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Old 03-08-2013, 17:54   #106
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
I am amazed that as many grocery stores in Southern cruising towns offer rides to/from their store....with usually a smile.

The markup on food is usually pretty tiny and they really don't depend on cruisers to make a profit.

Somehow I think West Marine would do well to cater to cruisers...while we may not buy that much from them..we often are the go to guys for new boaters and having us recommend WM would be in their best interest. Better than having yet another dissatisfied customer and spinoffs from it.

Sorry, but I'm just astounded that anyone thinks they're entitled to this. I WOULD expect to take a taxi back. A 5 minute ride? It's not that much money!
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Old 03-08-2013, 17:57   #107
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

No reason to be astounded Rakuflame! Not a so important subject.
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Old 03-08-2013, 18:05   #108
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Sorry, but I'm just astounded that anyone thinks they're entitled to this. I WOULD expect to take a taxi back. A 5 minute ride? It's not that much money!
Entitled...wow a big word I have never used....I'll try to work it into my posts more often.

I said maybe they should think of the big picture instead of the bottom line....other companies seem to.....

Some places don't have taxis, but that's not the point anyway...guess you missed it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 18:19   #109
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I thought it was Forum policy under "Dealer/Vendor and Customer Disputes" not to bash specific businesses? All the respondants sporting their Che Guevera "red berets" who have little or no concept of market economics and/or capitalism take shots at West Marine for establishing a retail plan aimed at the "walk in" buyer which must take into account their total fixed and variable expenses nationwide when establishing a pricing policy. How can a "brick and mortar" operation compete in pricing with an online retailer operating out of a warehouse with limited employees and less expense? Are you willing to buy exclusively online and never have the option of a last minute purchase where waiting a week is not an option? If price is your only consideration, then you will never have the convenience of a store that you can touch, feel and operate (if needed) the product you wish to buy. There is a price for these advantages. And, in regard to warranty claims, I have never found WM negligent in their part of the deal. There is a strong current of class warfare that is evident in this discussion where the evil entrepreneur who seeks to make a fair profit on his investment is viewed as someone whose goal in life is to take advantage and rob the common man for his selfish personal gain. If that is your attitude, be prepared to see the destruction of cities across the country with empty storefronts and abandoned shopping malls because he with the cheapest price is king and small business, as we knew it, will be lost forever. Vive la Revolucion! Vive la Revolucion! Vive la Revolucion!
Explain how the mom and pop stores sell for way less than WM...I would think a large corporation like WM would be able to sell for less. My local mom and pop marine store is at least 50% less on most items compared to WM....Even Ace Hardware sells the same products for alot less.
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Old 03-08-2013, 18:24   #110
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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No reason to be astounded Rakuflame! Not a so important subject.

I didn't know something has to be important to be surprising. Stupid rules!
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Old 03-08-2013, 18:25   #111
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Entitled...wow a big word I have never used....I'll try to work it into my posts more often.

I said maybe they should think of the big picture instead of the bottom line....other companies seem to.....

Some places don't have taxis, but that's not the point anyway...guess you missed it.

No, I didn't miss it. I disagree. I guess you missed that. Oh well.
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Old 03-08-2013, 21:54   #112
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

I see a pattern here. Seems folks on the right coast have a different experience then us left coasties. I have 2 friends that were former WM employees and both managers to boot. So I got all the skevy from them as to the goings ons above them. It wasn't pretty. I probably go in once a year now. My boat is berthed behind my favorate Chandlry here in Alameda...Svendsens. I've dropped about $17K there in the last 2 years refitting. In the .01% of the time they are out of something, I will go to WM where I pay at least 30% more. When ever I ask a question about one of their products, like a can of paint, a pimply face high school kid will start reading off the label. I just snatch it back and tell him that I can read. I wanted information.
I think a lot of people are right that when they went public, it changed.
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Old 03-08-2013, 23:41   #113
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

We have a WM in a town near us, it's close to our favorite take out place LOL never been in it ! I have 5 count them 5 local Chandlerys within a 4 mile range of our home dock! All are friendly, and have offerd to come pick me up to help out when my car was down! I buy the same stuff from them that sells online from WM for less money! i just saved over 150 bucks on the new blocks and assorted shackles and such for the re-rigging of our ketch to be all cockpit controled! and they have free coffee!! And Dannys donuts if ya get there before the shrimpers LOL
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Old 03-08-2013, 23:49   #114
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
I see a pattern here. Seems folks on the right coast have a different experience then us left coasties. I have 2 friends that were former WM employees and both managers to boot. So I got all the skevy from them as to the goings ons above them. It wasn't pretty. I probably go in once a year now. My boat is berthed behind my favorate Chandlry here in Alameda...Svendsens. I've dropped about $17K there in the last 2 years refitting. In the .01% of the time they are out of something, I will go to WM where I pay at least 30% more. When ever I ask a question about one of their products, like a can of paint, a pimply face high school kid will start reading off the label. I just snatch it back and tell him that I can read. I wanted information.
I think a lot of people are right that when they went public, it changed.
You've raised a least two issues.

The left coast first.

Randy started selling lines and rope for the racing fleet at the Palo Alto marin about of his garage in Palo Alto in the late '60's or early '70's. As of early 2000 the original store had not been remodeled and was located on San Antonio Road less that five miles from the Corporate Headquarters of HP. WM was California of that period, and had a reputation of not only replacing any thing bought from them that broke but they went out of their way to help boat owners.

Unfortunately success was his downfall He had to develop a management team, incorporate, and let the suits with their MBA degrees take over what his enterprise had become. bummer!

I've bought stuff from WM in Washington State Oregon, six or seven stores in California, West Pam Beach, Florida, and Puerto Rico. And each of the stores and their employees are a reflection of the Manager in charge. some good and some not so good.

Ignore the employees who are there to make a salary and really don't have a clue what boat ownership is. Instead search out the old guy, the one with the salt and pepper beard, the one who enjoys swapping boat stories. Every WM store has at least one., and he'ii help you.

If you find a getter deal somewhere else go buy it from them. Hell, I've even found better prices and service than Walmart!
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Old 04-08-2013, 00:00   #115
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

The scarcity at WM (and other big box stores like Home Depot and Target) is because of the automatic inventory order system which allows only one or two items on the shelf at a time. We used to try to get around this by placing special orders on popular items as the turn around was slow in restocking. HQ would catch on though and begin to question us about our ordering practices.
Yes, retail in general has changed a lot and anymore the customer is second to the shareholder. We have lost a couple of mom and pop Çhandleries here and Main streets are boarded up everywhere because of big-box pressure.
My favorite experience earlier this year was going into Target for a pair of flip-flops and finding none I am told that it is winter and they do not stock flip flops in winter. I said but this is southern California and clerk said but this is not where the inventory levels are set from.
Ace Hardware has a pretty good model in letting the mom and pop places stay through a franchising operation so mom and pop can meet local needs in a way that works while taking advantage of bulk pricing when they stock up.
No WM for me if I can avoid it. Too expensive and too poorly stocked.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:06   #116
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

Found this post to amuse those that think it's so rare....

"A couple of years ago we were docked at "The Wharf" in Orange Beach, Alabama and the pump in the shower sump went out. The marina store didn't have one, I walked about 2 miles to the WM store they didn't have it in stock, the mgr caled the Panama City store they did have it. So I ordered it, they drove me back to the boat, and about 6-7PM they brought the part to me at the marina, that was about a $50.00 sale. "
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:07   #117
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Found this post to amuse those that think it's so rare....

"A couple of years ago we were docked at "The Wharf" in Orange Beach, Alabama and the pump in the shower sump went out. The marina store didn't have one, I walked about 2 miles to the WM store they didn't have it in stock, the mgr caled the Panama City store they did have it. So I ordered it, they drove me back to the boat, and about 6-7PM they brought the part to me at the marina, that was about a $50.00 sale. "
Obviously that manager should be reprimanded because he makes other WMs look bad....
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:29   #118
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Would you be willing to pay more for the merchandise to cover the cost?
Nah, West Marine already makes enough to give a ride to their customers. The smart businessman realizes his survival depends upon customers, and customers that return time and a gain are the lifeblood of any successful retail business. You can turn a customer away and earn nothing, or if by discounting something by a dollar make a sale. Even if your margin is reduced from 10% to 5% you have made 5%. Sell nothing - 0%.

West Marine can either turn the customer away - who may never step foot in their door again - meaning they make 0% in the future from this person - or consider the cost in fuel and time as a discount against future purchases. Which is more desirable, 0% or 5%?
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:44   #119
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
I see a pattern here. Seems folks on the right coast have a different experience then us left coasties...
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..."A couple of years ago we were docked at "The Wharf" in Orange Beach, Alabama..."
A pattern definitely. We have right, left and now bottom coasts.
Fascinating and entertaining, I am neutral, and awaiting for some Canadian opinions - top coast?
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:49   #120
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Re: West Marine Getting Worse

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Nah, West Marine already makes enough to give a ride to their customers. The smart businessman realizes his survival depends upon customers, and customers that return time and a gain are the lifeblood of any successful retail business. You can turn a customer away and earn nothing, or if by discounting something by a dollar make a sale. Even if your margin is reduced from 10% to 5% you have made 5%. Sell nothing - 0%.

West Marine can either turn the customer away - who may never step foot in their door again - meaning they make 0% in the future from this person - or consider the cost in fuel and time as a discount against future purchases. Which is more desirable, 0% or 5%?

Incredible!!!!!

Let us know the next time you get a ride home from Best Buy, Sears, Costco, Target, Home depot, etc...
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