The initial deal is limited to online purchases (no trying to return stuff purchased from a physical John Lewis store) and is further restricted to clothing, shoes and "fashion accessories." (Wonder if the argument that an iPad Mini or a coffee machine is a fashion accessory would fly?) The John Lewis free shipping deal comes through a partnership with CollectPlus, a large U.K. parcel service. Completely non-coincidentally, the incoming E-Commerce chief for John Lewis—Mark Lewis—is the former head of CollectPlus. Regardless of where the idea came from, having a relatively quick and painless way to return those "looked good on screen but are in reality stunningly ugly patent leather pumps" is a good one. Anything that makes shoppers more comfortable with buying a lot of clothes on the chance that they'll keep some of them is certainly worth a shot.
John Lewis, the huge British department store chain, is taking an interesting twist on E-Commerce returns. The idea of having free unlimited returns for online-purchased clothing and shoes (especially shoes) is well known, but the chain is trying to make it more hassle-free by allowing those free E-Commerce returns at more than 5,000 convenience stores, gas stations (OK, petrol stations) and newsstands. Returning too tight sneakers when you fill up for gas on the way to work?