Money Talks News: The single greatest retailer rip-off

Money Talks News: The single greatest retailer rip-off
(Source: Money Talks News)

Money Talks News - Whether you shop online or off, you're familiar with the term, "suggested retail price." But what does it really mean? Apparently, not much.

If there's one thing that's hard for a shopper to resist, online or off, it's a bargain. Who wouldn't want to buy something for 20, 30 or 50 percent off?

But therein lies the problem: 50 percent off what? Retailers often use things like "List Price" or "Manufacturer's Suggested Retail." But if those things aren't real, then the sale's not real.

Simple example: A Samsung TV on Amazon. It says the list price is $750, and they're selling it for about $600, saving you 20 percent, or $150. Good deal. Or is it?

What about the same TV on Google Shopping. There are plenty of places to buy a Samsung TV, shipping included, for about $550: That's $50 less than Amazon. So is $750 really the list price?

What about one of the sites selling the Samsung TV for $550 on B&H Photo. B&H says the TV really costs $947.99, so you could instantly be saving $400. Such a deal!

That example was from a couple of years ago, but more recently an online appliance sale said that the super sale price of a refrigerator was the everyday price at about 20 other stores.

So what's a consumer to do? First and foremost, don't fall for this. Always assume the list price and the savings are simply made up.

Then see if you're really getting the bargain you're promised by doing an online search. That's the only way you'll know.

The Internet makes this kind of stuff easy, but it also makes confirming deals easy. Use it.

And if you want to find more bargains every day, visit the Money Talks News website and just do a search for "shopping".

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