Published: Sat, February 10, 2018
Markets | By Josh Butler

Jerks force LL Bean to ditch world's best return policy

Jerks force LL Bean to ditch world's best return policy

For over 100 years, Maine-based outdoor brand L.L. Bean has been known for its famously liberal return policy: if you're unsatisfied with a product, bring it in and get it replaced for free at any time, no receipt required, no questions asked. The letter goes on to explain that some consumers expect refunds for "heavily worn products used over many years" or refunds for products bought at yard sales or other third party outlets.

"Customers will have one year after purchasing an item to return it, accompanied by proof of purchase", the letter confirms.

Shawn O. Gorman, L.L. Bean's executive chairman and the great-grandson of the original Leon Leonwood Bean, said in the post that the company had to make this change because customers were abusing the generous returns policy. The guarantee has always been a selling point for Bean products.

In recent years the company has taken steps to appeal to a hipper, less outdoorsy clientele., L.L. Bean has been "looking to really create a new updated fit and style".

L.L. Bean isn't the only brand to do away with its lifetime return policy.

Trump Alludes to Christian Nationalism At the National Prayer Breakfast Speech
Trump vowed to "totally destroy" the law in his first speech to the prayer breakfast past year , drawing enthusiastic applause. And it's deeply offensive to the people like us who are not and who do not believe in God.

It's a momentous change considering that the previous policy had persisted for more than a century and was an integral part of the L.L.Bean brand. "It's not fair to the customers who honor the original spirit of the guarantee and it's certainly not sustainable from a business perspective".

Liberal return policies - some of which accept even death, divorce and weight loss as among the valid reasons to return items - might sound risky, but some retailers have found such policies to be rewarding by encouraging shoppers to buy more as well as fostering long-term bonds. In 1912, 90 of the company's first 100 pairs of its signature boots fell apart.

And the famed ME clothier says it's ending the century-old policy because some customers were abusing it.

"The satisfaction guarantee and the intent of the guarantee is very much still intact". Over the last five years, L.L. Bean lost $250 million on returned items that were so low quality, they had to be destroyed rather than donated.

It's not uncommon to hear stories of people clearing out basements of used or unwanted L.L. Bean products, sometimes decades after their purchase.

Like this: