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Cyril Dorogan Gepard PIM E-Commerce Consultant
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Cyril Dorogan
CCO at Gepard
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The Role Of Rich Product Content In eCommerce Return Management

5 min read
Published: September 14, 2023
Updated: September 15, 2023

Did you know that returns account for a staggering $817 billion worth of merchandise annually in the United States alone? The statistic underscores the immense impact of returns on the eCommerce industry. But there’s more to this story than just numbers. Returns aren’t just a financial concern; they also significantly influence customer loyalty and the overall shopping experience.

High return rates have plagued the eCommerce sector, and this challenge goes beyond the financial implications. Returns are often driven by issues such as inaccurate product descriptions, inadequate images, and incomplete product information. This leads to customer dissatisfaction and costly returns processes for businesses.

Let’s discuss how rich product content affects eCommerce return management.

What is eCommerce Return Management?

eCommerce return management is the process through which online retailers handle product returns initiated by customers. It encompasses everything from the initiation of a return request to the final resolution, including product inspection, restocking, and refunds or exchanges.

Understanding eCommerce Return Management

In 2021 the National Retail Federation reported that US shoppers are expected to return more than US $761bn worth of goods purchased that year. This trend is reflected in a 2021 report from IMRG which found that a quarter of all consumers return between 5% and 15% of the items they buy online.

Returns arise from an array of reasons, reflecting the diverse nature of customer preferences and expectations. These can encompass:

  • product dissatisfaction,
  • issues with product quality,
  • sizing discrepancies,
  • inaccurate product descriptions,
  • and even shipping-related problems.

Understanding these drivers of returns is vital for eCommerce businesses seeking to address the root causes and mitigate return rates effectively.

The Power of Rich Product Content

What is Rich Product Content?

Rich product content refers to the comprehensive and visually engaging product information that businesses provide to customers. It includes high-resolution images, detailed product descriptions, videos, 360-degree views, customer reviews, and any other information that helps customers make informed purchasing decisions. Essentially, it’s about offering an immersive and informative product experience.
  • Enhancing the customer shopping experience

Rich product content plays a pivotal role in enhancing the customer shopping experience. It transforms the online shopping journey into a virtual showroom, allowing customers to examine products from various angles, zoom in on intricate details, and even see how others have experienced the product. This immersive experience fosters greater confidence and trust in the product, resulting in more informed buying decisions.

  • Reducing uncertainties leading to returns

One of the primary reasons for high return rates in eCommerce is product dissatisfaction due to a disconnect between customer expectations and reality. Rich media content bridges this gap by providing accurate and detailed product information. When customers have a clear understanding of what they are buying, including product specifications, sizing information, and visual evidence, they are less likely to experience post-purchase dissatisfaction. This, in turn, significantly reduces return rates.

  • Illustrating the positive impact

Statistics and case studies affirm the positive impact of rich product content. According to a survey by Salsify, 88% of online shoppers consider high-quality product content to be extremely important when making purchase decisions. Additionally, case studies from leading eCommerce companies demonstrate that investments in rich product content have led to notable reductions in return rates, increased sales, and improved customer satisfaction. These real-world examples underline the transformative power of rich product content in the eCommerce realm.

How PIM Tools Influence Rich Content Management

Product Information Management tools are indispensable in the quest for effective rich media content management. These solutions serve as centralized hubs where businesses can efficiently create, organize, and distribute rich product content. PIM tools simplify content creation by providing structured templates and workflows, making it easier for teams to collaborate on enriching product data. They facilitate the collection of high-quality images, detailed descriptions, videos, and other content elements, ensuring consistency and accuracy.

PIM tools excel in content distribution as well. They enable businesses to effortlessly disseminate this enriched content across multiple sales channels, such as eСommerce platforms, marketplaces, mobile apps, and print catalogs. This streamlines the process, ensuring that customers encounter the same rich content, regardless of where they engage with the brand. Moreover, PIM solutions support real-time updates, ensuring that product information remains accurate and up-to-date across all touchpoints.

How using PIM tool can help enterprises, using Gepard as an example

Gepard is a powerful and flexible PIM platform that provides companies with the means to manage product information, digital assets and other data. Here’s how using the PIM solution helped for this company:

  • Improved quality of product information: Gepard PIM solution enables standardization and enrichment of data, resulting in more accurate and better product descriptions.
  • Multi-channel distribution: Companies can efficiently distribute their data to various online platforms and sales channels, improving the visibility and availability of their products.
  • Increased productivity: Automated workflows and integrations allow companies to save time and resources when managing data.
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Lazada’s 15% Reduction in Returns with Gepard PIM software

Lazada, a prominent eСommerce platform, faced the challenge of high return rates due to inaccurate product information and customer dissatisfaction. To tackle this issue, Lazada turned to Gepard, a robust Product Information Management solution with rich content services. Gepard PIM software empowered Lazada to implement rich product content strategies effectively.

With Gepard PIM solution, Lazada centralized and enriched its product information, ensuring that each product listing featured high-quality images, detailed descriptions, and accurate specifications. Moreover, the platform facilitated seamless data synchronization across multiple channels, including Lazada’s website and mobile app.

Results: Reduced Returns, Enhanced Satisfaction, and Increased Sales

The results were remarkable. Lazada experienced a substantial 15% reduction in return rates, a testament to the power of accurate and enriched product content. Customers were more satisfied with their purchases due to the improved shopping experience, leading to increased loyalty. Additionally, Lazada saw a boost in sales as customers had greater confidence in their product selections.

This success story illustrates how an effective PIM solution like Gepard PIM can transform the eСommerce landscape by significantly reducing return rates, improving customer satisfaction, and ultimately driving higher sales. For further insights into this case study, you can visit the full details here.

Best Practices for Implementing Rich Content Strategies

Implementing rich content strategies is crucial for enhancing the customer experience and reducing returns. Here are best practices to consider.

  • Understand Your Audience

Prioritize content that aligns with your target audience’s preferences and needs. Tailor your visuals and descriptions accordingly.

  • High-Quality Visuals

Use high-resolution images and videos to showcase products from various angles, helping customers make informed decisions.

  • Detailed Product Descriptions

Provide comprehensive and accurate information about product features, specifications, and benefits.

  • User-Generated Content (UGC)

Encourage customers to share reviews, images, and videos of their experiences with your products. UGC builds trust and authenticity.

  • Consistency Across Channels

Ensure that product content remains consistent on all sales channels, including websites, apps, and marketplaces.

  • Mobile Optimization

Optimize content for mobile devices to accommodate the growing number of mobile shoppers.

  • SEO-Friendly Content

Use relevant keywords and meta descriptions to improve search engine visibility and attract organic traffic.

  • A/B Testing

Continuously experiment with different content formats and layouts to identify what resonates best with your audience.

  • Content Localization

Tailor content for different regions and languages to reach a global audience effectively.

  • Content Management System (CMS)

Invest in a robust CMS to streamline content creation, enrichment, and distribution.

  • Regular Updates

Keep product information up-to-date, including pricing, availability, and customer reviews.

  • Track and Analyze Performance

Use analytics tools to monitor content performance, identify trends, and make data-driven improvements.

  • Educate Your Team

Ensure your team understands the importance of rich content and how to create and manage it effectively.

Cultivating an effective rich content strategy in eCommerce is all about precision and resonance. By meticulously aligning product data with compelling visuals and detailed descriptions, businesses can forge a seamless customer journey that drives conversions and fosters brand loyalty.
Sergey Shvets
Sergii Shvets
Founder & CEO at Gepard

Conclusion

Managing returns in eCommerce has become a critical determinant of success. We should start from understanding the challenges posed by high return rates, the financial toll they take, and the impact on customer satisfaction.

Rich product content emerged as a powerful solution. It offers an immersive shopping experience, reduces uncertainties that lead to returns, and ensures consistency across channels. Real-world examples, like Lazada’s 15% reduction in returns with Gepard PIM tool, illustrated the transformative impact of enriched content.

Rich product content is not just a luxury but a necessity for eСommerce businesses. It not only curbs return rates but also fosters customer satisfaction and drives sales. We encourage eСommerce enterprises to invest in robust solutions like Gepard PIM solution to unlock the full potential of rich content and secure a competitive edge in the ever-evolving eСommerce landscape.

Cyril Dorogan Gepard PIM E-Commerce Consultant
Written by Cyril Dorogan
CCO at Gepard
Dedicated professional with more than 15 years of professional background in the eCommerce domain. Helping companies with Product Data syndication and eCommerce solutions, striving for success, and focusing on dedicated customer service. Cyril has implemented a range of eCommerce solutions for a variety of companies as Amazon, GS1, HP, Dell, Rakuten, Elkjop, Lazada. He is passionate about making business processes streamlined and growing the companies' operational efficiency by fulfilling eCommerce automation.

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