Why Offering Free Return Shipping Is a Good Idea


All the major e-tailers are doing it! Why, you may ask? It’s basic psychology. Free returns make an online transaction completely risk-free to the customer. They can buy something, determine if they like or do not like it, and send it back without a second thought if needed. It’s a competitive play, and it has even allowed slightly higher priced items to remain higher priced while maintaining sales and high customer satisfaction rates simply for the offer of free return shipping. A recent survey from Deloitte found that 55% of customers are influenced by easy returns and 72% find free shipping important when making a purchasing decision. Some companies have even found that making their “Free Returns” policy more visible to consumers has increased their profits by over 350%. This should not come as too much of a shock, all things considered. Take the customer perspective into consideration for a moment. To the average consumer, free return shipping means:

Peace of Mind

Return shipping costs can be a huge sales deterrent. In some cases, they can be 50% of the cost of an item or more – that’s a huge incentive to drive to the nearest store to get what you need instead of placing an online order. By offering free return shipping, you’re giving customers peace of mind which is what increases conversion rates and drives brand loyalty.

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Why should I pay for shipping?


Have you ever needed to return a defective product, only to find out that YOU were expected to pay for return shipping? I have. And I was NOT happy. If a product fails, it should be the company’s responsibility to get me a replacement FAST. If the failure is their fault, why should I, the customer, be expected to spend my hard-earned money to pay to return the product?

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