As convenience becomes a top driving force for today’s consumers, data from Returnly finds return trends and returner personas that are shaping direct-to-consumer e-commerce. The objective of the research is to understand the importance of returns in the consumer journey and help brands and retailers stay competitive in the marketplace by creating the best return experiences possible.
“Our goal is to give direct-to-consumer brands insights on what modern shoppers expect when returning and exchanging products online,” said Eduardo Vilar, founder and chief executive officer of Returnly. “Our return personas give brands a blueprint to offer memorable return experiences that turn first-time returners into loyalists.”
The company distilled behavioral insights, finding six returner personas: The loyalist, the now returner, the first-time returner, the lazy returner, the fitting room returner and the policy abuse returner. The loyalist, Returnly says, is a company’s “ideal returner,” accounting for “39 percent of a brand’s revenue and returns undamaged merchandise on time.” This customer makes up less than 10 percent of the customer base, though — according to Returnly — they can be celebrated with rewards programs.
The policy abuse returner can cost retailers and should be combated by “prioritizing returns data and fraud prevention tools,” according to Returnly.
Additionally, the study found that 80 percent of consumers “think about the returns experience before buying,” while 73 percent “won’t shop again with a brand after a poor returns experience.” And further, 56 percent of shoppers will use a mobile device to start returns online, though 72 percent of consumers will use desktop computers when returning orders of more than $300.
The study also compared return behavior between men and women, finding that women are nearly 1.5 times more likely to return than men, though faster to do so — 25 percent of women will make the return one day after purchase. For all consumers, “slow refunds are the largest source of online stress.”
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