Help me, please. I’m trying to decide if this is ethical or fair trading. I would love your opinion. Read on…
I was looking at a UK based holiday company online. They are conveniently available 7 days a week including bank holidays. In fact, they are even open for our calls until 20.00 on weekdays. That is if you want to spend money and buy a holiday from them.
Now, if a customer wants to complain, the convenience evaporates; calls to the complaints team will only be answered Monday to Friday between 09.00 and 17.00. This is of course at the time most customers are working to earn the money to buy the holidays.
As a policy this makes me feel uncomfortable. What’s your opinion on this? Am I being unfair?
Don’t put your prices down, use a decoy.
Let me explain the idea with a case study from Williams-Sonoma, an American publicly traded consumer retail company that sells kitchenwares and home furnishings.
Williams-Sonoma introduced a home bread making machine for $275. Sales were significantly lower than expected. One option was to discontinue the product, another was to reduce the price. But before either of those options were taken Williams-Sonoma retained a marketing research company who suggested the decoy strategy. This was to introduce a slightly better bread making machine that was priced 50% higher than the $275 model. In other words, they would have a product that was only marginally better but at a price of $415.
Once the new $415 machine was introduced, the sales of the original $275 model began to grow. What was going on? Simply, the consumer spotted the $415 product and used that as a price anchor in their minds. Then, the $275 bread maker, which was almost as good, was identified as being a bargain.
This a poor sign of the times…multiple copies of Barclaycard terms and conditions. Let me share the story of their arrival.
I upgraded my iPhone. As a big fan of Apple Pay, I needed to add a few cards to my new phone and a couple of Apple Watches. I duly did this and accepted Apple’s terms online and I think Barclaycards as well (I expect so as I could use it to then make a payment).
Then three separate 14 page printed sets of terms and conditions arrived in my postbox.
My question is, why three? And then why any in analogue format? Isn’t it disappointing how some businesses purport to be digital and continue to chop down trees to hang on to legacy processes?
I also wonder how many people ever read terms and conditions presented in this way.
Most Venn diagrams seem to have two or three overlapping circles. This one has four and it makes sense.
It has helped me validate a couple of decisions this month. I’m sharing it with you now, save it for your own use.