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Demanding More: How SupplyKick Analyzes Data for a More Effective Return Strategy

Lowell Bieber
Aug 13, 2018 4:44:50 PM

As a direct representation of our partners on Amazon, we take delivering the best possible customer experience extremely seriously. When it comes to returns, the SupplyKick team strives to do our part to take care of both our partners and Amazon customers by minimizing returns where possible and providing a smooth returns experience when the return is unavoidable. We’re able to succeed in this regard thanks to our reliance on innovation and insight.

When a customer returns a product they purchased on Amazon, they are required to select a reason for the return. Reasons for return include:

  • Unwanted item
  • Product is not as described
  • Accidently ordered the wrong item
  • Item is defective
  • Other

Because SupplyKick operates as a third-party MFN seller on Amazon, we are able to track all of these return metrics using both Amazon reports and our own diligence, which gives both the internal SupplyKick team and our partners deeper insight into how products are performing on Amazon. With a dedicated team tracking data and monitoring every facet of the returns process, we are able to truly understand customer behavior and ordering habits, and then use this insight to proactively highlight potential manufacturer defects or areas of improvement.

Let’s look at some examples of how SupplyKick leverages data to positively impact the returns process for partners and customers.

First, lets say a customer marks a return as ‘Accidentally ordered the wrong item’. While it could be true that the order was actually an accident, in most cases this return occurs when there is a variation discrepancy, like if a customer ordered a grey t-shirt and it came out looking more off-white than grey. In this specific case, a high-quality, lifestyle photograph of the product variation, added by SupplyKick, can help customers better understand how the colors of the product look in different kinds of light.

This misunderstanding also occurs frequently when it comes to sizes and dimensions. If a high number of customers return a certain product because of ‘Wrong size’, the SupplyKick team can identify the trend and dig into the numbers to see what a good course of action would be. SupplyKick can analyze both return rates and customer feedback and comments to determine how to better highlight the dimension and size of the product in the product listing. Tackling this problem through data not only puts money directly into our partners pocket (as it reduces the number of returns and increases the overall number of product orders), but it also helps maintain our partner’s brand credibility and reputation as a high-quality, defect-free manufacturer.  

A final example deals with defective products. As any e-commerce brand knows, defects and damages are, unfortunately, pretty much unavoidable in manufacturing. SupplyKick diligently tracks ‘Defective’ returns and, if a trend is flagged, immediately follows up on the issue. If the SupplyKick team recognizes a trend highlighting a product defect across multiple orders, it often signifies a manufacturer defect that was undetected by quality checks. On multiple occasions, SupplyKick has been able to catch these defects after just a few product returns, after which the team removed the listing from Amazon, addressed the defect at the distribution facility, and passed any lingering feedback back to our partner for manufacturer follow-up.

Between tracking returns metrics and monitoring customer comments, the SupplyKick team can directly update product listings, inventory, and operational details to better serve customers. This streamlined returns process also extends to our partners, who receive direct feedback and updates so they continuously improve their product and brand image. SupplyKick helps brands deliver amazing returns experiences to customers, while improving sales in the process.

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