Returnly, a company that helps retailers manage post-purchase payments, announced it has raised $8 million in Series A funding and secured a credit facility capable of financing more than $300 million in shopper repurchases, according to a company press release.
Mundi Ventures and The Venture City led the funding round, with further contributions coming from Novel TMT Ventures and CoVenture, the latter of which provided Returnly with the new credit line.
Returnly’s current retail and brand partners include Fanatics, UNTUCKit, Outdoor Voices and The Greats. The company has issued more than $100 million in returns credit to customers, according to the press release.
Returnly works with customers who return products to help them buy again using return credit. Customers receive credits even before they return their unwanted items, turning a potentially negative and costly process for the retailer into an instant, fresh opportunity to make a sale and strengthen the retailer’s loyalty bond with the customer.
It addresses the $150 billion market of e-commerce returns, a problem that the industry has seemed to have little answer for in recent years as e-commerce sales have continued to grow. The retail sector also is just coming off what is typically its busiest season for returns, with around 20% of all annual returns occurring around the holiday season. Between 25% and 30% of e-commerce purchases annually are returned, according to a U.S. Postal Service estimate.
Additionally, retailers are investing in technology aimed at reducing product returns before they happen. Virtual reality, augmented reality apps and fit experiences are all aimed to help customers feel more confident about the purchases before they complete them.
Returnly offers a range of tools to help retailers with returns, but the most enticing capability might be its support for instant refunds in the form of credits. If returns are a fact of life for retailers, making it a seamless experience can be a quick way to garner return business and loyalty.