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The After-math

The impact of returns on GMV

Retailers know, there’s no such thing as free returns (or shipping, for that matter). But, ‘free’ tends to stick - as 87% of shoppers (Happy Returns) expect to bring back goods without incurring any restocking for or return shipping.

So… what’s a retailer to expect to get back?

Per Loop Returns, returns account for 10.7% of GMV… however, not all of that is lost. Of the return revenue, 28% of GMV is retained for exchanges or store credit, which helps take a bit of the sting out. All told, refunds account for 7.5% of GMV.

Returns have come a long way - from the old days of bringing back to a messy service desk and wincing when the associate would serve as judge for whether you would be awarded with your money back.

Shopify reports that 65% of returns are now automated, and a number of tech providers have transformed the returns process into a relatively positive engagement, even with potential for expanding the original transaction size.

We take for granted some of the advances in commerce. We aren’t wow’ed by the simple pleasure of ordering from your couch and having it show up within a few days anymore. 

But, the modern ecommerce returns process is another example showing that customer and brand can win:

Free returns removes a big obstacle to conversion…

… and automated returns (with appropriate business rules) keeps a brand from bleeding out on RMA processing, while helping to curb fraud.

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