Monday, November 17, 2008

A rant on Target

Sunday night as I was using google reader to read my blogs, I came across an awesome deal. A Britax Marathon for $42 in Granite. There was another, cow print which was priced at just under $60. Speculation was that this was a clearance on these two colors, likely to make way for new prints. For the price, I wouldn't have even been upset had the seat been slightly older. If you don't have a child, you might wonder what that matters, but it does, most car seats have an expiration date of six years from the date of manufacture. If you're paying full price, that's obviously an important consideration. If you're getting an awesome deal, you can oversee this.

There has been speculation all day today about whether or not this deal was legit. Some online reported their orders were canceled. Early this evening, I decided to check my order status. My order was gone, no explanation. A few hours later, I received an email:

Due to an unexpected error, the following item(s) you have ordered
were incorrectly priced at the time of your order.

Britax Marathon Convertible Car Seat - Granite

We're sorry, but we are unable to offer this item for the incorrect
price. The correct price is $279.99. We have canceled your order for
this item. If you would like to order this item at the correct price,
please visit Target.com to check for availability.

Despite our best efforts, a small number of items on our site are
occasionally mis-priced. We do, however, verify prices as part of our
shipping procedures. If we discover that an item's correct price is
higher than our stated price, we will either contact you for
instructions before shipping or cancel your order and notify you of
the cancellation. This pricing policy is posted in the Help section
on Target.com.

Again, we're sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused
you. Thank you for being our valued guest.


Sincerely,

Guest Service Department
Target.com
http://www.target.com


Well, I for one, think this is crap! Retailers have been complaining about the economy and how they were afraid that sales were going to slip this holiday season. There has been talk of early Black Friday sales. As a consumer, why would this error really matter in the grand scheme of things? Because, it sends a bad precident: we'll advertise something really low, get a bunch of people to order that and hopefully other things and then say oops. The old bait and switch.

If I were to have bought this in store, I would have had the price honored at check out. If I check out from the target.com website, why is this any different? I got an email confirmation and an order number - and it should be honored. Why? So that we have faith in Target's website. As it stands now, we'll all wonder - is this just a good deal or is this another ooops? Better to shop somewhere else.

As I wrote to Target in an email, they should understand that this made the rounds. Around the mommy blogosphere, this deal circulated. How many of us bought this and had our orders not fulfilled? Target should take note about the recent Motrin ad that targeted baby wearing moms - we moms talk. And, do they really want to be the subject of a negative discussion amongts moms on blogs, message boards and through email?

2 comments:

casacaudill said...

A couple of months ago some big hotel chain (Sheraton, maybe) had accidentally priced rooms at their Times Square hotel for $99/night. This is unheard of for NYC. Lots of people heard about it and booked their rooms. The hotel had a decision to make - go back to the people who were choosing to stay at that hotel versus the hundreds of other ones in NYC and say "too bad, so sad" or suck it up and be thankful that in a down economy they were booking rooms at all. The hotel did what was right and honored the bookings. It's too bad that Target didn't do the same thing.

Elaine said...
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