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Return/Repair Process for Consumer Electronics Satisfies Consumers

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Study released today by eBrain Market Research.

Consumers are generally satisfied with existing mechanisms for the repair and return of products in the consumer electronics industry, according to the results of the "Repair and Return Issues in the CE Industry" study released today by eBrain Market Research.

Within the last two years, more than 8 million households have returned at least one consumer electronics product for some reason shortly after purchasing it or receiving it as a gift. The most common reasons cited for returning these products were that "the product was broken" or "it did not work like I thought it would." However, many of these returns are not actually due to faulty products; but rather "operator error," meaning that the consumers did not know enough about their product to operate it properly.

Reports from manufacturers indicate that as much as 75 percent of returned merchandise said to be "broken" was actually found to be defect-free.

Generally, consumers expressed a great deal of satisfaction with the mechanisms in place to remedy a problem with a product. Overall, 78 percent of respondents stated that they were satisfied with the return process, with 60 percent claiming that they were very satisfied. The one area noted as a problem, however, was a desire to reduce the time necessary to deal with a return.

In the cases where a product actually did fail, consumers were almost as likely to purchase a replacement product (39 percent of respondents) as to attempt to get the original product repaired (44 percent of respondents). The cost of the repair plays a role in this decision. It was only when the repair value of the product neared one-third of the replacement value that most consumers expressed a willingness to pay for a repair.

The study was designed and formulated by eBrain Market Research. eBrain is smarter research. The most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research, international research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. The "Repair and Return Issues in the CE Industry" study was conducted with a sample of 1000 Americans during August, 2000.

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