MSE News:MSE investigation reveals John Lewis IS 'knowingly undersold'

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Former_MSE_Megan_F Posts: 418
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edited 16 May 2017 at 8:48PM in Shop but don't drop
John Lewis's famous 'Never Knowingly Undersold' policy has been called into question after it failed to reduce the price of a wide range of products it was aware were being sold cheaper elsewhere, a MoneySavingExpert.com investigation reveals...
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'MSE investigation reveals John Lewis IS 'knowingly undersold''
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  • Pincher
    Pincher Posts: 6,552
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    You can't expect John Lewis to drop the price across the country, just because Currys has a limited quantity promotion. It could be a loss leader.

    I have been buying John Lewis for 40 years, and I want them to make a healthy profit.
  • POPPYOSCAR
    POPPYOSCAR Posts: 14,897
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    I think we know this has been the case for a while now but useful to see it confirmed.
  • Pincher wrote: »
    You can't expect John Lewis to drop the price across the country, just because Currys has a limited quantity promotion. It could be a loss leader.

    I have been buying John Lewis for 40 years, and I want them to make a healthy profit.

    You then change your slogan, you can't say you aren't knowingly undersold if you then sell for a higher price. It's just common sense.

    I asked the ASA if they had ever investigated JL recently and what the outcome was as I couldn't believe they were getting away with this. Their reply was you would need to launch an official complaint to check.
  • gwapenut
    gwapenut Posts: 1,322
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    Pincher wrote: »
    You can't expect John Lewis to drop the price across the country, just because Currys has a limited quantity promotion. It could be a loss leader.

    You mean that I can't expect John Lewis to not be knowingly undersold when they claim they're never knowingly undersold? Really, are you sure?
  • richardw
    richardw Posts: 19,456
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    Martin S Lewis needs to formally complain to the ASA about JL's advertising, if he doesn't what's the point of doing this research?
    Posts are not advice and must not be relied upon.
  • Doc_N
    Doc_N Posts: 8,261
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    John Lewis have been getting away with lying about this since time immemorial - about time there was a prosecution.

    Go for them MSE. They behave these days in a thoroughly disreputable manner, but continue to portray themselves as saints.

    I've just had to prise a refund out of them that should have been made automatically - if I hadn't pushed them for it, it wouldn't have been repaid. And we're talking here about well over £400!
  • Pincher
    Pincher Posts: 6,552
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    Never knowingly undersold means you can get the difference back if you could have bought it cheaper elsewhere, not John Lewis should pro-actively drop their prices.

    These days, the price match procedure is more stringent.

    You inform John Lewis that there is a cheaper price, which needs to be a physical outlet near a John Lewis store, not an online offer. It also needs to be in stock, not some flash in the pan promotion sold out in two minutes.

    They then confirm you will get the difference back.

    Last year, I bought a Bosch lawn mower this way, based on an Argos price. I got the confirmation, paid full John Lewis price, then they refunded the difference.

    The article seems to be saying John Lewis has to price match any insane promotion going, which is a sure way to bankrupt any retailer.
  • Doc_N
    Doc_N Posts: 8,261
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    Pincher wrote: »
    The article seems to be saying John Lewis has to price match any insane promotion going, which is a sure way to bankrupt any retailer.

    "Our dedicated price-monitoring team proactively check the prices of branded products at our high street competitors every day, including online and during sales. If we find that they are selling the same individual product, sold with the same service conditions, at a lower price, we’ll meet that price in our shops and at johnlewis.com."

    That's what they claim, and the words 'Never Knowingly Undersold' can only, in plain English, mean one thing. That they will not knowingly sell anything at a higher price than another retailer meeting their definitions once they know about it. And one a customer has reported an undersale, they do know about it.

    If they want to keep using the slogan, to benefit from the additional sales it brings them, they should stick to what it says, but they don't.

    John Lewis is in reality quite an expensive place to shop for most things. The NKU claims make people think otherwise. It's a downright lie, and it's about time they were exposed and legal action taken against them. The Advertising Standards Authority hs found against them on more than one occasion (for example: https://www.asa.org.uk/rulings/john-lewis-partnership-plc-a16-366248.html) but it needs to go further.

    John Lewis had a fine reputation once, but it's now fast achieving a reputation for deceit and unfair trading.
  • POPPYOSCAR
    POPPYOSCAR Posts: 14,897
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    Pincher wrote: »
    Never knowingly undersold means you can get the difference back if you could have bought it cheaper elsewhere, not John Lewis should pro-actively drop their prices.

    These days, the price match procedure is more stringent.

    You inform John Lewis that there is a cheaper price, which needs to be a physical outlet near a John Lewis store, not an online offer. It also needs to be in stock, not some flash in the pan promotion sold out in two minutes.

    They then confirm you will get the difference back.

    Last year, I bought a Bosch lawn mower this way, based on an Argos price. I got the confirmation, paid full John Lewis price, then they refunded the difference.

    The article seems to be saying John Lewis has to price match any insane promotion going, which is a sure way to bankrupt any retailer.


    Did you actually read the article?
  • LadyDee
    LadyDee Posts: 4,293
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    Pincher wrote: »
    Never knowingly undersold means you can get the difference back if you could have bought it cheaper elsewhere, not John Lewis should pro-actively drop their prices.

    These days, the price match procedure is more stringent.

    You inform John Lewis that there is a cheaper price, which needs to be a physical outlet near a John Lewis store, not an online offer. It also needs to be in stock, not some flash in the pan promotion sold out in two minutes.

    They then confirm you will get the difference back.

    Last year, I bought a Bosch lawn mower this way, based on an Argos price. I got the confirmation, paid full John Lewis price, then they refunded the difference.

    The article seems to be saying John Lewis has to price match any insane promotion going, which is a sure way to bankrupt any retailer.

    Absolutely. Too many of our favourite stores have gone to the wall because of this insane bargain-chasing. We used to have lovely department stores "in the good old days" which have now become nothing other than franchise-housing outlets or disappeared altogether.

    Will JL be next? Cutting their prices (and hence partner dividends) to match the ridiculous one-day 'sales' by other stores can only have one result - the type of customer care and staff cuts/quality like Currys. None of the extended guarantees offered currently, without the hard sell.

    JL prices might be a little higher but you very seldom get anything less than first class service from very pleasant helpful staff, who on the whole go out of their way to make shopping in JL a rather better experience than buying in the likes of Currys or Tesco.
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