Free returns - sounds great, doesn't it?
In theory, yes - however, no returns are actually ever free, someone always needs to pay for them.
And they don't come cheap.
On the one hand, our partners and vendors need to cover the return costs if the products are advertised as "free".
To a certain extent, this is of course a marketing strategy, as it gives you, our customer, an additional level of security, peace of mind, and an incentive to shop with us. However, especially some of the smaller vegan businesses we work with simply cannot offer such deals as they would not be able to make a profit if they had to cover shipping and/or return costs.
But there's more.
Free returns aren't just bad for business, they also take a toll on the environment.
With every item that you return, the carbon footprint of that item increases. As we are a vegan marketplace with an emphasis on sustainability, we try and keep our impact on the environment as small as possible. Of course, the online shopping industry can never be completely carbon-neutral, but be do our best here at for vegans to keep it as low as possible and also encourage our partners to ship their orders with carbon-neutral shipping providers or offset the emissions in some way.
That being said, it's not just the emissions or the environmental footprint that increases; there's also a logistical challenge of the couriers, shipping trucks, and even planes that have to carry items back and forth.
So what can be done?
That's the question, isn't it? And the answer isn't as clear cut as we'd like it to be.
Of course we would like to offer you a carefree shopping experience and don't want you to have to worry about whether you can return an item in case it doesn't fit or you simply don't like it. Which is why we offer a no-questions-asked return period of 14 days after you have received the goods on most of our products (perishable goods and consumables are, for example, exempt from this).
On the other hand, we would like you to also make conscious choices when you buy something on our platform or online in general and keep in mind that you're burdening the environment "unnecessarily" by returning items.
We know that it's not always easy.
But sometimes, we see customers order 2 or 3 pairs of shoes of the same model because they want to get the size just right - which we understand - especially with shoes it's never easy to find the right size from the get-go. Which is why we try to be as transparent as possible and try to state whether the fit of the shoes is rather on the smaller side or if they are somewhat larger than expected.
Communication is key.
Did you know that you can always ask our partners directly about a product by clicking on the button "contact vendor" when you're on the product page? If you don't have enough information on the product, you can always ask our parnters to help you find the size that's perfect for you. They are always glad to help.
We'll make it easy for you.
If one of our partners offer free returns, there's usually a return slip in the parcel you receive.
For those cases where you need to cover return costs yourself, you can find a link in the last email that you received from us that will give you detailed instructions as to how you can book a return on our platform. Alternatively, you can of course always get in touch with us by using the live chat function at the bottom of the page, filling out our contact form, or sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.