Returns

The New Rules:

Delivery Logistics in the e-Commerce Era

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Read about the latest challenges and best approach to retail delivery

How to Get Online Returns and Reverse Logistics Right in the Age of Amazon

The growth of online shopping and the proliferation of last mile delivery options naturally result in more returns, placing increased pressure on reverse logistics operations which now need to be managed at scale. While product returns and reverse logistics can be predictable in their frequency over time, they are difficult to plan and optimize on a daily basis. They also create complexity as they require coordination with many other functional areas of a company, such as driver routing, warehouse operations and inventory management. This coordination is crucial in order to maintain operational efficiency, chain of custody and deliver a satisfying, timely return experience for loyal customers.

The complexity of managing the reverse logistics process is only going to increase as:

  • Same day and next day eCommerce volumes increase

  • Customer expectations around eCommerce return pickup and processing evolve

  • Awareness grows of the large role returns plays in the overall customer experience

  • Companies explore and leverage new models for last mile delivery, such as multi-fleet models and crowdsourcing

  • At-home options proliferate so that consumers can try on apparel or test technology before buying (showrooming)

RELATED MODULES

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DRIVER MANAGEMENT

fleets
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REVERSE LOGISTICS

returns
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CHAIN OF CUSTODY

logistics

How to Get Online Returns and Reverse Logistics Right in the Age of Amazon

The growth of online shopping and the proliferation of last mile delivery options naturally result in more returns, placing increased pressure on reverse logistics operations which now need to be managed at scale. While product returns and reverse logistics can be predictable in their frequency over time, they are difficult to plan and optimize on a daily basis. They also create complexity as they require coordination with many other functional areas of a company, such as driver routing, warehouse operations and inventory management. This coordination is crucial in order to maintain operational efficiency, chain of custody and deliver a satisfying, timely return experience for loyal customers.

The complexity of managing the reverse logistics process is only going to increase as:

  • Same day and next day eCommerce volumes increase

  • Customer expectations around eCommerce return pickup and processing evolve

  • Awareness grows of the large role returns plays in the overall customer experience

  • Companies explore and leverage new models for last mile delivery, such as multi-fleet models and crowdsourcing

  • At-home options proliferate so that consumers can try on apparel or test technology before buying (showrooming)

Optimizing Returns: The Strategic Imperative

The bottom line is that reverse logistics have become one more piece of the ever-intensifying battle to remain competitive in the online landscape. Since they provide a great opportunity to build trust and confidence with customers, businesses are increasingly realizing the value of having an efficient returns process for internal reasons (faster return processing means faster re-sales), as well as external ones (customers who are waiting for a rapid refund).

Reverse logistics are integral to creating a positive customer experience through reliable processes that facilitate a cost-efficient way to quickly and accurately retrieve and return inventory back into the their network.

returns_illustration
cancel_order_screen

Managing Returns and Reverse Logistics Through Technology

Returns are very similar to last mile deliveries – only in reverse. They also present similar challenges in terms of coordination and the need for efficiency through route optimization and the need for scale. This means that, similar to deliveries, it is very important to have an integrated platform to share and manage the data necessary to run an efficient returns and reverse logistics operation.

Optimizing Returns: The Strategic Imperative

The bottom line is that reverse logistics have become one more piece of the ever-intensifying battle to remain competitive in the online landscape. Since they provide a great opportunity to build trust and confidence with customers, businesses are increasingly realizing the value of having an efficient returns process for internal reasons (faster return processing means faster re-sales), as well as external ones (customers who are waiting for a rapid refund).

Reverse logistics are integral to creating a positive customer experience through reliable processes that facilitate a cost-efficient way to quickly and accurately retrieve and return inventory back into the their network.

returns_illustration

Managing Returns and Reverse Logistics Through Technology

Returns are very similar to last mile deliveries – only in reverse. They also present similar challenges in terms of coordination and the need for efficiency through route optimization and the need for scale. This means that, similar to deliveries, it is very important to have an integrated platform to share and manage the data necessary to run an efficient returns and reverse logistics operations.

cancel_order_screen
reliability

Optimal Customer Experience

Customers are satisfied with their returns experience.

efficiency

Operational Efficiency

Both return in- store and return pickups are efficiently processed – including collection, refunds, and inventory stocked.

data

Real-time Data

Real-time data is collected and centralized to provide insights in order to continually improve the returns process.

financials

Lowered Costs

Both the obvious and hidden costs of returns and reverse logistics are kept low.

RELATED MODULES

line_title

DRIVER MANAGEMENT

fleets
line_title

REVERSE LOGISTICS

returns
line_title

CHAIN OF CUSTODY

logistics

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