holiday ecommerce returns

Your returns policy is an important rule that protects the company from return-related losses. Returns and refunds are often used as a way to scam a company and tax their resources. It’s valuable to prevent frivolous returns or returns long after an order is purchased or delivered. However, there are also situations where there is more benefit from side-stepping your returns policy for the customer.

When should you accept a return that violates your typical returns policy? Let’s explore the different reasons and scenarios where this might be a smart business decision.

To Accommodate a Good and Loyal Customer

Customer credibility is an important factor. As the lifetime value of a customer increases, the more they are due special consideration. A customer who has bought from you many times without complaint – or having only made reasonable requests over a long lifetime of customer loyalty – can be more safely granted returns outside your returns policy.

Because the customer loves your brand, you can have confidence that their motivation truly is based on an item being damaged in shipping or not fitting right. Retaining their loyalty is also a valuable trade for the cost of processing their return outside of normal policy conditions.

After the Holidays

Returns policies often have a time limit from the moment of purchase or delivery. This ensures that people do not try to return an already thoroughly used item for a full refund. However, the holidays – and any items purchased with a ‘gift’ receipt – are different. Gifted items may have been stored, new and untouched, for weeks or months between the purchase and gifting to the new owner.

If someone is gifted a piece of clothing from your brand that doesn’t fit, granting them a return can earn  you a new customer gratified by your cooperation. Returns of this type are especially valuable if the person requests a replacement in the right size or other corrective qualities. This means they love the item, but the gift wasn’t quite right.

Consider writing a special returns policy for the holidays and for gifts.

Special Conditions and Solutions

Some return requests deserve special consideration because the conditions are unique. Manufacturing errors, unusually delayed shipping, or orders that are not delivered in full all create conditions that may be outside the intended use of your returns policy. The ability to “make it right” with your customers is more valuable than the cost of processing a return, especially when the customer is not the reason that their request is outside your returns policy.

It is also important to have special solutions to special problems, such as shipping an extra hardware pack or component if a product arrived with incomplete supplies or a single broken piece. You may be able to save the sale and create a happy customer with adaptive solutions to unusual returns requests.

Upgrade Your Returns Processing Capabilities with M.O.M.

The M.O.M. or Multichannel Operations Management system enhances your company’s ability to respond to order-related matters in an adaptive and dynamic way. It’s OK if some returns fall outside your standard policy when you have an innovative platform to handle inventory, order fulfillment, shipping, and more. Learn more about how M.O.M. can help you handle returns at

The ability to handle your returns with grace and flexibility will create a body of satisfied customers and instill confidence that any problems with your products or delivery will be quickly and compassionately resolved. This is an invaluable reputation to build through a service that becomes easy to provide with the right tools.

Contact us to learn how M.O.M. can help you with holiday returns.