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Demo: Customer RMAs

  • Name
    Brennan Zelener

In this Feature Friday demo I discuss WholeCell's Customer RMA feature which gives businesses a simple process to track wholesale and e-commerce customer returns.


All right, hi, everyone. My name is Brennan. I'm one of the co-founders of WholeCell. And this is our feature Friday series where I show you about one of the features in WholeCell and how it works. Today I'm talking about WholeCell's RMA feature. We're going to jump right in.

For anyone that hasn't heard of WholeCell before or is new to our system, I'd like to talk about it a little bit, WholeCell is a serialized inventory management system and it's built specifically for folks that buy and sell used devices, mobile devices, so devices like cell phones, tablets and wearable devices are an absolutely great fit for WholeCell. If you're buying and selling used devices like that you've probably looked at other inventory systems and they might not have what you need, and WholeCell was built specifically for folks buying and selling used devices like that.

One of the things that WholeCell is becoming known for more recently is having the ability to synchronize with e-commerce channels. So if you're selling on places like Swappa, Back Market and eBay, selling those used devices, WholeCell is, our goal is to be the best place for tracking your inventory and then allowing you to track your inventory while having it on those sales channels and have it listed on those platforms and synchronized so that you don't have to go manage that in each place and spend as much time doing that. You can manage it in one place in WholeCell and have it automated and connected to your sales channel. So that's the e-commerce, and multi-channel sync is one of the things WholeCell is doing more and more of as time goes on.

And with e-commerce and multi-channel sync one of the unique things about WholeCell is that you can scan IMEIs in WholeCell. It's built around mobile devices that have IMEIs and serial numbers so you can scan barcoded IMEIs. And you can also fulfill onto specific orders the exact IMEIs the devices that you are selling. So when you are putting inventory into WholeCell you put it in with the IMEI if you want to or you update it later if you don't put it in it first. And then when you're creating orders and orders are coming in through your ecommerce channels you are fulfilling those specific items on those orders so you know which IMEIs of devices went where.

And then I think the core thing that WholeCell does really well is as you add more and more employees to your business it keeps all those employees on the same page. So everybody in your company that's looking at your inventory, even people outside of your company that need to be able to see what your live inventory is like your customers, have the ability to access all of your inventory information from the web, you can create public links to give your customers access to just what inventory you have available for sale. And then for everybody inside your business, all of your team, you all stay on the same page, in one web-based application and that reduces a tremendous amount of communication errors and headaches as you build your business. So that is WholeCell.

What are WholeCell's RMAs? So RMAs are a way to track your customer returns, so it's basically a lot of people are tracking whenever their customer is either e-commerce or WholeCell, when they want to send something back they're using some combination of spreadsheets and emails to track what does the customer want to send back, when are they going to send it back, what's the shipping label they sent it back with and what are the reasons they sent all these devices back. And email and spreadsheet kind of get the job done but they're not a good organized system. So WholeCell's RMA system is an organized system for tracking all the customer returns that you have and process at any one point in time.

And there are two different things, the ways, that people will traditionally handle these returns, and WholeCell can track both of them. So it can return if your customer is returning a device that they had some defect with or some issue with and they want to either return it for a refund or a replacement, WholeCell can track both of those scenarios. Or if you have a customer that says, "Hey, this phone is in worse condition than I expected it to be in, and I I'm willing to keep it but I want a little bit of money back. I don't think it's worth what I bought it for." WholeCell can also track that and will update the records to keep all of your gross financial tracking correct so that if you end up giving a customer a little bit of a refund but they keep the device you now have a record of the fact that that happened and how much of a refund you gave them and how did that affect the total price that the device was sold for.

So that's what WholeCell RMAs can do and they can provide a lot of clarity to these email and spreadsheet combo systems that just don't give you good visibility into your system in the long term.

So I'm going to kind of walk through some of these things that I was just talking about. So when you're adding inventory to an RMA in WholeCell you have the option to choose is the customer returning this device and are they returning it for replacement or a refund, or are they not returning it, are they keeping it and they're wanting to just get some money back basically because of some issue that they had with the item itself. So you have both options, whenever you add an item to an RMA you have either option to select.

One thing that I really like that WholeCell does is it prevents you basically and your team from creating a return for a device that was not sold to a customer. So the customer is not very organized and they're trying to return devices to their various vendors and they tell you, "Hey, this device I got is not working," you ask them for the IMEI, they give it to you and you put it into your RMA in WholeCell, and if you did not sell that device to that customer then WholeCell tells you, "Hey, this is not sold, you cannot add it to an RMA." A customer cannot return an item that they didn't buy from you and so then you can relay that to the customer and it's just a very, very fast, it's pretty simple but a fast way for your whole team to just have a system in place that says if a customer is trying to return something that they didn't buy from you they shouldn't be able to do that. So WholeCell prevents that from happening.

You can create and manage and track these reasons that customers are returning devices. This I think is helpful for any business that's trying to improve the way that you track your returns and why are customers returning devices. We have a reasons section that allows you to create and manage the reasons that the customers are returning things. We've got a couple in here that I put in as a default but you've got a defective device, maybe the customer changed their mind, maybe the grade of the device that you said the grade it was B-grade but the customer believes it's C-grade, that's in there as well. And then you can add just any kind of note that you want about maybe what the customer is saying about the device so that you have when the customer sends these devices back you have the very, very specific reasons that they're returning the devices.

And that, again, this is another piece of this structure. You have some structure around your returns so you're not just getting returns every day that you don't know anything about, you're getting returns that you understand, you have some semblance of understanding of why the customer was returning them. And then you can actually kind of go in and look at this data later and see what is the most common reasons for returns, again, really helpful for a business that's growing and trying to reduce problem areas in their inventory.

So when you get devices back, WholeCell RMAs also have a structure for receiving the devices, marking them as received and returning them to your inventory. So say you've created an RMA for a customer, you've given them a shipping label, they ship the devices back to you, now you have an RMA sitting there and you've received the box of devices, WholeCell gives you a way to check off the ones that you've received, mark them as received and that will mark them as received on the RMA. And it will also put them back into whatever your default inventory status is. And so they're no longer ... it also pulls them off of the order that the customer placed, but now you have a record of the fact that those items were returned and they're back into inventory so you can usher them back into your standard inventory.

And I think that the last piece of any RMA is tracking how did you deal with it financially, how did you resolve a financial situation of a customer returning devices. And WholeCell gives you the option to track either maybe you refunded the customer through some means, maybe they walked into your store and you gave them cash or you sent them a PayPal transaction to refund them or you sent a wire transfer. We have a very, very simple way to, as you can see in the screenshot, put in how much did you refund them, what payment method did you use and what was the transaction ID if you need to hunt that down later.

But WholeCell also has a credit system. So if you tap on that credits next to refund there you'd be able to give this customer, their total refund was $230, so that's how much was due, so you could give them a credit for that $230 and then if they're going to order from you again in the future you'll have the ability to apply those credits to that future order. So WholeCell can do some of that tracking for you as well which is nice.

And then the last piece of RMAs that I think is really special is just you've got these four metric boxes that that give you the full picture of what is happening in an RMA. So you can open any RMA for a customer in WholeCell and you can see what was our total refund, how much have we refunded to the customer so far, how much is due if we haven't given them enough of a refund, did we only give them a partial credit or something like that, do we owe them more money? Nope. And then how much inventory is due back to us that the customer is returning? And so you get a very, very clear picture of those metrics there.

And that brings us to our demo. I've got some links here as well for anybody that if you have any questions please reach out to us at any time, at Our whole team gets those emails and we like to kind of dig in and help whenever there's any kind of issue or if you're just trying to understand the software, we would love to be helpful about that as well. And if you haven't started a WholeCell trial, that's the link to start one, we give a free 15-day trial and since you're on this webinar if you need any extra time we'd be more than happy to extend the trial for you so you can get a full test of how the software works. So I'm going to minimize my presentation here and give you guys a little demo of how RMAs work.

So I've got a few tabs open here that are relevant. So on my sales order tab you can see that we've got a sales order here for the test customer and I just picked this IMEI; let's grab this one at the top for this iPhone 6. I'm going to copy this IMEI, say that we sent this order out to our test customer; they decided that that particular device they wanted to return. So I've got a new RMA here for that customer that I've created, and it's a totally fresh RMA but what we're going to go through here and do is add that item, and just like you saw in our slide deck earlier we've got the option here to choose whether or not the customer is returning or not returning the device.

So in this example I'm just going to go through the returning process because I think that's probably one of the most common, especially for e-commerce orders folks are returning a device that they decided they didn't want or that came to them defective. So we're going to choose returning and we're going to put in that ESN that we just copied. And again, if you got an email from a customer that said they wanted to return 10 devices you could paste in the ESNs for those 10 devices here. You can also add items to an RMA by ID, so the WholeCell ID that gets given out to every single item in WholeCell, you can use that if you don't have an ESN for the device.

So let's go to next here. That device was, so we know that that device is on an order for that specific customer that we've created for and so we pull up all the details about that device so you can see it here. And again, if you did it for 10 devices this would pull up a table with all 10. We can see all the details and we're going to select the reason, let's for this in this case say it was a defective device. We said that there was nothing damaged about the device, but the customer says cracked screen is why they're returning it. And they bought the device for 50 bucks so we just automatically are setting the refund amount to $50 because they're going to return the device and we're going to give them a full refund. So let's add that to the RMA.

So now we have an RMA, within the table here this RMA device that the customer is returning, we can see one inventory item is due back to us because they're returning it and the status is waiting, we're waiting for that item. What you could do now is come in here on our three dot menu, you can download a PDF and you could email this PDF to your customer, tell them to put that in the box that they're returning with the device in. And you can kind of see here's the structure that we have, we can see in our metrics, we're going to give them a total refund of $50, we haven't refunded any money yet so we've got a refund due of $50 but we also have inventory due back to us of one device, so we know that the customer is going to be returning this device and we have a sense of that just at a glance from this RMA.

So let's say you've given the PDF to the customer, they return the device to you, it took a couple days the RMA was sitting here but you get the RMA in the mail, you get the box and it's got RMA number 20 written on it, maybe you have your customer write down the RMA ID on the box. That's super helpful. Now we can go in and select the specific devices that the customer has returned to us. And we can go in and select them and hit receive. And when we receive the devices, it's only going to do it to devices that are awaiting returns so this item is specifically awaiting in the return status so it's going to apply to that one, but this is going to do a couple things - it's going to pull the device off of the order that it was on because the customer has returned it to us, it's going to set its inventory status to whatever our default inventory status is in our WholeCell settings, and it's going to update this RMA to show that that device has been received. So we'll hit confirm here and wait for that to process.

And now we've got a single item with received as the status. Instead of being awaiting for return we now have it as received. And we still see that all these metrics are the same aside from inventory due, so we've gotten our inventory item back so we are not due any but we're actually, we've got a refund due for $50, so let's go in and process that. We can add a refund to the RMA here, that'll bring up this little window. And as I mentioned in our kind of slide deck, we have the option to either refund them through whatever means we want or we can issue them a credit specifically in WholeCell that we can then apply in the future to another sales order.

But let's just do a refund, let's say we gave them a $50 refund, we issued it through instead of PayPal maybe I'll say ACH transfer this time. And these fields are just you can write in whatever, it's basically meant for you to be able to go look it up later if you need to and have that record, and the transaction ID we will just do ACH Test ID here. And we could add any notes if we wanted to but in this case I'm not going to. So we're going to hit save.

And now once this saves and reloads we will basically have, and you can see it there in our key metrics at the top, we've got a total refund of $50 and that was refunded to the customer so that is complete. We don't have any dollar amount due and we don't have any inventory due back to us. So this is pretty neat. And we've got the ability to see the history of those refunds right here, which user created the refund and applied it, what the amount was for, how did they apply it, etcetera. And like I said, we could have done that with credits as well.

So this is kind of the basic structure of an RMA in WholeCell and these are customer RMAs, so handling the returns from your customers. And it gives you just a very, very clean system and structure for handling this process that I think oftentimes is dealt with in not very clean ways. So that's the goal of the system and that kind of concludes our demo here. So if anybody has any questions, feel free to put them in the chat, please let me know if you've got any questions. And if not, I'm going to bring up that slide deck that we had before just to show you guys our trial sign up URL and our email address.

So if you've got any questions for me, please put them in the chat. I'll wait a couple more seconds, but to start a trial of WholeCell go to that URL and sign up. We'd love to hear any questions or feedback that you have at that email address, we all monitor that one. But beyond that it seems like there aren't any questions, guys. So thanks so much for your time on the demo today. I'm going to conclude this demo of customer RMAs in WholeCell. Have a good one. Take care.

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