10 Stores With the Best Price Matching
In an effort to prevent showrooming, when shoppers browse products in-store only to buy them online for less, retailer price match policies have become much more prevalent in recent years. After all, once a store has you in their doors, many are willing to match the competition's price to keep you from ordering elsewhere via your mobile device. It's simply a smart business move. But like any retailer's policy, some are simply better for shoppers than others. Here are the nine best retail price match policies that you should take advantage of every chance you get.
1. Best Buy
The Best Buy price match guarantee is a strong one, because they'll match the price of both online and local brick-and-mortar competitors — a policy that many top retailers have yet to adopt. When shopping in-store, simply show evidence of the lower price to any "Blue Shirt" in the store. The best way is via your smartphone or an actual store ad. They'll then review the price and verify that the product is identical and currently available at the local competing store.
To get an online price match from Best Buy, you'll need to call them directly at 1-800-BEST-BUY. Be prepared to direct the company rep to the ad or website that is showing a lower price. They'll then verify that the item is in-stock on the competing website and 100% identical. Top websites that they'll price match include Amazon.com, Bhphotovideo.com, Crutchfield.com, Dell.com, HP.com, Newegg.com, and TigerDirect.com.
2. Fry's Electronics
Fry's price match promise also includes online and in-store pricing. While they don't specify which authorized stores they will price match, it's safe to assume that they'll match all the big players in your area. Just bring in evidence of the lower price on your smartphone and show it to any employee.
While their in-store price match policy is straightforward, their online policy is a little less spectacular. For example, their site says they'll match all authorized Internet competitors on their "delivered price" only. This means they might not match Amazon Prime pricing, as they'll consider Amazon shipping charges into the order total. In other words, even if you would get free shipping from Amazon, Fry's will still factor in shipping charges when giving you an Amazon price match. In many cases, you might be better off ordering the item directly from Amazon and avoid the headache of dealing with Fry's online price match policy.
3. Home Depot
Home Depot stands behind their prices by offering a low price guarantee where they will actually beat a local competitor's price by an extra 10%. All you need to do is show evidence of the lower price in the form of an ad, printout, or photo. In most cases, the easiest way to do this will be with your smartphone. I like to get my price match at the customer service desk rather than at a checkout register, as some cashiers are really busy and it tends to hold up the line.
As for an online price match, unfortunately they won't give you the extra 10% discount on top of the lower price. But they will happily match other verified websites that might have an item at a lower price. To get your online price match you'll need to call Home Depot directly at 1-800-HOME-DEPOT. The rep will independently verify the lower price and adjust your virtual shopping cart accordingly.
Similar to Home Depot, Lowe's will also beat any competitor's price by 10% as long as the item being sold is identical at both stores. While the Lowe's policy states that you must bring in the ad of the local competitor, I've had success simply showing the lower price on my smartphone. It's worth noting that Lowe's excludes competitor's closeout, special order, discontinued, clearance, and liquidation items from a price match. The rub here can be that many ads from competitors are clearance or closeout items making them ineligible for a price match. Just keep this in mind and be prepared to politely argue your case if need be. Also, as of this writing they do not offer an online price match on your Lowes.com purchase.
The folks at Staples have a very intriguing price match policy that will actually beat the competing price by 10% through 9/17/16. For an in-store price match, they'll match any retailer "who sells products in both retail stores and online under the same brand." This means that most small "ma and pa shops" will not be included unless they also have a website that sells merchandise. This is their way of making it easier to verify the lower price by keeping it limited to larger retailers.
In terms of an online price match, they will match prices, but it has to be from a retailer with a brick and mortar location as well as an ecommerce website. The two exceptions to this rule are Amazon.com and Wayfair.com, as Staples will price match both of these "online-only" players. To get your online price match, you'll need to call Staples directly at 1-800-333-3330.
6. and 7. Office Depot/Max
The Office Depot/Max price match policy also offers a great way to save on office supplies and technology. Similar to Staples, they'll price match any retailer as long as the item is identical and the competing store sells the item both online and in-store. They also clearly spell out the methods you can use to get your price match and they include a "printed advertisement, printed in-store signage, receipt of item purchased, picture of in-store signage, or online offer from mobile device."
As for an online price match, they don't currently offer one. But if you're shopping in-store and you find that Amazon.com is selling the item for less, they'll match the price as long as it's sold directly by Amazon and not a 3rd party seller. According to their website, Amazon is the only online merchant that they'll currently price match.
In my experience, one of the easier price match policies to take advantage of is at Target. The team at your local Target customer service desk actually has an iPad dedicated to price-matching, making it a very quick and seamless experience for shoppers. Just show them evidence of the lower price on your mobile device, or via a local ad, and they'll verify the lower price and make sure the item is identical and in-stock at the competing store and get you your savings quickly. It should be noted that exclusions include clearance, closeout, liquidation sales, and refurbished products.
For an online price match, Target has a long list of 29 online competitors that they'll match. Rest assured that the list includes all the big players like BestBuy.com, Amazon.com, Costco.com, Toys R Us.com, and Walmart.com. To request your online price match, you'll need to contact Target directly at 1-800-591-3869.
9. Toys R Us
Toys R Us has an excellent in-store price match guarantee that will help you get the lowest price on your future toy purchases. Not only will they price match all local competitors, but they'll also match 21 popular websites including Walmart.com, Target.com, and Amazon.com. It should be noted that when price-matching a competitor's website, they'll factor shipping charges into the total price of the item. To get your price match, simply show evidence of the lower price on your smartphone or via a print ad and a Toys R Us associate will take care of the rest. Items must be identical and they limit the price match to a maximum of two identical items per purchase. Unfortunately, they do not offer an online price match when shopping from their website.
The Wal-Mart price match policy is fairly straightforward and definitely worth taking advantage of. Wal-Mart will happily match the price on identical items sold by any local competitor or a select list of online retailers. Exclusions include clearance items, specials buys, and value of the day items as well as holidays like Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. To get your in-store price match, just show the lower price on your smartphone when checking out. For an online price match, you can either visit Walmart.com customer care or call them directly at 1-800-966-6546.
Are you a price-matcher? Do you often forget to take advantage of these great policies?