One of the most polarizing institutions in our American Culture right now is Wal-Mart—it seems you either love it or you hate it. I know all about the supposed “Made In America” ploy, the local small business impact, the China Connection, the ugly people videos, the alleged “glass ceiling” for women, the minimum wage flap, and how wealthy the Walton’s are. I don’t care about any of that.
Critics of this institution have made their disapproval of Wally World made known far and wide….as they sneak in during the dark of night to buy goods by the bushel so their cool friends won’t see them. I for one am sick of their hypocrisy and think we all need to be brutally and publically honest about this for once…..and I just want to say to everyone within earshot…..I LOVE WAL-MART!!!
LOW PRICES. Because WM buys in volume and leverages all of its suppliers to give them the best prices in the world they consistently offer their customers the industry standard in thrift. I know they play pricing games and have an occasional gotcha price matrix they use from time to time…..but week in and week out WM can be counted on to save consumers money on the staples they need. I’m on the far side of raising three kids in a down economy and after shopping other grocery store chains I know for sure I save 30% on my grocery bill every week. Kraft Lite Mayonnaise: WM $2.87 / Harris Teeter $4.19.....Cucumbers: WM $ .67 / Farmers Market $ .99…..Jimmy Dean Turkey Sausage Links: WM $3.97 / Food Lion $5.99…..Hershey Bars: WM $ .58 / Lowe’s Foods $ .94…..Scott’s Turf Builder Plus: WM $17.94 / Home Depot $23.97. You know what I’m talking about…..
AN AMERICAN SUCCESS STORY. Sam Walton had a vision to give his customers a wide variety of products at a great price under one roof. He started out small in 1945 with Walton’s Five and Dime Store in Bentonville, Arkansas with a marketing strategy of selling goods at a small profit margin to achieve a high volume of sales. His idea was quite popular and in 1962 he opened the first Walmart Discount City in Rogers, AR and soon a chain of stores using the same business model. The company became publically traded in 1970, became the #1 Retailer in the world in 1990…..and we all know the rest of the story…..
WAL-MART HAS EVERYTHING. Q-Tips. Motor Oil. Yogurt. Diapers. Geraniums. Pepto Bismol. File Folders. Ritz Crackers. Aquariums. Scented Candles. Underwear. Fried Chicken. Ammunition. Greeting Cards. Videos. Nightgowns. Jewelry. Coffee. End Tables. Condoms. Drano. Milk Bone Dog Biscuits. Ibuprofen. Knitting Needles. Asparagus. Chainsaws. Beef Jerky. Latex House Paint. Shampoo. Coleman Stoves. Light Bulbs. Spatulas. Bird Seed. Socks. Hot Wheels. I could do this all day…..
THEY ARE EVERYWHERE. The first Wal-Mart I ever visited was in Iuka, Mississippi near my in-laws home. I thought I had died and gone to consumer heaven. This place had everything and it was cheap. That was 25 years ago. Since then I’d venture to say there are WMs everywhere in America. Whenever we travel that’s the first place we look for. They’re just like McDonalds…..identical, comforting, predictable, valuable…..a known quantity that you can depend on wherever you go.
WHERE THE POOR SHOP. The Middle Class and The Elites in America want to appear to have compassion on those less fortunate than themselves. They vote politicians into office that will the redistribute wealth to fund those that cannot or will not provide for themselves. We now call “Food Stamps” their “EBT Card” so the downtrodden won’t be embarrassed when they buy groceries to feed their families. Politics aside, we all feel better when we help the poor. But where does a single mother of three go to keep her household fed and clothed? Wal-Mart. We know their food prices can’t be beat…..but the household goods they sell are affordable and functional. They might not be the best quality available, and I know they’re all made in China, but poor people can afford them and can find them under one roof.
vSo the next time you bad mouth Wal-Mart for whatever ideological position you feel is important remember that WM serves a valuable community service in our country. Wal-Mart offers consumers the best value for the dollar spent…..consistently, creatively, and profitably. Thanks for a great idea Sam!