Thursday, June 20, 2019

If buying an expensive item from Wal-Mart, check the online app price first

    If you don't want to read my story I'll just tell you my conclusion: When buying a big-ticket item at Wal-Mart it pays to check the price on their online app before buying it in the store.
    Last week was in the market for a decent vacuum cleaner. My $40 vacuum worked, kinda. So I made use of my subscription to Consumer Reports and found that the top-ranked vacuum was made by Shark, and that 16 of the top 24 vacuums were as well. The top-rated Shark was rated at 77, but the Wal-Mart model had a rating of 75 (warning: there are a few mediocre Shark models). Consumer Reports said the Wal-Mart model cost $230. The Shark is especially good for bare floors, which is what I wanted since I hate sweeping.
    I was at the New Albany Lowe's and decided to take a look at their Vacuums. They had a well-rated Shark Vacuum for sale at $269. I decided to check the Wal-Mart price on their app and saw that the 75-rated Shark was on sale next door for $141. I beat a path to the Wal-Mart and headed to the vacuum section where my vacuum was priced at $199. I had heard that Wal-Mart would match their online prices on request and they did, thus saving me $60 on a vacuum, which is a pretty big savings. If a Wal-Mart refuses to honor the price you can just order it online for pickup; they don't want that and so will honor it at the register.
    One word of warning: I've seen videos demonstrating how some merchants disable online pricing when they detect that your phone's location is in the store. So if you're planning a big ticket purchase, check the online price away from the store first.
    I'm very happy with my Shark. For those who want the very best rated Shark, the 77-rated NV586, it's available only at target and is on sale right now for $220. My Wal-Mart NV-500 or 501 with its 75 rating is good enough for me. I'd rather have the $80 than two additional points.