I just came back from visiting Toys’R’Us as another disappointed customer. Their semi-monthly paper advertisement contained a Sportspower “My First Trampoline With Enclosure” for $79.99. So what’s the issue? It’s out of stock. None of the stores within 60 miles currently have them in stock. However, the warehouse that services ToysRUs.com does — for $99.99 (plus $18-$19 shipping). It’s amazing that after 10+ years, the gap hasn’t been filled between online, ecommerce retail and store retail. Sure some stores have, such as Best Buy, but their prices and stock have other issues. Just the other day we needed a 10 foot USB cable. After checking out BestBuy.com and visiting the store, we found that their cheapest was $37 and change. Sites like NewEgg.com or Cables Unlimited offer more realistic prices.
So, how can this gap be filled? I’m really not sure. I’m just a geek with a frustrated face right now trying to make sense of this all. Then again, haven’t these companies ever considered streamlined processes or continuous improvement? The basic principles of a business should include continually looking to improve profitability and increasing revenues. One can only wonder.