According to studies, a robust returns solution can increase your customer value.1

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Reverse Logistics & Returns

Maximizing value from returned products

Often viewed as an inevitable cost of doing business, returns can be complicated and costly. But if managed efficiently, your returns operations can foster customer loyalty, strengthen your brand’s identity and enhance profitability for your business.

As an industry-leading reverse logistics provider, FedEx Supply Chain transforms the returns process from a necessary cost of doing business into a strategic advantage. Reverse logistics often operates independently, but by working with us to create and implement an integrated strategy, you will optimize recovery potential. Our holistic approach enables the simple, reliable returns experience your customers expect, while reducing the costs associated with handling returns.

Identifying optimal disposition channels

The reverse logistics experts at FedEx Supply Chain analyze returns processes and optimize operations by eliminating waste streams and identifying the best disposition method for each product — whether it’s return to vendor, return to stock, liquidation, recycle or salvage.

Strategic returns

Gain a competitive advantage by factoring reverse logistics into your overall strategy and goals. Today, more than ever, a simple returns process contributes to a great customer experience — and an efficient process helps reduce expenses. With returns so commonplace, make it your mission to transform these challenges into opportunities for your business.

Consider that:

  • Retail returns tallied $290 billion in the U.S. and Canada in 2015.
  • In certain categories, as much as 30 percent of e-commerce sales are returned.
  • Discounted or discarded returns cost retailers 4.4 percent of revenue.2

It’s more important than ever to develop a returns strategy versus simply processing returns. FedEx Supply Chain has a comprehensive approach to reverse logistics — based on more than 20 years of innovation and refinement. We expertly analyze your infrastructure, implement processes, ensure regulatory compliance and accurate record keeping, and efficiently operate your consolidated reverse supply chain. Differentiate your customer experience, manage your inventory more effectively and protect your brand by turning to FedEx Supply Chain.

Find out what happens to returns in this infographic.

Returns processing

Every return is an opportunity to enhance customer loyalty and minimize losses. For brick-and-mortar stores, an efficient returns process also means you can focus on merchandising new product, rather than spending energy and space on returned goods. FedEx Supply Chain understands reverse logistics channels and can tailor a reverse logistics strategy for your business. As a leader of innovations in the field, we will:

Design and operate returns centers

Build trust with customers and vendors by precisely accepting, evaluating and processing incoming returns.

Process returned inventory

Maximize value from like-new products, efficiently moving returns through the disposition process to reallocate them back into stock and use them to fulfill incoming orders.

Oversee return-to-vendor programs

Simplify vendor returns by using us as a single point of contact for coordinating your returns process and managing the requirements of your multiple-vendor network.

Disposition management

Eliminate waste and drive efficiency by having us sort and allocate returns into the correct disposition — whether it’s return to stock, return to vendor, recycle or destroy.

Process hazardous materials

Be confident that hazardous materials are properly handled and disposed of with specially designed tracking solutions.

Provide data visibility and reporting

Accurately measure the effectiveness and efficiency of your program, while ensuring visibility for regulators and stakeholders.

Recommerce and liquidation

Determining your product’s final disposition depends on the potential gain versus potential costs assumed to transport, handle and house the product. An experienced recommerce, liquidation and final-product-disposition provider, FedEx Supply Chain considers the broader view of returned products and uncovers all of your options to identify the channel that makes the most sense. Turn to us to:

Test, repair and refurbish

Recover more value from goods by testing, servicing, refurbishing and repackaging returned product to make it suitable for resale.

De-brand and repackage returned goods

Protect your brand in secondary marketplaces by de-branding and repackaging returns.

Harvest and recycle parts and raw materials

Recover any remaining value in unsaleable goods by sorting and disassembling products for the purpose of reusing or selling component parts and raw materials.

Redeploy product

Ensure products are placed appropriately to optimize sale potential. We’ll repack, repackage or reconfigure items and redeploy to help recover the most value from your goods.

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Unsaleable goods and damage research

Understanding why products are returned is imperative to improving your manufacturing and logistics operations. Complications such as manufacturing defects, multiple touchpoints and poorly designed packaging can increase return rates. The experienced analysts at FedEx Supply Chain apply a scientific approach to identifying causes and minimizing unsaleable returns by performing:

Benchmarking of unsaleables

Understand your operation’s savings potential by comparing your unsaleable performance to the industry average.

Supply chain analysis and damage research

Identify root causes that lead to unsaleables and damaged products by applying our structured research process.

Collaboration with trading partners

Resolve problems related to damaged and expired products by working with FedEx Supply Chain as an intermediary.

Consultation on reimbursement policies

Protect vendor and partner relationships with fair, clear and equitable guidelines regarding financial responsibility for unsaleable goods.

Recalls and disposition

Developing a simple, timely and clear protocol for recall management will help maintain customer satisfaction and protect your brand’s reputation. With insights gained through our experience in the retail, healthcare, technology and consumer goods industries, FedEx Supply Chain helps your business through this challenge by implementing:

Product recall management

Protect customers and your brand with our proactive and efficient recall services — from first notification to final disposition.

Product intake and processing

Quickly and effectively coordinate excessive returns in critical situations using our proven processes and resources.

Reimbursement of customers

Satisfy customers with timely, accurate reimbursements and product exchanges.

Testing and disposal

Gain insight into the recall through testing, and efficiently close the loop when we dispose of items using environmentally conscious procedures.

Secure destruction of regulated goods

Ensure strict adherence to regulations for disposal of pharmaceuticals, medical devices and hazardous materials.

Matt Palmquist, “The Unexpected Benefits of Product Returns” (Strategy + Business), Jul 23, 2015.
David Egan, U.S. Industrial and Logistics, “Swimming upstream: navigating the world of reverse logistics” (CBRE Research), Feb. 29, 2016.

The best way to understand our capabilities is to talk with us. Call 1.800.677.3110.

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