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Why go to Borders?


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17 replies to this topic

#1 of 18 Ralph Summa

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Posted July 16 2003 - 01:18 AM

I was in Borders yesterday to pick up a few books to read while on vacation and thought I'd pick up a DVD and some CDs as well. I walked out empty handed.

The price on the book was 100% of jacket price. I don't think I have ever paid full price for a book anywhere. I picked up Evanescence's CD at Best Buy a while back for $11.99. It was on sale at Borders for $15.49. Most CDs were $16.99-$18.99. I was looking at the Red Dragon DVD which was $26.99 and Gladiator was $28.99. I paid 25%-30% less for these in other stores.

I usually shop on-line, but when I want something quickly, I'll pop into a local B&M. I'll eat a few bucks here or there just for the sake convenience, but if I can have a book shipped to me for $15 and change, why would I think of paying $26?

Is this a local phenomenon or is this par for the course countrywide?

Ralph

#2 of 18 WadeB

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Posted July 16 2003 - 01:35 AM

Hey, I made a Borders run yesterday too and was thinking exactly the same thing: "who shops here?" Well me, I did buy a criterion DVD there, but they are hard to find at BB and CC and are expensive everywhere anyway. However, the Allison Krauss DVD I had just bought at CC was $6.00 more at Borders, and you are right, their CD prices are just insane.

Borders has a great selection, is a nice store, and I love thier numerous listening stations, but it is a place I mostly go to browse rather than to buy.

#3 of 18 Angelo.M

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Posted July 16 2003 - 05:20 AM

Quote:
Is this a local phenomenon...


It isn't.

I suspect, but do not know, that one of the reasons that Borders and Barnes & Nobles do not discount most books is that they probably have to 'eat' a fair amount of heavily damaged merchandise because of their 'infinite browse' policy (allowing folks to read in the store, cracking book spines and spilling their lattes on their newspapers and periodicals). Just a guess.

I don't mind paying full price for a book in a store because I do very little shopping on the 'Net, but I do mind paying full price for a damaged book; I prefer to damage it myself after it's been bought.

As far as CDs and DVDs: I'll shop there for hard-to-find stuff on occasion, and that's about it. If I have to resort to ordering a rare CD or DVD, I try to patronize local, mom-and-pop-type record/video places (becoming rare, right?).


#4 of 18 george kaplan

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Posted July 16 2003 - 11:12 AM

Well Borders does have a mixture of ridiculous prices on most dvds, and reasonable (i.e., the same as Best Buy, etc) prices on some. Mix in the occasional 10-20% off coupons, and you can actually (sometimes) get a really good deal at Borders. I got the Mouse that Roared there with a coupon for a better price than I could have at any other store, or any of the on-line places I shop. But, this only happens a few times a year.
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#5 of 18 Malcolm R

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Posted July 17 2003 - 02:20 AM

"who shops here?"
I wonder about this all the time for various stores.
  • FYE
  • Coconuts
  • Suncoast
  • Sam Goody
  • Borders
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Waldenbooks
  • B. Dalton
  • etc.
I hardly ever buy anything at any of these shops, or similar types of chain stores, and can't imagine why anyone else would either. Regular prices are usually straight MSRP. And there's sure to be a Wal-Mart, Best Buy, or Costco within close proximity of any of these higher priced stores. I'm baffled at how they stay in business.

My theory is lots of young people with no concept of the value of money. They have it, they spend it. The idea of comparison shopping is nowhere to be found since The Parent Bank is always open if they run out of cash.
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#6 of 18 george kaplan

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Posted July 17 2003 - 03:58 AM

Borders

Barnes & Noble
I hardly ever buy anything at any of these shops...and can't imagine why anyone else would either...there's sure to be a Wal-Mart, Best Buy, or Costco within close proximity

Well for dvds sure. But if you want to buy a book (which is the main thing to buy at a Borders or B&N), then while there are some cheaper alternatives (half-price book stores), they tend not to have the selection, and certainly Wal-Mart, Best Buy & Costco don't either.
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#7 of 18 Ralph Summa

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Posted July 18 2003 - 12:58 AM

I guess I just missed out on a 20% coupon from the "Coupons and Bargains" forum which would have dropped my book to $22 which was still about 50% higher than the $15 price on amazon. I know when you compare web shopping and B&M you have to figure in overhead, but as Malcom said, there are other B&M's who aren't charging MSRP. You can justify higher pricing for certain items like electronics, knowing that you can easily return something or get quick technical help, but I don't think I've ever returned to a book store after a week and uttered the phrase "this book isn't working right".

I think Angelo's theory has some legs although I never understood the practice. Most of the time I know what I want to buy. On occasion a book catches my eye in the store and I read through the jacket notes maybe the prologue. I don't think sitting down in the store and reading 10 or 20 or even 50 pages will change my mind one way or the other. to each, his/her own, I guess.

In the end I'll order my two books for $35 shipped from amazon, instead of paying $53 plus tax at Borders.

#8 of 18 Angelo.M

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Posted July 18 2003 - 01:42 AM

Ralph:

I think the 'infinite browse' definitely increases business for places like Borders. You stop in, have a coffee, hang around; if you're there, you're likely to buy something... eventually... maybe... Posted Image

I agree that there are far better places to buy books, particularly in large cities. Otherwise, Amazon is very hard to beat.


#9 of 18 Ralph Summa

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Posted July 18 2003 - 02:11 AM

I think the 'infinite browse' definitely increases business for places like Borders. You stop in, have a coffee, hang around; if you're there, you're likely to buy something... eventually... maybe...


Maybe they should serve cocktails. Beer goggles for books!Posted Image

#10 of 18 Charles J P

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Posted July 18 2003 - 02:21 AM

If you read Clive Cussler, and John Grissham only, then Wal-Mart is fine. But if I were to browse a typical Wal-Marts book selection, I promise you there would be NOTHING there that I read. The ONLY book stores in my area are B&N, Borders, Walden and B Dalton, as well as a few "speacialty" book stores that are more expensive than the ones I just named. I almost always impulse buy on books. I.e. I need something to read on the flight I am taking tomorrow, so I wouldnt order online either.

#11 of 18 george kaplan

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Posted July 18 2003 - 03:57 AM

There are certainly on-line stores that sell books and are cheaper, such as Amazon, however, I only use a handful of on-line sites that I trust and have had good experiences with, and Amazon isn't one of them, so for books, ordering on-line is not for me.

BTW, there's a new Border's coupon here.
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"Subtitles good. Hollywood bad." - Tarzan, Sight & Sound 2012 voter.

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#12 of 18 DanaA

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Posted July 18 2003 - 05:08 PM

Yeah, but you get those free two ounce cups of coffee when the urns not empty, so that justifies the ridiculously high prices. Posted Image

Seriously, I wanted a book last summer. Went to Borders. Was shocked to find it selling for $60, when the book cover had a suggested retail price of $35. Couldn't believe it. I went to the manager thinking it was a mistake so that it could be corrected. He told me that it wasn't a mistake and that Borders sometimes sells books for more than MSRP. I was shocked. Obviously, I didn't buy the book. Went to Amazon where it was something like $26 and bought it there. Even with shipping, it was well less than half of Border's site.

That said, I like that free coffee. Sometimes, three or four cups worth.

#13 of 18 WillG

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Posted July 21 2003 - 05:12 AM

I will say this of borders, I am sometimes willing to spend the extra money at Borders for the facts that: A. They have a very organized DVD section, unlike stores such as Circuit City were you have to pour through racks to maybe find something (but probably not). B: My Local Borders is very Pro-OAR on DVD. I don't really by many CDs anymore and usually go to the library for a book I need. But at least in terms of DVD, I sometimes am willing to spend the extra buck to support them
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#14 of 18 David Williams

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Posted July 21 2003 - 06:29 AM

I sometimes think that the only thing bookstores are good for is their Bargain Book sections.
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#15 of 18 Matthew Todd

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Posted July 21 2003 - 06:41 AM

I can think of one reason that I've shopped at Borders in the past.

If you have a discover card, you can double your cashback bonus by trading it in for credit at Borders. To me, this makes everything effectively 50% off. You can use regular coupons also for more savings, AND you can even order through Borders.com (which is really Amazon.com) and generally find an even lower price, but still use the credit there.

That's one good use I've found for Borders Posted Image

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#16 of 18 Dan Lindley

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Posted July 22 2003 - 05:46 AM

Sometimes you can find OOP stuff there. Also, a good selection of foreign films compared to most local competitors.
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#17 of 18 Jesse Skeen

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Posted July 22 2003 - 06:48 AM

Borders dropped the prices on their DVDs to Best-Buy-levels in 2000, but they seem to have gone back up since then Posted Image Guess they were selling too many of them!
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#18 of 18 StevenFC

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Posted August 25 2003 - 10:09 PM

Borders and Laser's Edge are the two places I head for here in town when I'm looking for a DVD that I can't find elsewhere. I rarely come away empty-handed. They're usually a couple of bucks higher--but the convenience of not having to order online is worth it.
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