Getting the most out of Wal*Mart

      2 Comments on Getting the most out of Wal*Mart

Shopping at Walmart can be a bear. Little to no service is common. Employees have little knowledge of products and bar code readers are often broken. Yet their prices are low, and you could use the extra cash. Fear not, here are 10 hot tips for getting the best out of Walmart:

  1. If you’re frustrated, leave. Vote with your feet. Is the checkout line 40 deep? Drop your buggy and leave. Let them cleanup. After all they should have more cashiers at the checkout shouldn’t they? Walmart profits on a “No/low service” philosophy. You are rewarded for this lack of service through low prices, but that does not mean you need to like it.
  2. Understanding Walmart’s pricing strategy. Is Walmart really cheaper? Not really. Yes, they are cheaper for about 200 of their most common goods, and very competitive on many goods, but if a product does not sell in large quantities watch the price. Is the item you need common or uncommon? If uncommon, go elsewhere.
  3. Walmart will price match. If you see something in a printed advertisement of another store that has the same exact product but lower take the ad into Walmart and they will price match it. There’s no need to actually go to the other retailer when Walmart is more convenient.
  4. If you don’t like the service, call the store manager. Contrary to popular belief, much of the staff at Walmart only follow strict rules, often incorrectly. These rules may not even be set by Walmart, but made up for the convenience of the staff. I know the store manager at my local Walmart, and he’s very reasonable. You may have to wait, but it’ll be worth it to other shoppers to get some idiot rule changed.
  5. If there is a huge lineup and you REALLY need the item, consider an alternative checkout area. Alternatives include jewellery, the drug store, electronics, and the auto centre. They’re often not busy and will help you out. Ocassionally you’ll find an area that believes they are above taking products from other areas of the store. Persevere. If you get mad, leave.
  6. Look for sale items. Yes, often they will have sale items on a rack at he very back of their department. Remember that most products in retail can be marked up 300-400%, so don’t feel bad when it’s marked down 50% or more. They are still making a profit.
  7. If you don’t like what you purchased, return it. There are exceptions, but you need to do returns within 3 months. Ideally do returns very early in the morning to avoid a huge returns line. The staff at the returns desk can be pretty ornery, but you would be too if you saw the number of scams they have to deal with. Persevere. if you don’t like something call the store manager. Please don’t scam any retailer with a fraudulent return.
  8. Buy seasonal items early in the season. Don’t expect Walmart to have a product all through the season. Products are shipped mid to late the previous season and are in the stores early. Mid to late in the season they purposely run out of product. This is so they have no excess products that they have to discount or send back to their supplier. Walmart is there to make money, not to ensure they have your product when you want. Go buy elsewhere if you don’t shop how Walmart sells.
  9. A cheap price for a shoddy or poor quality product is not a good buy. Walmart sells both in spades.  Do not buy it. If you do, return it.
  10. If you’re frustrated, leave. Vote with your feet. Did I mention this already? Shopping at Walmart can be maddening, but don’t let them give you a nervous breakdown. This is the service they offer and you like it or leave. Keep smiling and maybe give other retailers a go.

I shop at Walmart as if I’m playing a game. Good buys benefit my family and myself. Bad buys are returned. They aren’t going away any time soon, so if you’re dealt lemons, make lemonade.

2 thoughts on “Getting the most out of Wal*Mart

  1. myra36

    Great tips! I shop at Walmart quite a bit actually. I find the baby stuff (namely diapers and food) to be inexpensive compared to other retailers. I also get digital pics ($.19 each and I can send from home), books (30% off), and mags (10% off).
    I’ve written a post for shoppers in general. I’ve worked in retail for some time. I understand customers’ frustration over some of the “rules” that we have to go by. But I’ve always welcomed constructive criticism.As long as I’m not being yelled at of course!
    Take care!

  2. daviding

    I’m fortunate that I don’t have to spend much time in WalMarts. My wife does, but Walmart isn’t local to us, so it has to be worthwhile to drive 20 minutes to traffic to get to the closest one.

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