Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Jewelry on Sale

 Unless you don’t have a television or haven’t read a newspaper in the past week or so, you probably won’t know about the new pricing structure at JC Penney. JC Penney has decided to forgo constant sales in order to offer its customers lower everyday pricing. They will also promote a monthly sale and clearance sales designed to clear out merchandise that either isn’t moving or to clear space for new merchandise. I applaud JC Penney’s attitude, but not the annoying TV advertisement. It is about time that stores stop their phony bologna sales structure. This is when a store buys a product, marks it up to a phenomenal price and calls it retail, then promptly slashes it in half and declares the product as now 50% off. It’s almost seems illegal.

It has been standard practice for stores to put merchandise on sale in order to move stock. If a price of an item is seen as low or as a value, it is more likely to be purchased. My husband and I had this conversation just the other day. We had to ask ourselves when a bargain is a bargain. If you buy something you don’t need even at 50% off have you really saved any money or are you just fooling yourself? Someone who knows the regular price of an item, they will not be fooled by a sticker that says it’s on sale. Savvy shoppers know when something is a good deal. Unfortunately, not everyone is a savvy shopper and let’s face it, some items are not purchased on a daily or weekly basis. When you are shopping for a new car how do you know you are getting the best deal? Jewelry is another item that is frequently on sale and also purchased infrequently.

I sometimes stroll through mall stores and am constantly amazed at all the sales. When I check out their prices I wonder if the price is actually a sale or creative accounting. It pays to see how others market their ware in any retail store. Knowing what the product actually sells for is always invaluable information. Sales signs today are standard advertising because they have become ubiquitous and maybe people are becoming desensitized. Unless a store is going out of business, why do they have so many sales? My theory is, if someone really likes the product, is in the market for the product, they will take your price on face value, IF that price is reasonable. Having a sale constantly reduces the value of the product and potentially your credibility as a retailer. Can you really trust them when they say it’s a good price?

The barrage of sales over the past couple of years has been mind boggling. Retailers have felt a need to constantly try and undercut their competitors and give the appearance of having the best prices in town, this is all beyond me. I look for a good price but I’m reasonable in my expectations. I don’t think I’ll be able to buy a Rolex for a dollar and if I could it wouldn’t be a Rolex. Everyone wants to get as much “bang for their buck” as possible and people should do a little research before making a major purchase. Our current economic situation has shown that impulse purchasing is not a good idea. So maybe after years of buying for no reason other than because they want it, people are returning to sensible shopping behavior. They are purchasing what they need, what they can afford and doing their research to get the best value, fantastic sale price not needed.

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