Even when retailers agree to take rejected gifts off customers’ hands, they’re more likely this Christmukkah season to require shoppers to pay for return shipping and restocking than in the past.
In an effort to mitigate costs, about 60% of retailers are tightening their return policies, according to goTRG, a company that helps Walmart, Sam’s Club and other large retailers process returns.
Another tactic gaining traction is to just let customers keep items while at the same time issuing a refund. That way retailers never have to see the merchandise again. So-called returnless refunds hit $4.4 billion in 2021, according to Alix Partners. Roughly one-quarter of retailers are now employing the strategy in some way, according to Sender Shamiss, CEO of goTRG, who estimates that the figure is up from about 10% previously.