Retailers can drive customers to their shops by offering in-store returns, finds Narvar


With shop closures hitting record levels (according to PwC research that went live this morning) how can retailers drive customers increasingly shopping online to their stores?

It’s simple – in store returns.

New research from Narvar, the customer experience tech platform, released yesterday reveals 42% of UK shoppers have bought something else while returning an item to a physical store.

What’s more, over half (52%) of UK shoppers said they are happy to go in-store to return an item if they could get an immediate refund.

With returns hot on the retail agenda,  other stats from the report include:

  • More than half (53%) of shoppers are avoiding retailers that don’t offer free returns
  • More than a third (34%) of shoppers avoid shopping with retailers with no clear returns or exchange policy.

Cost-conscious shoppers favour in-store returns

  • Over half (53%) of customers admitting they check their bank balance once to a couple of times a day to see if they have been refunded for returned items.
  • Among those who already return items in-store, 20% admit they do this to as they don’t want to pay for the cost of shipping a return

Additional findings

  • 43% of UK shoppers fail to return items they don’t want 1 to 4 times per year because they miss the return window
    • When asked what services UK shoppers want brands to offer for returning purchases the top three services are: pre-paid shipping (47%), pre-printed return label (42%), notifications abound refund status (35%)
  • 44% of UK shoppers claim that, in the past year, they have shopped more frequently online than the year before
  • 21% of UK shoppers admit they have returned more in the past year than the year before
  • Apparel, footwear or accessories and consumer electronics are the top three types of online-purchased products that UK shoppers return the most frequently.

Anthony Gavin, regional director at Narvar EMEA, said: “Today, many retailers are still seeing online and ‘offline’ shopping as two separate journeys – when shopping today is in fact one continuous, fluid journey. Shoppers want convenience from their retail experiences and in store returns are a great way to provide an extra option for shoppers but also provides an opportunity for retailers to reconnect with shoppers and encourage them to make further purchases while in store. Using post-purchase technology retailers can effectively offer and communicate the different return options available to customers in this important stage of the shopping journey.”