Walmart is trying something new this year. A Black Friday in-stock guarantee on certain products during a certain time.
Sounds like a great idea, on the face of it. Let’s take a closer look.
The idea is that select Black Friday sale items will be guaranteed to shoppers visiting the store during a certain time frame.
If the store runs out of stock, the shopper will receive a “Guarantee Card” which, in Walmart’s words, will “ensure the item will ship to the same store for pick up by Christmas.”
The fine print says that individual shoppers can receive only one card per item, that the item will have to be paid for up front to get the card, and that the card must be registered by 11:59pm CST Nov 25, or it will be converted into a standard Walmart Gift Card. No other details are available on their site about that requirement.
Ok, working through the fine print, we finally get to the the actual guarantee… It says, basically, that if Walmart doesn’t get the item to the store before Christmas – they will give shoppers their money back – if they ask for it.
In other words, shoppers can buy a Guarantee Card if the individual store they’re at runs out of stock.
But if all of Walmart runs out of stock – they just give the shopper their money back.
In the end, doesn’t that mean it’s still a race to get the stock before it runs out? It’s not guaranteed that the shopper will get the deal – just that they’ll get their money back if they don’t.
It’s a great deal for Walmart – even if the item is out of stock, they get your money – at least for a while.
Here at NFS, we’d like to see Walmart back up the in-stock guarantee with something a bit stronger.
Perhaps the money back – plus a free $20 to $40 gift card, depending on how much money we spent, for our trouble (and the use of our funds in the meantime). THAT would be a guarantee with some teeth.
Ok, now let’s see what they are putting their weak guarantee on:
From 10pm to 11pm, the in-stock guarantee is on an Emerson, 32 inch, HDTV for $148; an LG Blu-ray player for $38; and a 16GB wi-fi enabled iPad 2, that comes with a $75 Walmart Gift Card, for $399.
And that’s it folks. Three items. Certainly all good deals. But just three items. hmmm.
Now we’ll hand this over to you. What do you think of Walmart’s in-stock guarantee?
Leave your comments below!