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It's lucky I live in a country where superstores like Walmart haven't yet made an impact. I was reminded of this again, a few days back when I went to a small newly opened music store near my house. This shop not only offered a minimum discount of 10% for all products on display, they actually gave as much as 40-50% off MRP on many of the collections.
On more than one occasion I've come across an instance where a small shopkeeper/store owner is not only willing to give offer discounts to encourage sales, he is actually pleased to do so, in order to establish customer relationship. It's a myth that the bigger shops including supermarkets offer discounts because they can afford to. Fact is, they do enough business so they can afford to ignore individual customers far more easily and therefore they couldn't care less about customer satisfaction. The personal touch is also missing in the large supermarkets. Nobody even cares whether you're a regular customer for years at a supermarket (I know this by experience).
Big supermarkets and mega-stores offer (usually pathetic) discounts only to rid themselves of old stock and/or to undercut the competition and drive the small shopkeepers out of business. Apart from the ethical issues involved, indeed here's a good business reason for all of us to keep the small traders in business: preserve competition and don't let the supermarkets dominate the retail scene.
Posted on Mon, Dec 17, 2007 at 15:11 IST (last updated: Wed, Jul 16, 2008 @ 21:36 IST)