The ultimate wish for eCommerce retailers is for their customers to be happy and satisfied with their purchases. However, returns are inevitable, and they add an extra layer of complication for e-commerce cosmetic brands as there's no way to test things before buying.
In this article, we'll cover how cosmetics brands can minimise returns, save money, and boost customer loyalty by offering free returns and using a return management platform.
Put a balanced return policy in place
Your return and exchange policy should balance the interests of your customers and your business. A fair return policy will help you retain loyal customers, increase sales, and avoid headaches down the road.
Your return policy should be clear, easy to understand, and fair for your company and customers. You want to make it as easy as possible for people to send back unwanted items or get a refund if something is defective or damaged. However, at the same time, you want to protect yourself from abuse of the system by setting reasonable guidelines that are spelt out upfront. For example, if you sell any specific product that cannot be returned, you should clearly mention that fact throughout the buying process and return policy.
If you need help writing a return policy, let us give you a hand with an article that covers all the dos and don’ts of return policy pages.
Proper product description to prevent returns
A good product description goes further than just saying what the product is. One of the best ways to avoid returns is to share as much information about the product as possible so that the customers can fully understand all the characteristics and applications of what they're about to buy. Here you have some of the details that cosmetic brands should display on their product pages:
- Product description: Include a detailed product description that addresses all the customer's concerns. This will help them decide if it is the right product for them.
- Ingredients list: Provide an ingredients list so people can see what is in your products and avoid any potential allergies or sensitivity issues with certain ingredients.
- Benefits: List out the benefits of using your products, such as increased hydration levels, decreased wrinkles etc., so that customers know why they should buy it and how long-term use may benefit them.
- Things to consider before buying: Be sure to include information about things to consider when purchasing cosmetic items, such as not being suitable for pregnant women or those who have sensitive skin; this will save you time later on when you have to explain why someone can't return their purchase because they didn't read through this information first!
Create and share how-to videos
How-to videos are a great way to showcase your products, educate customers, and get them excited about using them. They can also be a helpful resource for those who want to know more about the items they plan to buy.
Aside from the customer experience side, these videos can also become a great marketing asset. For example, a cosmetics brand that is outsmarting others and nailing it when it comes to how-to-videos is Sephora ⬇️
Encourage your customers to the sustainability aspect of return
Retail has, unfortunately, a significant impact on the environment. While many brands are taking action to be more carbon-neutral, only some understand that part of the problem comes from returns.
Cosmetic brands can handle returns more sustainably by implementing a closed-loop system where returned products are either repurchased and resold or recycled into new products. This not only reduces waste but also promotes a circular economy.
Another way for brands to minimise the environmental impact of returns is by having a more strict return policy so that only faulty or damaged products are returned and not opened or used items. Moreover, they can encourage customers to purchase sample sizes before committing to a full-size product which will reduce the number of returns.
Add close-up shots and a colour palette
Cosmetics might be one of the most challenging businesses to sell online. To mitigate returns and provide a near “real-life” experience, you must show your cosmetic products on your website how customers want to see them in a physical store. They will be more likely to choose the right product if given the tools to replicate an in-store experience digitally. In this case, the colour palettes play an important role in finding the colour that matches your skin tone. On the colour palette, include the name and shade number on each image so that customers know what they're looking at.
Include testimonials and UGC on product pages and social media
Testimonials can be used on your website, social media, and email marketing. They are a great way to build trust with potential customers. You can encourage current customers to create content reacting to your products, or you could work with influencers or UGC creators in your niche to promote your products on social media.
Testimonials should be authentic and honest. They must show a real person using the product so that other potential buyers can see how it looks in different settings and situations.
Make the return process hassle-free
Unfortunately, even after putting into action all or some of the activities shared above, your brand will still face returns. To ensure it runs smoothly for customers (mainly so that they can return to your store to buy again), a no-hassle returns process is crucial, especially for cosmetic brands. yayloh provides a fully digital and branded return experience for your customers to make returning products a simple and fast task. A hassle-free process increases customer loyalty, and your customers are more likely to return to your store.
Handling returns and exchanges can be a tricky process for cosmetic brands. However, by implementing these seven best practices, your brand can reduce returns, save money and ensure that the process is smooth and efficient for you and your customers.
Remember to be transparent and clear about your return policy, share as much product information as possible (through different channels and formats) and integrate your e-commerce store with software like yayloh to manage returns and get return data to reduce returns. With the right approach, you can reduce the risk of returns and exchanges and maintain customer satisfaction.