What U.S. city is believed to be the source of the retail term Black Friday?
Chicago, Illinois, Indianapolis, Indiana, New York, New York? Philadelphia or Pennsylvania?
In the 1960s' police in Philadelphia reportedly used the term to describe the shopping and sports mayhem that hit the city after Thanksgiving.
Traditionally, the day after Thanksgiving is one of the busiest days on the U.S. shopping calendar.
So, the term Black Friday has also been used to describe when retail stores move into the black, meaning they show a profit for the year.
因此，Black Friday这个词也被用来描述零售店“move into the black”，意思是他们这一年盈利
It makes sense that store traffic, the number of people shopping in person, increased more than 47 percent this year over last year when more stayed home because of COVID concerns.
But according to Sensormatic Solutions, a retail analytics and operations company, this year's Black Friday's store traffic was still 28 percent lower than it was in 2019 before the pandemic.
Observers believe it's because people started shopping sooner this year and spread out their buying instead of concentrating it on just one day.
Returns are inevitably part of this process.
Free returns.They're customer's insurance policy for shopping online, but what happens to those returns after you give them back might surprise you.
For customers really believe the product just goes into the black hole or ends up being resold to another customer.
In many instances, that's not the case.
In reality, many of these products never return anywhere.
Instead, they may end up here, or even here.
You know easily 25 percent of all these returns get destroyed.
In fact, returns have become such a headache for retailers that in some cases they're just refunding customers, letting them keep or donate the unwanted items.
The cost of getting the product back from the customer is much higher than traditionally just getting the product to the customer.
Turns out, free returns are far from it.
There's a very large disparity between the amount of returns that happen from consumers that buy products online versus in the store.
In a brick-and-mortar store, we typically get somewhere between five and 10 percent returns, but online we get north of 30 percent returns.
In 2020, the coronavirus pandemic pushed online shopping and returns to record highs.
CVRE, a commercial real estate service, estimates that Americans will end up returning up $70 billion worth of online purchases post-holiday season.
That's a staggering 73 percent growth from the previous five-year average.
Here's why that's a problem.
The entire returns business in and of itself is just extremely complex.
Big retailers already use data to improve the shopping experience on the front end.
Walmart believes data should play a bigger role in the returns process too.
We're constantly digging into the data to understand why customers are bringing stuff back.
And we actually can solve a bigger portion of the end of the life cycle of the product by stopping the return from ever occurring.
So, if I know I have an item that is low quality, we work with the manufacturer to fix it or we quit selling it.
That's because accepting a return isn't always easy either.
A warehouse optimized for fulfilling orders is now asked to receive a product and inspect it.
Then someone needs to decide whether it can be resold or not.
In the end, an online return can require up to 20 percent more space and labor than one made in store.
Those costs are part of why Opturo, a return solution company, estimates that returning a $50 item can cost a retailer 59 percent of its sale price.