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Sun Sept 22 2019 16:47:26

US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

By: Ina Steiner

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The US Postal Service is running a test that allows buyers to mail back product-returns to merchants without their original packaging. But is it a good idea?

If the concept sounds familiar, it's because Amazon offers its customers this service already, allowing them to drop off products at Amazon physical stores (Amazon Books and Amazon 4-star); Kohl's; Whole Foods Markets; and The UPS Store.

Amazon controls which items can be returned this way - customers must first get a QR code from the Amazon Return Center online. That's also how it works for the USPS test - buyers must present a QR code from a merchant when bringing their unpackaged item to a USPS location to be returned.

The Package Less Returns service will be tested at 53 sites in Southern Area's Dallas District that are equipped with Retail Systems Software (RSS) workstations. The returned merchandise will be shipped in USPS-supplied poly bags, available in two sizes: 12 inches by 15 inches, and 15 inches by 22 inches.

The test kicked off last week and runs through January 17, 2020. It's designed to help determine the viability of the Package Less Returns option as an ongoing consumer service.

Some merchants may love the concept, especially for certain types of products. But can you think of a better name than the "Package Less Returns" service?



Comments (13) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: FeelingFroggy This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 22 17:13:06 2019

Who broke the crystal.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Whatever This user has validated their user name.

Sun Sep 22 17:39:53 2019

I would call it "Don't Do IT" What in the heck is the USPO thinking?? My product is jewelry - let's see how much of that gets back to me and is there going to be a charge for the seller who's getting the return?
The post office (mine anyway) can barely keep the windows open with "cashiers" (let's call them what they are)  On a monday with 4 windows available they have 1 clerk.  Yeah - let's give that one more work - they already hate their jobs.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

This user has validated their user name. by: Lightning

Sun Sep 22 19:58:51 2019

Package Less Returns is grammatically incorrect from the start.  Maybe if it was package-less, or packageless, Unpackaged, package-free, or Open-Box Returns.  Package Less Returns sound like a math equation ''(package minus returns'' ( = what???)  Probably zero, as far as the seller is concerned.

You know, we don't always have to do something about everything.  Give it a rest for a change, and leave things as they are.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Sep 23 00:29:27 2019

I'm not sure that I even understand why they would want to do this. Are the seller's getting the return asking for this? I doubt it. Are the buyer sending the return back asking for it? who knows. Who gets to pay or will it be combined in with the postage for these poly bags? I can see getting returns of clothing this way. I even use poly-bags for most of my shipments, but if I don't send it in a poly-bag that is because I don't think it is a safe way to ship in the first place. So someone buys and iron and then changes their mind so this iron that no longer needs a package gets sent back to the seller in a polybag and it is toast by the time it arrives.

Who comes up with these stupid ideas anyhow? And who makes the decision to use the poly-bags instead of a nice sturdy box? The whole think sounds ridiculous.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Barbbie This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 00:39:05 2019

When I saw what they were calling it, honestly I thought they were just going to stick a mailing label on whatever it was (package less) and return it sounds like this is only slightly better, just putting a piece of plastic around it first.  
Bad, Bad, Bad idea.
I agree with the other posters if I wanted it mailed in a piece of plastic wrapper, I would mail it that way.
As with everything else USPS does, it will not be their responsibility, just on the seller, you will get back a broken piece of junk and the post office will ask you if you bought the insurance, no, well even if you did, too bad, it was packed badly, no insurance paid!

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: thebobman This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 00:40:57 2019

I bought a couple snow tires and they arrived via fedex with just a label on them. Now thats packageless shipping

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: ySirTinLee This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 04:18:17 2019

Why you people cry so much?  Read the article:
"buyers must present a QR code from a merchant when bringing their unpackaged item to a USPS location to be returned."
"merchant": that's you dumbass.  In other words, if you as the seller don't approve the return by issuing a QR code.  There can be no return.  It's simple!

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 06:39:14 2019

I don't see how a customer can get 100% refund if the item is not packaged, or is broken or scratched, or defective caused by the buyer.  Makes no sense.  As a seller I would be livid.  That's why I won't do FBA....among other reasons.  But remember -- 40% of AMZ sellers ARE Chinese.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 06:41:16 2019

"buyers must present a QR code from a merchant when bringing their unpackaged item to a USPS location to be returned."
"merchant": that's you dumbass.  In other words, if you as the seller don't approve the return by issuing a QR code.  There can be no return.  It's simple!
^^
This applies to FBA.  If you don't want to participate, don't do FBA and don't issue a QR code.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 08:45:45 2019

UGH

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: Disgusted This user has validated their user name.

Mon Sep 23 09:54:54 2019

That has to be the dumbest idea yet.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

This user has validated their user name. by: DeathFromAbove

Wed Sep 25 16:19:10 2019

This sounds like a great way to streamline returns if you are in the throw pillow business.

Perminate Link for US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns   US Postal Service Tests No-Box Returns

by: purpleiris This user has validated their user name.

Thu Sep 26 12:33:36 2019

This makes no sense. I already have it in my policies that items need to be returned in their original packaging via the same mail service used. Now, if the packaging was damaged, then it's likely that the item is damaged and I wouldn't want it returned anyway.

I'm just glad to see that they're requiring authorization from the seller so customers can't just go to the PO and return something without our knowledge. At least when it comes to using that service, anyway.



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