Change in returns volumes drives profit boost at ASOS

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ASOS expects to close its financial year  with turnover growth 17% to 19%, and a pre-tax profit of £130 million to £150 million, due to a surge in demand during lockdown.

The e-commerce fashion retailer told investors that the improvement in expectations was also down to a change in customer behaviour when it came to returns.

It said it had expected to see underlying returns normalise once lockdown measures had eased and customers were both able to ship returns and feel more comfortable doing so.

However, it said that it has become evident that returns had not increased at the rate it originally anticipated and it had seen a significant and sustained reduction in returns rates since April.  

“In part this reflects customer demand for ‘lockdown’ categories, such as activewear and face and body,” it said in a statement. “However, rates have been further suppressed below estimated levels by a prolonged shift in customer behaviour towards more deliberate purchasing across all product categories, even when sales momentum has improved.”

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