Retailers Helping Customers Spend Less?
While it might seem the last thing retailers would want to do during an economic downturn is to teach customers how to cut costs, but that’s exactly what a handful of clever retailers are doing. Home Depot, Wal-Mart and Stop & Shop are among several retailers that have begun offering classes and other programs that teach customers how to cut costs during the economic downturn. The general idea here is that the lessons on spending less will boost customer loyalty over the long haul.
Examples of this in-store focus on thriftyness comes from Stop & Shop’s “affordable food summits” where consumers are taught how to lower their grocery bills. Home Depot is offering classes on how to cut energy bills. And Wal-Mart recently hired a “family financial expert” who has used online chats to teach several thousand shoppers how to save money for college, whittle away debt and sell a house.
Retail analysts Lauren Sosik thinks the idea is a great one, as she explains. “For a long while many consumers didn’t really value the dollar like they should and they are learning the hard way now. These retailers are now kind of softening the blow and I think moves like this will be remembered when we’re all back on our feet again.”