retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Los Angeles Times reports on how Costco's approach to offering free samples is an example of "a particularly effective technique to get shoppers to try something new, especially a food product they might not usually buy," with the added bonus that "retailers that offer free samples, such as Trader Joe's or Sam's Club, seem more generous or consumer-centric."

Of course, it has to be managed: "Just how out of hand free samples can get was shown this week when a 78-year-old shopper said he was punched in the face after confronting a 24-year-old man about taking too many Nutella samples at a Burbank Costco."
KC's View: