Editor's Comment

Editorial: Why I’m the perfect example of a ‘bad returner’

There is a box sitting on my dining room table. It has sat there for weeks. It’s two cycling jackets I must return to Wiggle. Last week I got as far as printing out the returns labels (only I was out of printer ink on the second so had to handwrite it) and actually boxed the goods up.

I’ve been in and out of the house a hundred times since then but have I managed to actually take the parcel with me and drop it off either at the local Collect Plus point or the post office – both of which are less than a five-minute drive from me?

Of course I haven’t. I hate dealing with returns. It’s why I’m far happier touching and trying product instore than buying online because I simply can’t be faffed with the annoyance of having to return product. It’s a dilemma many delivery partners are trying to change for their retail clients and the latest to do so is Irish delivery firm An Post. The company’s launch of its ReturnPal service means that parcels for return can be collected from your house – even if you aren’t in.

Whilst there is a charge for the shopper if the retailer isn’t signed up to the service if they are signed up it’s free. Retailers may baulk at the idea of not only paying for the privilege of shoppers returning goods but now also the process of collecting it from their shoppers but the advantage is that they bypass people like me with their product sitting on my dining room table for weeks on end. Instead they get it back into their hands able to prep it for resale whilst it still holds true value for them.

For me at least such a service is a game changer – and one which would probably cost me even dearer if a certain sports retailer offered it…

Another game changer this week has been the launch of a same-day delivery service for London fashion shoppers from ASOS. The new service, ASOS Instant, is provided by On the dot and is available in London initially but will be rolled out to other major cities in the coming months.

Other shoppers prefer to click and collect their goods and the latest click and collect usage statistics from JDA and Centiro shows it’s a delivery channel that continues to rise – but that issues such as staffing are hampering the UK experience in particular.

Also rewriting the rule book this week is KFC. The company has partnered with DHL and QSL to develop a new service around fresh products delivery the trio have pledged. A bespoke service is to be delivered as a result.

Talking fresh, Amazon has announced the expansion of AmazonFresh to now include products from Booths. The company has a mouthwatering range of award-winning products so the new partnership is sure to be a hit with its customers.

Whilst DHL is rewriting the rule book Royal Mail is sticking to it. The company managed to win a High Court victory last week after it was ruled that the contractual dispute resolution procedures that were put in place under the agreed Agenda for Growth must be followed before industry action can take place. It removes the threat of strike action that had been suggested for this month.

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