UPS expects up to 1.9 million daily returns

With a growing e-commerce sector, so UPS is forecasting a record breaking number of returns to e-retailers. Throughout its parcel operations the global delivery company expects to handle more than a million parcels sent back to retailers daily between December and January. 


The first spike is to take place in the week before Christmas, with an expected daily throughput of 1.6 million parcels daily from December 16.

UPS has dubbed January 2 ‘National Returns Day’ with an expected 1.9 million packages sent through the returns network, a 26% increase on last year’s peak.

“As retailers start preparing for the busy holiday season, they should certainly be factoring returns into their business plans,” said Kevin Warren, UPS’s Chief Marketing Officer. “Gone are the days where returns were isolated to January – today’s empowered consumers will be sending packages back to retailers all season long.”


Research into effective e-commerce sales shows that online retailers need to offer a decent returns service. According to UPS own research:

– 73% of shoppers surveyed said the overall returns experience impacts their likelihood to purchase from a retailer again.

– 68% of survey respondents agree that the returns experience shapes their overall perceptions of a retailer.

– 42% said free return shipping contributes most to a positive returns experience

As part of that returns service, customers expect proactive communications, flexible returns options and transparency of the process.

“If retailers want to be considered a ‘Returns Rockstar’ this holiday season, they will need to be prepared to offer a seamless, hassle-free returns experience to consumers.” continued Warren. “UPS has a whole portfolio of products that can help simplify holiday returns for consumers and retailers alike.”

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