Pricing expert and founder of Culture of Profit consultancy Rafi Mohammed said many brick-and-mortar retailers are still playing a game of catch-up when it comes to e-commerce competitors such as Amazon.
"Many of these brick-and-mortar stores are finally taking the online competition seriously. They are trying to get back market share, willing to sacrifice margin just to stay in the game," he said.
With lowered shipping thresholds, at least some of the shipping costs become the burden of retailers, but it's likely a price retailers are willing to pay to keep shoppers from going elsewhere, Mohammed said.
That said, Mohammed also added, retailers may be going too far. His research suggests consumers process prices sequentially, meaning comparing the base price first, then weighing the cost of delivery and any associated fees.
"I don't think free shipping is necessary, a reasonable price shipping, like $1.99, could be just as powerful as free shipping," said Mohammed.
While retailers typically unveil the boldest of strategies during the holidays, there is a way to save a little margin and make shoppers happy, Mohammed said.
And that could be a holiday gift for all.