What Consumers Want From Returns

Retailers in the U.S. set a new benchmark this year by surpassing $300 billion in sales for the first time, according to an Internet Retailer report. Worldwide, it’s been estimated by Fortune that ecommerce is already topping $1 trillion per year in sales.

While many of these sales are considered business-to-business, the reality is that a good portion of them are being made by consumers. Safely, it can be pegged that about $750 billion in worldwide ecommerce sales are a result of direct consumer transactions.

High Return Rates Can Yield Profits

The Wall Street Journal estimates that as much as 33% of ecommerce purchases that are made by consumers are ultimately returned. But a Science Daily report offers comfort, by demonstrating (through various recent studies) that offering hassle-free returns can improve profits by as much as 25% following just six months of implementation.

Shoppers Want Hassle-Free Returns

According to UPS, the leader in ecommerce shipping solutions, the returns policy has become increasingly important to consumers in recent years. As the industry evolves, shoppers have grown to expect an easy returns policy that is convenient and comparable to the ease by which they can return products to a brick and mortar store.

When considering your ecommerce return policy and process, make sure you don’t overlook these veritable and recent statistics.

  • 88% of shoppers will take the time to read a retailer’s return policy.
  • 77% of retailers provide a specified return period.
  • 66% of shoppers will actually read the policy before they make a purchase.
  • 40% struggle to find the return policy, which can lead to abandonment.
  • 38% are dissatisfied with the clarity of the returns policy.
  • 15% of consumers abandon the shopping cart if the returns policy is unclear.

What Shoppers Want

The most recent statistics shed some light on what consumers want from an online product return policy.

  • 50% of shoppers think that returns can be easier to make online.
  • Just 42% are satisfied with the process of making returns or exchanges.
  • 86% want a return shipping label provided by the retailer.
  • 68% think free return shipping equates to a positive shopping experience.
  • 63% of consumers are dissatisfied with paying for return shipping costs.
  • 52% want the return shipping label included in the box.
  • 51% will not make a purchase if a return label is not included in the box.

Create A Winning Returns Policy

In order to create a returns policy that is attractive to prospective customers and equally as lucrative to your bottom line, there are several steps that will want to take. We’ve outlined them all in this infographic so that you can use it as a reference guide when crafting your perfect ecommerce returns policy.


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