Black Friday Frustration as goods expected to arrive damaged

Nearly three quarters of a billion pounds worth of goods sold to Brits during the 2021 Black Friday period are expected to arrive damaged according to new research from DS Smith.

A third of Brits plan to take advantage of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales and of those, two fifths (41%) expect to receive up to 6 faulty or damaged items totalling a value of at least £739m. Indeed, 69% of shoppers have previously received faulty or damaged items after ordering them online.

The experience causes ‘Black Friday Frustration’ with almost half of shoppers (46%) saying that products arriving broken or damaged is the most frustrating consequence of receiving a delivery. And the annoyances with poor packaging don’t stop there: a quarter of shoppers are irritated when goods arrive with unnecessary packaging (24%), and a fifth annoyed when packaging is far bigger than needed (20%).”

DS Smith’s DISCS™ technology, named after the types of testing (Drop, Impact, Shock, Crush, Shake), replicates the real world product journey to ensure the packaging is fit for purpose. Keeping the product safe while avoiding excess packaging.

Stefano Rossi, Packaging CEO, DS Smith, commented, “This eye-opening research shows that consumers are fed up with being delivered damaged goods. Luckily, there is a solution; one of the most effective ways to ensure goods arrive safely is to use the right packaging.

“In addition to the financial and emotional costs of delivering and then returning broken items, there is an environmental cost. We collaborate closely with our customers to design the optimal packaging every time. Packaging that keeps the product safe, deliver a great unboxing experience and have a small environmental footprint. Reducing preventable returns, exchanges and related carbon emissions benefits consumers, retailers and our planet.”

When it comes to returning an item, the average Brit revealed that anything less than £22 is not worth making the effort to return – creating additional waste as broken items clutter homes across the UK.

Returns also mean losing out on valuable income for brands and retailers as 48% of shoppers prefer to receive a refund as opposed to 34% who ask for a replacement. 41% are hesitant to shop with a brand again if they receive broken goods from them.

The industry can help alleviate customer frustration by supporting brands to create the best packaging that best protects products, and also limits the amount of material used – making it more environmentally friendly.

Join our Newsletter

Sign up to our weekly newsletters for updates on articles, interviews and events

Sign up