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What e-retailers hate about holiday shopping

You can send back that ugly sweater for free. But for merchants, it costs a bomb

Adam Minter | Bloomberg 

For retailers, December isn’t just the holiday shopping season. It’s also holiday return season, when consumers decide to send back all the stuff that didn’t fit, work or meet expectations. It’s an expensive ritual. According to the National Retail Federation, returns account for around 8 per cent of total annual retail sales. Online retailers face an even heavier burden, with returns averaging 25 per cent of all goods purchased and as much as half of apparel. If those percentages hold through the 2017 holidays, online retailers could face $32.1 billion worth ...

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First Published: Sun, December 24 2017. 21:38 IST