Reasons why sales are flat

Thursday, January 3, 2008

To the editor:Recent news reports have big-box stores and large chain retailers lamenting their lackluster sales and crying because they weren't going to make their sales totals and huge profits they had hoped for this Christmas season.

Sure, some other factors (job losses, high fuel prices, weak dollar) probably played a role, but these retail giants need to look at other factors.

1. The last of salespeople who really are dedicated to retailing, who know their merchandise lines, who are dressed professionally, act respectfully and go to someone who knows when they can't answer a customer's questions.

2. They all push gift cards yet don't count them until used. Once they have your money, it's a sales and an easy profit.

3. A lot of these stores are bigger than football fields. Having to park a quarter-mile away is good exercise, but shopping is easier at specialty stores in less congested areas and at stores off the beaten path.

4. Maybe sales figures are down because people are beginning to realize that Christmas is not about glitz and glamour and who can spend the most. It is about the real gift given to us: a Savior who is Christ the Lord -- and it cost us nothing.

RICH BEHRING, Cape Girardeau