I have to make a confession: I shop at Walmart despite my belief that I really should be shopping to the all American stores which use American work only and don’t exploit their workers… Yeah… I wish I could but truth be told, when I check the prices and have to feed my dogs and parrot, oh! and myself, I cannot afford anything but Walmart! And… in all honesty which are those stores? Do they still exist or the parts of most companies are made else where… I do not know! At least am questioning.
This morning, was one of those mornings, and I walked, as thousands of others into the Walmart to get dog food and apples! I am a spender:)!
As I stood in line, a nice young woman asked me:
“I love your purse, where did you get it?”
I hesitated: Hmm…, I thought, do I tell her, or not. I recalled a while ago, another woman in a store, asked me where I bought my dress, and when I told her the truth, her respect for me, clearly went down the tubes–“oh… really… thanks.” She turned around and her willingness to help me choose whatever I was buying disappeared! I guess, she labeled me: cheap, or poor, or simply, she cannot afford! I am not wasting my time!
After careful consideration, I decided for the truth:
“I bought it at a Goodwill Store for $5.00! It still had the original price on, $205.00”
Her shock was undeniable!
“Really? Which one?”
I breathed with relief. Here’s a smart woman! I told her the address.
Memories flooded my mind of how I learned how to shop and where to shop smart! How I learned that there is a NET and a MARK UP and each company marks up at will.
In other words, one could buy the same product for prices varying greatly, depending on the mark up the company (or the seller decided). Nothing wrong with it, this is a FREE economy based on supply and demand. However, as an educated consumer, it’s wise to know…
For example, when I had my wellness business and was visiting fairs restricted to business only. This is when I found out about “private label.” What is private label? The same factory makes a face cream and various companies pay for the factory to put a specific company’s name on the label on the jar. In other words, I could have sold jars with x face creams “Rodica’ Natural Therapies,” for $10.00 while X company was selling the same cream for $12 or $14 or whatever the company decides. The difference between what the company paid and the mark up, is the PROFIT!!! How the seller pays their bills and much more!
What does this mean to YOU, as a consumer? You may pay much more, or much less, depending on WHERE YOU BUY YOUR PRODUCTS!!!
In conclusion, is it shameful to check the ingredients, or the quality of a product and compare prices and quality or is it wise?
Frankly, I wish I could buy all American and shop at fancy department stores, but assuming I had the financial possibilities, would I truly support our economy?
Last time I checked, what I thought was American made, was actually still made in other parts of the world, by people who work for a quarter of the price we do. Why is this? Their standard of life is different and their prices. They could live in X,Y,Z countries on what the big companies offer them. We, here, can’t!
I don’t know the answer… but it’s on my mind, as I belong to a disappearing middle class and I really don’t want us to disappear while the CEOs of big companies make millions!
Until I find the answer, or someone does, or we do, I will remain cheap… or wise? It’s a matter of opinion and perception!