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Peak Season Continues Into the New Year as Holiday Shoppers Make Returns and Post-Holiday Shopping Plans

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·4 min read
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Amid Increased Pandemic Spending, Ware2Go Holiday Survey Says 92% of Americans Plan to Post-Holiday Shop, and 80% Expect to Make Holiday Gift Returns

Ware2Go, the UPS (NYSE:UPS) founded on-demand fulfillment network and integrated tech platform enabling merchants of any size to offer one-to-two-day shipping, today announced a second round of survey results predicting robust post-holiday spending and returns. With 92% of Americans saying they will participate in post-holiday shopping this year, a substantial increase over the typical 72%, merchants can expect heavy sales and a higher return rate both pre- and post-holiday season.

Shopping Booms Throughout the Season and Across Channels

After ten months of pandemic precautions, quarantines and changing digital habits, 83% of survey respondents said they plan to do more online shopping for holiday gifts this year compared with last. Overall, that means 70% will be shopping online exclusively or combo — both online and in-person — shopping.

Respondents vary regarding how quickly they plan to jump back into shopping after the holiday season:

  • 31% intend to shop within a few days after the holidays

  • 34% plan to shop within the month of January

  • 23% say they will wait 2-3 months before shopping again.

Ware2Go CEO Steve Denton explained, "Shipping carriers like UPS are hitting new peak volumes this holiday season already, and, with the anticipated post-holiday shopping season following, we can expect to see those volumes pushing well into January. With 63% of consumers planning to purchase from new brands, this holiday season presents an opportunity for sellers to build a new loyal customer base if they meet customer expectations for eCommerce delivery. With 99% on-time delivery rates, Ware2Go is giving merchants a competitive edge at a time when many retailers are struggling to keep up with demand."

Return Policies Sway Consumers’ Choices

With holiday eCommerce return rates hovering around 30%, merchants should consider the returns process when building both their selling and operational strategies. In fact, among survey respondents, a 61% majority say an online merchant’s return policy is very important to their decision to make a purchase, and another 34% say it’s somewhat important. Only 6% are indifferent.

Just over half (51%) of Americans have purchased a gift for someone and then returned it before gifting it. While their reasons varied, responses revealed that many returns are preventable:

  • 35% say that the item was not as pictured or described

  • 33% say that it took too long to arrive

  • 31% report that the fit wasn’t right

  • 31% ordered multiple options to compare

How Americans return purchases and how quickly they act are noteworthy data for retailers, too. A plurality, 47%, favor in-store returns, but 35% still prefer to return through the mail. For the most part, Americans act swiftly to return gifts they don’t plan to keep: 24% return in less than 1 week, 33% return in 1-2 weeks, and 18% take 2 weeks to 1 month to return.

Partnerships Can Ease the Returns Experience for Merchants and Customers

To make the entire delivery, through returns cycle and UX, seamless in B2B and B2C relationships, companies are joining forces. Ware2Go and Happy Returns today have announced a partnership to do just that. "Together with Ware2Go, we're delivering exceptional customer experiences from the time the order is placed until a return is completed," said David Sobie, CEO and Co-Founder of Happy Returns.

He continued, "With the data showing likely increases in online shopping for holiday gifts, a rise in the number of Americans purchasing from new brands, booming post-holiday sprees, and a vibrant overall eCommerce landscape, it’s clear that fast delivery plus a seamless returns policy will have impact — both for order conversions and the long-term value customer loyalty creates for merchants."

The Ware2Go Solution

Ware2Go provides businesses of all sizes with cost-efficient access to industry-leading warehousing, fulfillment, technology, and financial services so they can optimize their logistics, compete, scale, and grow. Ware2Go services help enable merchants to maximize the efficiency of their entire supply chain and develop high-functioning distribution networks to reach eCommerce customers across the U.S.

About the Survey

Conducted in October 2020 by Propeller Insights on behalf of Ware2Go, this survey polled more than 1,000 U.S. consumers. Ranging in age from 18 to older than 75, Americans shared 2020 holiday shopping interests, behaviors and preferences, as well as post-holiday plans.

About Ware2Go

Ware2Go, a UPS Company, operates a turnkey nationwide fulfillment network designed to help merchants easily position products closer to end customers for a fast, inexpensive and reliable order-to-delivery experience. Ware2Go offers an integrated solution for storage, pick, pack, and shipping services to businesses of all sizes through an intuitive cloud-based technology platform that makes it easy to extend your distribution footprint and scale up and down as your operational needs change. Ware2Go simplifies nationwide fulfillment to help you meet your customers’ needs and expectations.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201215005201/en/


Gabrielle Jasinski