Shoppers may be eager to find the best deals on Black Friday, but in doing so they may overlook a potential problem area of product returns.
According to a recent survey of 500 retailers by returns management provider goTRG, 6 out of 10 retailers are changing their return policies this holiday season. goTRG CEO Sender Shamis said these changes were generally not favorable to consumers, with many stores shortening return windows and adding restocking and online restocking fees.
These changes may surprise some shoppers who were accustomed to the lenient return policies common during the pandemic, when retailers relaxed guidelines to give consumers more leeway. , Kohl’s and Bloomingdale’s have extended their return windows by an additional 30 and 90 days, respectively, in 2020.
However, retailers are nowA slowdown in the economy has caused some to step up their policies. Black Friday shopper’s bottom line: Check the return policy before buying to avoid any unwanted surprises, experts say.
“Now retailers are saying, ‘We’re not interested if our customers create a crazy returns nightmare that’s beyond our control,'” Shamis said.
He added that retail executives are concerned about the strength of the economy and are “making sure their policies serve their businesses in the best possible way.”
Shorter windows at Amazon
Among the changes this year at major retailers, Amazon, To tell Customers who purchased items between October 11th and December 25th can return them until January 31st, 2023. shorter window than last yearif the purchaser purchases between October 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 can be returned until January 31, 2022.
While some retailers now charge customers for online returns, they typically don’t charge for items brought back to their brick-and-mortar stores. More people will visit your store and may want to purchase additional items during returns.
“The easy-to-get results are changing the return policy,” Shamis said. “As e-commerce matures, they are beginning to rescind these very liberal policies that existed for returns.”
For example, H&M will charge a US return shipping fee of $5.99 which will be deducted from the refund when the customer returns the item. While this policy is nothing new, some European markets may also begin testing online restocking fees.
Zara earlier this year Start Billing $3.95 However, if a consumer returns an item purchased online to a brick-and-mortar store, there is no charge.
“We got used to these very long return policies during the pandemic,” Shamis said. “It doesn’t exist anymore.”