The Post-Holiday Return Cycle is Setting Records

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By Susan Beardslee | 1Q 2022 | IN-6412

 

No End in Sight

NEWS


Approximately 30% of all online purchases are returned, with some retailers offering a refund without a return. UPS alone is processing over 60 million return parcels for a 10% increase Year over Year (YoY), which was previously a record. Per Optoro, a return processing company, returning a US$50 purchase may cost an average of US$33, which is an increase of nearly 60% from last year. In 2020 alone, US consumers returned about US$428 billion in goods, which is over 10% of total retail. More than 50% of returns are related to size or color reasons.

Timing is Everything

IMPACT


There are multiple implications for spiraling returns, impacted by a continuing pandemic. One is the cost of returns to the retailer potentially resulting in a lack of profit, as up to 66% of the sales price is consumed by returns fees and the initial cost to deliver has risen exponentially across modes over the last two years. Storage capacity is also severely limited. Additionally, now chronic labor shortages across the supply chain make the process even more stressed. Supply c…

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