Do Online Retailers Have Bigger Return Fraud Issues?
The numbers are in and they don’t look good in the returns category. Brick and mortar stores lost approximately 5-10% of their sales to returns, while online retailers lost up to 15%. And 20-30% of those returns were for apparel. Obviously, if people are buying clothes online, they can’t try them on so there are going to be some legitimate returns. Unfortunately, there is that subset of people that are out there to rip you off. Returns of stolen merchandise are still the biggest issue with return fraud, but wardrobing has become the second largest offense. This is an increasingly common practice of people that purchase products without any intention of keeping them. Sadly, if a retailer has a too lenient return policy, this can mean big problems for their future. Losing the revenue and profits from these sales can result in them having to raise prices, reduce costs and even cut jobs.
There is a simple answer for online only retailers to help stop return fraud, especially when it comes to wardrobing. That answer is: the Alpha Shark Tag. This is one of the most effective tools on the market today. You simply clip a tag onto each item before you pack it for shipping and it does all the work for you when it arrives. When the customer opens the package, they can still try on the item. If it happens to be the wrong size, they can ship it back and trade it for the correct one. If it fits, they keep it. However, if they want to go out on the town and wear their new purchase, they will need to remove the Alpha Shark Tag. That’s where the return policy comes in. You can have it posted online in the FAQ section and you can even attach it to the garment with the Alpha Shark Tag itself. Once they remove that tag, the item is no longer eligible to be returned. This easy solution prevents them from free renting the garment from you for a special event.
I bought my daughter a pair of expensive shoes last month from an online store. When we opened them up, it didn’t surprise me to find them with an Alpha Shark Tag attached via lanyard. It was the first time I’d ever bought something that came with one of them on it. I was actually pretty impressed. My daughter was about to cut it off, when I came running like a hurdle jumper through the kitchen to stop her. I had her sit down at the dining table and try them on, and of course, they didn’t fit quite right. I sent them back and we got the right size a couple weeks later. It was a seamless process and there were no issues, but we followed the rules.
Return fraud is a serious issue, and many wardrobing offenders don’t even think what they are doing is wrong. But it is. As one article recently put it: Retailers will build tall walls so the criminals will just build taller ladders. Business owners have to keep up with newest tools and fight return fraud at its core. If you’re looking for a product that will give you a return on your investment, Alpha Shark Tags are worth the research.
For more information on how to stop return fraud, contact us or call: 1.770.426.0547