Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I'm not sure why big box stores are so popular, is it just the thought that the prices are lower? is it better selection? roomier isles? more staff?? I cannot figure it out. I've shopped local and yes I'll admit I was wooed into the big box stores as well. I'm not pointing to a specific industry here, I've spent time and money at large chain food stores, clothing stores, home improvement stores etc. I've thought about this for a while and have always tried to support local businesses even before it was the "in thing" and feel strongly about it. But seriously why are the box stores so popular, for me it's not the 'low prices', (look at where they are made, what had to happen to get them that low?) I really don't see much of a deal. Selection?? How many types of pepper does one really need? How many pairs of shoes can one wear at a time?? The choices for toilet paper are ridiculous, a whole isle, seriously? So it's not about selection, for me. Roomier isles? Nope, makes me think that it's another gigantic structure taking up space full of imported stuff we could make in America! More staff? Uh I don't think so either, I'm more of a quality vs. quantity kind of girl. I'd much rather have a smaller educated staff than employees that are there to collect a paycheck and don't have a clue about that which they are selling.

Case in point, yesterday I needed more wood to stack the cord wood I'd been splitting on to let it cure for next year. I headed to the local lumberyard. I walked in and was greeted with a genuine smile despite the closing time was 20 minutes from my arrival to the store. I asked to purchase the said wood and was directed to the 'wood guy' he inquired as to what grade of wood I needed. What? He actually was trying to best meet my needs and cared enough to help me?? Try finding that in a big box! So I explained what I needed it for and was taken to the less expensive get-the-job-done type wood. I made my selection and the 'wood guy' picked it up and loaded it into my truck for me. Again, what? Not once have I ever had that happen, I always have to haul the cart out of the store and load it myself. Large pieces of plywood or particle board are not easy to maneuver by your self; not being a very tall woman, thankfully I'm pretty strong. Seeing my struggle to get them into the truck other customers have stopped to help, but not a store employee. After the wood was loaded I walked back into the store and paid for the order, yes, the wood was loaded before it was paid for! They trusted me?! Yes! The 'wood guy' wrote up my slip and asked me to take it to the cashier and said thank you and please come see us again. I actually felt like he meant it! So I get back to the first person I dealt with at the store who saw my children for about at total of 5 seconds commented to me that I've got some great kids there. She was aware the kids were mine and that they are awesome?! (I do, but that's another story...) Find that said about box store employees! I paid for my items and the total was 8 bucks and some change, not a huge order by any means but I can tell you I never felt like an inconvenience, like I was interrupting the store employees or an IPH (items per hour, damn I dislike that posted as you leave the store!) Mind you I could have driven a few miles further and gone into a big box but would the outcome have been the same? Would I have have the wood, yes, would it have been less money? maybe? maybe not. For me it's not about the money, it's about choice, support, voting, (with my money) call it what you will, it's about doing the right thing because I'm not an IPH and I refuse to be treated like one.

1 comment:

  1. I know exactly what you mean. I refuse to go to the huge shopping mall in my town for just about the same reason. I don't need all the junk that is sold there, and no amount of flashy signs or tempting sales are going to lure me in the door. I get what I need at the smaller, friendlier shops and what I don't NEED, I don't buy. :)


So what's the view from your world about that? I'd enjoy hearing it.