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Insight: North East worst region for serial returners

A new study has revealed that the North East of England is the worst region for ‘serial returners’. 

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Insight: North East worst region for serial returners

A new study has revealed that the North East of England is the worst region for ‘serial returners’. 

The research by Brightpearl, which surveyed 2,000 UK consumers, found that 36% of shoppers polled in the region purchase multiple items with the intention of returning at least some of them. 

The findings also reveal that 40% of retailers have noticed a marked increase in serial returns over the last 12 months, and some 52% of those polled are seeing their profits impacted by the process of managing these returns. 

While Wales and the South East closely followed the North East as the region for the highest percentage of serial returners, shoppers from the East Midlands were found to be most likely to keep their items with just 18% of shoppers in the area identifying themselves as a serial returner.

While offering free returns is resulting in a loss of revenue for retailers, many see the policy as key to their customer experience strategy. However, Brightpearl’s study found that 85% of consumers do expect retailers to provide returns for free.

Brightpearl chief executive Derek O’Carroll said: “The logistical and financial implications of handling rising volumes of returns and the impact on return rates could cause significant margin erosion for online retailers, unless they have the right systems in place to optimise the returns process and meet the challenge of serial returners.
 
“For example, using technology to centralise your returns data is one way to quickly identify serial returners and puts retailers in the informed position to make decisions on how they can weed out these problematic shoppers.”
 
The study’s findings also show that more than half of all 18 to 24 year olds intentionally return items they have purchased.
 

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