Skip to main content

Looking for the perfect shoe online

Since the day I became a mom, it became clear that the idea of spending an afternoon at the mall, trying on clothes store after store would become a memory of the past. I didn't have the energy to organize a shopping trip with the baby, and even less interest in spending time away from him. Shopping trips to the mall were replaced to long online shopping sessions late at night.

It wasn't a drastic change in fact. I had been shopping online for years, and my work forced me to be a somewhat savvy online shopper. So I didn't mind.... until I needed to find the perfect shoe to wear for my sister's wedding. I already had the dress and I had a very specific idea of the shoe I needed: the color, the height, the style, etc... Easy, I thought: Online stores have large assortments, easy filtering tools, reviews. I should find the perfect shoe in no time!
Well, not that fast. It turns out that assessing the exact color on a computer screen is quite difficult, and it didn't matter if the shoe fit 1,000s of other women if it doesn't fit me. So, I ended up buying 4 pairs of shoes one after the other and returning all of them. This process gave me the chance to compare my experiences with online returns.

Overall, I thought retailers did a good job in processing the returns and working through refunds and communication. This is big progress compared to recent years as far as I can tell (I used to be very skeptical about returns of items bought online from hearing about bad stories).
My main issue concerned the process of physically returning the items. For online-only retailers, I didn't really have the choice: I had to send back the shoes per mail. While I wish I didn't have to spend the time repacking everything, the mailing label was usually easy to organize. I guess that's all I could expect.

Retailers with both online and physical presence tend to have an advantage as they can accept returns in their stores. Those retailers who don't offer this service are not taking advantage of their full potential. First, customers are starting to expect to have this option when returning an item. It helps address the hassle of re-packing and mailing, and remove the uncertainty of not getting the refund quickly. So, there is a strong chance of disappointing customers if the option isn't available (this happened to me). Second, the subsequent store visit could generate additional impulse sales and increased loyalty that I am sure no retailer would want to miss.
That said, it's not a good customer experience either when multi-channel retailers push customers to return items in their stores to the point of making it difficult to return per mail (this happened to me as well). While this might be the best solution for them, they are missing the concept of convenience from the customer standpoint. What if there is no store around me? What if it's more convenient for me to drop a package at the post office? Retailers shouldn't make assumptions on behalf of customers about the easiest way to return items. They should just give us the choice.

I hope that online retailers will continue to work on making online returns as easy as possible, so that next time I (or many other customers for that matter) need to return an item, we don't have to spend time figuring out what options are available and arguing with Customer Service about what is the most convenient way of returning an item from a customer standpoint.

Comments

  1. I'm constantly searching on the internet for posts that will help me. Too much is clearly to learn about this. I believe you created good quality items in Functions also. Keep working, congrats! 网课代上

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Turkey travel with toddler - a good idea after all

After 10 days traveling in Turkey with our 16-month old son, we found that going to far-away countries with a toddler is not as difficult as many people believe. Yes, we also had our own concerns, and we had set our expectations that we might have a rough time. Yet, we had decided that it would be worth the effort since we were very eager to visit Turkey. As it turns out, most of our concerns weren’t justified, and we found that Daniel had a great time in Turkey. Below are a few things we have learned in our trip. • Jetlag : Interestingly enough, it was easier for Daniel to adjust after this complex trip than after a “simple” journey to Germany. After a 26-hour journey (2 flights and one 2.5 hour car drive) and a jump of 10 time zones, internal rhythm is typically quite upset for everyone, big and small. We flew with the night flight from San Francisco to Frankfurt, so Daniel had a good night of sleep behind him when we landed in Germany. From then, we paced his naps until the follo

Lassen Volcanic camping trip

After our fun trip to Yosemite , our second camping trip of the season was at Lassen Volcanic National park, and it was a great end of a fun summer. On our longest camping trip yet (3 days), we had the chance to visit most of the park highlights. First, we visited Sulphur Works, with boiling mud pots and geysers. It was a fun and relaxing hike, and a great way to get to know the park. On the second day, we climbed Cedar Cone , an old volcano that offers amazing views from the top. The hike is quite challenging due to the sandy aspect of the climb. But Daniel did great, climbing faster that some of the grown up around us (and despite wearing a shoe that was way too tight, as we discovered later!) The reward as the top is astounding views of the surrounding mountains and lava flows. The spent the afternoon after this long hike splashing in the river by the campground, which the kids loved! On our last day, we drove all the way to the other end of the park, to Drakesbad Ranch,

Yosemite trip

Last week, we had another big milestone in our family life. After last year's first quick camping trip at Pinnacles , we went camping for 2 nights for the first time. And it was a great success. We were lucky to get a reservation at a campground in Yosemite, on a weekend where the weather was perfect, if not a little too hot. We spent a weekend exploring the valley, hiking, looking for wildlife (not very successfully though) and enjoying the outdoors. It was fun! Even though Daniel had a short phase of accidents after a long hike to the top of Bernal Fall (bitten by a squirrel - or so he thinks, and a fall leading to a cut gum), he quickly recovered and enjoyed the rest of the trip. A few minutes later, he was again climbing on boulders, running around, and enjoying being outdoors to use his endless energy. The hardest part was leaving. Everyone was heart-broken, but Daniel had the hardest time. It seems to be a pattern for him lately, and I think this had to do with the age (a