Cracking the code on ecommerce returns

2 minute read

Every aspect of ecommerce has experienced a shakeup over the past few years – and returns are no exception. Online shopping is much more popular with Canadians than it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. And the more they buy, the more they return. If you’re selling online, the right returns policy is more important than ever.

To help you crack the code on ecommerce returns and boost customer loyalty, we asked 5,000 Canadians what returns-related factors compel them to buy – and what pains them most about returning online orders. What they told us can help transform your returns policy into a sales advantage.
Returns can make or break the sale. Canadian online shoppers are more likely to purchase from retailers that offer: free returns 82%, a hassle-free returns policy 81%, convenient locations to return items to 72%, ability to return in store 70%, ability to return by mail or courier 69%.

Among our findings:

Returns are on the rise: Almost half (48%) of Canada’s online shopping population reports having returned an online purchase over the past year. That’s a 30% increase over 2019, when 37% of shoppers returned at least one online purchase.

Returns can make (or break) the sale: Four in five (81%) Canadian online shoppers look for a hassle-free returns policy before they buy. Almost half (45%) have avoided repeat purchases from retailers who didn’t offer a convenient returns process.

Return-related pain points vary by generational cohort: Millennials are the most pained by having to print return labels at home and having to wait too long to receive their return credit or refund. Gen X shoppers are the most irked by having to pay for return shipping and not being able to return items in-store.

Explore our latest infographic to discover more about what Canadians across generational cohorts have to say about the online returns experience.

Crack the code on ecommerce returns
with our latest infographic

View the infographic

Phase 5, Canadian Online Shopper Study, May 2022.