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Old 01-08-2016, 12:49 PM   #21
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I think it's dishonest to use a store to demo a product if there's no intention to give them your business.
I don't see it that way at all.

It's nice to consider them for the sale. And by actually interacting with them, they have a better than otherwise chance of making a sale. But who I choose to buy from is my own business and based on my own criteria.

Do you buy a car that way? Is the person who takes you for a test drive owed the sale? No way.
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Old 01-08-2016, 12:54 PM   #22
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B&M stores that cater to a real need will do fine.
that's why alcohol, tobacco and firearms stores won't get betamaxed

but seriously, I think the ones in real danger are the Best Buys, Frys, etc - you will always need to get groceries and hardware...plus currently you have to go to a car dealer to get a car
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Old 01-08-2016, 12:58 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by mpeirce View Post
I don't see it that way at all.

It's nice to consider them for the sale. And by actually interacting with them, they have a better than otherwise chance of making a sale. But who I choose to buy from is my own business and based on my own criteria.

Do you buy a car that way? Is the person who takes you for a test drive owed the sale? No way.
I'm referring to those who will demo a product in a store when their sole intention all along is to buy it online. They had no intention of buying from the store, but have no qualms in "using" that store to test the product.

I'm not sure how this relates to car buying.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:25 PM   #24
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Some brick and mortar stores will...others will survive. Primarily clothing stores will survive. Its one of the few things people like/need to try on in person. Something can look great but on it doesnt fit right, doesnt feel right, not comfy, etc etc. There will always be a market for that.

Yeah I know people buy tons of clothes online, try stuff on and return what they dont like...its a very small percentage.

Now that most stores price match amazon I dropped my prime membership. I have a walmart/bestbuy very close...I can swing by and price match an item to amazon no questions asked. I dont buy much "stuff" anyway so for the few times I want/need something ill go to the store and price match.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:26 PM   #25
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Well, we test-drove our car locally, but we bought on-line from a dealer 40 miles away who offered the better price. I did call the local salesman and offer to give him the sale if he could match the other dealership's price, but he couldn't. It was more than $500 difference for the exact same car. The only thing I can think of, is that we live in a rich county, while the distant dealership is in a poorer one, so their overhead is lower.

However, karma quickly caught up with us. Not only is the dealership 40 miles away, so we hate to go there, and certainly not for the free car wash that supposedly came with the sale; their employees are less professional than at the local dealership. That's caused several headaches already.

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Originally Posted by Music Lover View Post
I'm referring to those who will demo a product in a store when their sole intention all along is to buy it online. They had no intention of buying from the store, but have no qualms in "using" that store to test the product.

I'm not sure how this relates to car buying.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:29 PM   #26
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that's why alcohol, tobacco and firearms stores won't get betamaxed
I disagree. The last 2 hand guns I purchased I bought online and shipped to my local gun store simply because it has to go through them. What if in the future someone like a notary service can receive firearms purchased online and process the proper paperwork?

I also buy all my ammo online...way cheaper than B&M stores. The only benefit to a gun store is getting to feel the guns in your hand, how they feel, weight, trigger pull, etc etc. You can have one massive store kind of like a cabelas...although their gun inventory is pretty bust.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:31 PM   #27
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Some brick and mortar stores will...others will survive. Primarily clothing stores will survive. Its one of the few things people like/need to try on in person. Something can look great but on it doesnt fit right, doesnt feel right, not comfy, etc etc. There will always be a market for that.

Yeah I know people buy tons of clothes online, try stuff on and return what they dont like...its a very small percentage.
However, that may change, and if it does, as with many other things, a critical mass of folks getting comfortable with the buy, ship, try-on, ship returns if necessary approach (which could develop even faster if there's a cost advantage) could make even B&M clothing stores unprofitable except as boutiques. It is always a discomforting thought that our own preference may someday be subjugated to some kind of critical mass of folks of a different persuasion, but I'm steeling myself for the fact that that sort of thing is going to happen with increasing regularity as I get older. (And, to be fair, has been happening to each successive generation as they got older - though I think "the rate of increase of the rate of increase is increasing." )
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:34 PM   #28
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I disagree. The last 2 hand guns I purchased I bought online and shipped to my local gun store simply because it has to go through them. What if in the future someone like a notary service can receive firearms purchased online and process the proper paperwork?

I also buy all my ammo online...way cheaper than B&M stores. The only benefit to a gun store is getting to feel the guns in your hand, how they feel, weight, trigger pull, etc etc. You can have one massive store kind of like a cabelas...although their gun inventory is pretty bust.
I was being a "little" sarcastic - I bought an AK-47 off the internet several years go and had it shipped through a FFL but I still think most people like to go to the gun store and check out inventory in person. I don't think buying firearms on the internet is that much cheaper. Ammo though for sure.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:36 PM   #29
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I suspect brick and mortar storefronts will go the way of the paperless office. It'll happen someday, but that day manages to stay just out of reach.
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Old 01-08-2016, 01:57 PM   #30
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I have one grocery store that I regularly visit and it has the key characteristics that I would like to see in any retail outlet that wants my business: 1) It's calm and quiet - no music, 2) The inventory is limited, they don't carry 10 brands of canned green beans, for instance, but they have everything that you need, 3) their prices are more than competitive, 4) they don't try to lure a shopper in with loss leaders, their prices are what they are, and 5) the store is organized so that you can get in and get out.

Bonus points if you guess the chain.
Walgreen's? After my cataract surgery, I did not want to drive far, lift anything heavy, or do a major grocery shopping so I went there to pick up a half dozen grocery items. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that their prices for the few things I purchased were closer to "moderate" than to "outrageous". Oh, but I suppose they do have loss leaders. I never read the Walgreen's ads. Anyway, it was nice to be able to get a few items without making an afternoon of it.
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Old 01-08-2016, 02:01 PM   #31
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I suspect brick and mortar storefronts will go the way of the paperless office. It'll happen someday, but that day manages to stay just out of reach.
we're paperless
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Old 01-08-2016, 02:03 PM   #32
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I am a part of the problem, as well. Putting aside the fact that I really don't spend much money on ANY kind of shopping, here's why I don't shop B&M:
1) I have to drive to get there,
2) There are often crowds of people to fight,
3) I find most stores unpleasant environments with their choices of "music",
4) B&M stores are not well organized for quick visits - IKEA being only the worst example,
5) B&M stores are not well organized for price comparisons,
6) etc.

I have one grocery store that I regularly visit and it has the key characteristics that I would like to see in any retail outlet that wants my business: 1) It's calm and quiet - no music, 2) The inventory is limited, they don't carry 10 brands of canned green beans, for instance, but they have everything that you need, 3) their prices are more than competitive, 4) they don't try to lure a shopper in with loss leaders, their prices are what they are, and 5) the store is organized so that you can get in and get out.

Bonus points if you guess the chain.
That sounds a lot like my local Aldi's store and even better, no long checkout waits more then 2 people in line they open up more lanes....
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Old 01-08-2016, 02:06 PM   #33
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I suspect brick and mortar storefronts will go the way of the paperless office. It'll happen someday, but that day manages to stay just out of reach.
It is like flying cars - 10 years away, perpetually.
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Old 01-08-2016, 02:19 PM   #34
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That sounds a lot like my local Aldi's store and even better, no long checkout waits more then 2 people in line they open up more lanes....
Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner!
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Old 01-08-2016, 02:27 PM   #35
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Agreed that B&M grocery and clothing stores will probably always be around. Some stores are doing both like Cabela's and B&H Photo. I've never been to either store but I've spent plenty at both. (Mostly what I buy at Cabela's is warm clothing not available locally.)

There was a medium range photography store about 30 minutes away but they closed about a year ago, as did the local Sears store. Come to think of it, I think it's been about a year since I was inside the local mall and I was struck by how deserted it was then.

Oh, another type that will probably always have B&M stores is furniture and mattress stores. People want to sit on the couch and test the firmness of a mattress, although we have bought some furniture items online like the desk I'm using now.
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Old 01-08-2016, 07:07 PM   #36
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All certainly won't die out. But certainly some are doomed.

Take the Apple Store as an example. That store is thriving and helping their business. But it is really nothing like a Best Buy (or remember Gateway country stores? They died about the same time Apple stores arrived).

Apple stores are (a) nice places (b) located in upscale shopping districts (c) offer a great place for tech supports and service (d) have are among the friendliest people working there (e) also let you try out new stuff if you like. They do not force you to buy there.

B&M stores that cater to a real need will do fine.
I'm not an Apple fan but recently went into their store with a specific objective. I wanted to buy an Ipad Mini 2 on sale through Walmart.com (of all places). I was upfront about everything and the young lady that helped me was fantastic. No looking bored or checking out other people. Good eye contact and made me feel welcomed. Probably with Apple's great profit margins they can afford to actually hire good people and train them well.

BTW, I was buying the Ipad Mini because we were going to discontinue our local paper. It works great and I don't have to go out on Sunday's to find that the paper is not yet delivered. The digital version is free ... so far. Someday we may have to actually pay for it.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:15 PM   #37
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It is like flying cars - 10 years away, perpetually.
Hey, I have one of those Dick Tracy watches.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:27 PM   #38
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FWIW, I would probably have done more Christmas shopping in real stores if they actually had some real Christmas spirit in them. No more store Santas except for those demanding money for photos. Decorations are designed to say nothing so nobody is offended. No way to help the less fortunate other than spending money at the store and dropping something off before leaving. And the 'season' starts at least six weeks to early. They really seem to celebrate a neutered festival that could have been made up by an TV comedy character. Oh! wait! That did happen. And that's what the malls are celebrating - nothing.

So, if the stores and the malls don't feel like a real Christmas, why bother to shop there?


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Old 01-09-2016, 03:26 AM   #39
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Probably with Apple's great profit margins they can afford to actually hire good people and train them well.
That's key. The allure of online shopping is how much of a bargain it is, by comparison, and that's possible only due to economies of scale. If you cannot "make it up in volume" like that, then the only hope is to "make it up in margin".

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FWIW, I would probably have done more Christmas shopping in real stores if they actually had some real Christmas spirit in them.
So that makes the challenge for B&M even more difficult. That which would motivate you to patronize them undercuts a store's mission two ways: It would add a certain amount of cost to thousands of sales (instead of adding much less cost to millions of sales), and it would narrow their target market to those who are looking for your particular brand of Christmas spirit, i.e., one unconcerned about offending patrons at whom the "decorations designed to say nothing" were aimed.

We've all become much more expectant about that which wants our attention (and our money). A hundred years ago, many folks were in a situation where they were satisfied just to have a place where they could actually purchase things. Now, that store must either speak to our soul or offer the absolute lowest price available.

I cannot imagine we have a hope, today, of anticipating how these changes in our attitudes and the changes in technology will affect how we buy things twenty or thirty years from now. Some things we expect to change probably won't, but mostly what I expect is that many things will change that we expected would not.
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Old 01-09-2016, 08:44 AM   #40
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we're paperless

Amazon can fix that...
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