With the holiday season on us, and really during any part of the year, there are a few things you should know about retail. The most important thing is that there are sales. You may have or have not noticed that there will be many a discount during the season. The stores, ranging from book stores to grocery stores, lower their margin of profit, basically to almost nothing for the customer base. That is right, if there is a sale; most stores are willing to take a loss. This can be for a variety of reasons, but what you need to know as customers is to patronize, encourage this behavior, and don't cause loss in other parts of the store which keeps the store from taking huge financial risks with these sales.
Many, many stores have what are called loyalty cards. These are discount cards that are given to the customer so that they receive points or a flat rate discount on items. Some cards are free, some are at an upfront cost, but it is important to note that you will always pay. The loyalty card system is designed so that on a per customer basis, the store will not take a loss, but make a profit. In a grocery store, items that are cheaper with the card will in fact have their prices slightly raised, or lowered while competing products prices are raised. This is a natural part of business, so don't fret at the thought, but at the same time, don't hesitate when acquiring a card. As a general rule, in the long run, customers do break even, even if there is a $20 or $25 yearly charge.
What Retail Knows and Doesn't Know
Retail, as an industry, doesn't really have great forecasts on the future. So prices tend to be based on two things: speculation and the previous year’s sales. Items that are significant, but are unproven sellers, such as a new type of television, or a new model of computer aren't likely to have huge price cuts. However, previous models of items are likely to get price cuts, not only to make for items released at the peak sales seasons, but because many shoppers shop one model behind. Keep this in mind, latest and greatest is going to be significantly more expensive than last month’s model, and retail knows this too. When shopping in general, it is very easy to mistrust the shopping environment, but don't. Be smart, and know who you are buying from. It will save you a headache in the future.
There are so many ways that you can save in a retail store. Try some of these tips above, and see how much you can truly save. It’s not that hard, and yes, the tips are out there. Work hard, and the savings will come the next time you go out and shop. Whether you go to a retail shop, or a hardware store, the savings will be there if you use these common tips.
Save 1% and more all with cash back credit cards. Find out how it's done as well as find more of my work at FINDcashbackcards.comView all articles by Tom Tessin
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