What’s more dangerous to some business owners than the shoplifter? A customer armed with their iPhone, Android, or other smartphone device can not only find more affordable deals, but also make others aware of price differences. Minus the somewhat evil scheme Amazon incentive Amazon uses for price checking stores (Harvard Book Store’s Take), the online-seller is revolutionizing business (Forbes).
This application allows users to search Amazon’s database of merchandise by scanning the item’s barcode. If the barcode matches an item in Amazon’s inventory, the user is given a list of competitive prices and reviews of the product. Additionally, it allows you to disclose the store that you are viewing the item in.
Local businesses are crying out in frustration due to would-be customers using smart-phones to scan items and check for competitor pricing. The cyber attack is coming, but what is a small, local business to do?
Nothing When your business practices are antiquated, the best thing to do is curl up in a ball and watch your business fail. You can always collect unemployment
Restrict smart-phone usage Let’s pass a law stating “No citizen should use their iPhone to search for discounts when in a place of business”, which could be beneficial for business. Model it after some repressive governments, after-all, Syria, North Korea, and Iran are doing well. Plus, it will weed out any customers looking to pay less than full price. While you may have a surplus of products because of your questionable business practices, you will have plenty of merchandise available to donate in the Holiday season.
Use a price-check system in which a person can show a competitor’s price as a way to receive a better deal. With the use of a sign, your business will make the sale and the customer will go home with a new purchase. Come Christmas time, you will still be in business and the customer will have their new gadget.
Imagine you’re selling HD Televisions at your Mom & Pop HD Television Superstore down the street and a customer approaches to tell you they want to buy your $1500 62 inch TV but at the Best Buy/Amazon price. You could say no, you could throw them out of the store, or you could sell the product for the competitors price. Your choice determines whether Amazon becomes the “local”, holiday store that everyone shops
I love small businesses and I want them to succeed. For a local business to survive, they must adjust their marketing strategies and allow for competitive pricing in a world gone mobile