The problem is that I will go and check prices at stores and online and then buy it from where it is the cheapest which is usually online. If brick and mortar stores did price matching then more people would buy it from there (understanding the online store has to be refutable). I know Sears at least used to honor online price matching because a long time back, I bought a television from Sears which was cheaper online and they matched it.
For the record, Target currently does price matching for Amazon.com as well as Walmart.com (and Target.com as well, obviously).
I thought they only did this during the Christmas season, but I went in the other day to their Electronics section, had found an item, and was talking to the salesperson about how it was cheaper on Amazon, and he said “Well, we DO price match them…” I was pleasantly surprised!
Not sure if Walmart or Kmart or anyplace else does this currently, but I’ll be sure to directly ASK the next time I go shopping there!
It was something they were originally doing just for the holidays, but then they extended it.
Word to the wise though; when you take up a salesperson’s time getting all the information on a product and then turn around and buy it online; don’t expect any sympathy and support when you bring in the item that you bought online and expect to get help from the store that you didn’t buy it from.
Want customer service? Buy from a store.
Want cheapy prices? buy online or from a crap store like WalMart.
YOU CAN’T GET BOTH!
I do the same thing, but I also factor in gasoline to get there. I live in a rural area that is 7 miles from the nearest Walmart and 30 miles from everything else. Sometimes it is cheaper to buy online and sometimes it would cost more in shipping and handling then for me to drive the 60 mile round trip to the nearest major city.
Some companies require that their products be sold at the same price across the board by their authorized dealers (online and off.) These are easy price matches when sales sometimes post differently over the weekend.
Unfortunately there will always be the grey sellers and the sellers that add a $2 extra then price the “kit” 57 cents below cost to come up first in search engines.
And then there are the people who demand you match said unauthorized goofy price and add a freebie for the one you don’t carry.
Also, in cases of real price matching the sales associate often loses any sales incentive the company may have proivided.
And then there are the products a brick and mortar must buy through the distributor that cost less online than the b&m can purchase them for. which is why you don’t see the small specialty shops like Game/Hobby stores anymore. I hated being subjected to these people. They quiz you for an hour at a time so you can’t deal with paying customers, come back every freaking week and NEVER buy anything. Congratulations, we went out of business. If you are buying online do your research there too.
Why is the Grumbels salesman upset? Grumbels doesn’t pay commission, so he shouldn’t care whether he makes the sale or not.
A lot of places do not pay commission, but they do have sales goals. One place I knew of started you off high hourly. But you had to hit a certain amount of sales. Missed two sales goals in a row you where out.
It’s also really, really annoying to help someone with something like that and basically be told “Oh, I was just taking advantage of your help.”
Not to mention that while helping this guy, there were actual customers who don’t get help.
If I’m earning minimum wage, I’d rather not bend over backwards for guys like these.
Also, my boss has more important things for me to do, so I have even less incentive to help someone shop with a competitor.
Higher sales for the store = More payroll hours for employees.
Lower sales for the store = Payroll cuts.
By wasting that salesperson’s time, this guy hurt all of the employees in the store.
The store I worked for had a system of tying payroll hours to sales which went a long way towards explaining why, on some days, it was almost impossible to find someone working the floor.
What do you think keeps Grumbles open and the salesman employed? Sales. What pays overhead? Sales. There’s a connection between sales and keeping the doors open, Bucko.
Also, online stores will always be able to sell for less than Grumbels because they don’t have to pay for the physical plant.
Exactly. While they may have to take care of some warehouse rental fees and some employee wages, there still isn’t the same overhead that an actual brick-and-mortar store has, which is why online stores can often be cheaper. (And then they seem to make up the difference with exorbitant shipping rates, depending on the site.)
Personally, I use a mix. I shop at the brick-and-mortar when it’s something I want right away, or want to see in person, or when I *know* I’m not going to save very much money once I pay shipping. I go for online stuff when I can wait longer, when the local places don’t have what I want (or have it but for close to double the price or more), and for gift-shopping so I don’t have to drive to ten different stores to find three items.
This is not an easy question. As a customer, I *do* want to get hands-on with a product before I buy it, but if I can save some money by purchasing online, I’m very apt to do it. The advantage of buying from a local store is usually found in post-sales service and followup, so it’s a tradeoff.
I always hear people say, “Well, why should I buy it from the store if I can get it cheaper online?”
Okay, fine, but if you’re going to buy it online, then use the resources that the online store offers you.
If you want better resources, then you SHOULD be expected to pay for it.
I think that Norm Feuti’s description “Abusem Resourcius” pretty much nails it on the head.
When you take up a salesperson’s time, use the store’s floor models, and benefit from their knowledge and advice, only to go buy the item elsewhere, you are ABUSING the store’s resources. And that is just wrong.
Stores are not in business to provide free demos for their competitors. If you’re going to make use of a store’s resources, then you should be expected to buy what you’re looking for there, too.
I need to stretch my dollars out, too. But I guess for me, the real question in this situation is … How much is my self-respect worth?
It’s annoying, but not abusing. From the time stores began and had competition, people have gone to one, tested out the merchandise and then gone elsewhere if they knew they could get it “cheaper.” Online is just the newest wrinkle in that competitive world.
Now, that doesn’t really apply to those who value quality over price; for those who know the difference between inexpensive and cheap. There are also those who understand that high-price is synonymous with high-quality (most of the time).
Those who know the real value of an idea, service or product, are willing to pay for it, whether it be in a B&M or online.
If I am going to by chance buy it online, I may likely only do so if they have a B&M store so as to return or exchange product it if need be as shipping back would be a pain.
Price Matching in many stores here where I am in Canada can vary. Some will pricematch online prices in store, others will only pricematch their own online with other competitor online (if instock) and many will only will pricematch instore with competitor instore flyer. Two retailers since they not only pricematch, they also take an additional ten percent off of difference so they can be be a pain if they insist on calling nearby stores for stock availability. In one case I got frustrated and walked to nearby competitor store that had stock and snapped a couple pictures of the products still left for sale with sale price and went back to show associate who then finally agreed as the 10 percent of difference was seven dollars in savings in this case.
Not all B&M stores with online counterparts can return or exchange items bought online; many items online are not accessible for the B&M store to mess with; they are online only due to low profit margins or low demand and staff at a B&M store can do little to nothing with it.
That, my friends, is why brick-and-mortar bookstores will be out of business in ten years.
And online can be cheaper. they can operate out of a few offices and warehouses. less salary, less rent, less electricity, less cleaning service, less carpet cleaning, less everything then having hundreds of stores throughout the county. As a retail worker with a low salary, I understand cheap and easy. But as some point, we have to stop and think what we’re doing to ourselves.
And what is it that you’re lamenting that we’re doing to ourselves? It’s a customer’s nature to want something for less (or even nothing, but that’s another story altogether) and a sales professional’s job to make sure the customer pays what it’s worth.
I disagree re the bookstores going out of biz in 10 years. Just as radios or movies didn’t when TV came in; just as TVs didn’t when PCs (and phones) gained the ability to play both music & movies. Now, if you were to say in about 25 years, when most of the baby boomers have died off, then yes, it’s possible the bookstores will go bye-bye then. Not before.
I hope you’re right. I really do.
I’ve already said I don’t blame people for wanting things cheaper (I’m one of them). And I’ve already admitted that my bias has me making this more of a deal than it probably actually is to society as a whole. So I’m not quite sure what you’re still trying to get me to concede.
It’s a complicated issue. Of course we can’t blame customers for wanting discounts, and I don’t expect that behavior to change. I hope you’re right about the future of bookstores. I really do. As someone who’s been in the trenches, though, and knows firsthand all the many reasons reasons Borders closed, I’m not as optimistic. And I do think society will lose something as a whole when they go. So, to me, personally, paying a couple extra bucks for a book to keep the stores open and people in jobs is worth it. But I know I’m in the minority, and I understand why. I don’t fault anyone for seeking a discount when they can. To each his own.
I confess, I have gone into a bookstore, noted titles I wanted, and then checked them out of the library.
Is it more or less wrong if I don’t spend any money anywhere?
It means that you’re frugal, a trait sadly lacking in this day and age.
it’s not wrong either way, per se. But if everyone does that, then there will be no bookstores left to do it with. you won’t have a place to go, browse titles, get recommendations from a knowledgeable staff.
maybe it doesn’t really matter to a society as a whole. Maybe I just think it does. All i’ve ever done is work at book stores (with a small stint at Walgreens), so maybe it’s too personal for me to be objective anymore. Afterall, I worked for Borders when they went under. I work for the other big name now, knowing full well that in ten years, if that company still exists, it will probably only be online. But I really do believe in having a place where you can go, take your family, have a cup of coffee and just spend an afternoon reveling in the written word, maybe sharing it with your loved ones or teaching it to your kids, where you can get recommendations, advice, etc, and talk to people who know about books.
But again, I am definitely biased. And most of that stuff can be done at a library anyway (save for the coffee). So maybe nevermind.
The difference here is you’re not taking up a salesperson’s time. There’s no harm in walking into a store, wandering around and looking at stuff, and walking out (other than ruining their conversion rates if the store tracks that.) Going in and demanding a salespersons’s attention, making them find things for you, asking questions about each thing, making them devote their attention to you and THEN leaving without buying anything is a completely different situation.
Not really. It’s part of every sales person’s job – you and me – to persuade the customer to buy with us instead of elsewhere. If we don’t, if they go away to buy online or at another B&M, then we haven’t done our jobs.
If, on the other hand, we behave like MOST retail clerks and simply point the customer in a direction and then take the money when they come to the counter, then we’re merely order-takers. That isn’t sales. At that point, we deserve to lose the customer to online business.
well, one advantage of going to the store vs. online is you don’t pay shipping charges and you don’t have to wait 3-5 days (or more) for it. when i worked at sears 15 years ago, there wasn’t much online buying yet.
I’ve found my own way of combating it. My employer (moderate retail chain with at least some floorspace dedicated to home housewares/kitchen stuff) has the Sodastream and we offer samples and demo. I own one (it’s a fun little toy, but do your homework before buying), so I’m willing to explain to customers about it and do a sample.
We’re SUPPOSED to offer information to everyone who comes in and asks about it, but I take a much more selective approach. If someone is legitimately interested, they get the full treatment (explanation, price matching, samples, experience, etc), but anytime they use the some combination of the words “cheaper”, “online”, or “Walmart”, I’m done. Right on the spot, no more information.
“You’d sell more if you let people try it”
“And I’d lose even less if I don’t give every moron who wandered in a free drink.”
There is the balancing act. I like your approach.
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