Customer service is an important part of any retail store. Retailers use a return policy to give shoppers a second chance if they do not like the product they bought – they can return the product in exchange for money, store credit, or another item of similar price. But how can customers use a return policy successfully? This article will give you advice on how to avoid problems when returning a product.
Which Of The Following Is Not A Benefit Of A Store Channel Shopping Experience?
Before we get into the tips for using a return policy, we thought it would be beneficial to understand that it is one of the many benefits of shopping in-store. While some online stores offer a return policy, it is nowhere near as common as that provided by brick-and-mortar stores.
Our Tips To Avoid Problems When Returning Products
Always ask for a gift receipt at the customer service counter
Sure, your gift is the next best thing to sliced bread, but on rare occasions, the receiving party does not share your awesome taste; having a gift receipt will prevent any future re-gifting crimes.
Study the return policy well
This means asking your cashier as well as checking the back of the receipt to confirm the policy. If purchasing online, check the Customer Service link. Note: Most retailers will extend their return policy temporarily for added holiday convenience.
Do not buy gifts too far in advance that may have a shorter return period.
For example, most electronics have a 30-day return/exchange period that starts the day of purchase. Let’s say on 12/1 you bought that 42-inch flat-screen your dad’s been eyeing. Dad opens his gift on Christmas day, which only gives him the next five days to test out his new toy before the return period expires. Again, knowing if there have been any special holiday return extensions will keep you ahead of the game.
Keep all paperwork and original packaging
We know this sounds crazy, but please resist the urge to dump everything after the kiddos are done destroying your home with foam insulation, cardboard boxes, and those metal twisty thingy’s. Some retailers require that the merchandise is in its original packaging with all original documents before a return can be processed at the customer service counter.
Location. Location. Location.
Keep in mind the location of the person you’re buying for and if the same store is in that area. Purchasing from a local specialty store sounds great, but if Aunt Sandy lives over 500 miles away, expect to spend extra money on shipping if a return is needed.
Give details and have paperwork readily available when approaching customer service
Expecting Customer Service to do all the leg work is unrealistic given the volume of people who will be in line or on the phone right behind you with the same issue.
You’ll get more brownie points if you simply admit to throwing away your receipt versus playing the blame game. Nine times out of 10, you’ll be exposed and can be sure that management will already know.
Take a stand
If you’ve followed the return policy, contacted the right departments, and are still not getting anywhere, take to Social Media (i.e., Facebook and Twitter). You’ll be pleasantly surprised at the response. No company wants that kind of bad publicity and would do whatever it took to make things right.
No matter what happens, do not yell at or become belligerent with Customer Service
Remember, customer service is a tough experience for retailers and customers. The more uncooperative you become, the more likely the quality of service received will decrease.