- Nov 16, 2020
- Business Update
JD Turns Focus to Value-added Services
by Kelly Dawson
In late October, Mr. Qin bought seven multimedia teaching systems on JD.com for his tutoring organization in Beijing, at a price of around RMB 30,000 yuan each. Weeks later during JD’s Singles Day Grand Promotion in November, his heart sank to see that each system was now selling for 4,000 yuan less. He feared he’s missed out on a great deal—and worried that his supervisor would be unhappy.
Then he remembered that he had purchased the machines with price protection insurance, and that he was well within the 30-day grace period. He quickly submitted an application on JD, but was skeptical that he would actually receive the refund. When he had attempted to redeem price protection insurance on other ecommerce platforms, he had only received coupons to apply to other purchases.
But as he contemplated this concern, his phone rang: It was the company’s financial department, announcing that they had received a refund of RMB 27,000 yuan. It had been only one minute since Mr. Qin submitted his application.
Mr. Qin’s case is only one example of JD’s increased focus on customer services this year.
Another beneficiary of JD’s customer services during the Singles Day period was Mr. Ma, who purchased a cotton coat from a third party seller on JD as part of the promotion. When he received the coat, he realized it was a bit tight to wear over his favorite lined puffer jacket, a must during the frigid winters of his northern city of Beitun, in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. He applied for JD’s “free door-to-door exchange” service that ensures door-to-door exchange regardless of where a customer lives—even 30 kilometers away from the nearest JD delivery station, in Mr. Ma’s case.
In order to ensure that Mr. Ma’s exchange went smoothly, a JD courier named Wang Pun rose before dawn on the morning of November 8th. He washed his face with cold water, and set out on a 250-kilometer journey from JD’s sorting center in Beitun to the sales department of the third party merchant that had sold Mr. Ma his coat. Around 1 pm, he arrived at the office—it was the first time the coat company had received such a visit for a customer exchange. Coat in hand, Wang turned around and set off for Beitun. Over the course of the day, he traveled a total of eight hours to ensure Mr. Ma would receive his return within 24 hours of his application for an exchange.
During this year’s Singles Day period, more than 90% of JD’s third party merchants offered the door-to-door exchange service—with ultimate savings estimated to be more than RMB 30 million yuan of freight and 33.6 million hours of waiting time, according to JD Express.
Additionally, JD Express reported that during the Singles Day period, JD’s price protection insurance saved consumers more than 100 million accumulatively, enabling consumers who bought products before the promotion to receive refunds for price differences.
In fact, JD’s value-added services ranked first among all e-commerce companies during the Singles Day period, according to a customer satisfaction survey published by Southern Metropolis Daily, a Guangzhou publication.
During that period JD’s customer service recorded more than 15 million customer service interactions, a development also driven by a rising willingness among customers to pay extra to enjoy value-added services, according to the report.