Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'The Observation Bar' started by GHT, Mar 21, 2015.
We have our Normal-Time back, yoohoo!!
Isn't that a reason to joy??
I fear the answer is “yes,” just as I am confident enough people fall for it to make the hustle work. The hucksters wouldn’t keep doing it if it didn’t.
But yeah, it annoys me, too. Dishonesty is at the heart of it. While I’m not the one being duped, I still hate seeing the practice get rewarded.
EDIT: “Buckle up. We’re giving away FREE belts.”
That’s the headline on a Facebook ad for Tecovas, the Western boot company. But they aren’t giving away anything. You gotta buy the boots (a few hundred bucks) and they throw in the belt at no additional charge. Which is cool, I suppose, to have a new belt to match your new pair of s*** kickers, but it isn’t in any way FREE, in all caps or otherwise.
There's a strange psychology at work when it comes to these kinds of fees. We charge a $2 per ticket processing fee for tickets to events ordered online or by phone, because offering those services requires us to pay thousands of dollars a year for an internet-based processing service that we'd otherwise not need and have no use for, and honestly would like very much to be rid of forever. But if we abolished that fee and just raised the price of tickets purchased online or by phone by $2, we'd be crushed by a barrage of outrage from the Karen contingent who think it's just DESPICABLE that we'd TAKE ADVANTAGE of THE ELDERLY WHO CAN'T STAND IN LINE, or who LIVE ON THE ISLANDS AND CAN'T GET INTO TOWN, or whatever.
And yet, if you break the price down as "Regular Price plus $2 processing fee," they gladly pay it and don't kick at all.
That differs considerably from a “wait, there’s more!” TV pitch for some miracle product that offers to double the order FREE, “just pay separate shipping and handling,” the charge for which is undisclosed until the sap is on the phone or the ’net.
I mentioned some weeks back how I was prepared to buy what seemed to be a screaming hot deal on a large George Nelson bubble lamp from an outfit called the realreal, which, as the name suggests, is an outlet for selling genuine luxury swag, guaranteed as such, the sort of stuff that gets routinely counterfeited. I was set to enter my card number when I saw the seller was charging a $900 shipping fee, which is absurd. Even with extremely careful packaging and priority shipping and insurance it shouldn’t have exceeded a single C note.
But wait, there're MORE! Order in the next thirty minutes, and we'll DOUBLE YOUR ORDER! That's right, you'll get not one, but TWO new and improved Splag Widgets for the price of one! And don't ask why this offer will still be in effect tomorrow night or the nights after when this infomercial repeats, just order NOW!
This offer not available in Hawaii, Alaska or Quebec...
Step Right Up!
I think anybody who'd buy any product from a "call now!" TV commercial is already on record as a chump. Say what you will, the Boys know their market.
I find those guys who sell "rare" coins on the shopping channels almost hypnotic, even though I know there is nothing the least bit "rare" about what they're selling. I used to have a whole box of those "rare Mercury dimes" that go for no more than melt value anywhere but on cable TV.
The most despicable, however, are the ones who sell so-called "prayer aids" to the elderly, the desperate, and the gullible, like that No Evil Oil charlatan with his little bottle of dyed canola oil "prayed over for 77 hours." I don't believe in a fiery Hell, but I'd make an exception if I knew this guy would go there.
Just saw a TV commercial for something called a “touchscreen purse,” which is a handbag with a transparent plastic pocket for one’s smartphone, which allows the user to do whatever that user wishes with that phone without removing it from that pocket.
And, of course, you get a second touchscreen purse thrown in free, except for — get this — a separate “processing and handling” charge. I’m left to assume the second purse is shipped in the same box or padded envelope or whatever along with the first purse, so instead of a separate *shipping* and handling charge there’s a *processing* and handling charge.
So, one tacky, cheap-ass purse for you and one for your BFF. Just pay separate processing and handling.
That's not so bad. I can easily ignore that given that I'm yet to be tempted by anything hawked on TV. What I don't like is online shopping where you can only see the price after you put it in your cart, and when you can only see the shipping cost after you enter you payment info.
We watch very little network tv these days, but we just saw that ad the other night, I think on AMC during Fear the Walking Dead. It's a purse with a clear plastic sleeve. And if you can get one for "free" with just a wee fee added on, think of the profit margin on selling just one at "full price".
I am in the wrong business...
I've recently noticed more retail sales websites having an option to verify the shipping costs as soon as something is placed in the "cart". I think they realized they were losing sales because so many people like us wanted to know the TOTAL cost before they committed to the purchase, so that particular trigger didn't get pulled.
Gotta wonder if there’s any research either affirming or debunking the notion that failure to fully and plainly disclose costs up front pisses off would-be customers such that it drives them away.
Not to conflate my own sentiments with anyone else’s, but I find the practice irritating at best. I doubt I’m even close to alone in those sentiments, but I certainly don’t discount the possibility that for every one of me and mine there’s at least two on the other side, people who will get to the point of payment and say to themselves, yeah, seeing how we’ve come this far, what’s another five bucks?
This reminds me that the practice in the UK and Europe is to price items in shops including all taxes. It says 45.95 on the tag, you pay 45.95 at the till.
The one and only thing l like about Ontario's Crown corporation liquor chain is that the price on the shelf is the price at the till. No surprises, as you know that total includes the usurious taxes applied.
When that five bucks could mean the difference between whether or not a person eats dinner that night, you can bet people are going to be frugal.
When a ballot measure a few years back broke the state of Washington’s monopoly on retail liquor (distilled spirits) sales and the supermarkets got into it, the price on the shelf wasn’t even close to the price at the till. It didn’t matter all that much to me, seeing how I’d quit the hooch some years prior to that, but I sure did hear a lot of grumbling about it. I haven’t lived there in six years, so I don’t know how it is now, but I’d bet they got it sorted out one way or another. Or maybe everyone just got used to it.
You gotta wonder if the ads for crap like the nineteen dollar and ninety-five cent touchscreen purse (but wait, there’s more!) are aimed at the same people who are digging through the couch cushions on the last couple days of the month.
I've been increasingly seeing this on Amazon's used books--a seller will have the best price on the book by a dollar or two, but instead of $3.99 or $4.99 for shipping, will charge upwards of $25 for S&H. First time I saw it, I thought they were mailing the book from overseas, turned out to be Ohio.
I understand that "impulse buy" urge, especially when I'm perusing evilBay for something and stumble across a different item which I MUST have even though I have absolutely no need for it. Fortunately, reason always manages to take control and no sales are made, but I can easily understand how people with less self control can get themselves into some financial trouble.
My guess is that Amazon and evilBay aren't so different in their operating methods. What I mean by that is, I don't know exactly how Amazon works with regards to what I call it's "sub-tier" vendors (i.e., people who have an Amazon "store"), but those with a store on eBay basically pay a percentage of each sale to eBay in order to maintain their web presence on eBay rather than start their own website which would likely get less "traffic". But that percentage only applies to the sale price of the item itself (or items) and excludes any shipping costs. So in order to give less of their profits to eBay, sellers figured out they could keep more of the sales money by lowering their sales prices and adding that discount to the shipping estimate.
Example: Seller has a widget he's willing to part with for $100, and shipping is another $15. If eBay takes 10% per sale, the seller has to give them $10. However, if that seller reduces the price of that widget to $10 and raises the shipping cost to $105, eBay gets only $1, the seller still ships the item for $15, and pockets the other $99. I don't really know, but I imagine it works pretty much the same way on Amazon.
Our provincial government is sloooooowly opening up competition, allowing grocery stores to sell wine and beer (but not liquor yet), BUT they cannot undercut the liquor store retail prices and still must include the necessary taxes, but still, the price on the shelf is all in.
Curiously, I can now open up a private pot shop, but I cannot open up a private wine or beer store. Only wine producers can open up shops and are limited to their own products (hence only the major players do so) and are otherwise limited to winery shops and mail order. The Beer Store (it is literally called that) is a government authorized private cartel. It was created in Ontario in 1927. Pure coincidence that is when prohibition ended here. From one criminal monopoly to another...
Since Amazon was mentioned, I find it obnoxious that if you look at something long enough or too many times, or leave it in you cart too long, the price goes up.