Returns Rose Dramatically YoY In The Days After Christmas

Here is more evidence that returns are on the rise. 

Loop Returns, an ecommerce management platform, processed more than 133,000 returns on Monday and Tuesday, December 26-27 -- a 33% increase YoY.   

Tuesday, December 27 saw higher return volumes than the actual day after Christmas. There was a 19% hike over the same day in 2021 and a 6% hike day-over-day from December 26. 

On the other hand, Loop saw the largest drop in refund rate over the 2022 holiday season. The gap widened over the holidays -- from 71% of returns being refunded in Q1-Q3 to just 60% over the holiday period. 

In addition, the surge in returns is creating upsell opportunities for retailers. Loop saw the largest day of upsells from returns ever on December 26. And as of December 27, Loop merchants had made nearly $300,000 in upsell since Christmas, the firm says.

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Some of this surge on Tuesday could be the result of people treating Monday as a holiday. In addition, inclement weather prevented many people from going to stores that day to return things or do anything else. 

But the general trend is also seen in other studies. For instance, Salesforce reports that returns nearly doubled the week after Cyber Week YoY, and Salesforce expects that if over 1.4 billion orders purchased this holiday season, 13% of the total will be returned.

But shoppers have gotten wise to the issue: 75% will be deterred from buying if the retailer charges for returns, according to a study by First Insight. Baby Boomers are most likely to feel this way — 84%, versus 71% of Gen Z and 69% of millennials. 

Loop found in a prior survey that 97% of consumers feel that brands with flexible return policies care more about their customer base. 

Loop found in a survey that 57% of shoppers are willing to abandon a brand that provides a poor post-purchase experience. Moreover, 96% of consumers read a retailer’s  return policies before making an online purchase. And 54% are unlikely to buy from a brand that doesn’t offer free returns.

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