Royal Mail suggests a 'try before you buy' model could mitigate losses.
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Returns of online purchases are expected to increase by 80 per cent today compared to the average number of return parcels per day in December, according to Royal Mail.
Takeback Wednesday, as today is being billed, is the day that most Brits return their unwanted and ill-fitting Christmas presents.
According to a study commissioned by Royal Mail, six in ten online shoppers will not use a retailer again if they have a difficult returns experience.
Clothing, electrical goods, and computer software or hardware are the most commonly returned items.
The study, part of Royal Mail’s annual Delivery Matters report, shows women are more likely to return something because the item is not what they expected. Men are more likely to return a non-clothing item because it’s incompatible or not useful for its intended purpose.
The average online shopper in the UK sends back an online purchase every month. More than half of those returning clothing or footwear said the most common reason is because the item didn’t fit or was the wrong size.
One in three of those that return items have used ‘try before you buy’ services. 18-34 year old shoppers are more likely to use a service like this if it was available.
Clothing and footwear are the categories people are most likely to use this service for, followed by electrical goods. Two in five shoppers believe they would purchase more items if a retailer offered a ‘try before you buy service’.
A spokesperson from Royal Mail said: “January is the busiest time of year for returns. Having an easy way to return online purchases is a crucial part of the online shopping experience.
“For retailers, ensuring their returns experience is in line with consumers’ expectations is incredibly important.
“It’s important to consider putting try before you buy at the heart of your returns offering – and staying one step ahead of your competitors when it comes to customer satisfaction.”