate = (10 returns / 100 sales) x 100 = 10%.



5 tips to decrease your return rate!

1. Improve the product description

You can start by reviewing the full description of your products. The description should be accurate so that each customer can understand if the product meets all of his criteria. With this, returns should naturally decrease if the customer receives a product that is compliant and meets his expectations.

2. Request the reason for return

Remember to ask your customers for a reason for return to identify more easily a possible issue on a product or its description sheet. 

3. Implement real-time tracking of deliveries  

Real-time tracking of deliveries allows your customer service teams to reduce the time it takes to process each request by providing simplified visibility over anomalies. By providing advice quickly, your teams will be able to build customer confidence in your brand. They will also be able to identify incidents and damages caused by transportation and offer compensation without the need for a return. 

4. Offer several delivery methods 

By selecting multiple shipping partners, you will be able to offer the most suitable delivery services to your customers. By selecting the most reliable carriers, you will be able to reduce the number of (sometimes) damaged parcels resulting in defective product returns. 

Moreover, if your customer wants to receive his product quickly, a carrier deemed to respect the delivery promise should avoid a return. It happens that the customer who did not receive the product in time does not need it anymore and returns it to you.

5. Provide a clear and simple return policy 

By making your return policy easily accessible and effectively communicated to your customers during their search, you reassure them and optimize the chances that they will make purchases from your brand. A recent study showed that 43% of French people say they will abandon a purchase if the return options are not satisfactory (Adyen study conducted by Ipsos). 

Combined with the previous tips, this is the best way to convince your customers while minimizing possible returns! 

To go further: Connect to a unified DMS!

Here's our best advice: connect to a unified Delivery Management System such as the Woop platform. That way, you'll be able to manage your business from a single point. How can you do this? Thanks to the different modules offered: 

The Tracking module coupled with the Routing module will allow you to follow in real time the evolution of the deliveries and to inform your customers almost instantaneously (SMS, notifications) in case of a problem. 

Finally, the use of Woop's unified DMS guarantees you access to a catalog of more than 600 carriers. Backed up by the expertise of our transport team, you can select and connect to the best transport partners. You will be able to offer a variety of delivery methods while having visibility on the quality of service and the promise provided by each carrier.

Would you like to know more about the support offered by Woop to set up suitable modules and thus reduce your return rate?

Contact us


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