When it comes to returning faulty or unwanted products, many consumers are unsure of their rights. For example, many consumers aren’t aware that they have enhanced rights when purchasing online under the Consumer Contracts Regulations. But, are retailers doing enough to combat this. According to the consumer group Which?, they’re not. A new investigation by the group has found that many major retailers across the UK are failing to provide their customers with clear information setting out their rights when it comes to returning products purchased in their stores and online.
Which? looked at the information provided by 46 different retailers and supermarkets, and found that a staggering 45 didn’t offer information that was both clear and accurate. As a result of this, several of the retailers that were investigated have since updated their information. These include supermarket Tesco, and clothing and food retailer Marks and Spencer, who has since changed the information on their websites informing consumers of their rights when they want to return products.
A spokesperson for supermarket, Morrison’s, commented that: “We give customers really clear advice in our terms and conditions on how to cancel goods they no longer want.” Which? Also noted that they have strong concerns over the confusion consumers are facing when it comes to returns, faulty products and warranties. This is leading to consumers losing money – which it added is completely unacceptable. Alex Neill, Which? managing director of home products and services, said: “We will continue to challenge those that carry on confusing their customers.”
In one case, which was the supermarket Iceland, the returns policy stated that items that were bought in error couldn’t be returned. This has now been confirmed as untrue. An Iceland spokesman said: “We immediately expanded the frequently asked questions on our returns policy on our website when the lack of detail was drawn to our attention by Which? We do not believe that our customers were disadvantaged by this previous lack of detail as our customer contact centre was fully and correctly briefed on our returns policy at all times.”