Tricky Target

>> 8.17.2010

Another one of my cell phones bit the dust this past weekend (I must have a talent for ruining these things!) and I found myself heading to Target to pick up another Go Phone (read why I use them here). I'm lucky enough to live within 15 minutes of two Targets, but I usually go over to the older one in the less affluent neighborhood. It tends to have a larger selection of the trendy home goods and a less crowded parking lot. Unfortunately, it was also sold out of the cheaper Go Phones.

Before heading ten minutes up the highway to the other Target, I checked the housewares section for sales on these cute plastic cups I've been eyeing all summer. I was excited to see that the entire collection was on sale for 50% off... but they were all out of my cups :(.

Luckily, the newer Target had my Go Phone AND a ton of my cups!

...but only at 30% off.

I asked a red-shirted employee why the other store would sell the same products on the same day at 50% off and she said that they base the sale percentages on stock levels. According to her, if one store has more of an item, they'll reduce the price more. This would all make sense if I hadn't just seen a store with fewer cups selling them for less.

My personal opinion is that it's more about the store's neighborhood than its stock levels.
What do you think?

PS Yes, of course I still bought the cups! A set of the short ones will go in our picnic basket and the taller ones will go in the kitchen cabinets :).


Carly @ Honey and the Moon August 17, 2010 at 10:34 AM  

I used to be a Go Phone user as well, until I finally broke down and bought an iPhone...however, if the iPhone ever permanently bites the dust, I will most definitely be a Go Phone girl again.

About the cups, I'm not really sure. I agree with you that it's probably based more on the location and demographic of the store than anything. Cute cups, though! xo

LizzieBeth August 17, 2010 at 10:51 AM  

I think John and Sherry at YoungHouseLove ran into the same thing-- they found the same item for two different prices and different stores.

I do the same thing. The Target by my apartment is in a very well-to-do area. I tend to stop at the one by my work, which is definatly a lower income area.


Meredith Travels August 17, 2010 at 11:32 AM  

The cups are adorable! I don't think I would be able to hide the shorties away in the picnic basket!

Kate@TwentySixToLife August 17, 2010 at 11:46 AM  

The Hubs goes through cell phones like that too. :(

I'm sure the cup pricing scheme has to do with the store's location. If they think they can get more money for them, they'll price them higher. I guess you can't blame a business for looking out for their bottom line, but it still seems shady.

Mrs. Chic August 17, 2010 at 12:04 PM  

I hate that pricing scheme! It's the same exact store regardless of area and stock on hand and should be he same price! If i buy something on clearance near me and see it cheaper I just exchange it and buy the cheaper one, done it several times - super annoying! :)

chacha August 17, 2010 at 1:31 PM  

I think part of it is stock and part of it is location.

I have found that the Target in the nice town further south from me -- while it's an older, un-remodeled store -- charges sometimes 20% more for the same product. Usually the clothes are the same, but things like foods and housewares are higher.

I guess it's a supply/demand thing but it's annoying. I never go to that Target unless I absolutely have to. I always go to my local Target which is securely middle-class at best.

Livinia Redlips August 17, 2010 at 3:19 PM  

my guess is that the 2nd store just hadn't done the correct markdown yet! love the cups, i have some too - in another pattern (and some that were from their halloween section).

Jeannine @ Small and Chic August 17, 2010 at 3:25 PM  

Marshalls/TJ Maxx/Homegoods stock stores based on area demographics, too! There's a TJ Maxx where my brother lives (Boston suburbs) that always has Prada, Vera Wang, etc. The one that was near my apartment (in the city) never had those sorts of brands. I've see the same thing down here in Virginia.

So funny that some TJ Maxx stores are too "high end" for me!

dolores @ Welcome to My Humble Ablog August 17, 2010 at 5:51 PM  

I noticed the same thing this past weekend! I was in hunt for those cute melamine dinner plates and after visiting 4 different target stores to gather a total of 5 dinner plates, I noticed that some stores displayed a 30% off sale or a 50% of sale. As Stephanie Tanner would say, "how rude!"


savvy_homegirl August 17, 2010 at 6:22 PM  

Being Canadian, I don't get to shop at Target near as much as I would like to.

I do border-hop from time to time though and when I'm traveling in the U.S. for work, I usually make sure I get to Marshall's. I have definitely noticed they do this in their stores. In one city I visit often, I've found the nicer neighbourhood store with high-end clothing, but the real clearance deals on purses and household items are at the store in the less affluent area.

Or so it seems...

dogsmom August 17, 2010 at 11:16 PM  

Sometimes I will buy an item when I think it will be going on clearance in the next week. I have had no problems getting a price adjustment as long as it does go on sale within 30 days (depends upon store. Some are 15 days.) It takes more watching but at least I have it before they run out.
Rarely have I ever actually returned anything and bought again later.

kimaloo August 17, 2010 at 11:18 PM  

Call me an old woman, but I would haggle the store manager. If store A has it for one price, then store B needs to sell it for the same thing. I've never done it at a Target but I've gotten my at Kohl's, Macy's, and Wal-Mart by having them call the other location and confirming their selling price. :o)

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