Shoppers to change habits as retailers move away from free returns

As holiday season looms, shoppers are worried about paying for returns.
As holiday season looms, shoppers are worried about paying for returns.
Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 5:01 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 15, 2023 at 7:45 PM EST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - A new report reveals more retailers are moving away from free returns, meaning, for some purchases, you’ll now have to pay to return something.

”That makes no sense to me, ”Parriss Jones-Greene said.

Notable stores like DSW and TJ Maxx are moving away from free returns. Some shoppers believe these stores are moving in the wrong direction.

”If you have to return something, you should just be able to return it for free,” Jones-Greene said. “You paid for it why do you have to pay just to return it back?”

The National Retail Federation cites returns are costing companies big bucks. Last year, they reported consumers returned $800 billion worth of goods and merchandise.

The change has some rethinking about how they shop.

”I’ll have to reconsider some things ‘cause, you know, every time I’m buying something, generally I might buy two things just to make sure it’s a good fit,” she said.

And she’s not alone.

In 2022, Narvar, a retail technology company, said 63% of consumers engaged in bracketing, which is when people order multiple sizes with the intent to return the sizes that don’t work.

With the holiday season coming up, the change poses another question.

“I’m the one that received the gift, and now I have to up money to return it,” Jones-Greene said. “That’s not cool.”

Most of the changes impact online purchases. Before you buy something online, read the company’s returns policy to see if something has changed.