Varien.com talks about Victoria's Secret, and their free shipping and free returns promotion on pants. Kudos to Victoria's Secret for trying an interesting promotion that can benefit customers. It takes courage to incur an average expense of around $10 per order, without $13.95 from the customer to offset the expected expense.
Many multichannel retailers make money on shipping and handling. Zappos, Endless.com and Piperlime are essentially applying enormous price pressure on all multichannel businesses.
This long-term pricing pressure will cause multichannel retailers to reduce expenses elsewhere.
The very same vendor community that is unified in its fight against the USPS will fall victim to the eventual cost-cutting that free-shipping/free-returns is guaranteed to bring to multichannel retailing.