Black Friday Frustration: Over €1.3bn Worth Of Goods Expected To Arrive Damaged, Study Finds

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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Black Friday Frustration: Over €1.3bn Worth Of Goods Expected To Arrive Damaged, Study Finds

More than €1.3 billion worth of goods sold to online shoppers during the 2021 Black Friday period are expected to arrive damaged, new research from DS Smith has found.

The packaging supplier found that close to one quarter (23%) of European consumers are likely to receive as many as three faulty or damaged items following the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

77 Million Broken Items

More than 77 million items are expected to be delivered broken during the period, it noted – enough broken packaged to fill 3,975 Olympic-sized pools.

'The experience frustrates shoppers who are fed up with the returns process,' DS Smith said.

More than two thirds (43%) of European shoppers say that products arriving broken or damaged is the most frustrating consequence of receiving a Black Friday delivery – if and when this happens, consumers are likely to feel disappointed (45%), annoyed (33%) and frustrated (25%).


On average, European consumers deem anything worth less than €26 as 'not worth making the effort to return', creating additional waste. Of those that haven't returned damaged items, 43% said that this was 'more hassle than its worth'.

'Losing Out On Valuable Income'

'Returns also mean losing out on valuable income for brands and retailers as 57% of shoppers prefer to receive a refund as opposed to 33% who ask for a replacement,' said DS Smith. '40% are hesitant to shop with a brand again if they receive broken goods from them.'

The findings were taken from OnePoll research of 8,000 European adults, including 2,000 in the UK, 2,000 in Germany, 1,000 in France, 1,000 in Italy, 1,000 in Spain, and 1,000 in Poland, conducted in November 2021.

Online retailer Amazon announced recently that it was taking on an additional 20,000 staff in the UK to deal with the expected Black Friday and Christmas rush.

© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. For more Packaging news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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