SANTA MONICA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Forty percent of online purchasers buy new packaging, often cardboard boxes, to ship unwanted purchases back.1 Happy Returns, which offers end-to-end return solutions to online and omni-channel retailers, today launched a new program to stem the tide of cardboard waste by offering cardboard-free returns to its retail customers.
The company is addressing a growing environmental problem while offering online and omnichannel retailers and their customers easier and more user-friendly ways to manage returns. Approximately 165 billion packages are shipped in the U.S. each year, consuming nearly 1 billion trees annually.2 As e-commerce continues to grow at nearly 15 percent a year, so will the impact.3
“Happy Returns helps solve the $0.5 trillion/year3 Achilles heel of the online retailing experience: efficiently and effectively managing the logistics of returned items while keeping customers happy,” said David Sobie, CEO and co-founder of Happy Returns. “Our new program delivers returns in a way that is good for the planet, extending new benefits to retailers who wish to support a more sustainable environment and reduce their carbon footprint.”
Happy Returns now accepts box-free returns at their nationwide network of Return Bar locations, where online shoppers who purchase goods from Happy Returns’ growing list of retail partners can return products in-person. Happy Returns aggregates returned items across participating retailers then bulk ships them in reusable packaging to regional return hubs for sorting, processing and routing to the most efficient destinations. The reusable packaging shipped to retailer’s distribution centers are collected and reused at Return Bar locations. Happy Returns’ Return Bar locations have doubled since early 2018.
Fashion retailers Draper James, Revolve and Rothy’s are the first to sign on to Happy Returns’ new cardboard-free returns solution.
“Box-free returns align beautifully with Rothy’s ethos,” explains Heather Howard, VP of Operations and People at Rothy’s. “We are sustainable to the core and constantly examining how we can reduce waste. We're proud to partner with fellow companies that prioritize the same goals. Happy Returns’ new program provides our customers another way in which to further participate in planet-friendly practices with our brand."
In order to quantify the value of the box-free return model, Happy Returns commissioned the study, “Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions Through Consolidated Returns Shipments: A Retail Study”, by Yorke Engineering. The study concluded that the box-free return program, “curtails the total distance traveled both for returns and resold refurbished items and reduces the cardboard consumption required.”
Specifically, the Happy Returns model reduces the amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 0.12 pounds per item returned. For example, a retailer with 1 million annual returns would reduce their environmental footprint by 120,000 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions annually.
John Horten, Vice President of Operations at Draper James, explains, “Happy Returns’ new box-free returns makes it easy for our customers to return their purchases while helping us contribute, however big or small, to environmental sustainability. It was a no-brainer decision for us to sign on.”
For more information, please visit www.happyreturns.com.
1. Mui, W., Ph.D. (n.d.). Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions Through Consolidated Returns Shipments: A Retail Study (p. 4, Rep.). Yorke Engineering LLC.
2. Peters, A. (2018, April 20). Can Online Retail Solve Its Packaging Problem? Retrieved from https://www.fastcompany.com/40560641/can-online-retail-solve-its-packaging-problem
3. Ali, F. (2019, February 28). US ecommerce sales grow 15.0% in 2018. Retrieved from https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/article/us-ecommerce-sales/
4. Orendorff, A. (2019, February 27). The Plague of Ecommerce Return Rates and How to Maintain Profitability. Retrieved from https://www.shopify.com/enterprise/ecommerce-returns
About Happy Returns:
Happy Returns provides comprehensive return solutions for the world's leading online and omni-channel retailers and their customers. With Happy Returns' Full Stack Returns, retailers offer customers a best-in-class branded online return and exchange flow as well as the maximum flexibility for returning purchases. Shoppers enjoy multiple ways to return: in-person via Happy Returns' nationwide network of 400 Return Bar locations, through the retailers' own stores, or by carrier. Happy Returns provides aggregated shipping and logistics across all channels with optimized disposition to destinations of the retailers' choice; all with comprehensive reporting and analytics. The result is a world-class experience for customers (NPS® of 95) with maximum value for retailers.
Happy Returns' co-founders met at HauteLook/NordstromRack.com, where they led the creation and launch of the highly successful Return-to-Rack program, in which HauteLook and NordstromRack.com shoppers return online purchases to Nordstrom Rack physical stores. Happy Returns is based in Santa Monica, California and its investors include PayPal, USVP, Upfront Ventures, and Lowercase Capital. For more information, visit www.happyreturns.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.