Tags: Incentives & Rebates
Successful Rebate Processing - 6 Steps to a Smooth Rebate Program
After the rebate program has been implemented and the goal incentive has been met, the rebate processing stage begins. An important part of having a successful rebate program is having an efficient rebate processing program in place. When processing a rebate, accuracy is crucial, otherwise there could be a loss of profit or reputation. Below are the six steps to a successful rebate processing program.
1 - Receive and Scan
Once the rebate incentive requirement has been met, customers can submit their rebate claim digitally or through the mail. Digital submissions can typically be done through text message, an app, or an online portal.
Offering a digital submission option streamlines the rebate process. When supported by a branded, web-based microsite, customers can track their rebates throughout the process. Digital programs create an efficient and user-friendly experience.
When the submission is received, it will be sorted and scanned into the processor’s system. This typically happens within 36 hours of the receipt.
2 - Data Entry
Data from each submission will be read, verified, and then entered into a campaign finance reporting form. Accuracy is critical for this step, discrepancies can happen easily in a meticulous process like this.
The processor should have an efficient system set into place to ensure no mistakes are made, and if they are, that they are corrected accordingly. From there, based on the data entered, the submission will be approved or denied.
3 - Customer Service
Keeping the customer in the loop about the status of their rebate keeps the customer happy and is more likely to ensure customer satisfaction, resulting in them continuing to purchase goods.
Customers appreciate knowing when their rebate claim has been received, when it has been processed, and of course, when it has been approved. Assuring customers of the status of their rebate reduces the likelihood of confusion or worry that may occur.
4 - Validation and Fraud Detection
Each rebate submission will be verified for validity and accuracy, as well as ensuring it aligns with the set required guidelines of the rebate program. Whether it is a computer processing the submission or a human, common mistakes can occur.
Mistakes can include incorrect receipts, repeat submissions, suspicious documents, and so forth. In order to maintain a profitable incentive program, the seller has to confirm there are no invalid or fraudulent claims.
5 - Invoice and Funding
Now that the rebates have been processed, the seller is able to determine the amount of valid submissions. If this step is not managed properly by accounting, it can be the most common cause of delays in rebate fulfillment. To avoid these delays, it is best for the seller to pre-fund the rebates in their account.
6 - Reward Fulfillment
Finally, after the previous five steps are complete, the customer is now able to receive their reward. The reward may come in a physical or digital format. It takes as little as two days for the reward to be delivered in the mailbox, on the other hand a digital delivery can be instant.
In total, it typically takes around two weeks for the customer to receive the reward after the claim is initially submitted.
A Successful Rebate Program Means a Quality Customer Experience
A successful rebate processing program includes creating a quality customer experience, verifying submissions, and managing finances. Creating a custom rebate program ensures an efficient and successful outcome.