Dang the closest sam ash to me is in Jeff City, 100 miles away or so...
As I said, everyone is entitled to make their own purchasing decisions and I do not disagree with the logic you have presented, save for those internet retailers who choose to sell at low margins also have employees. Whether you buy that stand locally or from another state, you are still eating away at the profits which will likely ultimately go towards salary. Employee salaries and/or benefits (when they do exist) are by far the largest portion of overhead in running just about any business.I disagree a bit here. My getting the stand for a good deal isn't my fault. There are actually shops on the internet that are selling for less in this case. The bigger picture is that my saving a few bucks on a stand gives me more elbow room to inject more of my money into the economy by being able to buy something else. If I paid the original $99 price, then that seriously cut into the money left over that I used to buy lunch for my wife and myself at another retail business who has people doing a job that sucks with a high turnover rate.
You have astutely pointed out another glaring problem in our industry. Many if not most drum shops (and perhaps other music retailers) are owned and managed by drummers who have little to no experience running a business. This was especially common in the 1970s, 1980s and on into the 90s. While that is changing, it is glaringly obvious what shops are managed by people who know how to run a business (see Memphis Drum Shop) and those that are not.And regarding this high turnover rate that music retailers seem to be enjoying, after having worked for Guitar Center and a chain now dead, Goodman Music in California, the problem isn't the customers, it's the people they attract into the job. For years music instrument prices were negotiable, and the people attracted to this job were not sales-minded people, but the musician-dreamers we all are. We all want to be cool - so how cool is it to get to go a job where you get to play with stuff you intend to own? Or the story goes. Then these people figure out that to survive in it has more to do with your people skills ability to get them to buy stuff then it does your musical ability, and since California is an at will state decide to leave because the job isn't really for them, or the owner decides to fire them for not figuring that part out.
Some shops do, some don't, it is a matter of the market in which they operate. In the current drum industry, I know for a fact that, smaller, independent dealers need to maintain roughly a 20% gross profit margin to keep their doors open. Keep in mind, the net profit (after wages, rent, other overhead) is much lower, often in the single digits. You should know as a former GC employee, not even the evil giant could possibly operate on 5% GP margins.If the music retailers weren't making a profit, then he wouldn't have given me a break on the price. Why don't they just drop the price to their lowest profitable level and tell me that's as low as they could go then? At a Guitar Center just last week this happened to me: I was looking at their $35 straight cymbal stands and asked if he could do better. He was honest and said no. He even showed me on his computer he was only marked up 5% over cost. I bought them and he was being honest. Nobody else could sell them that low. The salesman wasn't a frustrated musician frustrated at me trying to get a deal, he just laid it on the line, there was nothing to haggle. If all music retailers ran their stores like all other retailers, there'd be less frustrated musicians working for them and customers wouldn't expect a better deal. It's interesting to go into a BestBuy these days.
Personally I wouldn't go into a shop and try out their cymbals adding wear and tear etc to their products if I had no intention of buying one from them as I just don't think it's reasonable.So I was at a drum shop the other day, planning to try out some cymbals. I told the guy there that I might be interested in a new cymbal, and I went to try them out. Well, I was pretty sure I wasn't gonna buy a new cymbal, because I am planning on getting one used. But i still wanted to try them out, to see if i liked them or not.
GC? I'll bet you a large sum of money that if you wait 3 weeks and go back, he won't be there. Their turnover is one of the highest of any industry. It's a revolving door of salespeople.Thanks for all the replies guys...
And to be specific, what I actually said was, "I'd like to check out a few rides"
I didn't really say I'd be interested in buying one.
And actually Travis this was guitar center! Do they have a reputation for being rude to customers who don't buy?
Fortunately there's a drum HQ nearby, which cover's most of my drum needs. They hardly have any paiste stuff though, which is why I went to GC.
If I may be allowed to back-pedal a bit, I do not treat salespeople like crap when I go into a store. I nicely tell them I can get it cheaper elsewhere and if they're willing to bargain with me, I'll buy it right there on the spot. Which I did, in my case. You can be a good negotiator without trashing the salesman. But I stand by my attitude that "it's your money, do what you want with it" because for everybody, that's the truth. They don't have to take bullying from a salesman to buy something.Bo, your assumption that the dealer could still make a profit on that stand isn't necessarily true, or at least isn't the whole picture. Some places will sell certain items at price that they cannot afford to do, day in and day out, just to make you happy and keep you as a customer. But it isn't really accurate to think they could do that all the time. A 5% margin won't cover your cost of doing business, normally, for a brick and mortar store.
Make no mistake, I look for good deals, too. But I also understand that, when the main driving factor in a purchase is price only, then service will suffer. Sadly, most people buy on price alone - think WalMart, not really known for outstanding service, but still an enormous retailer - and to be competitive, businesses cut labor costs. The reality is, you will not have consistently excellent service when you've bought the cheapest labor available.
I agree with the people who say that a person working retail shouldn't be rude to a customer. But I also know there are a lot of customers who deserve it. Among them, in my opinion, are people who waste the time of a retailer and use that retailer's investment when they have no intention of buying there. Also, there are customers who think that, because they have money to spend, they have no responsibility to treat the retailer respectfully. The "I have the money, and without me you are shit, so you have to do whatever I want and I can treat you however I want" mentality. In my opinion, this type is just a crappy human being - at least this aspect of their personality is crappy. To me, it's the adult version of the playground bully. Anyone who works retail has met this person. Unfortunately, retailers have to learn to let that stuff roll off their backs somewhat. But it's tough.
Live Free or Die Man! I have always loved the great state of NH!LOL, you need to move to NH, we do not have most of those taxes......Yet!! the liberals are trying harder and harder every year though.
Stores around here are great to buy from, especially ones that are on the borders of Maine and Taxachusetts they make a living off of those states citizens having to shop here to avoid ridiculous sales taxes. maine even tried to pass a law here in NH saying that we had to ask for ID's and if they were from Maine we had to tax them...LOL how ridiculous that it even got to a vote but eh what are ya gonna do. Hopefully NH can hang on to it's policies for the rest of my life anyway.
if someone gave me an attitude at a store I would go back when I knew I was buying something and seek out another saleman and hope the A-hole was there watching me buy : )