Environmental Impact of Amazon Customer Returns and Competitive Sustainability Ways

Take Back-Track for example – a rapidly growing Ecommerce company whose unique business model is taking defective or customer returned products from sellers, refurbishing said products, and then helping sellers resell their products for a discount (as opposed to having Amazon resell them or throw them away). It’s a win-win because it means sellers still are able to salvage profits AND it helps reduce the unnecessary waste of discarding perfectly usable products.

Private Label Branding Strategies – Back-Track to Customer BT2C

Amazon Private Label Branding Strategies

There are 2 schools of thought when it comes to branding a group of items. One method is to go the “Mega Brand” strategy where every item receives the same brand name. The other method is to have a major brand and then use a micro-branding strategy for each model or package. Watch my video and see what strategy I used and how it impacted my online sales and brand loyalty.

Back-Track to Customer BT2C

Back-Track sends a ton of replacement parts and renewed packages to customers everyday for our clients. We call this a BT2C (Back-Track to Customer) ticket. Great news is we’ve “SIMPLIFIED” the process dramatically and would like to show you the new way. Please watch the video for more details.

Truth – National Online Customer Returns Day is January 2, 2020

Why is January 2nd Nation Returns Day?

UPS is one of the largest shippers for online retailers and one of the largest carriers for shipping online customer returns back to the retailers.  In years past, UPS considered January 5th as Nation Returns Day with the largest single day for return shipments of 1.5 million packages on January 5th 2017.

However, according to UPS, things have changed including the date for National Returns Day.  In 2020, National Returns Day is January 2nd (today) with an estimated 1.9 million customer returns being delivered back to retailers on this single day.

While January 2nd may be the biggest single day of return shipments, it’s not the only day customers return packages.  The entire month of January is commonly known as “Returnary” for online retailers as the entire month is a big month for returns considering most retailers offer 30, 60 or 90 day return policies during the holiday season.

It’s estimated that a total of $90-95 Billion (with a capital B) worth of merchandise will be returned over the 2019 Christmas holiday season, including returns during the month of January 2020.  This is a 15-20% jump over the 2018 holiday season.  So as online returns get easier and easier, online retailers who don’t have a customer return loss recovery process in place keep losing more and more.  This “cost of doing business” continues to grow.

1.5 Million Packages Returned on December 19th

Wait, what’cha talking bout Willis? That’s right, on December 19th 2018 UPS returned 1.5 million customer return packages to online retailers.  But how, you ask?  Because of self-gifting during the December holiday season many people buy themselves gifts that eventually get returned.  Sometimes people buy multiple gifts and once they pick the final winner, they take advantage of free returns for the others.

UPS also states that approximately 1 million packages are returned to online retailers each day in December with December 19th being the largest day of the month of December.

When is National Returns Day?

National Returns Day is simply the largest single day for online customer return shipments being delivered back to the online retailer.  According to UPS, National Returns Day has moved over the years:

  • January 5, 2017 – 1.3 million packages
  • January 3, 2018 – 1.4 million packages
  • January 3, 2019 – 1.3 million packages
  • January 2, 2020 – 1.9 million packages (estimated)
  • January 2, 2021 – ?

Note: December 19, 2018 UPS saw 1.5 million online customer return shipments as customers returned self-gifting items or gifts they decided not to give.  In 2019, 1.6 million customer return packages were returned to retailers each day for the week of 12/16/19 – 12/21/19.  Yes, before Christmas.

It’s expected that these statistics will become harder to track in the future as Amazon manages more and more of the last mile delivery, they are also expected to begin picking up customer returns soon.  Also, Amazon has setup a partnership with Kohl’s to be their premier return drop off service allowing customers to drop off their customer return package in person at their local Kohl’s store rather than shipping it using UPS.  I expect Amazon’s blue delivery trucks to pickup at Kohl’s bringing the van’s back to the warehouse full instead of empty.  Sounds more efficient to me.

Why Does Back-Track Care About This?

Back-Track is on a mission to help Amazon sellers recover part of the $32 Billion in “Lost Value” in their Amazon customer returns.  Back-Track will reBOX, reNEW or rePAIR customer returns for Amazon sellers to help them resell the product once again as refurbished or through Amazon’s Renewed program.

We believe that re-purposing the product and extending its life is better economics for Amazon sellers and also better for our environment at the same time.  Having less Amazon customer returns destroyed is a good thing.

From our experience working with Amazon sellers, our data shows that about 80% of Amazon’s customer returns are “Not Defective”.  These are products that function as they were designed and can be resold again to someone else.

For every item that Back-Track reNEWS or rePAIRS that’s one less item going into a landfill prematurely.  That’s one less item draining profits away from Amazon sellers.  That’s one more item in the hands of a consumer like it was originally designed for.

Let’s Get Busy!

Ready to have Back-Track reNEW your Amazon customer returns?

Simply send us your contact information and our friendly staff will tell you more details about pricing, products and how to get started.  NO FEE TO START!

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Online Scam Targeting Facebook Users – When it’s Too Good to Be True

$179 Electric Car

Did you see the $179 electric car ad on Facebook?

When It’s Too Good to Be True…

Something caught my attention and I wish to bring it to your attention too.  I was scrolling through Facebook like usual when an ad crossed my feed that stopped me in my tracks.  An electric vehicle for only $199.

online scam Facebook electric car scoot fake website

Because I have an interest in electronic vehicles, I stopped to take a look.  I’m thinking “No way can you buy a small electronic vehicle like this one for only $199”.  So, I clicked on the Shop Now button and I was taken to their online website.

online scam Facebook electric car scoot fake website

Right away, the warning signs started flashing, WARNING WARNING, DON’T DO IT!

I’d like to say I’m smart enough to see online scams like this one but unfortunately, I’ve fallen for a similar scam only a few months  ago as I was searching for a new pool vacuum and found a deal that seemed too good to be true from a Google ad and went to the website and attempted to purchase it.  My credit card company stopped the transaction right away, but was it too late?  Did the fake company get my credit card number already?

Warning Signs of an Online Scam

As a seasoned eCommerce seller, and having already been scammed like this before, I noticed things that quickly suggest this was not a legitimate online merchant with a legitimate product.

  • The account name is a jumbled mess of random letters
  • The store URL is a Shopify sub-domain
  • The About Us page has no identifying statements about the actual seller
  • The online store is using a very basic startup template
  • The products offered are few and not related
  • Most of all, the prices are extremely low and unrealistic

Interesting, as time passes, one website has even lowered the price of the electronic vehicle from $199 to $179.  They’re probably feeling the pressure from other online scam websites poaching their “customers”.  Oh my.

Do People Fall for these Online Scams?

Yes they do.  Many of them.

  • We’ve become conditioned to believe the Internet is the place to go for “Deals and Steals”.
  • We’ve been conditioned to believe if we don’t like what we purchased for any reason, we can simply return it.
  • We’ve been conditioned to believe if we give out our credit card to the wrong people, we’re protected by the credit card companies.

Additionally, if you click on one of these ads and are taken to the website, Facebook will show you MORE and MORE of these type of “Sponsored Ads”.  Facebook showed me an ad for a scooter, an ad for a camper, a ad for a bike.  I guess after clicking on one ad, I’m labeled as a “Sucker”.

online scam Facebook electric car scoot fake website

online scam Facebook electric car scoot fake website


online scam Facebook electric car scoot fake website

online scam Facebook electric scooter fake website

online scam Facebook electric scooter fake website

online scam Facebook camper fake website

online scam Facebook camper fake website

online scam Facebook bike fake website

online scam Facebook bike fake website

Look at all the Comments

If you scan through the comments on the Facebook posts, some people are asking normal questions about the product or shipping…and the scammers are answering the questions quickly and with respect.  While other comments are from people who see this scam for what it is, a scam and attempt to warn people not to fall for it.

What about Facebook and Shopify?

In some cases, Facebook and Shopify are benefiting from scams such as this.  Someone is paying Facebook for the “Sponsored Ads”.  Are they using a stolen credit card to pay Facebook?  I’m sure they are.  Shopify may be making a commission on the credit card transactions or for hosting the website.

Until websites such as Facebook or Shopify or the credit card merchants are held to a higher standard of safety and security, these type of scams will be hard to stop.

If it’s Too Good To Be True?

Remember, if it seems too good to be true, it probable is.  Stay away from scams like this.  Warn your friends.  Hide your credit cards.  Report the posts to Facebook.  Until people stop believing in scams such as this, the scammers will continue to scam people.