Barnes & Noble Sent Me To Amazon

I’ll get to the book part, but first . . .

Today’s a holiday – Memorial Day. My Dad was a vet, World War II, South Pacific. He was wonderful, very quiet, retired from the Phone Company when people went to work and retired from the same job after decades.

He retired early, at 62, because he was just tired of working. He had a pension, and in those days, one could actually retire at 62 and draw Social Security. Not a lot of money, but he could afford to buy books. Usually Tom Clancy and Ken Follett.

He loved to read. Did so every night after Mom went to bed. It was quiet, the cats kept him company and didn’t ask him to fix the leaky faucet.

Segue to reading.

I love to read. Unfortunately for my husband, I will forego doing anything if I have a good book. I read a lot of business books – which can be boring – but when you find one that supports your opinion – it can be a real page-turner.

Yes, I’m talking about my quest last week to buy Cubed from Barnes & Noble.


Well, it was partly my fault.

As I said last week:

So, I read the article, I went online and ordered the book to pick up at my local Barnes & Noble. I planned to read as much as possible last night and wow you with enhanced knowledge, but alas, my $17.38 purchase came through, confirmed via text, that the price in store is actually $26.95.

Oh, mon dieu. I went to B&N, asked for my book at the counter and said, “I have a question.” The clerk responded immediately with, “We charge the full price, not online price” . . . as she put the book back on the shelf. They have my name, email address and phone number. Good Job.*

So I came home and ordered Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace from Amazon, free shipping and it was $17.04. Ha!

Now to be completely fair to B&N, they do let you know the price of the book will be different if you go to the store to buy the book. Well into the ordering process, mind you.

Yes, Summerlin location, I'm calling you out, AND admitting that in my excitement to find this book I overlooked the New Revised Price. I still think it's rude. And stupid.

Yes, Summerlin location, I'm calling you out, AND admitting that in my excitement to find this book I overlooked the New Revised Price. I still think it's rude. And stupid.

There it is. Well, it says the book is $27. But it’s actually $26.95 – why can’t they just put the real price in there?

The bigger question is this: Why, when you have a customer standing in front of your clerk with cash in hand, do you choose to NOT complete a transaction?

This is the stupidest sales decision ever. This certainly wasn’t a case of showrooming because I looked online – then I went to the store.

In this piece from Business Insider, reverse-showrooming, which is what I was doing and didn't know it, is being adopted by retailers.

"What has changed is that retailers have begun to identify the reverse showrooming trend and the opportunity it offers to them, and they are now working to actively capture those sales."


I live in Las Vegas. We don’t have a lot of bookstores anymore. Perhaps B&N think they have a market to themselves. But looking at the stats on bricks and mortar booksellers in this town, I think not.

Especially when they turn down a sale. From me.

I buy a lot of books – I’m not a Kindle type of person. I like ink on paper. I put post-it notes to mark important pages – especially the ones that completely agree with me and validate what I know to be true. And I’ve even been known to underline the good stuff – and use a post-it.

So, I bought the book from Amazon and had to wait a couple days. Cheaper than the online price from B&N, and I got free shipping.

Oh, and I went ahead a bought a couple other books too.

Missed opportunity, Barnes & Noble.

By the way, have a wonderful, safe Memorial Day. Put out the flag, honor our wonderful vets, barbeque a few burgers and read a book.


*well, actually, so do you if you click on my contact page.