A return policy is a set of rules that a business creates regarding how and what a customer can return to the store for a refund, store credit, or other value.
Return policies vary depending on the business, but they always involve a set of guidelines and rules about which items customers are allowed to return, procedures they should follow for making returns, the time frame in which they can return items, and what they can get in exchange for a return, such as a full refund, partial refund, store credit, or rewards credit.
Returns are typically a normal part of the retail ecosystem, but they can be logistically tough for businesses, as they impact inventory management, budgetary, and forecasting processes. That’s why it’s critical for businesses to construct return policies that align with their business practices while meeting their customers’ needs.
For full transparency, the return policy should be well-documented and placed in visible areas in-store and online. Enacting rules that customers aren’t aware of can be damaging to the customer relationship.