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Price matters for holiday 2011 season

October 25, 2011 • National News


FILE – In this Feb. 22, 2010 file photo, a store associate helps a customer at the Sears retail store in Burbank, Calif. A week before Halloween and two full months before Christmas, stores are desperately trying to outdo each other in hopes of drawing in customers worn down by the economy. Sears is offering to beat a competitor’s best price by 10 percent. Wal-Mart, the biggest store in the nation, joined the price wars Monday, Oct. 24, 2011, by announcing that it would give gift cards to shoppers if they buy something there and find it somewhere else cheaper. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Forget style, quality and customer service. This holiday season, all that matters is price.

A week before Halloween and two full months before Christmas, stores are desperately trying to outdo each other in hopes of drawing in customers worn down by the economy.

Wal-Mart, the biggest store in the nation, joined the price wars Monday by announcing that it would give gift cards to shoppers if they buy something there and find it somewhere else cheaper.

Staples and Bed Bath & Beyond have already said they will match the lowest prices of Amazon.com and other big Internet retailers. Sears is going a step further, offering to beat a competitor’s best price by 10 percent.

“The days of marketing the stuff in your store because it was a hot brand are over,” says Dave Ratner, owner of Dave’s Soda & Pet City, a Massachusetts pet food and supplies chain.

For the holidays, Ratner plans to offer 20 percent off pet accessories if customers buy a bag of dog food. Customers, he says, just want a deal.

Almost four years after the onset of the Great Login to read more

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