image: Mark Lennihan / Associated Press

Getting tough on returns is hurting retailers

April 6, 2018


Returns are expensive for retailers, representing lost sales, sometimes damaged or opened inventory and extra staff time.

Of the three options for returning unwanted items — return to store, return to distribution center and return to a third party — return to store is not only usually the cheapest option for retailers, who may benefit as some customers buy something else, but it’s also preferred by some 60% of online customers themselves, according to consulting firm AlixPartners.

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