Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Low Price - a rant

If you think Low Price doesn't hurt America, you need to look around. Gas prices, jeans, food, and, yes, phone and internet. Wal-Mart beats its vendors up on price continually - until the vendor has to close its US plant and move overseas (ala Levi's). So does Home Depot. Remember when Sam Walton was proud of selling only goods sold in America? Try to find one today in that behemoth's stores today! SBC and VZ have priced DSL at $15. Cable doesn't see the need to compete at that crazy rate. And cable may not have to. Cable is positioned as more reliable and faster. The phone companies gave up selling value in 2002. Then the Bells went on a price war with CLECs. The result: lower revenues for all and a few more bankruptcies. There is a cost to companies going bankrupt. The $15 offer is supposed to help Broadband penetration go up. But no one listens to the consumer. Not everyone needs / wants always-on broadband. Too much spam. Too many problems from virii and malware. Those are the issues that need to be addressed by the industry. (But you may not like the answer. Can you say IPSphere or IMS? This is the cost.) It's all bait-and-switch and other marketing tricks. The DSL is $15, but your local phone bill just went up. Guess what? It's called cross-subsidization and it's illegal, but the F-Agencies don't care. (You know: FTC, FCC. I know what that F stands for in 2005!) Your gas prices jump before the hurricane hits. Drug prices are cheaper everywhere else in the world. Short-term thinking has resulted in long-term payments (levee system in NOLA). How do we spend $200B on rebuilding the Gulf Coast and $100B rebuilding Iraq, when our deficit is $7T?
"The rising U.S. budget deficit threatens growth in the economy which has provided ``one of the main engines driving growth'' in the world, said International Monetary Fund Managing Director Rodrigo de Rato.
The Trade deficit is out of hand. We have a weak education system, high poverty, health insurance averaging $11,000 per year, and not much in the way of fuel and water conservation. Looks bleak to me, especially in a service economy like ours. When jobs are off-shored. When small businesses are closing. When salaries are flat, but all other costs are rising. When your politicians are all in it for the short-term, how do you get a long-term solution to any of the real problems we face? People react to emotion. Kerry discussed facts and got beat by GW telling stories. The Republicans don't want the White House in 2008. It would be better to stick a Democrat in and watch the Dems try to fix all the problems coming to a head. With voters so disillusioned (and many cynical). With the country splintered by politics (try to talk to a Rep if you are a Dem about anything, even Katrina!). With it being more about placing blame and finger-pointing than solutions (what's that saying? You are part of the problem unless you are part of the solution?). Where are we headed? Yes, we worry about price. But I worry about the full bill, because price is not true cost - and that is what the consumer/taxpayer pays, true cost.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi, you might be interested in articles to help you succeed. An excerpt of one is here! If you are interested, go see my
related site.
Designing A Website That Sells
By Walter Wood

Would you buy meat from a grocery store that left the
bad meat in with the good meat or wasn’t clean? Would
you buy a car from a sales lot that had totaled
automobiles on the front lot? I wouldn’t and neither
would you. Your website is your grocery store; your
car lot. You must have an atmosphere that is pleasing
to buyers. One that tells that buyer that you are not
an amateur, but instead a trained, seasoned
professional. Your site is a direct reflection of
your product and that is why that having a well
designed website can make or break your sales.

The first thing to keep in mind when designing your
website, is “surfability”. Take a few minutes a look
around at several web pages. What makes them
appealing? Were there some that you closed out of
immediately? Why? Take notes and do your research.
Keep in mind that when a person visits your site they
have a goal in mind. They are either seeking
information or shopping for a product. Give the
person what they want without having to search for it.
Be sure that all the information on your site is
relevant to your product. Make the buyer think that
they need your product to solve their problem.