Meet the Tornadoes:
Andrii Serhiienko

Andrii Serhiienko Lead Software Engineer Returnado

Get the chance to get to know the people behind the brand through our series of employee portraits: The Tornadoes of Returnado. This time, we check in with Andrii Serhiienko, Lead Software Engineer at Returnado.

 

When did you join Returnado? And what is it that you do?

Andrii Serhiienko
Lead Software Engineer

I joined Returnado in August 2019 as the lead software developer. I develop new features in the product, plan future development, mentor my teammates and manage the team, and project management activities. We are a small team, and all of us have more than just one role.

 

What is the best part about working at Returnado?

It is a great product and there is a useful and nice idea behind it. We have a great founder who loves what we do and who understands what our customers need.

 

What are you most looking forward to as you continue the journey with Returnado?

The process of growing into a big, shiny company, with a product that makes endless an amount of customers happy.

 

Let’s get personal… how would you describe Andrii?

Nothing to say specifically. I am just me, really.

 

Do you have a motto that you live by?

“The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised”

 

What do you do in your spare time?

I use my spare time programming, learning new things, and reading books. It is what I enjoy most.

 

Tell us something most people don’t know about you?

I was actually a decent hacker in the past!

 

Speed Round

If I could choose one superpower that would be … wisdom

A fun fact about me is … I’m funny!

My most useless talent is … in some sense all my talents are useless

 

This or That?

Calling or Texting

Winter or Summer

Meat or Vegetables

Horror Movie or Comedy

Online Shopping or In-Store Shopping

 

Connect with Andrii!

Email: andrii@returnado.com
LinkedIn: Andrii Serhiienko

 

 

Meet the Tornadoes

(Click the photo to read more.)

Philipp Goldberg, CBO
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Returns are a natural part of e-commerce, and unfortunately also the most disliked part of e-commerce. Many retailers see it as a ‘necessary evil’, when in fact it is a great opportunity to generate new revenue and purchases.

Exchanges, the perfect complement to returns and claims

Today, many consumers that submit returns do not do it because they changed their mind or regretted the purchase. Rather, they return items because they were sent the wrong item, the item is damaged, or because it did not meet the customer’s expectations in terms of quality, size, etc.

Therefore, exchanges are a great complement to returns and claims. By allowing customers to exchange an item for another product, size, or even store credit, you enable new revenue streams. An order that would normally have been lost, possibly even to a competitor, is saved. According to stats we have based on our customers, you will turn more than 30% of all returns into new revenue through exchanges.

Additionally, our data also shows that customers’ exchange value tends to be higher than the original value. A win-win situation if you ask me.

 

Motivate an exchange instead of the return

There is a whole bunch of strategies to apply in order to motivate your customers to do an exchange rather than canceling the purchase through a return.

The following are two examples:

1. Charge returns – offer free exchanges

This may sound harsh. But, charging for the freight of a return, while offering exchanges free of charge, is actually a great motivator for a customer to choose to exchange an item.

2. Suggest new items/size/colour

For some types of products, there is winning in only letting the customer exchange for the same product, same color, material, or size. In other cases, you benefit from offering the customer to exchange one item for any other item. It all depends on what type of products you sell, and what motivates your customer base.

BONUS:

(3. Returnless returns is also a great alternative to returns)

Is the product still functional, but a bit ‘beat up’ from transportation? Is your customer willing to keep the product for a partial refund? Returnless returns are growing and are a good complement to returns, claims, and exchanges.

 

What is an exchange policy and why do you need one?

Return policies are the rules a retailer creates to manage how customers return and exchange unwanted merchandise they purchased. A return policy tells customers what items can be returned or exchanged and for what reasons, and the timeframe over which returns are accepted.

As returns are often seen as a necessary evil, retailers somewhat look the other way when the returns arrive and result in a loss of profitability. For this reason, it is often missed that a return can be a real business opportunity if handled properly.

 

Establishing a returns (and exchange) policy

The risk of a poor return policy

Over time, customer complaints about your return policy can start to filter onto social media, showing up as comments under your ads or even in Google searches about your business.

This is where a poorly implemented returns process starts to negatively affect your overall reputation as a business.

However, processing every return manually and dealing with customers on a case-by-case basis can also be expensive for your business operations and exhausting for customer service staff. At some point, most businesses will need to figure out a solution for returns and exchanges that benefits themselves and their customers.

 

The benefits of a customer-centric return policy

Many retailers have concluded that a customer-centric approach to the return policy is a powerful tool in terms of conversion rates, customer experience, and marketing.

Why you benefit from a customer-centric return policy:
  • According to Postnords annual report ‘E-commerce in Europe 2020’, 45% of online shoppers consider the return policy to be of great importance when making a purchase. In addition, 40% of the participants say they made a return in the past year.
    .
  • Also, according to UPS, 68% of shoppers check a website’s return and exchange policy before making a purchase. That’s why many brands now advertise “free,” “easy,” and “no-hassle” returns and exchanges to increase conversion rates and online purchases.

A return policy that benefits the customer is often the differentiator between businesses with a strong repeat purchase rate and those that rely on one-time purchases only. A better customer experience is more likely to lead to a higher retention rate and long-term revenue growth.

To summarize, your reputation will benefit most from offering easy returns and exchanges to customers.

 

Additional blog articles

 

Do you want to offer exchanges to your customers?

Once you have submitted your information, one of our experts will contact you shortly. We will listen to your challenges, tell you more about our solutions and see how they can help you and your business.

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BBC Returnado

‘I’ll buy five items and only keep one of them’

… is the title of BBC News’ article including comments from Returnado’s CEO & Founder, Haider Abdo.

BBC Returnado

BBC News is shining the light on the flip side of e-commerce, the dreaded return, and how it affects:
  • Consumers,
  • profitability,
  • and the environment

The article discusses various factors that make us shop online while in lockdown or living with restrictions, such as boredom. The article also covers how Returnado helps retailers reconvert 30% of returns into new purchases.

Click here to read the full article.

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Returns Management Trends 2021

2020 was the year when online-shopping really boomed. The growth we experienced last year is MUCH HIGHER than the preceding years. However, more than 30% of all online purchases end up as returns. And, more than half of all retailers say that dealing with returns has a negative impact on the day-to-day business operations. 

Another metric suggests that consumers focus on details regarding the return process. Like free returns. Almost half of all online shoppers will move on to another retailer if charged for making a return. 

We have identified some trends to keep an eye on in 2021.

 

Returns Management Trends 2021

 

1. The Power of Free Returns

47% of online shoppers say they will look to make a purchase elsewhere if they have to pay to make a return. Forty-seven percent. That is almost half of all of your potential customers. 

Of course, this number varies depending on industry and product as with most things within retail.  

But, if we focus on sales numbers, rather than the cost of a return, a study published in the Journal of Marketing shows that online stores that offer free returns see customers spend up to 457% more than they did initiate the return. Four hundred and fifty-seven percent increase. 

However, you need to look at the value your customers bring in, and compare it to the cost of a return.

There are many solutions to this problem, a few examples could be:

  • Do not charge for any returned items
  • or, charge for returns, but make exchanges free of charge
  • or, only charge if the return’s monetary value is less than … (your choice)

Note! You can always set different rules for different markets, segments, or product groups. 

 

 

2. Friction-Free Social Commerce

Social commerce is when you sell products directly on social media. From first touchpoint and product discovery to research and eventually a purchase. 

One of the main advantages of social commerce is that the customer never has to leave the social platform, speeds up the entire sales process by skipping a bunch of steps along the way, and making the purchase friction-free. In addition, it also socializes the purchasing process – allowing customers to share their experiences with friends and family and interact with the brands they love.

Although social commerce may not have a direct correlation to returns management, it will ultimately impact your returns. The customer will expect the returns process to be simple if the purchasing process is simple.

Today, you can utilize Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest (and Snapchat) for social commerce. But surely, other platforms will follow their lead shortly. 

 

 

3. Sustainability

Sustainability is on everyone’s lips. And something we really need to talk more about.

Of course, there are things you can do to improve the return rate. Like, optimize your product description and size guide. Even add environmentally friendly shipment options. BUT. We need to be aware that sometimes it is cheaper to let the customer keep a defective product for a full or partial refund, or have it sent back, restored, and resold at a discounted price. 

Packaging and refurbishment are two things that are up and coming. Let me explain why.

 

Environmental-Friendly Packaging

Packaging and the environment go hand-in-hand. But there are two things that you need to keep in mind: materials and sizing.

In terms of material, we need to move away from plastics, cardboard, and other materials that are not the most environmentally friendly. I do not think I need to discuss plastic any further as it takes 100+ years for the material itself to decompose… so, we do not want more of that spread out in our environment. Instead, there are ‘plastics’ made from natural materials. It may be a little more costly, not necessarily though, but it will resonate well with customers. 

The good thing about ‘plastics’ is that it is easy for customers to return items using the same packaging. A cardboard box is a bit more tricky. Let’s say a customer orders a pair of earrings and a jacket. The products arrive in a box. The customer then wishes to return the earrings and is advised to reuse the same packaging. This means that the package will hold a lot of unnecessary air. Air that takes up space that could have been used to ship other products. 

Rethink your packaging. Sometimes making the slightest change makes a huge difference. 

 

Refurbishment and Repurposing

Refurbishment and re-purposing are becoming increasingly trendy. And not only is it trending, but it is also a much better choice than buying new items in terms of environmental and sustainability aspects. 

Let’s take jeans as an example. To make one pair of jeans, the water consumption adds up to about 7,600 liters (2,000 gallons) of water. And even by using recycled water, this is A LOT of water. And a lot of work. Now, denim is one thing that actually gets better with time, wear, and tear. Would you not agree? 

But, there are options that will cost less than manufacturing new products. More sustainable options that have a less environmental impact: refurbishment and repurposing. 

By re-using fibers, parts, and materials that are already produced, we skip parts of the process in making new products for customers to purchase. Or why not repurpose a pair of jeans into a jacket? 

At Returnado, we are determined to be part of the change and are working closely with our customers to solve this particular challenge. Stay tuned for more information later this year!

 

 

4. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is something we see more and more retailers pick up as something they would like to use. However, many retailers are still discovering technology that can reshape their returns management processes and are not ready for AI at this point in time. 

But, AI and automation can help retailers regain control of their returns – while paying it less effort and time. AI does just that. It helps decrease touches on returns and positively impact their bottom line. 

To get started, you can set up your ‘smart business rules’ in your returns management system, and let the system do the work for you, while you focus on the activities that drive revenue instead.

 

 

5. In-Store Returns

One way to minimize the cost of returns is to allow in-store returns. Not only is it easier for customers, but also to reconvert the return into a new purchase. 

Let me explain what I mean by ‘easier’. Offering in-store returns for online purchases meets the need for speed, tracking, flexibility, and automation of alerts to your customer. When customers can return something in-store, you are putting the customer in charge. In control. Empowering them of sorts. The responsibility is then shifted to the company in terms of shipping items back to distribution centers or allocating items to the store’s inventory. 

 

 

6. Quick Refunds

When making a purchase, a customer is asked to select a payment method before finishing the purchase. The customer is required to pay you when the purchase is made (or sometimes select an invoice option), while a refund can take weeks or (in the worst cases) even months for customers to receive. 

By automating the refund process, you can have refunds paid shortly after an item is handed over to the carrier, when arriving at the warehouse, or approved by customer service. Whatever you choose as your trigger. 

You can also choose returnless returns. This means, for example, paying a partial refund for your customer to use to take an item to the tailor. Either way, just like with everything else in our lives, people’s patience is getting shorter, and as customers, we expect quick returns and refunds.

 

 

7. A Digital Returns Process

I can imagine you are tired of handwritten return slips that are completely unreadable? What if I say there is a way to remove them from your returns process? In fact, what if I can promise that all you need to do is scan a barcode, open the package to control the item, click ‘approve’ and move on to the next package?

No, I am not joking. Returns management systems have actually been around the past decade, but many retailers have been focusing on the return as a source of new income and therefore missed the opportunity to reconvert returns to new purchases. Returns have been referred to as a necessary pain for e-commerce. 

By using a system, you let the customer register the return/claim digitally. Here, you have the opportunity to offer your customers to exchange the return for a new product, or request a refund. In fact, based on our own data, more than 30% of all returns are reconverted to new purchases at this stage. New revenue for your business that would have been lost. 

In addition, your returns management and customer service teams will save huge amounts of time, as time spent on returns will decrease by a lot. Your customers? You may wonder. Do not worry! They are kept updated about the status through automated notifications throughout the entire process. 

 

 

READ MORE: 5 reasons why you should digitise your warehouse returns process →

 

 

To summarize the returns management trends for 2021

The goal for 2021 will be building customer loyalty, and for that, the returns process plays a big role. Therefore, your focus needs to be to reduce the return rate while increasing the reconversion rate by applying some of the tools that we have discussed in this post.

The trends we have covered are the power of free returns, friction-free social commerce and sustainability, artificial intelligence, quicker refunds, and digitizing the returns process. Find the balance that fits your business the best. 

 

 

Curious to get started with a returns management system?

Contact us today to learn more about Returnado, and have one of our experts find the perfect setup for your business. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Read more

Get the chance to get to know the people behind the brand through our series of employee portraits: The Tornadoes of Returnado. This time, we check in with Philipp Goldberg, CBO at Returnado.

 

When did you join Returnado? And what is it that you do?

Philipp Goldberg, CBO

I started my journey at Returnado in May, 2020, as the CBO (Chief Business Officer). My daily responsibilities include optimising our Commercial Team; including sales, marketing, communication and business development. We finally have a solid team in place, which we are looking forward to expanding during 2021.

 

What is the best part about working at Returnado?

My colleagues, they are awesome! I also enjoy working with a product that enables a greater overall experience for customers when buying stuff online. It is definitely becoming more important now as more people are starting to make purchases online. 

 

What are you most looking forward to as you continue the journey with Returnado?

Honestly, the journey itself. But also to see where we can take this company in the next 3-5 years – exciting times ahead!

Let’s get personal… how would you describe Philipp?

I would describe myself as friendly. However, I am also a very competitive football nerd.

 

Do you have a motto that you live by?

Yes, I do. “Do not take everything too serious!”

 

 

What do you do in your spare time?

I spend as much time as possible with my family. My girlfriend and I have a newborn son and I love spending as much time as possible with them.

 

Tell us something most people don’t know about you?

Something that most people do not know about me is that I am a pretty decent cook, and I cook at home everyday.

 

Speed Round

If I could time travel … I would go to ancient Greece

My favorite movie is … Lord of the Rings (I am a nerd I know)

If I could choose any mentor it would be … Gunde Svan

 

This or That?

Calling or Texting

Hamburger or Tacos

Online Shopping or In-Store Shopping

Return or Exchange

Pool or Ocean

 

Connect with Philipp!

Email: philipp@returnado.com
LinkedIn: Philipp Goldberg

 

 

Meet the Tornadoes

(Click the photo to read more.)

Andrii Serhiienko Lead Software Engineer Returnado
Andrii Serhiienko,
Lead Software Engineer
Read more
Digitalisera-returhantering-lager-Returnado

A digitised, transparent and simple process means that the return quickly becomes a competitive advantage. The return, the part of the buyer’s journey that is widely disliked, instead becomes a friction-free experience. There are also many monetary reasons why you should move away from a manual approach, to a digitised and automated flow. Here is why.

 

 

To work manually with return management

Handling the return manually at the warehouse is becoming increasingly time-consuming. Not only because e-commerce has experienced explosive growth in the past year, but also because more e-retailers are becoming aware of alternatives to returns, such as exchanges.

Manual handling of a return means that: information about what is on the way is completely excluded, that each return needs to be registered by hand into the warehouse systems, and in some cases, into several other systems. Additionally, customers rarely receive updates about their return and contact customer service for information.

As with much else, there are huge gains in digitising the returns management process in your warehouse.

 

Advantages of digitised warehouse return handling

  • Eliminate handwritten return slips
  • See exactly how many returns are on the way
  • Adjust staffing according to the number of incoming returns
  • Save time through automation
  • Reduce the risk of human error

 

Eliminate handwritten return slips

Is there anyone who would miss handwritten return slips? No? As I suspected.

In a digitised returns process, the customer registers a return, choose the reason for returning/submitting a claim, and attach a picture of the product in the returns portal. As a result, the warehouse staff can simply scan incoming goods with a hand scanner in order to see all return information without having to register anything into the system.

 

How many incoming returns can we expect?

The biggest advantage of digitising the return is that you always know ​​exactly how many, and which, returned goods are on their way to your warehouse. Large packages? Small packages? Many packages?

With the help of that information, you can, for example, adjust staffing as needed, and constantly notify your customers with current return status, along with minimising the load on customer service in terms of return-related matters.

 

 

Adjust staffing according to the number of incoming returns

As I mentioned, there is a great advantage in having the customer register the return digitally in a return portal.

As a result, you can adjust the staffing of the warehouse according to the amount of returning goods as notice trends depending on season and/or campaigns. With the help of real-time data, you can easily see when the pressure increases and the flow of returns increase or decrease. However, you can also use the information to adjust the staffing of other departments, e.g. customer service.

Read more about how Royal Design Group, in just 12 months, reduced staff costs for customer service by 31% by digitizing the return

 

Save time through automation

Fact: A manually handled return can take up to 20 minutes in total processing time.

This includes: registering all return data specified on the hand-written return slip sent back with the package, checking the item for damage, and updating the stock balance along with initiating the refund. However, no customer interaction with customer service is included in the calculation.

But, by digitising the process and letting the customer register the return data, even before the item is sent back, a great deal of time is saved. Additionally, if you connect your process to a returns management system, you can instead complete a return in about 5-10 seconds. Scan, check, and done.

Here you can read more about Returnado’s ecosystem of integration partners

 

Reduce the risk of human error

The larger number of manual steps in the return management process, the higher the risk of mistakes due to human error.

Therefore, it is important that all systems containing return-related data “speak” to each other through integrations. More digitisation and automation = less to no risk.

 

A digital process makes the return your competitive edge

In addition to optimising your internal working methods by digitising and automating, you can also count on an improved customer experience.

The return can in many cases determine whether a customer chooses to shop with a e-retailer again or not. A smooth, simple, and transparent returns process can make the return one of your main competitive advantages.

 

Curious to know more?

Are you interested in knowing more about how Returnado can solve your return challenges? Fill in the form below, and one of our experts will contact you shortly.

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Returnado-Integrations

In general, most companies selling products have some way of handling returns, and SaaS solutions, like Returnado, serve as a hub, collecting all the important data in one place while also distributing the right information to other systems you may have in place, automatically.

 

Returnado’s open API caters to infinite opportunities

Returnado-integrations-data-points

In order to use Returnado, there is no need to switch out or add any other systems to your current IT ecosystem. Instead, Returnado integrates, using an open API, to your pre-existing setup of systems, or serves as the lone hub covering your entire returns operations like the only or final piece of a puzzle. Whichever way, you do not need to worry, we have got you covered. 

At Returnado, we are committed to providing our customers with the best returns solution on the market, and we keep tabs on new tech innovations best suited for your business. In fact, Returnado has ready-to-use integrations with a great number of partners within different areas of the process. Read more about that below.

Are you missing an integration? Let us know! The Returnado ecosystem is growing, and we are always looking for new partners and systems to integrate with. 

 

Returnado-E-com-integration

Returnado integration to e-Com system

There are many benefits of connecting your e-commerce platform (e-Com) to a returns management system. Not only can you offer returns to reconvert returns and claims – and save important income from being lost. You can leverage expanding your customer base, manage all the information connected with orders, customers’ products, shipments, and more easily. In addition, you will increase profits. Simplifying a painful process for your customers will create loyalty and return business. 

From Returnado to e-Com:

  • Return information
  • Refund data
  • Exchange data

From e-Com to Returnado:

  • Order information
  • Product data
  • Customer data

 

Returnado-ERP-integration

Returnado integration to ERP system

Integrating your returns management system to the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) helps you streamline your business processes and workflow across att departments tied to the returns process. When integrated, you are eliminating one of the major time-consuming parts of your work: manually entering data into the ERP, which will waste your productive time. 

Enabling people from all departments to access the omnichannel business data will speed up your processes. For example, the inventory management team would have a real-time update on products available and can act upon the shortage of inventory.

From Returnado to ERP:

  • Return information
  • Refund data
  • Exchange data

From ERP to Returnado:

  • Order information
  • Product data
  • Customer data

 

Returnado-OMS-integration

Returnado integration to OMS system

The Order Management system (OMS) registers all incoming orders. In order to create a personalised order view and experience for the end-customer, the OMS system will share the order information with Returnado. 

Customise the consumer dialogue for each customer with selected recommended products, or options for reconversion by using the data from your OMS system.

From OMS to Returnado:

  • Order information data

 

Returnado-TA-integration

Returnado integration to TA system

Synchronising the data from your Transport Administration system (TA) is crucial for efficiency. By allowing the end-customer to select a carrier in the customer dialogue interface, which is also integrated with Returnado, will trigger actions automatically. Such as, booking transports with carriers, creating shipping documents (digital), and tracking shipments. 

From TA to Returnado:

  • Shipping information
  • Digital shipping label
  • QR code

 

Returnado-WMS-integration

Returnado integration to WMS system

The warehouse management system (WMS) relies on data generated and held in a CRM, e-com, or EPR system to manage warehouse operations and ensure efficient logistics.

Not only does the integration reduce the chance of human error, but it also provides an opportunity to analyse the operation’s data to improve workflows and efficiency.

Some use the data as talking points in meetings with suppliers and partners.

From Returnado to WMS:

  • Returns information (item received at the warehouse)

 

Returnado-CRM-integration

Returnado integration to CRM system

Individually, your customer relationship management system (CRM) is a system that carries customer data. By integrating a CRM into other systems and applications, you can automate many processes and unleash the full power.

With access to customer service ticket data, you can sync service activity to contact information in your CRM to stay up to date with the service needs of your customers. 

From Returnado to CRM:

  • Customer Service tickets

 

Less admin, with Admin!

Returnado-modules-screens

With Returnado Admin, you can track the return from registration to refund or shipping of exchanged items. You can access the handling and shipping status, communicate internally with colleagues regarding a return and change the refund value for chosen returned items. 

You can also access claims data and attached photos, and take action. Or help customers with questions. 

Far too many e-commerce teams still use manual processes and forms for returns management, entering the same data into multiple systems daily.

With Returnado Admin, the data is always accessible, and you can easily access relevant data or generate reports. You have all the data in one place, with the correct integrations, automatically.

 

Talk to Us!

Are you interested to find out if Returnados returns solution could be the perfect fit for you? Fill out the form below and one of our experts will reach out to you shortly. 

 

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returnado in the media 2021

January 2021, the month when we would find out what Brexit would cause when Christmas returns were spiking after a year of booming e-commerce due to a raging pandemic. It had a massive impact. We had the pleasure of joining several media houses, to talk about the situation we are all finding ourselves in, Brexit, and of course, all things reverse logistics and returns. 

Here is a collection of articles you should not miss! 

 

 

Post-Brexit shoppers pay a third extra to get hold of EU goods

The Times, 2021-01-25

We knew what was coming, but we were all hoping for more. Tens of thousands of internet shoppers are now being hit with unexpected customs, VAT, and delivery charges on orders sent from EU retailers. British customers are facing demands to pay up to a third extra to release their goods from bonded warehouses once they arrive in the UK.

We joined Her Majesty the Queen for breakfast, in theory of course, as Haider Abdo, chief executive of Returnado was mentioned on the front page of The Times. A newspaper that Queen Elizabeth II reads daily. 

The article is locked behind subscription on The Times’ website. But luckily, it was also published for Business Matters, so click here to read the article in full. 

 

READ! Brexit: How to prepare your e-Commerce returns operation

 

‘F****** Brexit’ EU firms losing out to UK rivals due to red tape – Man Utd WAG caught up

The Sunday Express, 2021-01-24

This article shows that we are all equally affected by Brexit. European retailers are struggling to compete with their British rivals as they come to terms with Brexit red tape.

Maja Nilsson Lindelöf shared her frustration about Brexit on her Instagram story a few weeks back, about VAT charges and not knowing when it will all be sorted. It is not ideal to depend on deliveries to be able to do one’s job when Brexit is… Brexit.

Haider adds some insights to the discussion: “EU-based retailers will have a harder time competing with UK ones since EU businesses will likely deliver slower and there will be more friction when both purchasing from abroad and returning items there. With these extra friction points, prices will likely need to increase there as well, making them less competitive against UK-based merchants.”

Read the full article here

 

UK shoppers pay a third extra for EU goods amid Brexit red tape

Yahoo! Finance, 2021-01-22

Haider Abdo, the chief executive of Returnado, a global returns management company, told the newspaper: “We spoke to one EU company that generates labels for shipping and they said 80% of their clients hadn’t yet filled out the forms to meet the new requirements. That accounts for several hundred thousands of retailer shipments to the UK every month.”

“Smaller retailers have been caught out because when it dropped over Christmas they were in their busiest point of the year.”

Read the article here

 

WATCH! Haider Abdo joins Bob Mills on air for TalkRADIO

 

UK shoppers pay a third extra for EU goods amid Brexit red tape

Retail Insight Network, 2021-01-08

Haider, our CEO, sat down to chat about Brexit with Retail Insight Network’s Jessica Paige. With an estimated €52bn turnover in 2020, the UK is the third-biggest e-commerce market in the world after the US and China. The internal market is big, and many local retailers have been able to set up a base and create a strong presence serving the local market. This is something that will affect the UK retail industry greatly. 

Read the full interview here

 

Haider Abdo of Returnado: “Making a return is a consumer right”

Thrive Global, 2021-01-08

In December, Returnado was featured in an article published to Medium.com’s platform. In January, the journalist, Jilea Hemmings, submitted the popular article to another platform – Thrive Global

With consumers’ routines and opportunities to go out and about freely having changed as a result of Coronavirus, the ability to get items delivered to one’s door or, indeed, the least crowded post office in the vicinity has become more important than ever. Allowing customers to select both were to have their orders delivered and from where their returns should be picked up has proved to be a key factor in driving growth and capturing market share.

Click here to read the article in full

 

 

Talk to us!

Are you interested to find out if Returnados returns solution could be the perfect fit for you? Fill out the form below and one of our experts will reach out to you shortly. 

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On December 29th, Returnado CEO & Founder, Haider Abdo had the pleasure of joining talkRADIO host Bob MILLS on air for a live interview to discuss all things returns.

In the 17 minute long interview, the two cover topics such as:

👉🏽 The future of UK brick-and-mortar stores
👉🏽 The problem of “influencer returns” and “try-on-parties”
👉🏽 How 2020 became the year of the “novice buyers”
👉🏽 The difference between “Good“ and “Bad“ returns

We have uploaded the full interview to our youtube channel, you can watch it here:

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Brexit is a fact, and the time has come. As of January 1st 2021, the UK is no longer a part of the EU and any trade deal between the UK and EU will come into full effect. However, no agreement has yet been reached. We are most likely facing a no-deal scenario, or perhaps a symbolic agreement. 

So, what happens now?

Whatever the outcome of the negotiations with the EU, UK businesses (and really anyone selling anything in, or to, the UK) must adjust to meet the new trade regulations. E-Commerce teams all over Europe (and the world) are now working tirelessly to adapt to the various new restrictions. It is time to prepare to declare, so to speak. Here is what you need to know.

 

What Brexit means to e-commerce

 

What Brexit Entails for E-Commerce

Starting January 1st, 2021, all goods must be declared to Customs in the UK. This is required regardless of the agreement the UK and EU will negotiate and agree upon; all goods (imported or exported) between the parties after the transition period must undergo customs clearance, even in cases where no customs taxes will be levied for the goods.

This is the same process as for all other non-EU countries (with a few exceptions: Noway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein).

At the moment, there is no agreement in place, and we are most likely facing a no-deal scenario. It is likely that the EU and UK will not come to a written agreement, but rather a symbolic agreement to adhere to. 

But what impact will Brexit have on e-Commerce? To understand, we need to take a look at the numbers:

  1. During 2020 (alone), more than 32,6 million consumers are estimated to have made a cross-border online purchase worldwide
  2. Roughly 30% of UK shoppers have shopped more online due to the coronavirus pandemic
  3. 45% of all UK online shoppers made at least one return in the past year

 

What Brexit Requires From e-Commerce Retailers

  • Detailed data will be required to export/import goods
  • Customs declarations will be required for each parcel
  • Sent goods are subject to VAT (and duties when applicable)
  • Inspections will take place on some goods – imported or exported
  • Rates will change as a result of customs handling
  • Transit times may increase because of linehaul changes and potentially customs checks

 

What Brexit Means for Reverse Logistics

Returns are an essential part of the overall e-commerce machine. An operation that, if handled well, can secure future sales, save time and reduce costs. Brexit may affect your current returns operation which is why retailers must consider all possible outcomes. 

The e-Commerce space is of great importance in terms of Brexit as the return rates average 30% of all purchases, compared to only 9% in brick-and-mortar stores. 

Here Is How You Get a Head Start: 

  • Gather relevant items data. Do any specific rules apply to your products?
  • Make sure that you have sent a customs handling authorization to your customs agent (if applicable)
  • Stay up-to-date with negotiations between the UK and EU
  • Invest in your returns process – save time, money and customer satisfaction
  • Partner with a returns management expert – we can help you automate the Customs declaration process.

 

 

How Online Customers Will Experience Brexit

Many consumers and companies buy items (imports) from brands, whom often ship items from other countries into the UK. In many cases, because retailers are becoming great at creating a look and feel of a local brand online, the consumer might not even be aware that the merchant or their warehouse is situated outside of the UK.

In the short term, consumer will expect slower handling of orders, refunds and exchanges unless retailers have prepared for Brexit properly. Eventually, we can expect some non-UK based smaller/niched brands to limit their sales effort to the UK until the agreement with the EU is signed.

The returns process will shift towards consumers needing to export their items to its destination, which will require a customs declaration and potentially extra costs, and of course more friction. Leading to more items ending up dying in the back of your wardrobe or on landfills.

 

How ASKET Prepared For Brexit

Brexit changes will require retailers to adopt a flexible end-to-end returns solution. As every brand and customer is different, a variety of scenarios must be considered. From the moment the customer initiates a return to refund processing and redeployment, Brexit is likely to affect, and perhaps cause disruptions, to your existing returns flow.

ASKET, a Returnado customer, values the customer experience greatly and started preparing for Brexit early in 2020.

 

ASKET Manages Returns in Returnado

Taking advantage of the power in Returnado, ASKET is ready for what Brexit will bring. Together, we have implemented Returnado’s solution for Customs declarations that will automate the entire process. The solution will automate Customs Declarations for the countries where it is needed; the declaration document is created in Returnado along with the shipping label and automatically sent to the customer.

In order to save a great amount of time (and money), ASKET has set up a local returns hub in the UK where parcels are verified, registered and later shipped in bulk to ASKET’s warehouse in Germany. The local returns hub helps ASKET to enable faster refunds and exchanges, rather than waiting for the returned items to arrive at the warehouse in Germany.

Asket Estelle Nordin Operations and Customer Experience Manager
Estelle Nordin, Operations Manager at ASKET

“Brexit will have a profound impact on the way businesses operate as well as the day-to-day life of individuals and households in the UK. For us at ASKET, our number one priority is to maintain the best possible service experience for our customers. To do so, we have been working hard with Returnado and Cycleon to create a return service that ensures we can continue to offer free returns and exchanges as well as a hassle-free customs declaration process,” says Estelle Nordin, Operations Manager at ASKET

 

Returnado for ASKET

  • Automated Customs Declarations for the countries where it is needed. The declaration document is created in Returnado along with the shipping label. Shoppers will experience the return as smooth as before Brexit
  • Ensuring the continuation of fast refunds – customers do not need to wait until the return is delivered at warehouse in Germany
  • Environmental perspective; it is more efficient to consolidate and bulk goods instead of shipping them one by one

 

Cycleon – A Returnado Partner

In addition to using Returnado for returns management, ASKET has welcomed one of Returnado’s partners into their ecosystem: Cycleon. 

To better adapt to Brexit, embracing local solutions will be key. Avoiding the unnecessary transport of goods between the UK and EU will reduce the chance of shipment delays or issues at customs. Cycleon manages international returns by companies to benefit from combined volumes by utilising their local warehouses to collect returns and transport them in bulk. 

 

Just-In-Time (JIT) – A Service of the Past?

Other parts of the e-Commerce cross-border supply chain are also affected by Brexit; but the magnitude of the effect is still unclear. 

The most deeply integrated of all supply chains is the one we know as just-in-time (JIT). Supplies are delivered in very small quantities at very high frequencies from suppliers which are located in nearby regions or countries. As well as reducing costs, a key advantage of such JIT systems is maximising product and service quality.

A great many UK companies depend on JIT systems. However, for JIT to work, the whole delivery system has to be frictionless. Which means, enforcing compliance with EU requirements will make cross-border JIT systems almost impossible to operate.

Even if it only takes 30 seconds per truck to enter the UK, the lines would be several kilometres long.

 

In Any Outcome – We Are Here to Help!

Contact us to learn more about how Returnado and our experts can help you to navigate and secure your returns operations. 

 

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