11 stats on returns that you need to know

With returns costing retailers $260 billion per year, all businesses want to keep their return rates as low as possible. But these stats will make you rethink and re-focus your returns strategy:

  1. 1 in every 3 online purchases are returned, proving that you don’t always know what you’re getting online. It's even worse for online apparel, with a return rate closer to 40 percent.
  2. Over 85 percent of consumers want a convenient returns policy, which impacts sales and return rates: consumers flock to stores with friendly return policies, with about 55 percent seeking the most affordable return shipping option (when return shipping fees are assessed).

  3. Friendly return policies are better: Zappos -- which offers free two-way shipping and a 365-day returns policy -- found that its customers with the highest return rate are also its best customers.1

  4. A 13% rate of returns results in the greatest profit. WSJ analyzed six years of returns’ impact on  a catalog retailer that sells apparel and accessories, and found the sweet spot of returns.

  5. When consumers get free shipping on returned items, their purchases over the next two years increased by between 58 percent and 357 percent. On the other hand, when consumers had to pay for return shipping, their subsequent purchases decreased by between 74 percent and 100 percent.

  6. 60.9% of shoppers would abandon a retailer if they had an unpleasant experience returning an item there.

  7. 86.9% said they would share a negative return experience with friends and family.

  8. 80% of customers are loyal to e-commerce retailers with free and easy return policies, and 92% of consumers will shop again at an online store with easy returns.

  9. On the flip side, 82% of consumers will not shop again at an online store with difficult returns.

  10. 57% of consumers return items due to retailer error, whether the size/color is incorrect or the product is wrong altogether.

  11. The online product returns policy influences as much as 80% of the sale.


Join Welcome for a free webinar:

3 Ways to Slash Returns Costs

Returns cost retailers $260 billion a year, which accounts for 8% of total sales. If returns were a corporation, they would be #3 on the Fortune 500 list! Almost 10% of all customers were not happy with the product they bought, which will have affected their loyalty to your brand.

In '3 Ways to Slash Returns Costs' we look at how retailers have successfully used communication to avoid the damage of returns pre-purchase and post-purchase. During this webinar, you will learn how to collaborate with your existing vendors to understand in-depth product issues and highlight potential product description page improvements to enhance the buying experience and help shoppers buy the right product for their need.