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How to master your ecommerce product returns policy

ecommerce returns policy

Your returns policy wields a heavy impact on your ability to win repeat business.

Make it easy for your customers and they’ll buy from you in future with trust, but get it wrong and you’ll be waving goodbye to frustrated customers forever.
Here’s how five of Australia’s biggest online retailers handle their returns to ensure their customers keep coming back:

Lorna Jane

What’s an acceptable return?
Australia’s leading sportswear brand offers returns and exchanges on all full-priced online order,

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7 ways to reduce product returns

product returns

Dealing with excessive product returns costs you time and money, and runs the risk of building customer frustration that leads to poor online reviews.
Even if you’ve streamlined your returns policy, it still pays to focus some attention on reducing the number of product returns being sent back your way. Having an ecommerce postage strategy is a smart place to start when setting off on this postage adventure, and will help you avoid returns.
Here are seven things you can do to keep your products in the hands of happy customers:

1.

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10 ways to pimp your ecommerce packaging

pimp your packaging

For online retailers, your packaging is often the major tangible touch point for your brand.
So getting your packaging right is not only important for keeping your shipping costs down, but is also an opportunity for you to add to the overall customer experience.
Here are 10 ecommerce packaging ideas that surprise and delight:
1. Printing on the inside of the box adds a sense of occasion to the product reveal and gives you an additional space to direct people to your website or social media accounts.

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International shipping from Australia: State of the industry overview

Woman laying on couch with laptop and card

Rising internet penetration rates around the world and the emergence of a new Asia Pacific middle class are driving the rapid growth of Australia’s international shipping industry.

 
Australia’s e-commerce retailers are increasingly tapping into lucrative international markets as rapidly increasing internet usage around the world make global online shopping the new retail powerhouse.
In fact, market research predicts that the web will account for 12.4 per cent of all global retail sales by 2019 and international shipments are expected to comprise up to 20 per cent of Australia’s total e-commerce purchases by 2017.

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6 things you must know about postage insurance

postage insurance

There’s nothing more frustrating for a customer than patiently waiting for their product to arrive only to pop open the package to find it has been damaged in transit.
It’s one of the major risks of buying online, and a good reason why offering postal insurance to your customers makes sense.
With postage insurance in place, your customer can be assured of a timely replacement, and as the seller, you’d don’t have to reach into your pocket to pay for it.

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How to make money from ecommerce postage

Make money on postage

Setting the right postage strategy can boost your revenue by as much as 10 per cent. Find out how. 
Making money from postage in Australia is possible – but not how you might think. Simply inflating your postage rates with steep ‘handling’ surcharges is not necessarily the way to go.
Thanks to the proliferation of low-cost foreign eBay sellers who sell products at or below cost and make up profits on inflated delivery fees, online shoppers are becoming better at spotting poor postage deals – and they don’t like it.

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Estimated international shipping rates and delivery times

Toy forklift on laptop keys

International shipping may be more affordable than you think.

Refer to these estimated delivery times and costs to see if international shipping is the right move for your e-commerce business.
While international shipping prices and delivery timeframes vary depending on parcel size and weight, along with destination country and freight provider, we’ll help get you started with these estimated shipping prices and timeframes to popular countries.

Country
Delivery type
Estimated delivery time
Estimated delivery cost (1kg)

China
International express
3 business days
From $32.33

New Zealand
International express
2 business days
From $24.87

UK
International express
2 business days
From $41.20

US
International express
2 business days
From $42.53

Singapore
International economy express
1 business day
From $30.14

Please note that these delivery timeframes and costs are estimates only.

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6 ways to reduce your postage costs in Australia

Shipping savings

Postage costs can be one of the largest expenses facing Australian ecommerce businesses. If you offer free or flat-fee shipping, spiralling postage costs may be taking a significant bite out of your profit margin. And even if you’ve opted for variable-rate shipping, high postage costs passed on to your customers could price you out of the market.
The good news is that there is much you can do to take control of your shipping and send your postage costs hurtling downwards.

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How to set a postage pricing strategy that works

Ecommerce free shipping

Free, flat-fee or variable postage? Find out which is best for your ecommerce business.
The method you have chosen for charging for shipping could be killing your online sales. According to research by Statista, 56 per cent of online customers abandon their shopping carts when they encounter unexpected costs.
So if your ecommerce business is experiencing high shopping cart abandonment rates, your problem could lie in unexpected shipping costs sending customers running for the virtual door.

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Common import restrictions for international shipping

Man facing wall with sign

Thinking about taking your e-commerce business international? Find out what you can’t send overseas.

Individual countries restrict and prohibit a range of goods for import – and some may surprise you.
For example, you can’t send cameras or bicycles to China, New Zealand says no to motorcycle helmets, sending batteries to the UK is a no-no, the US bans products made from cork, and Singapore won’t accept chewing gum.

Restrictions vs prohibitions
Most countries have a long list of import restrictions and prohibitions,

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