UPS, Overstock Launches Returns Pilot Program

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diving letter:

  • Overstock.com and UPS are launching a pilot program for more convenient customer returns in the fourth quarter, CEO Jonathan Johnson said on the online furniture retailer’s conference call last week.
  • The pilot will allow customers to have product returns picked up at home without repackaging the product, Johnson said. Overstock’s website currently advises customers to ensure their returned item is well packaged and in a box suitable for shipping.
  • The pilot will help both companies better understand customer preferences and evaluate their end-to-end shopping experience, Johnson added. “Initiatives like this with UPS can go a long way in generating repeat business from our customers.”

Dive insight:

The program with Overstock is one of several pilot projects UPS is running as part of its recently announced Logistics-as-a-Service offering, the delivery giant said in an emailed statement. Building a robust reverse logistics business is one of the five key pillars of the initiative, which aims to generate new revenue streams for the company, CEO Carol Tomé said on a conference call.

“We are unable to share further details just yet, but we see strong potential for new value creation for our customers as we combine the strength of the physical UPS network with digital-first tools and platforms,” ​​UPS said in its statement.

A spokesman for Overstock said the company had no more to report on the program than what was said on its earnings call.

A pilot launch in Q4 for the returns initiative would make its debut in the middle of the peak holiday shipping season, which is expected to lead to a spike in product returns. UPS processed more than 60 million returns from November 14, 2021 to January 22, 2022, an all-time high for the company.

UPS and Overstock are already well-known returns partners. According to Overstock’s website, customers can obtain a return label through UPS.

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