Walmart’s notorious price-matching strategy is getting even more aggressive this holiday season, the company announced Monday. The company plans to roll out an all new incentive, which runs from November 1 – December 25, that will guarantee consumers the lowest possible prices on qualified products. For early bird shoppers who have missed the best deals over previous holiday seasons, this is great news… maybe.
Consumers who purchase something from the retail giant, but then find the identical product elsewhere for less, are eligible to receive a Walmart gift card covering the difference. The “Christmas Price Guarantee” rules are dead simple: To get a gift card, consumers simply bring their receipt to Walmart customer service along with the other store’s printed ad. For example, if you buy Uncharted 3 for $60 only to see it at a different store for $30 (I wish), Walmart will give you a $30 gift card. Unfortunately, this offer doesn’t apply to online prices.
The great gift we can give our customers this holiday is great low prices on the things they want most, Duncan Mac Naughton, chief merchandising officer of Walmart US, said in a statement. Walmart is easing shopping stress this Christmas by allowing customers to shop when and how they want, all while guaranteeing low prices through the entire holiday season.
The strategy comes at a crucial time for Walmart as the holiday season historically accounts for up to 40% of the retailers’ anual revenue. With the job market still in unstable condition, consumers are understandably becoming more and more frugal, saving their money for needs rather than wants. This program aims at alleviating some consumers’ worries by letting shoppers do it at their own discretion – even items placed on layaway are eligible for the new program. So how is this good for tech-lovers?
If you’re anything like me, the urge to buy gadgets can sometimes be undeniable, so retail competition is always a good thing. Competition equals lower prices – just don’t expect to find something like an iPad 2 for hundreds of dollars cheaper. Realistically, bargain hunters will likely find the best deals with things like smartphones, blu-rays, hard drives and video games, so definitely keep your eyes peeled for those.
We’re confident Walmart will have fantastic prices on a wide assortment of gifts from electronics to toys, so customers can shop early and spend the holiday enjoying time with their families, continued Mac Naughton.
A word of caution, though: Walmart is well-known for getting exclusive options and bundles, meaning products may be off by one number or letter, nullifying the offer. Still, that doesn’t mean you won’t run into a dream deal.
The main thing will be to do your homework, and keep those receipts! The holiday season is typically a time companies hit us with their hottest products, so stores will keep prices competitive in hopes of attracting more customers. In addition, stores will want to move older tech in order to make way for the next best thing, which brings to mind smartphones and video games.
While Walmart’s holiday price-match sounds good, don’t go in expecting to rack up a ton of gift card money. Don’t be afraid to call different stores to compare prices, and keep product numbers in mind. Additionally, and I know this is old school, don’t forget to pick up a copy of the Sunday paper so you can look through the ads.
Whether you’ve been saving for a new game console, hard drive, or TV, price-matching should make for what will hopefully be a happy holiday season. Good luck out there.
If you see any killer deals, let us know. What do you plan on getting?