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price matching problems

Discussion in 'Televisions' started by wiggy, May 15, 2002.

  1. wiggy

    wiggy
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    Am I alone in finding some retailers wriggling to avoid price matching some of the cheaper dealers well known on this forum? My latest difficulty is with John Lewis Oxford Street who have steadfastly refused to price match Robert Whyte and TV & Video Direct by stating, and I am not making this up, that these dealers do not display prices and thus the goods are not generally available at the price which I was quoted over the phone. I have also had it stated that the JL undersales policy now requires prices to be displayed so that you can "see" them. In fact if you look at the latest version of the Undersales Policy it says nothing of the sort but does say " if you find the same item at a lower price at another shop in the UK we will refund the difference".
    The only provision in the Policy is that they do not match outlets that are not normal shops eg membership clubs, market stalls, duty free shops, mail order catalogues or the internet.
    I need other practical experience of problems, if any, before taking the matter further.
    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Guest

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    Friend of mine had the same problem with JL Cheadle when buying a Mini DV recently - they wouldn't price match and came up with different excuses for not doing every time he went back to them. In the end he didn't have the balls to kick up a big enough fuss and took my advice to buy it from an online retailer and saved some money in to the bargain.

    Forget price matching - buy online and support the companies who are genuinely selling goods at low prices rahter than those shops that rip of the majority of their customers.
     
  3. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
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    wiggy,
    If it is a large television, not a small item, my advice would be to persist with John Lewis and obtain the best price you can from them or a similar company.
    John Lewis have a probability of still being in business to take care of service when needed, and they have the five year guarantee.
    You may come unstuck buying from mail order hopefuls, they trade on extremely slim margins generally, and out of guarantee service following the swap out period may not be a strongpoint.
    You won't find "local dealers" to helpful to you either, if they still exist, as they will feel you didn't buy it from them, so they don't owe you Jacksh....
    You know John Lewis will be a safer option.
    If it's a lower priced item, buy it online and take a chance.
     
  4. LV426

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    Disagree. There is MUCH more to buying a TV (or any other complex piece of hardware for that matter - but TV's are probably the "worst" example) than getting the lowest possible price.

    Old Chinese proverb: The bitterness of low quality remains long after the sweetness of low price (or something like that!).

    Pretty well all TV's sold are susceptible to (that doesn't mean "definitely will suffer from") picture defects of one sort or another - geometry errors, banding, convergence errors, colour impurity, I could go on.

    It therefore becomes a major factor in your purchase decision that, if this sort of thing is going to bother you, ie you believe that your hardware should be more or less perfect, you should buy from somewhere that you are confident will co-operate fully in dealing with any complaints you may have. You can only gain this confidence by your own experience or by reputation.

    JL, for example have, I believe, a very good reputation for resolving customer problems. Some posters on this forum have suggested in the past (although I can't vouch for it personally) that firms like Robert Whyte, Sound & Vision, etc are less co-operative.

    To me, that would be worth a few pounds, especially with a TV purchase. You pays your money..........
     
  5. encaser

    encaser
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    Gotta love the irony of that being a Chinese warning about low quality goods:D
     
  6. rashomon

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    Hi Wiggy,

    I have just purchased a TV from JL - and you are right in that they are becoming a bit more awkward with the Price Match promise.

    I was told that if I went in to the store they would price match on the spot - this was incorrect apparently and the policy for all undersales is that they must go through the undersales dept i.e. a through check that can take 3 - 5 days.
    Having said that, as I was told that they would price match on the day - I went in and kicked up a stink when they refused to ring up the competitor. They duly did and I got a bargain telly from a reputable dealer.

    I think that because I bought on a Saturday - when they were very busy, they wanted me out of the way as quickly as poss so that may have helped my situation .... dunno.

    Anyway, I agree with Nigels post re: purchasing from a store like JL as opposed to Mail Order on expensive items ... So stick with it and good luck.

    Cheers,

    Rash.
     
  7. Guest

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    But Nigel, that suggests that you are buying a lower quality product from an online retailer, which is not the case.

    Take me as an example. I paid £1364 from QED for the Tosh 36ZP18 which would have cost me £2k in JL. OK, at the time I bought it they were matching Internet prices but I refused to buy from them on the basis that they'd match the price for me and then charge somebody who walked in the shop who wasn't in the know £2000 (never knowingly undersold? Hmmmmm)

    Did I get a lesser quality TV? NO I got the same as I would have got from JL

    OK then what about service? Not in my case.

    QED are basically Miller Brothers. Before getting the Tosh I had a Philips which had a manufacturing fault, when I called to say there was a problem they immediately offered a full refund or replacement. Better than the service I got from the Sony main dealer where I got my previous TV from.

    Even if QED stopped trading and I need service then the manufacturer will deal with the problem. In my case I have a 5 year Toshiba warranty.

    Obviously you need to buy carefully and there's nothing better than recommendation - this board is a good place to start.

    Don't forget that there is an additional benefit from buying online - the Distance selling Act means you can give them the goods back without question if you don't like them, irrespective of whether they're faulty or not. Not something most shops will do - so you get your new two grand piece of kit and hate it, not problem, give it them back.

    Anyway, at the end of the day you can't say that all online retailers will go bust/give bad service or whatever in the same way as you can't for shops.

    My main point is that if it wasn't for the likes of QED and other reputable online retailers we'd all be paying a lot more dosh for our tosh.. or sony or panas.........

    ps. I can hear it now - somebody's saying "but you can go in to JL or Curry's or wherever and see it working" Yes you can but if I'd seen my Tosh in a shop before buying it I wouldn't have. Why? Because they can't be arsed setting them up properly, they use crap feeds, (when I saw the Tosh in JL sometime after I bough it they didn't have the speakers attached and told me that they don't come with the set, the salesman didn't have a clue). Now I'm making general comments about shops.

    OK Rash, I see where you're coming from - what you're saying is only buy something from a shop where you have to kick off before you've even bought something becuase they promise something and don't do what they promise....

    Cheers
    OG
     
  8. Iancity

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    Sorry OG, have to disagree. Bought over the net from a company 300 miles away and had loads and loads of problems with them. To cut a very long story shgort, HI-Spek (the dealer) would not replace my TV, yet one letter to Sony (the manufacturer) and the tv was replaced. Have you ever heard of the manufacturer overuling the dealer in the customers favour!!
    From bitter experience I would now only buy 'big' items from reputable local dealers (of which JL seems to be the best).
    I think the main question here is IF something goes wrong. If it does (as seems to be the case with most 32"TV's) the clearly the local dealer is the best route, however, if nothing goes wrong, then clearly the lowest price i.e. Internet is the best choice, as one of the previous replys said, you pays your money you takes your choice. . . . . .


    Wiggy let us know what you do.
     
  9. gringottsdirect

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    A sales manager for John Lewis told me they have become disillusioned with selling rear projection televisions as people were comparing in the store and then buying from mail order dealers to save money. As John Lewis no longer price match "internet only" suppliers they have decided to stop selling rear projection televisions altogether.
    If this is true I wonder how long John Lewis will keep selling consumer electronics of any description? Will they decide there is no point taking up valuable floor space to demonstrate products for people to buy elsewhere?
    Recently Courts have done just this.
    Whilst everyone likes to save a buck, are the dealers selling over the internet, although providing short term cheap prices, ultimately harming the AV market. If things carry on this way, there won't be anywhere for enthusiasts to try before they buy, except with a load of hassle.
    A recent report by Mintel has stated the crisis for "internet only" suppliers, they have extremely high costs to keep public awareness of their site, combined with extremely thin (if any) operating profits.
    Maybe in the future, no one will be able to buy AV except by personally importing from Germany or somewhere. Even Kingfisher is de-merging Comet as they can't wait to stick to D.I.Y. ...
     
  10. LV426

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    I wasn't referring to the product itself - clearly a Panachronic Model XYZ123 will be of the same potential standard whether you buy it from Currys, JL, or Empire Direct. I was referring to service.
    I'll take your word for its' being Miller Brothers. In which case, yes, I agree - they are pretty good. I live fairly near their HQ and do most of my consumer electrical shopping there. What I said was, It therefore becomes a major factor in your purchase decision that, if this sort of thing is going to bother you, ie you believe that your hardware should be more or less perfect, you should buy from somewhere that you are confident will co-operate fully in dealing with any complaints you may have. You can only gain this confidence by your own experience or by reputation. which doesn't actually say, "Dont buy Mail Order". All I was trying to say was, "Don't evaluate a retailer solely on the basis of the prices they charge. There is a fairly high likelihood that (especially) TV's will have some sort of flaw in their performamce and, if that bothers you, you need to consider after-sales service in your decision."
     

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