Guidelines to Comparing Prices

As you comparison shop, be aware of the tactics of many internet retailers, who make you think they’re giving you the lowest price, but really aren’t!

Tactic #1: Hide the shipping charges

Some retailers hide their shipping charges from you until you check out. Unless the retailer offers free shipping (as many do), shipping rates should be clearly posted.

Tactic #2: Using the word “discount”

Some websites use the word discount all over the place to convince you that they have discount prices. But the word “discount” doesn’t make it so! Their prices are no lower once you figure in the shipping. Some even have the word “discount” in their name! Don’t believe the word discount when you see it. Shop around a bit, and it should become apparent whether the “discount” is.

Tactic #3: Comparing to retail or list price

Some websites sell the same dining set for as much as $150 more than their competitors. It’s their regular price, but they call it a sale! Then, to convince you it’s a great price, they show it next to a list price that’s even $100 more than that! And their price doesn’t even include shipping! If you see a sale price next to a retail price, do some comparing… it could just be a gimmick.

Tactic #4: You get what you pay for

Some retailers mark their products up really high assuming that if they charge you less, you’ll think the merchandise must not be high quality. That is not always the case. Most internet retailers pay the same wholesale prices to the same manufacturers. So, if you see a much lower price, consider it.

Tactic #5: Claiming lowest prices

**No one** has the lowest prices… anyone claiming they do is being dishonest. Granted, they’re willing to beat the price of any competitor, but in the meantime, most of their prices are the same or higher than everyone else, and you have to “catch them” to get “the lowest price”! If you want to pay low prices, then don’t believe the low price claims. Compare. Compare. Compare.

Tactic #6: Promising great customer service

Actually, everyone promises this, and they should! Consider this however: All retailers will try to get your order right. It’s when problems occur beyond human control that you discover the real value in customer service! If you’re not treated right when an order goes wrong, will saving that additional $10 really have been worth it? So, if you have purchased patio furniture on the web, had problems with the order, but received great customer service in response, then that’s the retailer you want to buy from next time!

Tactic #7: Trying to convince you that higher prices are fair

Actually, this approach might be legitimate. After all, no one’s prices are the lowest… they just need to be fair. A price might even seem higher at first glance, until you realize shipping is already figured in. Remember, the bottom line isn’t the price you paid, but the experience you got for the price you paid.

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