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Returns policies highlight omnichannel failings says research

A growing number of retailers allow shoppers to return goods bought online in-store – but too few allow the return of goods bought in-store via the internet, according to a new survey.

The survey, by Martec International for Omnico, says that 74 per cent of UK retailers force shoppers to make a journey to the store to return unwanted goods if they will originally bought in a bricks and mortar venue. Yet 65 per cent of retailers allow shoppers to return online purchases via a store and a further 23 per cent plan to introduce such a service.

“Retailers increasingly understand that returns can be a make-or-break interaction with customers and require a far more flexible approach,” said Omnico CEO Mel Taylor. “Customers become frustrated and annoyed when they cannot return what they bought in a store through an online touchpoint, as they know they can do the reverse. Customer expectations are increasing all the time, and retailers who fail to invest in systems that give them the necessary flexibility and omnichannel integration will definitely fall behind. True customer loyalty is built on outstanding customer service.”

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