Back in the day, if someone wanted to compare prices on things, it would usually require going to stores in person. This, of course, took up tons of time and maybe even some transportation expenses in order to facilitate this. Or, one could pick up the phone and call, but this made it tougher to see an item in person.
Of course there is no reason to do this anymore. If we’re shopping online, we can compare prices and buy accordingly. However, sometimes we want to go into a store and actually see a product in person before buying. Or, we might simply come across something in person and then get the idea that we want to buy it.
In that case, we can simply showroom. In other words, just go into a store to look, and then buy elsewhere for the cheapest price – very often online.
I started to do this last year, when there were a few purchases that I wanted to make, but thought I would just check to see what other prices were when searching online. You can simply get a price-scanning app, or have a few sites handy where you can browse prices in a few minutes. I like the app approach, as it’s quicker. Of course, this requires a smartphone, but I think these are more than worth it in their own right.
Anyway, in some cases I found that it wasn’t worth the extra few dollars of savings to either go to another store or to wait and buy online, so I just bought in person. In another case, I noticed that prices diverged widely from what I saw in the store to what I could pay online at another retailer. In that case, I simply walked away and bought elsewhere. This was nice for holiday shopping 🙂
Really, it’s a simple thing: just find the item, scan it, and see the competitive prices. I’ve tried RedLaser, but there might be other ways to go about this as well.
To me, if it requires a minimal amount of incremental time to check prices in this way, it’s worth it. Really, it seems as though it’s getting harder and harder for business to hide if they’re going to go with non-competitive prices. If consumers pay attention to the latest apps and technology to facilitate this type of price comparison, the savings can really add up!
My Questions for You
Have you ever showroomed?
What are your favorite ways to compare prices between stores?
Do you use any apps or sites to shop prices?