Thursday, October 25, 2007

My retailing hero

One Canadian bookseller obviously gets it. Too bad he’s in Ottawa. Taken from the Toronto Star.
With the Canadian dollar worth more than the U.S. dollar, retailer Christopher Smith has a popular promotion. He's letting customers pay the U.S. price on anything he sells that has both prices printed on it.

Suppose a book, greeting card or toy sells for $19.95 (U.S.) and $24.95 (Canadian). His customers can buy the product for $19.95 in Canadian dollars."People have been saying to me, `When are the prices going to change?' I've been patiently educating customers that it takes a while," says Smith at his Ottawa bookstore, Collected Works.

"But you get to the point where you stop educating consumers and begin boring them. It became inexcusable when our dollar approached and then hit par with the U.S. dollar. Their eyes would glaze over." Store traffic has doubled since he started the promotion, which runs till the end of this year. And he's had lots of publicity – including CBC radio, where I heard him last week. "With books, it's so easy to sit down before your computer and buy online. What could I do? It was better to sell a little of something than nothing.

And shame on General Motors.

1 comment:

Michael said...

I still can't get used to the Canadian dollar trading at $1.03 US.

I remember when the Canadian dollar was 65 cents US...