Shipping - Article | 4-min. read

Returns Strategies that drive ROI: The Home Test Kit Model

Companies with return-based business models have become increasingly popular and profitable in recent years. The home test-kit industry, for one, is booming. The home test-kit model, which pivots on returns, allows customers to complete test kits in the privacy of their own home, then send them to a lab to get their results. In only a few decades, many businesses have found success in this niche market.
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The Rise of Home Testing

It all began with the pregnancy test kit. Before the advent of the modern pregnancy test, women had to send their tests directly to the lab. The success of this very first at-home test kit led to the development of DNA tests. Home tests followed soon after. At the same time, e-commerce was on the rise — all key factors that spurred growth for the home test-kit industry. Today, the applications are numerous and span countless fields of business, from personal health to home safety.
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Achieving Success

As evidenced by the graphic, home test kits require an intricate return model with complex shipping and return needs. For such a process, simplicity is key. Brand loyalty is earned in the many touch points between the company and the customers. To make the model work, a business should study companies that have nailed the process. The best of the best spell out their customer journey in a few simple steps — explaining each stage, the price of the return, how long customers will have to wait to get their results. Some include a section of frequently asked questions. There they answer pressing questions about how the tests work, how a customer can access their results and more. To counteract the off-putting effect of bad returns processes, companies must create a convenient experience for their customers with clear communication at the final results stage.
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Planning for Peace of Mind

Those interested in starting a home test-kit business usually start by mapping out their customer journey. This insightful practice can help a company learn how to serve its clients and ultimately boost its sales. Once customers have completed their test kit, how will they send it back? When it comes to returns, there are many options available to the modern business:

  • Hand-Off: In this interaction, customers can hand off the test kit directly to their mail carrier. This is a low-effort option that nixes their travel time.
  • Pickup: Here, a customer can schedule a pickup at a time that is most convenient to them. This tailors the experience to their needs.
  • Drop-Off: Finally, a drop-off option allows customers to get the ball rolling by immediately bringing the kit to the shipping center.

Getting the Results

In a typical e-commerce transaction, refunds and refund time have a major impact on the customer experience. For the home test-kit model, results play a parallel role. Many companies set clear expectations from the get-go. This ensures that customers understand how long it will take to process and determine the results of the test. Those that provide results through multiple channels — e-mail, website or mail — make the process even easier for the customer. Creating a system with multiple access points gives customers control. Clearly communicating these policies in the early stages of the marketing journey allows for an even greater conversion rate. In-the-know customers are, of course, happy customers.

Home test kits provide an invaluable service for users. Though the process is complex, when done right, a good shipping experience delivers better results for everyone. Learn more about how an optimized return strategy can positively affect your bottom line.

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