Did you know that in 2020, Americans spent $813 billion online? Millions of those purchases will end up getting sent back and those returns can have a big environmental impact. Over the years shopping has changed a lot. Before we would go to stores and feel or try on the clothing we want to buy. Now, most people prefer online shopping since they provide a variety of options to choose from and because some shops offer free shipping. What exactly happens when we return an item we didnt like? People return on average about 25 percent of what they buy online, compared with about 8 percent of what they buy in stores ( upfront). Instead, they’re often thrown out, even if they’re still brand new. About 5 billion pounds of returned goods end up in landfills each year which is shocking right. I read that all types of clothing gets thrown out because companies don’t put those items back on sale. Some returns get sent to discount or thrift stores, while things like electronics could get stripped for parts. Other unwanted could still end up in the garbage eventually.
I am a person who usually buys online and I had no clue about what happens to returned items. It is important to be careful when shopping online. Now that I am aware of how shopping can lead to environmental problems I will be careful when purchasing items.
What are your thoughts on online returns?