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Retailers Try to Thwart Price Apps

Published on December 23, 2011
by Dana Mattioli

The smartphone boom is unleashing a new era of pricing transparency to consumers able to use wireless apps and search engines on their mobile devices in stores to check if they are offering the best deal. But retailers are fighting back harder than ever to prevent their stores from becoming mere showrooms.

More bricks-and-mortar stores are reviewing prices of online stores when setting initial price of an item. If prices are out of whack, they are more aggressively matching the prices of their online rivals. Some retailers are investing heavily in exclusive products that are less vulnerable to price competition.

“Our pricing has to be very competitive,” says Best Buy Co. Chief Marketing Officer Barry Judge. “We know what Amazon’s price is on everything they sell,” he says.

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