If Only Shoppers Could Return Stuff By E-mail

Shopping online is convenient, as long as you like what you bought. Forrester Research surveyed online adults on their attitudes about doing holiday shopping online. Fifty-nine percent said they “often find products online that I can’t find anywhere else,” while 41 percent said they “usually find the best deals/values online.” Forty-five percent prefer shopping online “to avoid crowds/lines.” But 50 percent said it’s “a hassle to return items that I purchase online”; 27 percent said they “prefer not to buy online to avoid the hassle of returns.” Free delivery is a major selling point when consumers choose among online shopping venues: 66 percent said they’re “more likely to shop at a retailer that offers free shipping.” However, the fulfillment process can also be a sticking point. “Despite the fact that a vast majority of consumers have moderate expectations for when packages should arrive (i.e., within three to five days), 15 percent said they received orders late last year.”