This Is How Officeworks Avoids Paying Out Price Guarantees

The Officeworks Price Beat Guarantee offers to undercut competitor prices by 5% if you find a lower priced, identical stocked item. That's a good deal and one that many of us have benefited from over the years. But in order to ensure it doesn't pay out that extra 5% too often, I discovered what Officeworks does.

I needed to buy an external hard drive so I did a quick online shop around. I set myself a budget of $200 and wanted at least 2TB, but preferably 4TB. I have a few options nearby and, as it's a nice day I wanted the store to be within about half an hour on my bike. When I checked the price at my local Officeworks, I found a 6TB Seagate drive for $189. That seemed reasonable so I headed to the store.

When I got there, the sticker price on the drive was $219 - which is the price I saw online over the weekend. So I asked the sales assistant why there was a discrepancy. He told me that Officeworks checks competitor prices twice a day and updates their pricing at 11:30 and 14:30 each day.

So, if I'd found the drive somewhere else for $189, before Officeworks dropped the price, I could have saved another $9.45. It's not a lot of money but it would have covered a trip to the op-shop for some more second-hand vinyl for my collection.

If you're looking to score that extra 5%, shop around and get to an Officeworks store before 11:30 or 14:30 each day. This will improve your chances of landing a price-match deal.


Comments

    As someone who use to work retail, if someone had come in to me with this situation, I would have explained as above. But without hesitation, or being prompted, would have said I will gladly match the price you saw tho.

    Not honouring it, may mean I still get a possible sale at the current sticker price, but it could also mean confrontation, or at the very least leave the customer with a poor taste in their mouth from the entire experience.

    But by simply taking the hit, you're guaranteeing they'll be happy with the ease of the process, the trust given and you'll be in their mind for sure next time they want to purchase because they feel that you can be the only stop required for future sales.

    Obviously there might be some limitations to this, like the staff member not having the authority to sell at that price, ect: but calling a manager (assuming they have the slightest experience) would agree and do the above.

    It took me a lot of years to seperate my emotional hang ups and the idea of business.
    Nothing worse than someone who is self entitled, or if you're just not having a good day and can't be arsed; "price is what it is..."

    Anyway. Just a rant.

      Yeah, its not hard to say "We put the prices up @ 11:30, but seeing as you've done all that work and still wanted to buy from us when you didn't have to, I'll help you out here and price match for you anyway."

      Its turning a policy into a positive, and the PR alone makes it worth it. Really its functionally no different to if they HAD come in before 11:30 anyway, and the positive PR can only help.

      As you say, if you don't, it breeds resentment, and certainly doesn't promote them feeling like they should come back next time. Its little things like this that face to face retail need to do if they want return business. its one of the few ways they can differentiate from online sales.

        What I don't get is that there is no price matching going on here anyway. Unless I'm misreading the article the author checked a price online *at officeworks* then went to officeworks to buy it. So they've jacked up their catalog price in the half hour or so it took to get there. In that case surely you'd either pull out the phone and show them the online price or push for the sale price. Or just walk out.

        Unless you're way over time (like a week or two late) on the specials I'd expect the shop to say "yeah what the hell, you can have it for the sale price."

    I find one of the things they do to avoid giving you the 5% bonus, is limiting the number of sites they'll honour.

    eBay: No
    Dick Smith: No
    Not on their list: No

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