Monday, April 4, 2016

Early Apple Retail Adventures

Jean-Louis Gassée:

As we saw it at the time, the accepted practice of volume discounts was the first step on the Road To Perdition. Big retailers would order large quantities of computers at a reduced price and then rather than using their fat margins to hire and train competent sales and service organizations, they would cut the price tag of the product in order to drive out the competition. They would sell Apple products the way hypermarchés sold yoghourts.

Smaller retailers would get killed, squeezed between discounting competitors and their higher product cost. And yet, those smaller retailers were the most enthusiastic, the most competent promoters of Apple machines, always willing to spend an extra hour to explain the product, to answer questions after the sale, to provide personalized service.

We resolved to go against standard practice and enforced uniform pricing: No quantity discount.

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