Introduction to RTOs and Why They Should be Kept in Check
There are multiple challenges faced by eCommerce retailers and one of the most prominent and inevitable pain points is return-to-origin requests (RTOs). RTOs refers to the process of a customer initiating a return of an already purchased product. This can occur for a multitude of reasons such as them finding a better deal elsewhere, the order taking too long to be delivered, buyers’ remorse or simply because they had a change of heart. However, regardless of the reason. Retailers still bare the brunt of the effort and expenditure in picking up the goods and ensuring that the product reaches the warehouse unscathed.
Why Reduce RTO?
RTOs can double and even triple the logistics costs involved in fulfilling an order as the process has to be repeated twice. Two times is referred to as while delivering the order to the customer and while returning it to its original storage location. There are many tools and strategies that can help in minimizing the damage caused by RTOs. We will highlight the Whatsapp Business API in this blog. Read along to know all the details on how to reduce RTO requests through Whatsapp business API. We will talk about 9 ways to reduce rto requests in practical ways.
What is Whatsapp Business API?
Whatsapp needs no introduction as it is one of the largest messaging platforms in the world with more than 1.5 billion active users. Since being acquired by Facebook, now Meta, in 2014, the service has seen more integration with important business functionalities. In 2018, Whatsapp Business API was created. It is essentially an API that enables companies to monitor, receive and reply to Whatsapp messages from their customers in an intuitive and simple-to-use manner. This has tremendously benefited businesses that receive a large chunk of their engagement. Also, great communication through Whatsapp. The feature has since enabled services such as automated replies and integration with other functions provided by the Facebook Business Suite.
Because messaging is a more personalized form of communication. New features are enabled helping firms to directly inform customers about the status of their orders and reassure them in case of a delay or other unforeseen circumstances. This in short helps in reducing the frequency of RTOs.
9 Best Ways to Reduce RTO Requests Though Whatsapp Business API
1. Sharing Additional Product Information
Photos, videos, descriptions, links, and other important information can be shared seamlessly on Whatsapp. Customers can simply request the details about a product they are interested in and can be updated with all the latest information. We all know Whatsapp is primarily a messaging service. So, All of these functionalities are built-in and customers can be sent whatever information they need through the click of a button. This reduces the time needed to gather information. Later it is send to them on email or on the website that they might not open for days.
2. Providing Order Tracking Facilities
Order tracking facilities can be shared directly on the app. As opposed to another page or window that they will need to open whenever customers want to check their order status. This will help them keep track of their orders in an accessible way. It will also prevent them from getting anxious about where it is and when they will reach them. Additionally, updates about which stage the parcel is in can be sent seamlessly on Whatsapp.
3. Encouraging Customer Feedback
Since your customers can be directly communicated with on Whatsapp, an app that they probably use daily to communicate with family, friends, and colleagues. This makes it relatively easier to request feedback for various processes once they are completed, through an informal and friendly approach. If they enjoyed the service, they could be thanked and encouraged to spread the word about their experience to other potential customers and if they have a grievance, it could be addressed instantly, encouraging even more positive eCommerce customer feedback.
4. Taking Customer Preferences Into Account
Being a direct communication platform, businesses can constantly be in touch with clients. Also, if they have any special requests or inputs regarding their order, it can simply be sent to the support executive and they can give them a quick answer as to whether it is possible or suggest an easy alternative, in case it is not. This customised service will be appreciated by customers.
5. Preventing an Extra Learning Curve
Since most people, especially outside the US, use Whatsapp as their primary means of communication. They would be well-versed in its functionalities and it will be more seamless and intuitive for customers and businesses alike, to contact each other as opposed to a random page on a website or by email. This will result in faster response times and quick resolutions to queries.
6. Monitor False Deliveries
Delivery personnel who falsely mark an order as an NDR instead of really attempting to deliver it are committing a sort of NDR known as fake deliveries. These have a terrible impact on both customer satisfaction and profitability. The main reason because they increase the likelihood of RTOs. Due to no fault of their own, customers are left waiting for an order that never arrives and dealing with several delivery attempts. Making sure this number is maintained at a minimum can be accomplished by tracking phony deliveries among various carriers.
7. Employ NDR Management Software
The following four measures are critically necessary for the fundamental management of NDRs to lower RTO%. However, you must use more sophisticated and technologically enabled resources if you want to significantly reduce your RTO% as well as your NDR statistics. The NDR management software is at the top of that list. They give you the resources you need to automate NDR management, streamline the process, and quickly handle numerous follow-ups.
8. Mentioning Correct Product Details
Online retailers can send customers multiple photos at once using the Whatsapp Business API. With accurate product descriptions and excellent photographs, they may personally inform clients about new product launches or promotions.
Inaccurate information and unaltered photographs help to avoid disparity in product offerings. Customers are reassured by the company’s reputation and the services it offers, which fosters confidence for future purchases.
9. Tracking Details via WHATSAPP
Customer satisfaction is greatly impacted by sending tracking updates, which also dramatically reduces customer worry while the purchase is being shipped. The simplicity of a Whatsapp message, however, cannot be compared to updating via emails and text messages.
Sending a customised Whatsapp message with some tracking updates is more advantageous and attention-grabbing. It is because most individuals don’t check their emails and texts as frequently. It gives the customer the information they require. Also, lowers the likelihood of cancellations, and lowers the expense of the reverse shipment.
Conclusion: Importance of Managing Your RTOs
RTOs can cause a severe amount of damage to businesses that aren’t equipped to handle them. Whatsapp Business API provides businesses with enhanced capabilities to swiftly and easily communicate with customers. This ensures they have a good experience. However, there are many 3PL eCommerce fulfillment companies such as WareIQ and ShipMonk, that take it a step further, by providing dedicated tools to limit the effect of RTOs on a business such as insurance and reverse logistics. Analyze the requirements of your business and select an option accordingly.
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