Jamie Powell-Tuck discusses free returns on BBC Radio 4

The revelation that ZARA has started charging their customers for online returns may be somewhat old news by now to those working in the retail industry…but the discussion certainly is not. Labour shortages, fuel surcharges, and returners-happy consumers have culminated in a more expensive reverse logistics process for all and several missed earnings reports from e-tailers as a result. The free returns debate has never been so relevant.

BBC Radio 4 once again turned to award-winning returns solution ZigZag to provide an expert point of view on the topic of free returns and what else retailers can do to combat the rising costs of doing business online. Jamie Powell-Tuck, ZigZag’s long-standing Chief Operating Officer, was the perfect professional to share some fresh insight from our Retail Returns Study 2022 and provide practical advice for retailers looking to minimise the financial impact of returns.

Host Winifred Robinson introduced the segment on the Your and Yours programme with some mixed opinions from shoppers across Manchester’s high streets. Whilst many seem to understand why charging returns may be a necessary action for many brands, but highlighted that the timing of the move – during a cost-of-living crisis – was not favourable for your average consumer.

Jamie was asked to provide predictions on whether other brands will start charging for returns, what other money-saving techniques are available to cash-strapped retailers, and for his quick tips on what retailers can do to reduce returns. In true ZigZag fashion, Jamie’s interview provided listening retailers with some key takeaways and interesting statistics to help them revolutionise their returns policy.

“We might start to see more of retailers going towards a subscription model or a loyalty and promotional based [offer of free returns] …We are seeing more and more that the free return is key to people going online, so it’s certainly not going to go away.”

ZigZag was delighted to be welcomed back onto BBC Radio 4 for another returns discussion and, as eCommerce and returns continue to grow, we are sure that the topic would have been of interest to most of show’s 11 million+ weekly listeners. We would like to thank Jonny Dymond and the BBC Radio 4 team for the invitation as we are always excited to provide the voice for reverse logistics!