Experts Provide Answers on Increased Order Returns, Warehouse Safety

We all can use some extra help sometimes, reaching out to our “bench” with tough questions, situations or challenges we’re dealing with in our work roles. That’s why Multichannel Merchant created our new “Ask the Experts” feature.

In the latest edition, MCM readers sent in questions about an increase in returned orders, and about ways to maintain fulfillment center and warehouse safety for their workers during the COVID-19 crisis. Below are the expert answers.

Note: if you want to submit questions to our expert mailbag, you can do so anytime by clicking here.

Question: What are some solutions for retailers fighting a higher return rate than a purchase rate? This is happening to our company and I’m sure others.

Answer: My advice would be to honor those returns and to then take one or more steps, depending on what suits the brand: Offer a discount code for a future purchase and/or provide a way to donate a portion of the refund to a COVID-19 relief fund.

  • Zack Whitacre, Senior Manager of Operations Strategy, Bonobos

Question: How are workers staying safe in warehouses?

Answer: Employers are taking steps to maintain warehouse safety by implementing several safety checks throughout the day, including workers’ temperature and assessing potential symptoms.

We’re also seeing workers assigned to cleaning high traffic areas several times a day and putting highly visible decals on areas such as light switches, door handles, etc. to constantly remind workers about safety. They’re also replacing doorknobs with hook style handles that can be opened using forearms.

The trend towards goods-to-person automation is escalating as well, limiting the number of workers in a facility. These types of automated units reinforce distancing within most facilities.

  • Brian Barry, president, F. Curtis Barry & Co.


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