ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -
Are you an online shopper that takes advantage of free shipping knowing you can just return things for free, too?
FOX 35 talked to retail experts that say that consumers who do that do that too often may be labeled “returnaholics.”
Retail specialist Wendy Krepak said online shopping is a “very important piece of the puzzle” for retailers but returns cost stores money—to the tune of 375 billion dollars per year.
"They have not only restocking fees if the items aren't damaged. If they are then they're not even saleable so it's a big loss to their bottom line,” Krepak said.
Not to mention shipping costs.
So, now retailers are keeping track of online shoppers who return more items than they keep.
"If you're returning 30 percent of the products that you buy then you may be a ‘returnaholic.’ If you’re return 4 to 5 percent [or] 1 percent of the products that you buy then probably not,” said Omer Artun, CEO of Agilone, a company that helps retailers understand consumer behavior.
Artun said retailers aren’t just using his data to identify returnaholics. They also use it to understand what kind of shopper you are and tailor your online shopping experience to you.
He offered this example: if a company notices that a shopper tends to buy the same pair of shoes in multiple sizes and send the ones that don’t fit back, a retailer might create a customer history and remind the shopper what has worked in the past.
But if a company can't curb a customer's returns, “You might not want to market to these people. Don’t send them offers don’t promote to them to buy stuff from you,” Artun said.