If you’re selling products as your home-based business, do you worry about competing with Wal-Mart? You shouldn’t. Wal-Mart does not always have the lowest prices. In fact, this individual claims they don’t have the lowest prices on 98 to 99 percent of the items they sell. I don’t know about that 99% thing; one would have to do an exhaustive study to back that up, but I do believe that their items are relatively low on a percentage of high profile, key items. Relative to what? Relative to the other brick & mortar stores, but not relative to many items sold on the web elsewhere.
Why is that? Even with their ‘relatively lower’ prices, better pricing can usually be found elsewhere on the web. If you’re selling products as your home-based business, you’re probably dealing in some niche market in which Wal-Mart carries very few of the items (if any). In the items we’ve sold which are also sold at Wal-Mart, we almost always can price them lower than Wal-Mart and still make a profit. One way we can use this as a tactical advantage is by posting a price comparison table on our website (here’s our price – here’s Wal-Mart’s) complete with links to our products and even links to Wal-Mart’s so that people can see for themselves. We also list products which we sell but Wal-Mart doesn’t in our comparison table — illustrating the fact that our store can provide more value than Wal-Mart in our market.
By the way, I’m not suggesting here that you make pricing the primary strategy in your marketing plan. The truth is, you won’t be able to sell some things for less than Wal-Mart not to mention your other web competitors. Competing on price alone will not work in the long haul. Denise O’Berry has this great article about Competing On Price A Losing Proposition where she explains why this is a bad idea.
But as an attention grabbling tactic, pointing out that your prices are lower (on a few selected items) than Wal-Mart’s is a great way to capture the attention of your potential buyer. Most people automatically assume that Wal-Mart always has the lowest price on everything and this can show them otherwise, creating a ‘wow reaction’. Further pointing out that you have items which Wal-Mart does not carry can solidify that favorable impression and can earn you a customer.
So don’t worry about completing with Wal-Mart; instead use them to your advantage. Is Wal-Mart worried about you? Perhaps they are:
In Google, Wal-Mart sees both a technology pioneer and the seed of a threat…. The worry is that by making information available everywhere, Google might soon be able to tell Wal-Mart shoppers if better bargains are available nearby.