Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The sale of goods or commodities in small quantities directly to consumers.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or engaged in the sale of goods or commodities at retail.
  • adv. In retail quantities.
  • adv. At a retail price.
  • transitive v. To sell in small quantities directly to consumers.
  • transitive v. To tell or repeat (gossip or stories, for example) to others.
  • intransitive v. To sell at retail.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The sale of goods directly to the consumer; encompassing the storefronts, mail-order, websites, etc., and the corporate mechanisms, branding, advertising, etc. that support them, which are involved in the business of selling and point-of-sale marketing retail goods to the public.
  • n. Retail price; full price; an abbreviated expression, meaning the full suggested price of a particular good or service, before any sale, discount, or other deal.
  • adj. Of, or relating to the (actual or figurative) sale of goods or services directly to individuals.
  • adv. Direct to consumers, in retail quantities, or at retail prices.
  • v. To sell at retail, or in small quantities directly to customers.
  • v. To repeat or circulate (news or rumours) to others.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The sale of commodities in small quantities or parcels; -- opposed to wholesale; sometimes, the sale of commodities at second hand.
  • adj. Done at retail; engaged in retailing commodities; as a retail trade; a retail grocer.
  • transitive v. To sell in small quantities, as by the single yard, pound, gallon, etc.; to sell directly to the consumer.
  • transitive v. To sell at second hand.
  • transitive v. To distribute in small portions or at second hand; to tell again or to many (what has been told or done); to report.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The sale of commodities in small quantities or parcels, or at second hand; a dealing out in small portions: opposed to wholesale.
  • n. in small quantities; a little at a time, as in the sale of merchandise.
  • Of or pertaining to sale at retail; concerned with sale at retail: as, retail trade; a retail dealer.
  • To sell in small quantities or parcels.
  • To sell at second hand.
  • To deal out in small quantities; tell in broken parts; tell to many; tell again; hand down by report: as, to retail slander or idle reports.
  • n. Retaliation.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the selling of goods to consumers; usually in small quantities and not for resale
  • adv. at a retail price
  • v. sell on the retail market
  • v. be sold at the retail level

Etymologies

Middle English, from Anglo-Norman, variant of Old French, piece cut off, from retaillier, to cut up : re-, re- + tailler, to cut; see tailor.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the Old French verb retaillier. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • More Wal-Mart Checks Out a New Continent Heard on the Street: Testing New Delhi's Fiscal Fitness If foreign direct investment "in retail is opened up, we can contribute more," Mr. Duke told a group of Indian executives and bureaucrats.

    India Urged to Open Market

  • The word retail may suggest shopping malls and corner stores, but in the wine business, retail typically refers to the large wine merchants who do the bulk of their trade on the telephone, on the Internet, and via e-mail.

    Investing in Liquid Assets

  • It's happening once again this week, and it gives a whole new meaning to the term retail politics.

    CNN Transcript Jan 13, 2006

  • It gives a whole new meaning to the term retail therapy.

    Telegraph.co.uk: news, business, sport, the Daily Telegraph newspaper, Sunday Telegraph

  • “The secret to retail is to get the money in the cash register as quickly as possible.”

    Only Rep. Frank could go kill health care rationing… - Moe_Lane’s blog - RedState

  • This state takes pride in the fact that it's (INAUDIBLE) what they call retail politics.

    CNN Transcript Jan 20, 2007

  • Those are what we call retail politics, door to door, hand to hand.

    CNN Transcript Apr 5, 2007

  • Likewise, all these airlines have what they call retail partners.

    CNN Transcript Feb 17, 2007

  • Now that Mondale has tossed his hat tossed into the ring, or had it tossed into the ring, following the tragedy a week ago in which Wellstone died in an airplane crash, he was out doing what they call retail politics, pressing the flesh, and he's going to be doing that in other parts of the state today, Rochester, Duluth and the like.

    CNN Transcript Nov 1, 2002

  • "We believe that workers in America have rights," said Tom Geiger, spokesman for UFCW 21, which paid for an ad published in the Daily Journal of Commerce on Thursday challenging what it calls the retail chain's bad business practices.

    The Seattle Times

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