How do cross-border e-commerce sellers cope with high return rates during peak seasons?

As soon as Amazon’s Black Five is about to kick off, Wal Mart has directly set two Black Five dates this year to help businesses seize traffic. While the platform traffic has increased, the sellers have burst orders, and the crisis has also come quietly. For example, the return rate after shopping in peak season has caused quite a headache for many sellers.According to statistics, for e-commerce, at least 30% of products purchased online are returned, which is three times the offline return rate! There are many reasons that can cause buyers to return goods, such as receiving the wrong item or delaying delivery.Canada Multi PlatformAnd buyers in Europe and America have always been the “big spenders” of returns. According to data from the American Retail Federation and ApprisRetail, as the level of online shopping increases, the return rate of online shopping has reached a new high. The survey found that the average return rate in the US e-commerce market has jumped from 18.1% in 2020 to 20.8% in 2021, with return costs accounting for 21% of order value.In Europe, although the return rates vary among countries, they are still high. The Netherlands has the highest return rate in Europe, while Poland and Italy have the lowest. Spain has a return rate of 57%, France has a return rate of 37%, the UK has a return rate of 44%, and Germany has a return rate of up to 50%.According to Return Helper’s data, clothing, shoes, and accessories accounted for the highest proportion of returned goods, reaching 40%. Consumer electronics accounted for 25%, while sports, mother and baby, and home goods accounted for the remaining 35%.The general cross-border e-commerce platform is dominated by the shopping experience of buyers, not only allowing buyers to return and exchange goods without reason, but also attracting more buyers to shop during the peak season by extending the return time and other policies. All losses are borne by the seller and the platform, especially the seller!This year’s peak season, Amazon has once again extended the return deadline!Orders placed between November 1, 2023 and December 31, 2023 will be returned before January 31, 2024.In the case of free returns, consumers will not have any pressure. You can shop freely, and if you encounter something you don’t like, you can return it. Especially in the clothing category, if consumers do not choose the right color and style, they will place multiple orders at the same time, leaving only a small portion of the selected items and choosing to return the rest.There are also some seasonal products, such as Halloween and Christmas decorations, if they are returned after the holiday, not only will the shipping cost be high, but it is also not easy to resell, and even become a part of the inventory. Although the return cost of Amazon’s free return policy is borne by the Amazon platform, the return period for most products is 30 days, which is very unfavorable for sellers.Even many sellers may encounter malicious returns. Many returned products have already been used and cannot be resold. There are reports that some internet celebrity bloggers on Instagram and Tik Tok will purchase a large number of products, showcase and attract traffic to fans through unboxing and other forms, and then return these products.At present, many retailers in Canada have changed their return policies and no longer provide free return services to consumers, charging a certain fee. Especially for some clothing brands.For example, local Canadian brands Aritzia and Abercrombie&Fitch.Aritzia charges a return shipping fee of $8 and taxes, which will be deducted from the refund when returning the online order; Abercrombie&Fitch charges a return service fee of 7 yuan for online returns.UNIQLO Canada charges a fee of 9.90 yuan plus tax on all returns sent to its warehouse;Best Buy Canada charges a return fee of 15% of the purchase price for certain products, provided that the original packaging of the product has been opened;H&M charges a fee of $4.99 for returns made through Canadian postal retail centers, but provides free return services to members;Zara currently still offers free return services, but in the UK, the fashion brand charges a fee of £ 1.95 (approximately CAD 3.30) for online returns, and it is expected that a return fee will also be charged in the future;Lululemon can still offer free returns, and customers who join the new membership program can even receive additional benefits.

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