Highlights from the survey, which collected responses from 600 consumers, include:
"¢ 64% of respondents stated that the reason for returning an item purchased online or by phone is because the item is the incorrect size or color
"¢ 84% of respondents stated that the return process is extremely or very important to their future intentions to shop with a retailer
"¢ 50% of respondents who receive an incorrect item after already returning it once stated that they are much less likely to shop with that retailer online or by phone again for future purchases
"¢ 25% of respondents who have experienced continuous return process issues with particular retailers stated that they have limited shopping with that retailer both online and in-store
"¢ Nearly 20% of respondents expect the correct item to be shipped to them within one to two days after returning the incorrect item
When asked how important the return process is to their future intentions to shop with a retailer, 84% of survey participants said that it is extremely or very important. The majority, 57% of respondents, stated that returning products bought online or by phone is moderately easy but annoying, while 16% stated that the return process is difficult.
Additionally, one-third of survey participants have, after returning an incorrect item, received the incorrect item for a second time. Half of these respondents stated that they are much less likely to shop with that retailer online or by phone again for future purchases.
What's more, nearly one-third stated that they experience return issues more frequently with particular retailers, with 31% noting that they have to return items bought online or by phone more frequently when shopping with large versus small retailers. Of those who answered that they have experienced continuous return process issues with particular retailers, 25% stated that they have limited shopping with that retailer both online and in-store, while 15% have stopped shopping with the retailer online altogether.
"This research proves that the clear majority of product returns are due to retailer error," states Keith Philips, president and CEO, Voxware. "Mistakes are happening too frequently, both in the initial delivery and in the return process. This not only increases supply chain costs, but it also severely impacts customer satisfaction. As online shopping increases, the time to optimize supply chains for omni-channel delivery is now. Most errors occur in distribution centers at the moment orders are picked off of the shelves. Hands-free voice software can dramatically decrease these picking errors, so retailers can get it right the first time, cut returns, and boost shopper loyalty."
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