Purchasing a washer online from Sears? Prepare to pay $31 more than the sale price.

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On 5/15/2016 8:58 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Yet the merchandise sales part of Amazon is not profitable, and it is subsidized by Amazon's other ventures. So it's wrong to say that all Sears had to do was to put their catalog online earlier.
Sears sold off their other businesses which generated more income than department stores.
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On 5/23/2016 10:58 AM, sms wrote:

Had Sears done it earlier perhaps Amazon never would have made it this far. WalMart got caught starting late too.
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On Monday, May 23, 2016 at 7:58:34 PM UTC-4, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

I seem to remember a company that rode their cash-cow film business all the way to, and up the stairs into, bankruptcy court.
"We can't go digital - even with our own innovations - because it'll eat into our film profits."
Some smart guys just ain't so.
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On 5/15/2016 8:27 AM, Dean Hoffman wrote:

Most folks "don't have the time" to make a pilgrimmage out to a store, wander around to find what they are interested in and then try to chase down a pimply faced kid (who would much rather be elsewhere!) to answer their questions.
We hadn't been in a Sears in close to 20 years (maybe 25?) but bought a bed there. *One* older salesman who was a good salesman (and didn't make us wonder if he actually knew anything about the product).
Sears, Penney's, etc. look like morgues, here. Big EMPTY buildings (lots of product, no people!)
We wonder how long it will be before Costco goes the same route (Kirkland branded everything; then starts letting the quality slip...). Our total dollars spent there has largely remained constant over the years -- despite price increases. We seem to be buying fewer and fewer things from them and finding better deals, elsewhere.
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wrote:

I live close to a town of about 8,000. It's about a 50 mile drive one way to buy something if I can't find it nearby. That's fifty bucks added to the price using the IRS figure of fifty cents a mile. Internet buying beats that by a bunch in convenience and usually price. I try to patronize the local Ace Hardware. Where else to get an odd plumbing piece on a weekend or evening? The next generation is taking over so there will be a learning curve. The older employees knew their stuff. There were a fair number of people at a mall the last time I hit one. A good share of them were teenagers just wandering around.
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On 5/15/2016 5:28 PM, Dean Hoffman wrote:

About all that I buy on-line are electronic components. Can't go wrong -- unless someone pulls the wrong parts (in which case, they can pay for the return postage, etc.).
SWMBO has tried buying clothing and shoes but its usually multiple attempts to get the right product in her hands. I'd rather just go somewhere, buy what I want and be done with it.
[It takes dynamite to get me out of the house, shopping. But, once out, "let's get ALL OF IT done!"]

We have a couple of ACE's here owned by the same folks. Very good selections, etc. I know the first names of many of the folks and they know mine.
A little embarassing to only be buying "small change" items (screws, nuts, etc.) but I feel no need to spend a lot of money JUST to spend a lot of money, there! I'm not going to buy a box of 5/6x3/4 carriage bolts when I only need *2*!

Malls aren't fond of teens -- "short arms" (even if they have deep pockets!)
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On Sun, 15 May 2016 18:30:52 -0700, Don Y

Same girl I was talking about likes shoes. Bought a lot from Zappos, usually when they are on sale (of course they play games about that.) Free returns including shipping. But eventually they told her she couldn't buy anymore because she returned too much, even though she kept a lot more than she returned. So she changed her email address and reregistered and that seemed to fool them. (You'd think they could foresee that and would go by shipping address.)

Ace is VERRY good.

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On 5/17/2016 2:48 PM, Micky wrote:

Some sores will also kick your ass out if you return too much. It is costly to handle the return.
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Also, Amazon bought Zappos about that time so their policy may have changed.
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On 05/15/2016 07:28 PM, Dean Hoffman wrote:
[snip]

There used to be a good old Ace hardware store around here like that. We had another good hardware store too. Neither lasted long after Lowe's opened.
[snip]
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wrote:

3 or 4 Aces in baltimore are small, packed with stuff and one or 2 definitelyh doing good business. One in a west suburb is very busy, larger, and was mobbed 9 days ago (sunday), the firstg good weekend day this year. There were twice as many cars as usual, filling a parking area that is always empty. They were giving free hotdogs that day.
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On Sun, 15 May 2016 19:28:39 -0500, "Dean Hoffman"

It would help me to picture this if I knew what town and state.

My friend walks in one for 90 minutes 3 times a week when the weather is cold or rainy. A big mall in Baltimore actually went out of business, so now she has to go to a smaller one. She's bumped into one or two other walkers from the first mall. A store often gives her a free pretzel.
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On Sun, 15 May 2016 11:32:57 -0700, Don Y

This was a good thing for a long time, because I saw all the things that people sold, things I'd never thought of, a few of which I needed and some that I would need in the future.
But now I'm not so interested in learning about new things. I have too many hobbies, for example.

I buy my water heater there. They have the same spacing as my original one, between the intake and output pipes.
I bought a universal garage door receiver/xmitter there a while back, to replace one a friend had foolishly removed from his house, that turned on 8 flood lights. I got it working, but I never heard back that his wife was happy again, and I asked, and got a vague answer.
Not only did it work from the street in front of their house, it worked another 30 feet into the school yard across the street. Something must have gone wrong, but IL don't know what.

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On Sun, 15 May 2016 10:27:36 -0500, "Dean Hoffman"
snip

When I was a kid in the late 1950s, the yearly arrival of the Sears catalog was a wonderful event. It seemed to have everything imaginable and I would spend hours looking through it.
Sears was the king of mail-order then and they continued to be king for a long time. When Internet shopping started, Sears was in a perfect position to dominate it since they already had a massive mail-order infrastructure operating. All they had to do was put their catalog online.
But they didn't. And now, they will soon be gone. Another example of upper management flubbing it while sitting fat and happy in their tower. Wal-Mart will follow in the next 10 years.
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What do you see Walmart doing wrong?
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On Mon, 16 May 2016 16:47:47 -0500, "Dean Hoffman"

Based on the two WMs (super centers) where we used to shop, one about 20 miles west of us and the other about 20 miles east of us, I would say:
1. Empty shelves - About 15% of the items we try to buy on any given shopping trip are out of stock. There is a place for it on the shelf, but it's not there. The items vary from trip to trip, but there are always a couple.
2. Their on-line shopping seems chaotic and uncertain. It would be nice if anything ordered on-line had the option to be picked up (shipping free$) at the local store.
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On 5/17/2016 5:56 AM, CRNG wrote:

Target is even worse, in that regard. If it was an occasional thing, we'd assume someone just botched their JIT MRP. But, it seems to happen too often to write it off to a fluke!

SWMBO ordered a battery for her camera some years ago. Walmart was one of the few online places that carried it. And, we could just pick it up in the store (lots of camera batteries are third party and we wanted to be able to play touchy feely before settling on the purchase). The service was worse than the post office! There wasn't even a person *at* the Will-Call desk (which was hidden in the back of the store).
[The USPS is actually very "efficient" in their counter service; they keep the minimum amount of staff there as possible to address the needs of their clientele. Staff "standing around" might improve service *times* but not "efficiency"! In that regard, WalMart was even MORE "efficient"! :< ]
This sort of thing should be a no-brainer: if you have an online presence, all you should have to do is arrange for the parts to be included in the latest shipment to Store #1234 with a label "To the Attention Of: Online Sales Will-Call".
WalMart appears to be missing the business aspects of The Internet in much the same way that MS did!
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On Tue, 17 May 2016 06:12:25 -0700, Don Y

I have not set foot in a post office in years. Why would I since their online and "doorstep" service is as good as it is. I am not sure why I would even need to go to the PO and I ship and receive from them a lot. I can sell some kind of widget on Ebay, the postage it already computed, I print the postage paid label here, stick it on the box and the mailman picks it up on my front porch the next day. I can do the same thing on Click n ship (USPS web site) for anything I want to mail. They even give me the boxes for free.
I agree about the Walmart "will call" desk. I had to track down someone to call someone to get my package there. In the end, the "package" (a set of tires) was really in the tire shop but you still need the ticket from will call.
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On 5/17/2016 9:07 AM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

You don't have a POBox, do you? :> When clients send things to my box, they often "don't fit" so I have to take the little slip to the window to "claim my prize"...

Sure! I used to use the "medium shoebox" to mail cookies to friends and family. Finally decided that $11 for postage was making them awfully expensive cookies!
OTOH, in the bakery, they seem to want $10/pound...

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On Tuesday, May 17, 2016 at 12:07:16 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Have you tried PayPal shipping for small packages that can go USPS First Class? Click-N-Ship has a minimum of ~$6 which is much more than it costs for USPS First Class when shipping just a few ounces. PayPal Ship Now lets you buy postage and print 1st Class mailing labels.
https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_ship-now
No address book though, so you have to keep typing in addresses that you use a lot.
..snip...
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