Bait and switch

Started Feb 3, 2014 | Discussions thread
Pontoneer Senior Member • Posts: 2,243
Re: Bait and switch

gazis wrote:

Hi all,

I would like to solicit feedback from our members on their experience, if any, with the so-called 'Bait-and-Switch' strategy in photographic gear promotions.

But first, allow me to explain how, in principle, the 'Bait-and-Switch' strategy works, through a hypothetical example:

- The retailer announces a (typically limited-time) reduced price offer for an item. For instance, for a lens costing USD 1,000, an offer of, say, USD 800 may be announced (e.g., when combined with a coupon code)

- The consumer orders the item online, or, visits the retailer's local store for the item

- The retailer, in the case where the consumer issues an online order, typically does nothing and waits for the consumer to contact him/her with a status request for the order. When the consumer does so eventually, the retailer claims that there has been a problem with the payment, that he/she has repeatedly tried to contact the consumer via email on this matter, and that, for lack of a response, he/she has had to cancel the order. Nonetheless, he/she states that he/she will happily accept a renewed order of the item from the consumer, at the latest price of course. The consumer, in checking his/her email, finds no relevant email. In the case that the consumer requests an order priced at the level of the original order, the retailer regretfully informs the consumer that this cannot be supported.

- The retailer, in the case where the consumer visits his/her local store, regretfully informs the consumer that the stock to which the offer applied has been already exhausted and states that he/she will accept a renewed order of the item from the consumer, at the higher price of the remaining stock of the item.

This is pretty much the skeleton of the strategy; variations may apply, depending on the item promoted, the application of combined offerings, and so on.

As consumers, I am pretty sure most of us are not entirely unfamiliar with this practice, so I would welcome a round of feedback where we get to share our experiences with it. I hope it is not too much of a burden and it will certainly educate us all a bit.



This really is very simple - by accepting payment for an item ordered , the supplier has entered into a contract to supply the goods ordered at the agreed price : they must either fulfill the order or refund in full .

If they fail to do either , the most effective remedy , failing a chargeback on your credit/debit card , is to raise an action in the small claims court , where they will be ordered to pay - this can be enforced if they do not comply . Don't forget to ask for costs when raising your court action .

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With kind regards

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