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Hjort, K.
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Publications (10 of 12) Show all publications
Hjort, K. (2013). On Aligning Returns Management with the E-commerce Strategy to Increase Effectiveness. (Doctoral dissertation). Chalmers University of Technology ; University of Borås
Open this publication in new window or tab >>On Aligning Returns Management with the E-commerce Strategy to Increase Effectiveness
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The returns management (RM) process has traditionally been seen as a value recovery process, which has resulted in an efficiency focus in the returns flow. This thesis present, the effects on a fashion e-commerce organisation, which is underprioritising or neglecting RM in general and consumer returns specifically. In the reported and described single-case study and through a real-life experiment, performed with the case organisation nelly.com, it is shown that the consumer returns rates are not only influenced by the product itself. They represent a complex problem that has its reasons and causes, whereby the product (size, fit, quality, et cetera) together with consumer buying and returning behaviour ultimately have a combined effect on the organisation. The results from the thesis are based on previous research and rest heavily on the research performed since the start of the research journey. Consumer returns form part of the value creation in e-commerce and therefore returns management is a strategic part of the business as such. Handling consumer returns in a traditional or efficient returns system without knowing the reason for return and the state of the returned item is nothing other than gambling with resources. The proposed returns information system (RIS) framework in the thesis addresses this issue and facilitates the downstream application of the gatekeeping activity, near or at the end-user location; managerial attention is required at the strategic process level to build a proper returns system that is partly, and quite likely, decentralised. Products, suppliers, customers and internal processes cause consumer returns and therefore a returns manager needs to address these with other functions and SC partners. This result is partly new and the proposed alignment of RM as a strategic process is new in the sense that RM is part of value creation. This thesis empirically supports the conclusion that “one size fits all” is outdated and does not fit with ecommerce business. The results imply that managers need to gain a profound understanding of consumers’ buying behaviour and also to create differentiated delivery and returns processes to be able to grow within the existing customer segments and possibly to attract new or non-customers who are out of reach at present. Seeing the RM process as strategic in e-commerce, as proposed in the thesis, facilitates the development of the process to become both effective and efficient. Returns management has the potential for revenue creation and cost reduction.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Chalmers University of Technology ; University of Borås, 2013
Series
Skrifter från Högskolan i Borås, ISSN 0280-381X ; 3472
Series
Doktorsavhandlingar vid Chalmers tekniska högskola, ISSN 0346-718X
Keywords
Returns management, supply chain management, alignment, case study, experimental research, gatekeeping, avoidance, reverse logistics, strategy, e-commerce, Logistik
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Bussiness and IT
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-3648 (URN)2320/11978 (Local ID)978-91-7385-791-8 (ISBN)2320/11978 (Archive number)2320/11978 (OAI)
Public defence
2013-02-15, Vasa C, Vera Sandbergs Allé 8, Göteborg, 10:42 (English)
Note

Dissertation to be defended in public on 15th of February 2013, at 10.00 in lecture room Vasa C, Vera Sandbergs Allé 8, Göteborg, for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Available from: 2015-12-04 Created: 2015-12-04 Last updated: 2016-08-19Bibliographically approved
Lantz, B. & Hjort, K. (2013). Real e-customer behavioral responses to free delivery and free returns. Electronic Commerce Research, 13(2), 183-198
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Real e-customer behavioral responses to free delivery and free returns
2013 (English)In: Electronic Commerce Research, ISSN 1389-5753, E-ISSN 1572-9362, Vol. 13, no 2, p. 183-198Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Abstract This study aims to explore the influence of free delivery and free returns on the purchasing and return behaviour of real e-customers in the marketplace. To accomplish this goal, we conducted the study as a fully randomised and controlled experiment in cooperation with nelly.com, a Nordic e-commerce site that specialises in fashion and beauty. Our results suggest that a lenient delivery policy is associated with increased order frequency, decreased average value of purchased items, increased probability of return, and increased average value of returned items. In addition, a lenient return policy was found to be associated with increased order frequency, a decrease in the average value of orders, a decrease in the average value of purchased items, and increased probability of return. However, the effect sizes are generally small, and we conclude that factors such as legislation and competition often force e-tailers to offer free delivery and free returns even though such offers probably would not have been profitable otherwise.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2013
Keywords
E-commerce, Buying behaviour, Lenient policies, Experimental study, Kvalitetsdriven logistik
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-1582 (URN)10.1007/s10660-013-9125-0 (DOI)000319067500005 ()2320/12377 (Local ID)2320/12377 (Archive number)2320/12377 (OAI)
Available from: 2015-11-13 Created: 2015-11-13 Last updated: 2017-12-02Bibliographically approved
Ericsson, D., Hjort, K. & Lantz, B. (2012). A bifocal approach to channel design. In: : . Paper presented at 5th European Forum on Market Driven Supply Chains, Bryssel, 30-31 oktober, 2012. 5th European Forum on Market Driven Supply Chains, Bryssel, 30-31 oktober, 2012
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A bifocal approach to channel design
2012 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
5th European Forum on Market Driven Supply Chains, Bryssel, 30-31 oktober, 2012, 2012
Keywords
Kvalitetsdriven logistik
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-6971 (URN)2320/11964 (Local ID)2320/11964 (Archive number)2320/11964 (OAI)
Conference
5th European Forum on Market Driven Supply Chains, Bryssel, 30-31 oktober, 2012
Available from: 2015-12-22 Created: 2015-12-22 Last updated: 2017-01-22Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K., Lantz, B. & Ericsson, D. (2012). Customer segmentation based on buying and returning behaviour: supportin differentiated service delivery in fashion e-commerce. In: : . Paper presented at 17th International Symposium on Logistics (ISL 2012), Cape Town, South Africa, 8-11 july, 2012.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Customer segmentation based on buying and returning behaviour: supportin differentiated service delivery in fashion e-commerce
2012 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Keywords
Strategy, Customer segmentation, Differentiation, E-commerce, Buying behaviour, Supply Chain Management, Logistik, SCM, DCM
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Textiles and Fashion (General)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-6930 (URN)2320/11850 (Local ID)2320/11850 (Archive number)2320/11850 (OAI)
Conference
17th International Symposium on Logistics (ISL 2012), Cape Town, South Africa, 8-11 july, 2012
Funder
Region Västra Götaland
Note

Sponsorship:

VGR

Available from: 2015-12-22 Created: 2015-12-22 Last updated: 2017-09-27Bibliographically approved
Torstensson, H., Hjort, K., Larsson, J. & Ericsson, D. (2012). Hållbar distanshandel. Västra Götalandsregionen
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Hållbar distanshandel
2012 (Swedish)Report (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västra Götalandsregionen, 2012
Keywords
Logistik, Handel, Mode, Logistik, E-handel, Hållbarhet, Hållbaret
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Textiles and Fashion (General)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-4558 (URN)2320/11871 (Local ID)2320/11871 (Archive number)2320/11871 (OAI)
Funder
Region Västra Götaland
Note

Sponsorship:

VGR

Available from: 2015-12-17 Created: 2015-12-17 Last updated: 2017-09-11Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K. & Lantz, B. (2012). (R)e-tail borrowing of party dresses: an experimental study. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 40(12), 997-1012
Open this publication in new window or tab >>(R)e-tail borrowing of party dresses: an experimental study
2012 (English)In: International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, ISSN 0959-0552, E-ISSN 1758-6690, Vol. 40, no 12, p. 997-1012Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The main purpose of this study is to increase the understanding of consumer behaviour with respect to (r)e-tail borrowing, performed under different (more or less generous) delivery and return policies. Design/methodology/approach – The study was designed as a randomised controlled experiment with a random sample strategy. Among the 192,482 Swedish customers who had made an order at nelly.com during the previous 12 months and were to receive the quarterly nelly.com newsletter in November 2010 by e-mail, 4,000 were randomly selected and randomised into four groups of 1,000 in each group. Findings – The experiment revealed certain purchase and return patterns that support the conclusion that (r)e-tail borrowing behaviour exists in fashion e-commerce. Evidence was also found that lenient delivery and returns policies seem to reinforce (r)e-tail borrowing behaviour, albeit not always in expected ways. Practical implications – Differences in delivery and return policies seem to impact consumer purchase and return behaviour differently depending on the type of item. Therefore a more differentiated view of how to apply them is suggested. Offering the same delivery and return policies to all types of customers and products is generally not optimal with respect to profitability. Originality/value – The paper illustrates the need to consider both delivery and returns policies together with customer and product categories simultaneously when applying them in an e-commerce context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2012
Keywords
Consumer behaviour, Decision making, E-commerce, E-tail borrowing, Experimental study, Retail borrowing, Returns, Sweden, Kvalitetsdriven logistik
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-1378 (URN)10.1108/09590551211274964 (DOI)2320/11627 (Local ID)2320/11627 (Archive number)2320/11627 (OAI)
Available from: 2015-11-13 Created: 2015-11-13 Last updated: 2017-11-29Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K., Hietala, P. & Ericsson, T. (2011). Improved Returns Information System to facilitate Gatekeeping and Returns Avoidance. In: : . Paper presented at Harstad University College in Harstad, Norway, June 9-10, 2011.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Improved Returns Information System to facilitate Gatekeeping and Returns Avoidance
2011 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Keywords
returns management, gatekeeping, returns avoidance, e-commerce, ICT, closed-loop supply chain management, Logistics and Transportation
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Textiles and Fashion (General)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-6578 (URN)2320/8254 (Local ID)2320/8254 (Archive number)2320/8254 (OAI)
Conference
Harstad University College in Harstad, Norway, June 9-10, 2011
Available from: 2015-12-22 Created: 2015-12-22 Last updated: 2017-09-27Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K. & Eriksson, P. (2011). Improved Returns Information System to facilitate Gatekeeping and Returns Avoidance. In: : . Paper presented at Reverse Logistics Association, Conference & Expo, Singapore, September 27-28, 2011. Reverse Logistics Association
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Improved Returns Information System to facilitate Gatekeeping and Returns Avoidance
2011 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Reverse Logistics Association, 2011
Keywords
returns management, avoidance, gatekeeping, fashion e-commerce, e-commerce, Returns Management, e-commerce, IT
National Category
Business Administration Other Computer and Information Science
Research subject
Textiles and Fashion (General)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-6713 (URN)2320/10078 (Local ID)2320/10078 (Archive number)2320/10078 (OAI)
Conference
Reverse Logistics Association, Conference & Expo, Singapore, September 27-28, 2011
Available from: 2015-12-22 Created: 2015-12-22 Last updated: 2018-01-10Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K. & Ericsson, D. (2010). An application of Avoidance and Gatekeeping to manage returns in a distance selling setting. In: Proceedings of the 22nd Annual Conference for Nordic Researchers in Logistics: . Paper presented at Nordic Researchers in Logistics, Kolding, Denmark, June 10-11, 2010..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An application of Avoidance and Gatekeeping to manage returns in a distance selling setting
2010 (English)In: Proceedings of the 22nd Annual Conference for Nordic Researchers in Logistics, 2010Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

ABSTRACT Purpose of this paper The purpose of this paper is twofold, to explore what causes returns in distant selling through examining return reason codes and their distribution. Further to investigate, how and if Returns Management, especially return avoidance and gatekeeping can be applied to a mail order / e-commerce organisation. Design/methodology/approach A single organization case study, designed with both quantitative and qualitative strategies, was used to explore the relatively unobserved area of consumer returns. The results have been evaluated and discussed with different managers from the company under study, to substantiate authenticity and trustworthiness. Findings The paper presents interesting insight into the field of consumer returns in a distant setting. It shows that a considerable amount of returns are size and fit related as one might expect. However it also presents interesting results that a quite large percentage of returns are dependent on consumers i.e. not collecting deliveries etc. Research limitations/implications The presented study provides a starting-point for further research in the mail order/e-commerce business. Practical implications When deciding a strategy for how to handle the problems of returns it is of outmost importance to consider why customers are returning. The returns avoidance process is perhaps the most efficient and effective way of reducing return costs, understanding customer requirements are an important ingredient in this. What is original/value of paper Most studies within the field of returns focus on products or the efficient handling of returns. This study focuses on understanding what causes returns through examining order and returns data, especially return reason codes.

Keywords
returns management, avoidance, gatekeeping, reverse logistics, case study, Returns Management
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-6490 (URN)2320/7375 (Local ID)2320/7375 (Archive number)2320/7375 (OAI)
Conference
Nordic Researchers in Logistics, Kolding, Denmark, June 10-11, 2010.
Available from: 2015-12-22 Created: 2015-12-22 Last updated: 2016-12-01Bibliographically approved
Hjort, K. (2010). Returns Avoidance and Gatekeeping to Enhance E-commerce Performance. (Licentiate dissertation). Swedish School of Textiles, University of Borås; Chalmers University of Technology
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Returns Avoidance and Gatekeeping to Enhance E-commerce Performance
2010 (English)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The mail order business was once a traditional method of selling and distributing clothes, and other commodities, to customers. Now, the e-commerce trend, with more sophisticated techniques of marketing, selling, and distributing goods, has not only challenged the traditional mail order system, it seems also that the traditional retail chain and even fashion chains are being challenged. This change not only affects how sellers compete (be they long-distance or not), it has probably affected us as consumers - our requirements and how we purchase. This work contributes to this development through extensive empirical investigations into how and why customers return what they have previously ordered. The primary conclusions are that consumer requirements tend to vary, and therefore the standard solution of delivering goods to a vast variety of consumers without engaging in discussion about the individual customer service requirements (et cetera) is most probably the central cause behind the increasing return trends seen in the business. The purpose of this thesis is to identify and to characterise important factors causing returns. Further, to assist the development of Returns Management research, the intention is to develop a theoretical model of a Supply/Demand Chain returns system that incorporates an application of avoidance and gatekeeping in a distance sale context with the aim to improve overall systems performance. The research design used in the thesis was a case study performed at one of the largest mail order organisation in Sweden, with a long tradition in the business. The main data used in the thesis has been collected from interviews, a questionnaire, and secondary data exported from the case organisation. Sales and returns data covering approximately one year of sales and returns in the Swedish market was quantitatively analysed, and the results were regularly discussed and presented to key informants at the case organisation to substantiate authenticity and trustworthiness. The overall conclusion is that the distance-sales trade is affected by the trends that are seen in other areas, namely increased competition - not only from within the distance trade but also from the traditional retail trade. This is probably due to the ease of shopping via e-commerce, and the vast supply of products that even exceeds that of the retail chains. This attracts new customer groups with new demands and requirements. This, in many ways, is an archetypal difference between today’s e-commerce business and yesterday’s mail order business, and could explain why customers from the different channels behave and return differently. The use of the Internet affects how we purchase, and therefore the result of the purchase. It is quite likely that we are far more spontaneous when purchasing over the Internet in comparison with telephone and mail orders. Key words: Returns management, customer service, demand chain management, e-commerce, avoidance, gatekeeping

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Swedish School of Textiles, University of Borås; Chalmers University of Technology, 2010
Series
Skrifter från Högskolan i Borås, ISSN 0280-381X ; 22
Series
Report/ Department of Logistics and Transportation, Chalmers University of Technology, ISSN 1654-9732 ; L045
Keywords
returns management, customer service, demand chain management, e-commerce
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-3574 (URN)2320/7372 (Local ID)2320/7372 (Archive number)2320/7372 (OAI)
Available from: 2015-12-04 Created: 2015-12-04 Last updated: 2016-03-14
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