Benefits of Hiring an Offshore VA for Product Returns and Refunds

E-commerce necessitates handling returns proficiently. Efficient processes foster customer loyalty. Explore the advantages of outsourcing return management to specialized virtual assistants in Phoenix for smoother operations and happier customers.
offshore VA for Phoenix E-commerce - featured image

Table of Contents

As an entrepreneur, you are likely always sending out products. However, exchanges, returns, and refunds are inevitable. While returns are often beyond your control, your policies and processes can determine whether your customers will be loyal buyers or one-time shoppers.

E-commerce returns are common and must be accounted for as part of the standard business practices of your online store. One solution is working with virtual assistants (VAs) in Phoenix who specialize in return and refund management.

Continue reading to discover the benefits of employing an offshore VA for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store.

Benefits of Hiring a Product Returns and Refunds VA

Benefits of Hiring a Product Returns and Refunds VA

E-commerce is the second largest industry in Arizona. If you run an online store, you are well aware that many products bought online are returned and exchanged.

Some online retailers try to eliminate returns and refunds by making the process cumbersome for customers. They do this to avoid the managerial challenges accompanying each return and refund. Rather than simplifying returns and refunds, they complicate the process for their consumers. This makes surviving in a saturated market harder and may lead to closing.

Ethical e-commerce involves investing in return and refund management or reverse logisticsthe process through which buyers can return products quickly and easily. One gainful investment is to leverage outsourced e-commerce services and hire an offshore VA for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store.

Here are different ways an offshore VA can enhance the return and refund process for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store.

Handling Uncontrollable Product Returns

Uncontrollable returns are those you cannot do much about. Buyers may want to return a product simply because they have changed their minds. Only a few return requests belong to this category, so an offshore VA for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store can handle the policy level for you.

The third-party worker can also analyze why returns happen in the first place. The average rate of return for e-commerce is 30%. Returns commonly occur for the following reasons:

  • The product is the wrong size.
  • Poor quality control has led to damage to the product.

The offshore virtual assistant may recommend solutions, such as better product images, to give potential buyers a more accurate idea of the product’s size. Product images are best for online stores that sell fashion items and accessories.

Once your third-party professional understands the reason behind uncontrollable returns, they can help you establish a more transparent policy. Doing so is even more beneficial if the number of controllable returns is higher.

Conducting Audit for Returns and Refunds

The taxes collected from online sales increased by almost 71%, showing that online orders in Arizona keep growing. Return audits are vital to minimizing the number of returned products and increasing profitability. An important task that an offshore VA can do for your Phoenix-based e-commerce shop is to study why return requests occur in the first place.

They can analyze customer feedback from the return request form. After checking the submissions, they will look for a pattern behind controllable returns. Common reasons for returns include:

  • Insufficient product description in your store or website
  • Slow shipping or delivery delays
  • Improper packing leads to damaged items
  • Defective products due to manufacturing issues

These reasons fall within your control. Addressing these issues helps minimize your return rates, making managing and improving customer satisfaction easier.

However, most e-commerce store owners are too busy to audit returns and refunds. E-commerce customer service outsourcing can help entrepreneurs lower the return rate.

Measuring the Average Cost of Returns and Refunds

This part is crucial because it helps you understand costly business areas, giving you actionable insights to improve and optimize your return and refund processes. Your current logistics partner might be charging too much, or your contracts might require revision. Access to such information is difficult unless you have a dedicated VA from an offshoring provider in the Philippines.

A third-party professional can help you determine the average cost of returns and study how returns affect your bottom line. They can look at the office hours spent processing returns and refunds. They can also study the cost of reverse logistics functions, such as updating customers about their request status and replenishing stocks. 

For example, your VA discovers that shipping a new product costs the same as the return price. You can then credit a refund and allow the shopper to keep the product. Doing so saves you additional return shipping costs, which are higher than the cost of issuing a refund.

Another solution is to charge buyers for reverse shipping, but many consumers stop purchasing from stores that do this. Ultimately, you can do so much to improve your return and refund process if you hire an offshore VA for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store to calculate the cost of returns.

Creating Dockets and Tickets for Returns

An offshore VA dedicated to handling returns and refunds for your Phoenix-based e-commerce store can collect all auto-generated and manual requests and send them to the designated team. This way, the internal staff can process return requests quickly.

Speed is crucial when processing returns and refunds because 88% of consumers stop buying from a merchant that takes too long to process returns or credit refunds. You may not overthink this because you can always acquire new buyers, especially since Phoenix is the fifth-largest city in the country.

However, research shows that 77% of shoppers who receive late returns and refunds are less likely to recommend your store. Worse, they may share negative comments about your brand with friends and family, putting your reputation in grave danger.

Avoid this problem by hiring an offshore VA. They can dedicate time to reviewing return and refund requests and flag those near the seven-day mark. They can also help you draft return and refund email templates.

Drafting and Establishing a Return and Refund Policy

Your return and refund rates will never reach zero, regardless of how much you try. However, drafting a company-wide return and refund policy can make life easier for you and your buyers. An offshore VA from a business process outsourcing (BPO) agency can accomplish this for you.

After analyzing your online store’s controllable and uncontrollable returns, the offshore VA can help you prepare a transparent and universal policy. This document ensures you and your customer are on the same page, helping avoid conflicts.

When drafting the policy, the VA may include all acceptable reasons, deadlines, and conditions for returns and refunds. They may also make the window for return requests shorter to minimize the number of uncontrollable returns. Drafting an airtight return and refund policy has many nuances that an expert VA can handle on your behalf.  

Moreover, the VA can publish your policy on your website or portal for better visibility. They may also suggest that your fulfillment team attach a printed copy of the return and refund policy with the product shipment.

Importance of Effective Product Returns and Refunds

Importance of Effective Product Returns and Refunds

An effective product return and refund process fosters customer trust. Hence, an excellent outsourced customer service tip is to hire a specialist. Customers who experience a complex return or refund process tend to stop buying from your shop. This procedure gives buyers a sense of security, making them more inclined to support your business.

The refund process guarantees that the product customers bought will be good enough, or they can return the item to get their money back. If the seller offers the option to return or exchange the product due to dissatisfaction, it implies that the quality of the product is ideal.

Lastly, customers may contact you regularly if you are not streamlining returns and refunds. Due to the cumbersome procedure and lack of information, they often ask you about status updates.

Constant customer questions cost your business crucial time. It will also annoy your customers since they must wait for your response. By the time you reply, they may have already left a negative review on your site or badmouthed your brand to a friend. Customer-centric outsourcing is crucial in this aspect to ensure a positive buying experience.

The Bottom Line

Managing returns and refunds can be overwhelming without a dedicated VA. With their assistance, skills, and experience, you can make necessary improvements in your processes while enhancing customer experiences.

With a streamlined return and refund process, you can instill customer loyalty. Guarantee all these and more by tapping an offshore e-commerce VA. Let’s connect today to discuss how you can ensure these advantages!

Picture of Allie Delos Santos
Allie Delos Santos is an experienced content writer who graduated cum laude with a degree in mass communications. She specializes in writing blog posts and feature articles. Her passion is making drab blog articles sparkle. Allie is an avid reader—with a strong interest in magical realism and contemporary fiction. When she is not working, she enjoys yoga and cooking.
Picture of Allie Delos Santos

Allie Delos Santos

We Build Your Next-Gen Team for a Fraction of the Cost. Get in Touch to Learn How.

You May Also Like

Meet With Our Experts Today!