While it’s not entirely unheard of to see prices listed in euros stateside, a new federal class action lawsuit claims that retailer Zara’s practice of doing so — and allegedly making up its own exchange rate — has tricked shoppers into paying more than they should.
It’s a time-honored tradition in retail to show shoppers just how much a deal they are getting by showing the “list” price next to the price the customer will actually pay. It’s a practice that online sellers, who can often offer deeper discounts than bricks-and-mortar stores, frequently use, but it looks like Amazon is quietly shifting toward showing shoppers only one price.
When you’re in the supermarket and see a big, loud “Lower Price” sticker covering up an everyday price and showing a discount of anywhere from $.20 to $5, you’d expect that the price being covered up would be the original, higher amount. That’s why some Aldi shoppers are confused about why the discounted price on the sticker is the same as the price it’s covering up. [More]
A month after Universal Studios said it would implement a surge pricing structure for pre-order tickets that offers discounts for customers visiting on off-peak days. The Comcast-owned company essentially undid any goodwill it had created by instituting an across-the-board increase to ticket prices. [More]
Three months after Turing Pharmaceuticals entered the spotlight by buying the rights to a generic drug used to save lives and dramatically increased the price from $13.50 to $750, the company’s CEO has been arrested in a securities-fraud investigation. However, the charges are related to another company the man once led. [More]
Beginning tomorrow, October 1, Target will price-match the websites of 29 major retailers in stores and for purchases from their website. These include the usual big names that you might expect, like Amazon, Walmart, and Best Buy, but also some major specialty retailers like Sports Authority and cosmetics retailer Ulta. [More]
Just three months after Amazon tied up its bevy of contracts with top publishing houses, it looks like those deals might not be working out well for several companies, as they’ve reported declining e-book revenues in recent months. [More]
Kohl’s Corporation must shell out nearly $1 million to settle lawsuits with four California counties over allegations the company charged customers more than the price advertised on shelves and signs. [More]
In the past, most recently in 2013, Coca-Cola has experimented with the idea of vending machines that adjust prices according to the temperature. The idea really bothers some people, but fixed prices that are always the same for everyone haven’t historically been the norm. We may be coming to the end of a weird century-and-a-half experiment with the practice. [More]
Walmart is famous for lowering prices and calling them “rollbacks,” but sometimes the opposite happens, too. Reader Ben spotted this example of roll-forward pricing at his local Walmart on a clearance sign. [More]
Reader N. was shopping in the weather station section at Walmart when he noticed something odd. Hanging on the same rack were two different variations on the same weather radio. You could buy the radio for $29.88, or buy the radio with a little carabiner flashlight included for $49.94. Wait, what? [More]
Usually, retailers lower the price of an item per unit when you buy more of it. For example, a gallon of juice costs much less per unit than a single-serving bottle. When this system falls apart, and it frequently does, we call it “fuzzy math.” [More]
Kohl’s is the land of never-ending sales: nearly everything in the store is on perpetual markdown, and no list price is what it seems to be. But reader Mike was annoyed recently when he earned some Kohl’s Cash from a purchase and brought it back the following week. He couldn’t find anything on sale that he actually wanted to buy, and was especially annoyed to see an item for which the price had increased by exactly the amount of his Kohl’s Cash voucher. [More]
No retailer will ever come close to Target in the realm of fuzzy math: sale prices that are higher than regular ones, volume discounts that cost you more for buying large quantities of an item, and substitutions that make no sense. Discounter Family Dollar is doing their best, though. [More]
Walmart is absorbing some price increases on products like food, rather than passing them along to consumers. The chain plans to continue keeping its prices down across the board to goose sales, executives told investors earlier today.
Katie Couric recently interviewed Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz on CBS Sunday Morning and asked him if he thought the company had a “tin ear” to what people were going through with the recession. Perhaps, she suggested, they couldn’t afford to pay “$5 on their coffee every day.” Schultz’s response was to laugh. You see, Starbucks coffee only costs $1.50.
A little bit of pricing news out of CES: LG told Dow Jones Newswires that their 3D TVs will be getting cheaper by 20% this year, as “production costs have been dropping with improved technology.”