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Upset in Arnold over a coupon

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Posted: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 10:02 am

This morning (Friday Sept. 28) I went into ACE hardware in Arnold. I had an ad for Stihl power products from the current Buy and Sell Press. The ad was from Guy’s on Highway 88 and offered a Stihl BG55 leaf blower for $149.95, which is full retail, but also offered a $10 discount coupon from that price. I asked the person at ACE, “Will you honor this $10 discount coupon if I buy this blower from you? The person stated “No, it is not our ad; we are an ACE hardware store.” Also in my hand at the time of this discussion was a package of Stihl weedeater nylon line priced $14.99, and a tube of Stihl grease priced $7.99. So I returned the products to the shelf and left.

In the last two months I have purchased at ACE in Arnold a “six pack” of Stihl chain saw oil, two new chainsaw chains, two packages of plastic wedges and a pair of Stihl safety glasses, and also had two Stihl chainsaw chains sharpened at ACE.

I own an Stihl 026 Pro chainsaw, a Stihl MS170 trimming chain saw, a Stihl HT101 gas powered pole saw, a Stihl FS44 weed eater as well as my current Stihl leaf blower.

I am a 20-year owner of property in Arnold, and I have lived here full time since 2002, tried to shop in Arnold, but guess where all my business is going back to!

Mike Miller




Editor’s note: We asked Ebbetts Pass Lumber Co., the owner of ACE Hardware, to respond and received the note below, addressed to Mr. Miller.

 “Mr. Miller:

“We sincerely appreciate your business, your decision to shop locally and support the 20 families in Arnold that depend on Ebbetts Pass Lumber Company for a livelihood.

“Our decision to not honor your coupon from a store in Pine Grove was a simple one. We buy the Stihl blower that you referred to for $122.92 plus freight. By the time an associate has assembled, gassed and oiled it, we would lose money selling it for $139.99. If another store wants to sell you a product at loss that is their prerogative. We are in business to make money, and we will not apologize for that. Twenty local families depend on it.

“If you choose to take your business to another county, and turn your back on your neighbors during our local economic crisis – over something so petty – that is your prerogative.

“Jason Hauer

“Director, Ebbetts Pass Lumber Company, Inc.”

© 2015 Calaveras Enterprise. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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  • Mike Bullard posted at 10:19 am on Thu, Oct 11, 2012.

    Mike Bullard Posts: 569

    That wasn't indignant, that was resourceful. And chain stores're notorious for exactly that: ploy ploy ploy. An ad for one store in a chain gets money in Ace, wrong Ace, but that's where the management makes a "didn't see it was only that store pisser" into a satisfied customer, as well as nails 'im with a "come see what's in OUR ad" and a brief pause at the impulse rack with a little dialogue. Bend over, make 'im happy and make 'im loyal, he pays cash. There, that's a manager. Like you said, you've got folks counting on you, don't punk 'em for a couple bucks you'da seen many times over anyway. Is winning an argument really that important? My wife says no, HA HA HA.

  • Brian40 posted at 9:43 am on Thu, Oct 11, 2012.

    Brian40 Posts: 1

    You need to remember we're hearing just one side of the story.
    I have to agree with the store. Why the customer would expect them to honor a coupon for another store is a little baffling.
    For this guy to get so indignant over the fact that they said no makes him look like a child.

  • Dickey Weinkle posted at 3:44 pm on Wed, Oct 10, 2012.

    Dickey Weinkle Posts: 159

    I had my insurance office in Cedar Center, Arnold from 1978 to 2005. It was my experience that most locals took their insurance business down the hill, including most of the local businesses. Maybe it was my breath.[whistling]

  • Mike Bullard posted at 9:29 am on Wed, Oct 10, 2012.

    Mike Bullard Posts: 569

    But you know in retail it doesn't matter what the customer acts like (within reason), it's the retailer's place to make a satisfied customer out of him/her. If mangement won't handle a customer complaint any better'n that where's a customer gonna go to make an impact? Another thing; if that's how an unsatisfied customer's treated I'd hate to be an employee under such a bitter, arrogent "to [expletive] with ya" management. I'da yanked his keys out of his hands and gave him a broom, he's gonna lose bi'ness and maybe more for that.

  • risingsuncaltelcom posted at 8:28 pm on Tue, Oct 9, 2012.

    risingsuncaltelcom Posts: 204

    Driving over to Pine Grove from Arnold and back would cost more in gas than the $10 he would save with the coupon - not to mention almost 2 hours of driving.

    While the response could and should have been stated differently and less negatively, the outrage of the customer so much that he wrote a letter to the editor seems a bit excessive. I wouldn't think to ask one store to honor another store's coupon myself. If they said, sorry, we don't that, I would have considered the time and gas it would have taken to use that coupon and just bought it local.

    I have shopped at that Ace Store myself many times fixing things at my parent's cabin in Arnold. I think people are lucky they have a nice store like that in Arnold. They certainly came in handy when I needed things.

  • MichaelArkin posted at 1:51 pm on Tue, Oct 9, 2012.

    MichaelArkin Posts: 265

    Really? Is that response for real?

    It would have been better to say nothing than to disrespect Mr. Miller.


  • Charles Dudley Jr posted at 12:55 pm on Tue, Oct 9, 2012.

    Charles Dudley Jr Posts: 1281

    Agree 100%.

  • Mike Bullard posted at 10:27 am on Tue, Oct 9, 2012.

    Mike Bullard Posts: 569

    WronG response. Arrogance is NOT a successful retailer's mentality. You coulda come out smellin' like a rose but you chose to counter dissatisfaction with adversity. WronG.