Vend’s 2016 Holiday Retail Boot Camp Day 3: Make the Most Out of Returns



It’s common for retailers to be more lenient with their policies for products that were purchased during the holidays. This is because merchants understand that many people buy gifts in early December (or even much earlier) which means shoppers who want to return their gifts in January won’t make the usual return cutoff of 15 to 30 days.

Try to implement something similar in your business. Introduce a more lenient holiday return and exchange policy to entice customers and to give them a bit more leeway when purchasing holiday items.

You should also be clear about how you’ll process returns. Will you issue cash refunds or store credit? Will you allow shoppers to return items without a receipt? These are just some of the issues you’ll need to address.

Some retailers also extend special return policies for loyal customers. Best Buy, for instance, has a standard 15-day cutoff for returns and exchanges, but extends that to 30 or 45 days, for its Elite and Elite Plus members respectively. You could consider an extended holiday return policy for loyalty program members.

There’s no one-size-fits-all policy for returns and exchanges, so craft your rules based on what makes the most sense for your business. But whatever you decide, communicate it clearly with your staff, post the details clearly in store and ensure your policies are consistent across all your outlets.

Vend Tip

Using Vend? We can help implement your holiday policies.

You can now issue gift receipts so they don’t display the cost of the purchased item(s). Learn more about gift receipts here.

You can also issue store credit to your customers as part of a return. This store credit is placed on your shopper’s account and can be used to make purchases in the future. Learn more.

See: Day 4.

About Nikki Michaels

Nikki is Vend's content and copy wizard. American-born and Auckland-based, she's into reading (a lot), writing (obviously), and travelling (always).