5 Ways to Lower Your Amazon Return Rate in 2024

April 30th, 2024

Amazon Return Rate

Grab Your Free Consult

How Your Amazon Return Rate Affects Your Bottom Line

Did you know that over half of shoppers review returns policies before buying? It's true! For Amazon sellers, dealing with returns is just part of the job. Whether it's a change of heart or a quality issue, returns are an unpleasant but unavoidable part of doing business.

Developing a solid returns process can cut down on losses and build customer loyalty. Start by reviewing Amazon’s return policy. Depending on whether you’re an FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) or FBM (Fulfillment by Merchant) seller, your options may vary.

What Happens to Amazon Returns?

Amazon processes returned items through its vast network of fulfillment centers, where products are inspected, sorted, and categorized based on their condition. These returned goods are then either restocked for resale, refurbished, or disposed of if they can’t be resold. 

Amazon’s meticulous process promotes efficiency and maximizes its return on assets. As for clothing returns, Amazon's return policy on clothes is designed to provide customers with flexibility and peace of mind. Shoppers can easily initiate returns online and choose from a range of options, including free returns, local drop-offs, or Amazon returns in-store, offering an easier return experience. 

Amazon continues to explore customer-friendly solutions such as free and in-store returns to enhance convenience while increasing efficiency. After all, many shoppers choose Amazon because of their no-fuss returns policies.

How to Check Your Amazon Return Rate

Staying on top of your Amazon return rate is the best way to tackle problems head-on. On Seller Central, you have access to an Amazon FBA Returns Report.

To access this report:

  • Sign into Amazon Seller Central

  • Navigate to the “Reports” tab

  • Click “Fulfillment” from the drop-down menu

  • Go to “Customer Concessions” 

  • Select “FBA Customer Returns” 

  • Enter the timeframe  

  • Click  “Generate Report” 

All returned items within this timeframe will appear here with their status. 

To start a return, customers must give a reason. This info can uncover trends and issues that may need to be addressed. Monitoring this information is crucial. It may prove to be the make-or-break factor for your business.

Check the Average Amazon Return Rate by Category

While the average ecommerce return rate varies from category to category, the average typically sits between 5% and 15%. There are other categories, such as electronics, apparel, and jewelry, where the return rate can reach up to 40%. 

Monitor your return rates closely to identify any patterns or trends, especially if certain items are being returned more often than others. By pinpointing areas for improvement, you can take steps to improve the quality and appeal of these items.

5 Ways to Reduce Your Amazon Return Rate

Once you have the information you need, it’s important to review your product listings and processes. As an Amazon seller, you should track customer complaints and feedback, actively looking for solutions. Here are some great places to start:

1. Create Strong Titles, Bullets, and Descriptions 

Your listing is where customers gather information and decide whether your product is right for them. Developing strong content that is easy to understand and clearly displays features and benefits can prevent customer dissatisfaction and returns.

Each section should highlight your product’s key features including sizing, ingredients, materials, compatibility, packaging, and any other relevant info. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes to identify what information to include.

This is also an opportunity to put customer feedback to work. What are the common issues shoppers have? What is the reason they return this item? Anticipating customer questions and answering them in your listing can promote sales and improve your Amazon return rate.

  • Title
    Your title should identify what you’re selling, what it’s for, and the color, quantity, or pack size being sold. 

  • Bullets
    Put the most important facts and features in your first three bullets but make sure you fill out information for all available bullet points. The first three are what shows on mobile devices without having to click to see more information. 

  • Description
    Your description can expand on the bullet points in more detail and showcase your unique voice. Most shoppers will never scroll past your bullet points, but if they do you want to give them the information they need.   

2. Add Visual Content

The creative assets on your listing are not a bonus - they are a vital part of the customer experience! Up to 75% of shoppers use photos and videos to determine whether they will make a purchase. Visual content should be high quality and highly informative. 

Around 64% of returns occur because a product does not match the photos on your site or listing. Having crisp, clear 360-degree images can cut down on confusion and dissatisfaction. If you don’t have the resources to shoot high-quality photos and videos, enlist the help of a photo and video professional. Creating informative graphics, showing your product in action, and providing simple product shots from all angles can boost customer trust while cutting down on returns and complaints.

If you don’t know where to start, check out Amazon's product image guidelines. Following these guidelines can cut down on your Amazon return rate and eliminate delays and issues. 

3. Improve Packaging

Some say it’s what’s on the inside that counts. While that may often be true, what’s on the outside is the first impression. Packaging is not a place you want to skimp. No matter how great your product is, if it can’t make it to the customer without incurring damage, a return (and possibly a scathing review) is inevitable.

Packaging represents your brand. The colors and materials should mirror your brand identity and show your commitment to quality. In one survey, 40 percent of shoppers said they would be more likely to purchase from a seller again if their product arrived in premium packaging. While it may be easy to overlook, great packaging can boost your Amazon ROI without significantly raising expenses.

Getting your packaging right is a must. Sending products off carelessly can cause delays, damage, and returns. If your customer can’t use your product, neither can you. With careful consideration and an eye for detail, these issues are (mostly) avoidable! 

4. Focus on Customer Service

If you know anything about Amazon, you know that customer satisfaction is the name of the game. A huge part of the platform’s success is based on its incredible customer satisfaction rate. Amazon expects sellers to reinforce these values. Your reputation depends on it!

Being communicative, friendly, and timely can drastically reduce your Amazon return rate and poor reviews. No matter how great your product is, problems arise and demand your attention. Getting back to customers quickly and offering agreeable solutions is a great way to get back on track.

Returns are a hassle that everyone wants to avoid. If you’re easy to reach, you can diagnose issues quickly and help customers use your products as intended. People often just need that extra TLC or guidance to feel confident about their purchase. They may be confused about how to use your product or have questions that can be easily answered. A prompt response can improve your Amazon return rate and keep customers happy.

5. Take Reviews and Feedback Seriously

Developing an arsenal of positive reviews can improve visibility, credibility, and sales. Products with 100 or more reviews have a 92% higher conversion rate, making it more important than ever to take your customer feedback seriously. So, what do you do when a negative review pops up?

Addressing negative reviews quickly can reduce your Amazon return rate. It is another way to showcase your exceptional customer service skills and wow shoppers with your responsiveness. When possible, try to fix the situation and offer help. Once people know that you’re willing to work with them, they just might change their tune.

Getting Amazon reviews and feedback is a great way to gain insight into the customer experience. Tracking issues that arise can highlight areas of improvement that need your attention. 

For example, if there is a stream of sizing issues, adding a size chart to your listing may be beneficial. Or if products are arriving broken, maybe it’s time to invest in better packaging.

Final Thoughts

As an Amazon seller, there are so many moving parts that can affect your success. Your Amazon return rate should be checked regularly to keep you thriving in a sea of competition. Not only does it impact revenue, but it also has a huge impact on your reputation as a seller. 

Cutting corners and avoiding problems rarely pays off. The world of ecommerce is highly competitive and customer expectations are on the rise. With thousands of alternatives, it’s vital to make your product stand out and offer quality, consistency, and incredible service. 

Improve your Amazon return rate and make this year your best yet! Our experts work with clients in a wide range of industries to boost sales and visibility while reducing your workload. Take the first step towards enhanced performance by reaching out to us today!