BizJournals – As online shopping continues to grow, the pressure rises for retailers to offer return policies that satisfy customers. Retailers are making an effort to take the guesswork out of online shopping while providing fair return options, Glossy reports. The backlash against L.L. Bean’s decision to pull its unlimited returns policy demonstrated how a policy can impact a brand.
The average online return rate is about 30 percent, more than double the rate of in-store purchases, according to a report from Bold Metrics. Before buying anything online, a report from Narvar, a retail software service company, shows that 57 percent of consumers check a retailer’s returns policy, Glossy reported.
“Retail returns policies will likely evolve to moderate returns policies that won’t turn off customers and won’t bankrupt the company,” David Naumann, vice president of Boston Retail Partners, told Glossy. “A reasonable returns policy will have a realistic time limit and won’t charge shipping for damaged, inferior or exchanged goods.”
“Today’s consumers have high expectations; they demand convenient ordering, fast and free shipping, and a friendly returns policy,” Naumann told Glossy. “These are now table stakes for retailers, and the cost of these features need to be built into the pricing model for sustainable profitability.”
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