Oct 12

Economic Treason in H-Town

Article 39.2.tonyab
Economic treason shall consist of actions that result in reputational damage for my word-of-mouth, an unacceptable economic cost, or a loss of economic sovereignty for TD Bradley.

One of my favorite small businesses recently increased their prices by 180 – 200%. Yes, you read it right, 1-8-0 percent to 2-0-0 percent. I’ve feverishly been searching for an economic term to describe such an act, but no term exists to describe this foolishness. I can’t even consider it price gouging because there is not a high demand that would even justify such a high increase. I have a term for it…tomfoolery!! Let’s apply that price increase to coffee – basically, that $5 cup of coffee that you may have purchased yesterday is at least $9 today. Tell me, would you still buy that cup of coffee? I mean, really, did they slip some gold flakes in that @#$%?

To ease my mind and grasp some understanding, I decided to conduct a little research and do some business rationalizing. I liked their products so much that I NEEDED to do this. First, I asked if they were underselling themselves. In that circumstance I can understand the price increase, but they weren’t. Then I asked if their prices measured up to their competitor’s prices. Their prices were actually slightly more than the local competitor. So, I dug a little deeper and pretended that I was going to make one of their products. I imaginatively purchased all of the materials that I would need at last year’s prices. I factored in US consumer price increases within the past year. My total increase, including time and effort, was less than 3%. Then, I decided to be generous and factored in a 1% “just because” and a 6% “random crazy customer” increase. It increased to a total of 10%; nothing near 200%.

Don’t get me wrong, a price increase is almost inevitable today for small businesses. However, there are some things that should be considered before making that decision. To name a few: the length of time in business, customer loyalty, and how much of an increase would have actually been reasonable. I’m seriously wondering who advised them that this was a proper decision. There was no notification, no warning, no explanation…nothing! They just basically said, “Okay, this used to be $15 but now it’s $30.” For a minute, I wondered if it was joke and they had some secret web cam catching people’s facial expressions when it was time to check out. In my opinion (and I know what they say about opinions), the price increase is not in line with the product’s overall value.

I simply can’t afford it anymore. Perhaps they are purposely pushing themselves out of business. *Shrugs shoulders*

1 comment

  1. AWard


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