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Effectively Handling Returns Showcases Your Brand
By: Cindy Wendland
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“I’d like to return this, please.” Those words may not be the favorite ones heard by retailers, especially after the holidays. Those words can be received differently if you use a return as an opportunity to showcase the excellent customer service offered by your brand.

Remember a few facts about your customers. The customers may not like the fact that they have to return a gift. They may have been disappointed in some facet of the product. They may not have been happy with the fit. Or, they just may not have liked the item. Most likely, the customer just wants something that works and that makes them happy.

If you can be as excited about a return as you are about a sale, your customers will remember that. The goal with your brand is to make it easy to make a return and be happy and cheerful about helping to solve the customer’s problem. Any time you have the customer face to face, it is an ideal opportunity to build a long-term relationship. People want to have relationships with brands that make their lives easier and that offer them a good experience. Try to do both.

Try to offer a replacement item that will solve the problem with the returned item. If you cannot, then thank the customer for shopping with you and build the relationship with dialogue about some upcoming items or events for your brand. Turn the focus away from what didn’t work toward what will be a great experience. Returns can be positive. Try to make it so.

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About the Author
Cindy Wendland has a background in marketing and finance. She is the creative director for an online men's health magazine, BrainBrawnBody.com, and she gets to write their leisure/travel blog. She is also a web designer helping her clients with online community engagement, websitesbywendland.com. Prior to her web years, she worked in pharmacy consulting.
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