>Gears and Wears>Retailers & E-tailers: the good, the bad, and the ugly
Needs more cowbell!
• Return to kicking my own ass by 2018
An online retailer sells to customers, a local shop sells to people... granted there are good shops and bad shops, but I'm willing to bet every purchase/sale in a local shop means more to them than to an online retailer. The $10-$20 you save is usually lost in shipping anyway.
Then again, sometimes saving 30-50% online is hard to pass up.
That said, I share your thoughts about the benefits of the local running store. This is particularly true for stores that employ experienced runners who have a lot of advice about the products... I'm always impressed when the sales-person is a runner and talks me out of buying the most expensive product, recommending a less expensive but better product instead. Plus, these local stores often serve as the foundation for the local running community, providing free race information, organizing fun-runs, bringing runners closer together... that's a really valuable community service.
Finder of good newts
It's hard to look down if you don't go up
NBwebexpress.com -- After spending almost $120 on full-priced running apparel I found that all 4 items I had ordered went on clearance for an average of 33% off not even 3 weeks later. I contacted them to see if they might do even a partial price-adjustment and they refunded me the difference on the entire order...a savings of nearly $40.
... They seem to have problems (at least lately) with their computer systems, as there have been numerous foul-ups with my orders (delays, cancelled orders, coupons don't EVER work online), but when I call on the phone they always correct it ASAP and are very friendly about it (which really makes all the difference). They do send me a TON of email, but some of those emails have some pretty good deals attached (one time it was 40% off the entire purchase)!
"Able to function despite imminent catastrophe"
"To obtain the air that angels breathe you must come to Tahoe"--Mark Twain
"The most common question from potential entrants is 'I do not know if I can do this' to which I usually answer, 'that's the whole point'.--Paul Charteris, Tarawera Ultramarathon RD.
√ Javelina Jundred Jalloween 2015
Cruel Jewel 50 mile May 2016
Western States 100 June 2016
That, plus the spam and the hard-sell on the VIP membership and "special offers". I don't need the aggravation.
It seems I am not the only one.
I've had several good experiences with Running Warehouse. Free 2 Day shipping and no problems after 3-4 orders.