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Almost two-thirds of shoppers are less likely to return goods bought online

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A survey by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has revealed that almost two-thirds of consumers are less likely to return goods they buy online, compared to those they buy on the high street — despite an extra right to a seven-day cooling-off period for goods bought online.

The survey for the ‘Know Your Consumer Rights’ campaign found that:

  • More than 60% of shoppers are less likely to return goods purchased online, compared to goods purchased on the high street.

  • Three quarters (77%) of UK consumers don’t know there are differences between online and high street consumer rights.

  • More than one in 10 (13%) admit to not being sure of their consumer rights with online purchases.

“There has been a huge revolution in how people buy goods,” says consumer minister Kevin Brennan. “We are now Europe’s biggest online shoppers, so it’s important we all know that most online goods can be returned with no questions asked within seven days. We want confident consumers who can assert their rights and get a good deal.”

The survey also reveals that consumers are just as confused when shopping on the high street: Two-fifths think that retailers always have a right to refuse a refund if they don’t have a receipt, while one in ten believes goods can’t be returned once they’ve left the store.

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