Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Wasted Time

It's no wonder the music industry is doing so poorly these days.

I just went out on my lunch break to buy a couple of CDs, both of which are supposed to be new releases today. Borders' music department didn't have either. So I went over to Sam Goody, and they didn't have it either. Borders I can understand, they being a book store and all. But Sam Goody's got no excuse; they're a CD shop. That's all they carry!

To make matters worse, the woman who was helping me at Borders checked the computer to see if there were any in stock; and one disc was not, one was. The one that was in stock was not on the shelf, and all she could do was apologize because: since it was a new release, chances were that they hadn't had time to put it out yet. When I worked at a music store, if that disc was in my store, I was going to find it for you. No matter what.

Of course, as a pathetic attempt at customer service, the sales clerks in both stores offered to order it for me, which would take anywhere from three to five days. I love this tactic. Why would I pay Borders or Sam Goody prices just to order something.

I of course declined. If I'm going to go through the trouble of buying an album online, I'll get it somewhere cheap. Amazon.com, Half.com, Itunes, AllofMP3.com and countless other online retailers sell CDs at significantly lower prices than either of these stores (and most other brick and mortar stores as well.) The only reason I still shop at brick & mortar stores is because I'm impulsive and I make impulse purchases all the time. I like the satisfaction of leaving on my lunch hour, walking to a store, and walking out with a CD. For that satisfaction, I am sometimes willing to pay more. Not often, but sometimes.

However, if I keep going to these stores only to be turned away by lack of product and shoddy customer service, my days of in-store shopping may be over soon.