Supply Chain Dive: UPS and Overstock to Launch a Pilot Program for Returns in Q4 2022
Overstock.com and UPS will begin a test arrangement in Q4 to allow for more convenient customer returns. According to the retailer's CEO Jonathan Johnson, the pilot program will allow customers to have returns picked up from their homes without having to re-box the items.
Customers are currently being advised on Overstock's website to use appropriate packaging for returns. The delivery giant UPS also said in an email statement that the experiment with Overstock is just one of several tests it is doing as part of its recently announced logistics-as-a-service offering. On a recent earnings call, UPS CEO Carol Tomé discussed the company's efforts to diversify its revenue streams, one of the five pillars of which is the development of a strong reverse logistics business.
"We don't have further details to give just yet, but we see strong potential for new value creation for our customers as we combine the strength of UPS's physical network with digital-first tools and platforms," said UPS in a statement.
A representative for Overstock stated that beyond what was discussed during the earnings call, there is no additional information available. It is anticipated that there would be an increase in product returns during the holiday shipping season, thus a test launch of the returns effort in the fourth quarter would be timely. From November 14, 2021, to January 22, 2022, UPS processed more than 60 million return packages.
Overstock and UPS have been working together on returns for some time now. The Overstock website indicates that buyers can obtain a return shipping label from UPS. Through the pilot initiative, both companies will be better able to understand their customers' preferences and evaluate their end-to-end shopping experiences. “Initiatives like this one with UPS can go a long way in generating repeat business from our customers,” said Jonathan.
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