Holiday returns expected to keep stores busy

MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - Not every present under the tree is a home run, and millions of people are looking to cash in on that 'dud' gift.

According to the National Retail Federation, three out of four holiday shoppers checked return policies before making a purchase. The day after Christmas serves as a time to take back unwanted or unneeded gifts, with returns policies varying by store.

"We try to explain to our customers what our policy is. It's a 15-day policy after Christmas. Come in, swap it out, exchange it, and get something completely different. We want a happy customer; we want them coming back. We aren't looking for a 'one-time sale'. We're looking for a sale that goes on for years to come," said Robert Loeb, president of Loeb’s Clothing.

Some stores are more liberal on returns policies than others.

"We don't have a return policy. If somebody isn't happy with what they get from us, they don't like it for any reason, wrong size, wrong color, don't like anything about it, we want it back. It's no big deal. It's real easy and it works real well and it has worked well for us for many years," said Harry Mayer, owner of Harry Mayer Clothiers.

Once people return those unwanted items, many will look to spend Christmas cash and gift cards at some of their favorite stores.

"Also, you have to remember, this is a big day. A lot of people get cash for Christmas. A lot of people get gift cards for Christmas. So this will be our biggest day after Christmas before New Year's. So it's a great time for us. We love the day after Christmas," Mayer said.

Leaders in retail say there are still plenty of good deals to be had through the end of the year and the start of 2018.

"People are spending gift cards. They get cash. They get money for Christmas. They're anxious to spend and the sales are good after Christmas. So it's a good reason to shop and buy," Loeb said.

"We still have a lot of good product left from Christmas. We'd love to show you what we've got and we sure appreciate your business," Mayer said.

Retail experts expect $90 billion worth of holiday presents are heading back to the stores. With about $10 million Americans set to return gifts from this holiday season. According to Optoro, $5 billion pounds of returned gifts, are about to end up in a landfill.