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(The Consumerist)   Sears - For all your automotive, hardware and Rolex needs   (consumerist.com) divider line 29
    More: Strange, Sears, Eddie Lampert, Rolex, Sears Holdings  
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2194 clicks; posted to Business » on 25 Jul 2013 at 10:25 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



29 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-07-25 10:41:04 AM  
Why not? You could return it later if you keep the receipt.
 
2013-07-25 11:07:41 AM  
I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point, especially for things you don't think "Sears" for like Rolex watches

Guys, you aren't going to beat Amazon in this space.  It's what Amazon does, and they have the scale and expertise to make it work- you don't.  Ideas like "Order online, pickup at store" are idiotic: Amazon will have it at my door faster than you will to your store, and I'll pay less.

Focus instead on stuff that is hard to order online- things with sizes, or things you want to touch before buying.  Focus on customer service- get people who actually understand the products and can help you pick.  Focus on stuff people need *now*, not in two days. Focus on repair services for expensive stuff

Sears isn't failing because of Amazon: they're failing because they *suck* at all the above.
 
2013-07-25 11:09:21 AM  

Glockenspiel Hero: I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point, especially for things you don't think "Sears" for like Rolex watches

Guys, you aren't going to beat Amazon in this space.  It's what Amazon does, and they have the scale and expertise to make it work- you don't.  Ideas like "Order online, pickup at store" are idiotic: Amazon will have it at my door faster than you will to your store, and I'll pay less.

Focus instead on stuff that is hard to order online- things with sizes, or things you want to touch before buying.  Focus on customer service- get people who actually understand the products and can help you pick.  Focus on stuff people need *now*, not in two days. Focus on repair services for expensive stuff

Sears isn't failing because of Amazon: they're failing because they *suck* at all the above.


And they've sucked LONG before Amazon came along.
 
2013-07-25 11:22:49 AM  
Sam's Club has stocked some luxury goods for years. I know my aunt joined to buy Waterford glasses at $40/ea. they're usually about $65
 
2013-07-25 11:32:51 AM  

Dwight_Yeast: Sam's Club has stocked some luxury goods for years. I know my aunt joined to buy Waterford glasses at $40/ea. they're usually about $65


Costco has also offered luxury goods (including watches) and as to Amazon vs. Costco, compare return policies at the two plus the fact at costco you can return to a brick and mortar store even if purchased online.
 
2013-07-25 12:00:05 PM  
I needed some parts for a GE dryer and the Parts guy at Sears wanted to charge me double what they were charging on Sears online parts website.

He didn't even have them in stock, so they were going to charge me double to do the exact same amount of pointing-and-clicking on the parts website. GFY, Sears.
 
2013-07-25 12:06:37 PM  
Yeah... I'm working on being rich enough to afford Rolex watches and bespoke tailoring, so let's go to Sears.

/They don't cater to the tall.
//Success as a coping mechanism.
 
2013-07-25 12:27:27 PM  

Glockenspiel Hero: I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point, especially for things you don't think "Sears" for like Rolex watches

Guys, you aren't going to beat Amazon in this space.  It's what Amazon does, and they have the scale and expertise to make it work- you don't.  Ideas like "Order online, pickup at store" are idiotic: Amazon will have it at my door faster than you will to your store, and I'll pay less.

Focus instead on stuff that is hard to order online- things with sizes, or things you want to touch before buying.  Focus on customer service- get people who actually understand the products and can help you pick.  Focus on stuff people need *now*, not in two days. Focus on repair services for expensive stuff

Sears isn't failing because of Amazon: they're failing because they *suck* at all the above.


The "site to store" thing is a great idea....

Amazon is pushing into getting things into people's hands in one day, if not the same day. The stores had a chance back when things took a week to get from Amazon to your door. They've fumbled this notion so terribly that there really is no way to recover. All the B&M companies treated their web presence separately from their store presence. They would charge you shipping even though you'd pick the item up in a store, etc. Amazon has figured out all the difficult logstics of getting things into people's hands at a price that can't be beat, at a relatively quick pace. Now they are on to easier tasks of rolling it out.

The only thing B&M will be good for is groceries....and guess what Amazon is eyeing.

If I were Kroger, Walmart, etc., I'd be jumping all over getting groceries delivered to a person's house. They should've started on it 3 years ago, and if they haven't started they should start now. If it'll be another 5 years, they're boned.
 
2013-07-25 12:32:12 PM  
The sad thing is Sears could have been Amazon, they could have been the one and only online retail giant.  If they had simply kept their catalog business, which was barely profitable <5% returns IIRC, for 5 more years and morphed it to online sales, they would have been the industry giants.  They had the shipping infrastructure, they had over 100 years experience in home devilries, they even had their own credit arm.
 
2013-07-25 01:19:47 PM  

Big Beef Burrito: I needed some parts for a GE dryer and the Parts guy at Sears wanted to charge me double what they were charging on Sears online parts website.

He didn't even have them in stock, so they were going to charge me double to do the exact same amount of pointing-and-clicking on the parts website. GFY, Sears.


"Good For You, Sears"?

But yeah, I've found that the worst places to try and get replacement parts are appliance stores.  First they want to sell you a new appliance.  No, I don't need a Kenmore Elite fridge just because the water line on my GE is broken.  Then they'll want to sell you installation service for the part.  No thanks, I can read a one page document handle a screwdriver.  And then when they get around to giving you the quote for the parts, it's way more expensive than any of the hundreds of online parts stores.

My guess is they do this because enough people relent and pay through the arse, and it's very high margins.
 
2013-07-25 01:56:13 PM  
You know, this seems strange to us now because most of us have grown up with sears as a brick-and-mortar behemoth in the middle of the range on prices. But, there were days when portions of the sears catalog had items you'd see in something like skymall - stuff kids would drool over throughout the century, knowing they could never actually afford it. This is more like returning to the golden years of the sears wishlist items..
 
2013-07-25 02:12:21 PM  
In the last 4 years, many of the hand tools sold under the Craftsman brand name are now made overseas.
...
Despite a long history as a US-sourced brand, most current Craftsman tools are manufactured in China.


WTF, Craftsman? You used to be cool...
 
2013-07-25 02:12:27 PM  

valkore: Big Beef Burrito: I needed some parts for a GE dryer and the Parts guy at Sears wanted to charge me double what they were charging on Sears online parts website.

He didn't even have them in stock, so they were going to charge me double to do the exact same amount of pointing-and-clicking on the parts website. GFY, Sears.

"Good For You, Sears"?

But yeah, I've found that the worst places to try and get replacement parts are appliance stores.  First they want to sell you a new appliance.  No, I don't need a Kenmore Elite fridge just because the water line on my GE is broken.  Then they'll want to sell you installation service for the part.  No thanks, I can read a one page document handle a screwdriver.  And then when they get around to giving you the quote for the parts, it's way more expensive than any of the hundreds of online parts stores.

My guess is they do this because enough people relent and pay through the arse, and it's very high margins.


The margins have to be unreal. They wanted 15 bucks each for a drum bearing, which is a 1" x 3" piece of plastic with a hole in one end. Online was only 9 bucks each, but that was still more than enough to make me want to beat a man to death with his own shoe.

Plus, this being Florida, old people are willing to pay more for the magicians at Sears to handle the mysteries of the Internet for them.

/Go fark yourself, Sears
 
2013-07-25 03:00:06 PM  
Two things that couldn't be more irrelevant in this day and age:
* Wrist watches
* Sears
 
2013-07-25 03:26:43 PM  

MrEricSir: Two things that couldn't be more irrelevant in this day and age:
* Wrist watches
* Sears


encyclopedias
 
2013-07-25 03:52:07 PM  
Why spend $33K on a watch when your cell phone's clock is locked to GPS? Besides, I can get a Rolex knock off for $175 or less, if you know how to deal,  down in Cozumel, which will fool the average Joe.
 
2013-07-25 03:57:49 PM  

Sin_City_Superhero: In the last 4 years, many of the hand tools sold under the Craftsman brand name are now made overseas.
...
Despite a long history as a US-sourced brand, most current Craftsman tools are manufactured in China.


WTF, Craftsman? You used to be cool...


That will be #1 on my list of things to fix when I take over the job as CEO.  Move Craftsman tool production back to the US.  Make them as good as possible.  Reinstate the lifetime warranty, no questions asked. Don't worry that they cost 2-3x what the WalMart tool does.  Then MARKET THAT.  "Craftsman- you can buy cheaper, you can't buy better"  "Craftsman: you only need to buy them once."  Run TV ads mocking the cheap tools from big box stores: have a couple of guys working on a project, have the other tool break or fail, and have guy #2 say something like "Here, use my Craftsman".  Show a proud Dad giving his son a set of Craftsman tools for his high school graduation.

To this day I can't figure out why the morons that run Sears haven't done this.
 
2013-07-25 04:09:57 PM  

Glockenspiel Hero: Sin_City_Superhero: In the last 4 years, many of the hand tools sold under the Craftsman brand name are now made overseas.
...
Despite a long history as a US-sourced brand, most current Craftsman tools are manufactured in China.


WTF, Craftsman? You used to be cool...

That will be #1 on my list of things to fix when I take over the job as CEO.  Move Craftsman tool production back to the US.  Make them as good as possible.  Reinstate the lifetime warranty, no questions asked. Don't worry that they cost 2-3x what the WalMart tool does.  Then MARKET THAT.  "Craftsman- you can buy cheaper, you can't buy better"  "Craftsman: you only need to buy them once."  Run TV ads mocking the cheap tools from big box stores: have a couple of guys working on a project, have the other tool break or fail, and have guy #2 say something like "Here, use my Craftsman".  Show a proud Dad giving his son a set of Craftsman tools for his high school graduation.

To this day I can't figure out why the morons that run Sears haven't done this.


Dear God this, just using my Father's 40 year old set of Craftsman, brings me memories of all the projects we worked on together.  Sell the quality, the nostalgia, the history.

Oh and I have never broken one of his old sockets, modern Chinese sockets not so much.
 
2013-07-25 04:41:02 PM  

Glockenspiel Hero: I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point, especially for things you don't think "Sears" for like Rolex watches

Guys, you aren't going to beat Amazon in this space.  It's what Amazon does, and they have the scale and expertise to make it work- you don't.  Ideas like "Order online, pickup at store" are idiotic: Amazon will have it at my door faster than you will to your store, and I'll pay less.

Focus instead on stuff that is hard to order online- things with sizes, or things you want to touch before buying.  Focus on customer service- get people who actually understand the products and can help you pick.  Focus on stuff people need *now*, not in two days. Focus on repair services for expensive stuff

Sears isn't failing because of Amazon: they're failing because they *suck* at all the above.


well that and Eddie Lampert is a Ayn Rand huffing lunatic who did some absolutely insane things to the corporate structure of Sears to try to creat "internal competition"
 
2013-07-25 08:59:25 PM  
Is that a real Rolex? A Swiss Rolex? Or is that a Sears Rolex?
 
2013-07-25 09:36:00 PM  

Magorn: well that and Eddie Lampert is a Ayn Rand huffing lunatic who did some absolutely insane things to the corporate structure of Sears to try to creat "internal competition"


dilbert.com

dilbert.com

Note that these are from 1995. It's like some things never change...
 
2013-07-25 11:39:11 PM  
Glockenspiel Hero:Focus instead on stuff that is hard to order online- things with sizes, or things you want to touch before buying.  Focus on customer service- get people who actually understand the products and can help you pick.  Focus on stuff people need *now*, not in two days. Focus on repair services for expensive stuff

Seriously. I'm not just going to buy a chainsaw sight unseen. Have a little room with a bunch of firewood and brush and let me go at it. I don't even need a chainsaw but I'd probably buy one if I was allowed a test drive.
 
2013-07-26 12:13:56 AM  

kidgenius: The only thing B&M will be good for is groceries....and guess what Amazon is eyeing.

If I were Kroger, Walmart, etc., I'd be jumping all over getting groceries delivered to a person's house.


Giant is really pushing their Peapod delivery service on the East coast. Seems to work pretty well based on the folks I know who have used it. In particular, a few single mothers at work who don't have to pack up the kids and drag them through the store while avoiding the aisles of candy and soda. Point and click, and it's at your door when you want it. It makes sense that the B&M stores have an advantage over Amazon because people are familiar with the quality of the food they'll be getting, and delivery can be made quickly. Even Amazon would need a much different distribution system to master this.
 
2013-07-26 01:31:29 AM  

Glockenspiel Hero: Sin_City_Superhero: In the last 4 years, many of the hand tools sold under the Craftsman brand name are now made overseas.
...
Despite a long history as a US-sourced brand, most current Craftsman tools are manufactured in China.


WTF, Craftsman? You used to be cool...

That will be #1 on my list of things to fix when I take over the job as CEO.  Move Craftsman tool production back to the US.  Make them as good as possible.  Reinstate the lifetime warranty, no questions asked. Don't worry that they cost 2-3x what the WalMart tool does.  Then MARKET THAT.  "Craftsman- you can buy cheaper, you can't buy better"  "Craftsman: you only need to buy them once."  Run TV ads mocking the cheap tools from big box stores: have a couple of guys working on a project, have the other tool break or fail, and have guy #2 say something like "Here, use my Craftsman".  Show a proud Dad giving his son a set of Craftsman tools for his high school graduation.

To this day I can't figure out why the morons that run Sears haven't done this.


Because Sears figured out a loooong time ago that most Americans these days were weekend warriors at best.  If you buy a wrench that, really, you use only a couple times a year, it only needs to look sorta good to get you to buy it.  It's much cheaper to give the few of you who actually wear one out a free replacement, instead of continuing to make 100% of the product an expensive quality tool that never really gets used.

Ever wonder why that 200-piece tool set only cost $225?  Do the math - $1.10 average per tool.  If Sears sold higher quality tool sets, they'd cost $600+ and you'd all go straight to Walmart looking for a cheaper set.

In 1993 I bought a Sears set when I started classes at a motorcycle mechanics institute, and wore most of them out before the end of 12 months.  I didn't have enough time to keep going back for free replacements, and started replacing them with Snap-On tools, at $30+ a wrench and $20+ per screwdriver.  Now those are almost jewelry-quality and indestructible, but I have over $10,000 in my box.  Most of y'all will never need, or want, to spend that kind of money.

But when I'm asked what tools to buy, I tell them to get a Sears set.  Good enough, and the average Joe will never wear them out.
 
2013-07-26 06:21:51 AM  
kidgenius:
The only thing B&M will be good for is groceries....and guess what Amazon is eyeing.

If I were Kroger, Walmart, etc., I'd be jumping all over getting groceries delivered to a person's house. They should've started on it 3 years ago, and if they haven't started they should start now. If it'll be another 5 years, they're boned.


Clothing too, IMO. Unless you're just buying a t-shirt, you're going to want to try it on, and between various manufacturers even clothing with identical sizes/body type can fit differently. So you go in, find a size/fit/manufacturer that you like, then order more of the same online (because the store's stock is likely limited). Although it is possible, you won't always find that same manufacturer at another retailer (whether another physical store or an online).

I'm not talking about tailored stuff either, but that mid range between wife-beater Saturday and meeting-with-the-boss Monday. Decent pants, decent button down shirts.

Or I don't know, maybe "business casual" is a dying style. I don't like wearing random t-shirts in an office, even if I have no interaction with customers, but plenty of guys do and management doesn't really care anyway.
 
2013-07-26 09:30:55 AM  

El Pachuco: Glockenspiel Hero: Sin_City_Superhero: In the last 4 years, many of the hand tools sold under the Craftsman brand name are now made overseas.
...
Despite a long history as a US-sourced brand, most current Craftsman tools are manufactured in China.


WTF, Craftsman? You used to be cool...

That will be #1 on my list of things to fix when I take over the job as CEO.  Move Craftsman tool production back to the US.  Make them as good as possible.  Reinstate the lifetime warranty, no questions asked. Don't worry that they cost 2-3x what the WalMart tool does.  Then MARKET THAT.  "Craftsman- you can buy cheaper, you can't buy better"  "Craftsman: you only need to buy them once."  Run TV ads mocking the cheap tools from big box stores: have a couple of guys working on a project, have the other tool break or fail, and have guy #2 say something like "Here, use my Craftsman".  Show a proud Dad giving his son a set of Craftsman tools for his high school graduation.

To this day I can't figure out why the morons that run Sears haven't done this.

Because Sears figured out a loooong time ago that most Americans these days were weekend warriors at best.  If you buy a wrench that, really, you use only a couple times a year, it only needs to look sorta good to get you to buy it.  It's much cheaper to give the few of you who actually wear one out a free replacement, instead of continuing to make 100% of the product an expensive quality tool that never really gets used.

Ever wonder why that 200-piece tool set only cost $225?  Do the math - $1.10 average per tool.  If Sears sold higher quality tool sets, they'd cost $600+ and you'd all go straight to Walmart looking for a cheaper set.

In 1993 I bought a Sears set when I started classes at a motorcycle mechanics institute, and wore most of them out before the end of 12 months.  I didn't have enough time to keep going back for free replacements, and started replacing them with Snap-On tools, at $30+ a wrench and $20+ per screwdriver. ...


The first time I literally split a 14 mm socket lengthwise while trying to loosen A stubborn bolt was when I started paying serious attention to the tools I owned and theit quality.  There is a LOT of crap being made these days but there has to be a middle ground between the garbage Wal-mart and Sears sells these days and the Snap-ons and Makitas of the world
 
2013-07-26 12:17:26 PM  
Glockenspiel Hero: I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point, especially for things you don't think "Sears" for like Rolex watches

Guys, you aren't going to beat Amazon in this space.  It's what Amazon does, and they have the scale and expertise to make it work- you don't.  Ideas like "Order online, pickup at store" are idiotic: Amazon will have it at my door faster than you will to your store, and I'll pay less.


People used to say that doing pizza delivery was a waste of time, because Pizza Hut had that market locked up.  There's always ways to improve, and new ways to deliver product.  Just because it seems like Amazon has things perfected, doesn't mean that someone else can't find a way to do it different or better, and take a chunk out of their business.

Competition is a good thing.
 
2013-07-26 12:20:11 PM  

kidgenius: If I were Kroger, Walmart, etc., I'd be jumping all over getting groceries delivered to a person's house. They should've started on it 3 years ago, and if they haven't started they should start now. If it'll be another 5 years, they're boned.


I've been saying that for years.  If there was a reasonable delivery service for groceries I'd be all over that.
 
2013-07-26 01:25:12 PM  

Glockenspiel Hero: I honestly don't get modern brick&mortar places like Sears and Wal Mart trying to move online at this point


Walmart actually has it down pretty good from my experiences. My local Walmart is fairly small, so the online selection is much greater. I've purchased TV's, a microwave cart, and other oddball kitchen stuff from them and have it shipped to the store (yes, I always check Amazon first for price). Then I just go to customer service, pick it up, and go (and I don't have to dress up like I'm going through the whole store or something)

Sears'/Kmart website OTOH, is a mess. Very limited selection in everything, inventory checker isn't accurate at all, and most of the crap comes from "Marketplace" sellers with ridiculous shipping costs.
 
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