business news in context, analysis with attitude

With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  The Washington Post has a piece about what appears to be a confusing and inconsistent pricing policy at Barnes & Noble, where prices for some books are lower online than in stores … though employees have been empowered to offer the lower price to customers who ask for it.  But if they don't ask, no such luck.

It gets even more perplexing.  When you go on the Barnes & Noble website looking for a book, a pop-up ad for the same book at an even lower price can appear - from Amazon.

And people wonder why customers are choosing Amazon instead of traditional stores?  This is nuts … it exploits customers who have not done their homework, and opts for the short-term revenue generated by a pop-up ad over the long-term benefits of being a consistent, reliable and shopper-centric brand.