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View Full Version : GW wants to kill off online stores - rumour!



Jack Spratt
09-03-2009, 17:05
Hey all

Just heard from a store manager that GW has a grand scheme to rid the world of warhammer-selling online stores. He told me he had head it from GW themselves at some kind of meeting.

This is what he told me: The list price will rise 40 %. But stores will get a 10 % discount from each of the following things:
1) If you have a window to the street.
2) If you do intro-paints.
3) If you do intro-games.
4) If you have models on display.

In this way online stores will not get the discounts and can no longer undercut the prices. That is what he said anyways. The reason he gave was that online stores made none of the hobbybuilding work and reaped all the benefits. I do not think it is true. Not even close. The hobbybuilding work (intro games, and intro paints, room for playing and so on) translate directly into sales for the store and not for the online store. I have yet to hear about a 12 year old that got an intro game and then went home and bought his or hers stuff on the web. I know that I spend more money than I would otherwise had done when the models are cheap.

Take with loads of salt. I have no reason to trust this guy.

If it is true I think GW is about to make a mistake that will affect their sales in a negative way. And I had just refound my love for the company with all the cheap plastic...

EmperorNorton
09-03-2009, 17:14
With a step like that they'd kill a great number of indy stores as well and GW's sales would take a huge hit, probably huge enough for them to go under.
I doubt they are that stupid.

Brinnyunlimited
09-03-2009, 17:33
I call *********.

Although it would be nice for GW to reward the people with an actual store. Maybe an extra 10% off for brick & mortar stores or something like that.

Avian
09-03-2009, 17:37
My town is not big enough for a hobby store to be financially viable and without online stores, there would not be a gaming group here at all, so I am all for them.

Ravenous
09-03-2009, 17:38
lol, sounds like GW is trying to turn indies into GW employees by making them work harder with brides of cheaper warhammer :p

I doubt this would happen, most indies will react badly by having a supplier telling them to work harder for thier discount.

Gazak Blacktoof
09-03-2009, 17:40
I'm not sure how I'd react to that sort of move. I don't have problem paying full retail, I've only recently started purchasing from discounted online retailers and e-bay. Previously I ordered direct from GW over the internet.

I can see that it makes sense to support non-online retailers in order to encourage grass-roots growth in the market, but from what I understand some brick and mortar gaming stores really have problems selling GW products at a profit and that his had little to do with internet competition. I imagine this move would be aimed at encouraging a growth in the player base than out of a motive to support B&M independents.


I rarely purchase from my local GW store and I've never been to an independent gaming store so currently I'd rather have the online-discount and play at home.

CaliforniaGamer
09-03-2009, 17:52
A wholesale price increase of a whopping 40% would spell the complete doom of Games Workshop, even in a good economy let alone now.

First off, no one would even buy the minis when Gamezone is already better quality for less. Sure they will still buy 2-3 army books per year but that would be it.

ozzyboy
09-03-2009, 17:52
This sounds like the employee trying to scare you into buying at the store. I would just keep buying your models and not worry about it.

BilboBaggins
09-03-2009, 17:56
Doesn't GW already have a policy preventing stores from internet sales? I was told that was the reason you have to phone in orders to The War Store.

Hicks
09-03-2009, 18:18
That would be crazy. If it weren't for online discounters nobody in my gaming group would be buying anymore miniatures and I'm sure we aren't the only ones. GW would lose a ton of sales. Also, not all stores have a window to the street, that's a stupid idea.

Brinnyunlimited
09-03-2009, 18:27
Gamezone is already better quality for less.

Obviously just a matter of opinion. I personally find Gamezone miniatures quite crowded and generally ugly and I know others who feel the same too.

The thing to consider here is, some of the biggest "indies" GW deal with are online only stores (Maelstrom and Wayland spring to mind).

To Suddenly stop supplying these stores would seriously damage GW's annual turnover, so I very much doubt there is any truth to this at all.

Mad Jack Deacon
09-03-2009, 18:33
I'm calling shennanagins on this one.

The volume of product moved through accounts like The Warstore is pretty large and even though it'd cut into their retailer cost, they could get the product through a distributor. And if GW is going to punish online stores this way, going through someone like Diamond/Alliance would probably mean a better retailer cost than via GW.

Another easy way around this is to simply rent out the smallest space in a strip mall you can find, never turn on the power or water, set up an intro and paint table, and put a box of AoBR, LoTR, and BfSP on a rack behind the tables.

Put your contact info on the window, lock the door, and walk away. You've got a store front.

Brother Loki
09-03-2009, 18:36
@BilboBaggins - they do have some restrictions on online only stores in the US, but that would be uncompetitive and illegal in Europe, so they don't here.

As a former FLGS owner I'm all in favour of things that make it harder for parasitic online discounters to drive real shops out of business (one of my staff members once spent 45 mins going through the basics of several different games with a newbie, only to be told afterwards that they weren't going to buy anything in the shop as they could get it cheaper online), but I think this sounds like a pretty clumsy way of doing it.

@Mad Jack - or, you know, you could contribute to the growth of the hobby and the industry, and actually demo games to people. Gaming is a social activity, after all. It requires other people to do it with. I don't think a collection of faceless online only stores is the way to ensure a healthy industry in the longer term.

IJW
09-03-2009, 19:35
Absolute garbage. This would be illegal in most of GW's markets.

Earthbeard
09-03-2009, 20:04
A wholesale price increase of a whopping 40% would spell the complete doom of Games Workshop, even in a good economy let alone now.

First off, no one would even buy the minis when Gamezone is already better quality for less. Sure they will still buy 2-3 army books per year but that would be it.

I pay retail - 10% from my local FLGS and have never bought a gamezone figure or intend to.

Guess that makes your sweeping generalisation wrong uh!?

Run along now.

CapitanGuinea
09-03-2009, 20:14
do you destroy the main way of building your own profit? Nore GW will do, i feel...

Indie store are in trouble? Just the one that refuse to evolve, and don't have a internet counterpart for their business... The Old ways are dead.

And GW will never bet on the losing horse.

rivers3162
09-03-2009, 20:22
As others have said, this sounds pretty unlikely. Plus I'm not sure where the OP is (the States?) but it seems like there's a good chance EU competition law would prevent GW from doing this in Europe. Not saying they can't but I think it would be extremely difficult. Plus I'd imagine a huge price increase combined with the sheer amount of flak they'd take would be tantamount to corporate suicide in the present economy.

I always thought that GW's current practices regarding stock were aimed at reducing the share of online stores i.e. by restricting a lot of the blisters to mail order only and generally making only the plastic box sets available in stores.

Bookwrak
09-03-2009, 20:32
Absolute garbage. This would be illegal in most of GW's markets.

QFT. Aside from that, historically speaking _any_ post that starts off, 'I heard this from a GW staffer,' has a 99.9% chance of being a warm and fragrant pile of BS.

McMullet
09-03-2009, 20:48
Regardless of anything else: How on Earth would GW police this? Do the stores have to send in a photo of their window, with the street in view, and a copy of today's paper? A weekly video update of then showing kids how to paint? How could they define these criteria and enforce them, without it costing them so much in legal fees and extra staff for the constant monitoring for it to be completely unprofitable?

I've heard some pretty wacko things about GW before, but I can't see this as being real. It's completely impracticable. Maybe GW will prove me wrong though...

BilboBaggins
09-03-2009, 21:00
There were rumors a few years ago about GW and their discounts to realitors. One local store dropped GW becuase of the rumor. The rumor was started by a disgruntled former employee.

untimention
09-03-2009, 21:13
GW do need to look at it however it wont change at all.... GW profits come from stores buying and re-selling.

The stores act as hobby points.. places to play... be sold to, paint and have a chat.

Online stores are for more serious players... older.... and have armies not a few models.

Bregalad
09-03-2009, 22:34
Dumping gets harder? We Indie store customers feel with you!:rolleyes:
About as much as online stores felt with ruined indie stores:evilgrin:

Killgore
09-03-2009, 22:39
How many people purchase online then game in indy stores or gw stores?

would those same people have the cheak to complain when those stores go bust due to lack of paying customers?

stroller
09-03-2009, 22:46
From the OP: Take with loads of salt. I have no reason to trust this guy.

Then why pass it on? Or am I missing something?

As an aside Maelstrom have bricks and mortar - been there bought things.

Tagis
09-03-2009, 22:52
Can't see it happening myself. Not only does it cost them a lot of immediate revenue, there is a good chance they will lose customers who rely on the discount to justify their continued expenditure. I often see people commenting here and on other sites that if they had to pay full retail they would no longer buy models. GW get some money out of these people - the discount comes out of the retailers margin, not GWs. The additional problem is this will feed into the negative image of GW which many people hold due to perceived shenanigens in the past. If GW were to do such a thing, why would independants want to stock their goods when they could be next for the chop?

hertz
09-03-2009, 23:08
Good though, perhaps, but it sure looks like a clumsy way of doing it. Perhaps it where only an idea born out of a brainstorming session, and never intended for actual use, but anyway presented for the retailers at some meeting or such to give the impression of caring about this particular threat the the B&M?

redbaron998
09-03-2009, 23:20
Ha Ha that would be a great way to loose alot of business quickly. The only way any of my friends (20ish year old college students) can afford the game is by getting 20% off at The War Store. (or other equivalent)

If that goes under then there goes most of my gaming group. We have rolled with the blows of the price raises and such as much as possible, effectively raise the prices another 20% and we have no choice but to capitulate hobby intrest to corporate greed.

yabbadabba
09-03-2009, 23:55
Some of the views on here are ... ... interesting to say the least.

GW cannot prejudice against online retailers. So until the Eu/America/Rest of the world take steps to prejudcie agaisnt online dicounters, GW cannot.

That GW dislike discounters is well known and it is based on a fairly sound business basis. They fell the price the charge at retail is the right price for that product. Discounters make life harder for everyone else and online discounters make life especially hard for all B+M stores which GW see as the lifeblood of their current sales strategy.

But don't worry - I am sure your 20% discount is perfectly safe. For now.

Deadmanwade
10-03-2009, 05:12
To be honest, I like getting a discount on my miniatures. Why pay more if you dont have to right? Gw is very expensive.
At the same time, I like having a local gaming store whether its GW or an indie. I dont have one where I'm living at the moment and I wish I did.

Given a choice, I'd rather have an indie store near me and not buy online. Having a friendly and inviting place to play, where I can pick up little bits and pieces as I need them is great. When I shop online I usually wait until I want a lot of stuff to avoid postage etc.

One thing I have done in the past is to wait for a new release and go to my (then) local store and say "Hey, I'm going to buy a (insert new army name here). If I buy X amount from you, can you give me a discount?"

Knowing that they are guaranteed to get a quick turnover on a product is usually a good incentive for the store owner to offer a discount.
It may not be 25%, but you get the miniatures when its convenient for you (even the day of release), you keep the store owner happy and in business and you pay less than retail.

Some businesses stock more than just GW and are a real mail order company, thats great for them. Its the guys who trade out of their back rooms, never keep anything in stock and have next to no customer service that I dont like.

I wonder what would happen if GW just offered a 20% discount on all orders from their site? They'd make more than they do wholesale and get rid of lots of the middlemen in an instant.

cookiescrumble
10-03-2009, 10:30
Anything by GW to protect a FLGS will be welcomed by me with open arms, having just set one up. The problem I have, is with the 25-30% online discounters, as a guy who is trying to make a living from this stuff I simply can't match those prices. If you look at my website, I haven't even bothered finishing the GW products, because I won't sell them. Instead I am moving my focus to other games, such as Flames of War and Warmachine/Hordes, where there are measures in place to stop anyone getting an account and offering stupid discounts.

I think it is a case of GW realising that they need to start protecting the hobby. Not so long ago they basically gave an account to anyone, then they introduced a T&C saying that you have to either have an online store or a bricks or mortar store. It's not hard/expensive to set one up. I have lost all my sales at my local gaming club, which I have been part of from the beginning (2 years), to someone walking in and offering GW stuff at a third off the RRP :eek:, setting up a crappy website so that he keeps his account .I have also had the same problem with Warmachine/Hordes in the past. Some people however would buy from me out of principle, having somewhere where they can come to to paint and play games.

As for the EU rules saying GW can't stop people buying from them, well they can. They can choose who to sell to, there are also ways of capping discounts without breaking the rules, like other companies, although I will say no more about that ;).

I think that GW should do more to support local stores, and screw over the internet traders by putting measures in place to stop massive discounts so that things such as customer service matter more. They have started to do this, putting in measures to stop drop shipping. The hobby is all about community, which was one of the main focuses of my shop. Thats why I have a designated painting area and a gaming area.

Brother Loki
10-03-2009, 10:43
@cookiescrumble - Do you have an actual shop now then? You might want to update the website to reflect that. I can definitely see myself heading down to Pompey to pick up warmachine bits.

Nicha11
10-03-2009, 10:56
GW a company on the edge it needs to boost sales and so goes for a radical tactic.

Cut sales!

I don't think the dear GW that we all love/hate has the stupidity required to get rid of online stores.

lorelorn
10-03-2009, 11:18
Sounds to me like running a shop was harder work than these guys had thought, and GW opening gave them a good excuse to quit.

RobC
10-03-2009, 13:56
The same is true of retailing in general. Book and music shops are disappearing on the high street at a terrifying rate, and in the case of music the blame isn't solely on illegal filesharing.

This isn't a out-and-out criticism of online purchases, by the way – I just want people to realise that unless things change, high streets may not exist for much longer. And that applies to both good and bad shops.

zedeyejoe
10-03-2009, 14:27
How on Earth would GW police this? Do the stores have to send in a photo of their window, with the street in view, and a copy of today's paper?

Thats how another firm I know does it. They also would like an interior shot and details of your customers, so as "to better help you manage your sales area".

So yes it is being done, just not by GW at the moment.

I can see every reason why GW would want to eliminate online stores other than their own. After all whats not to love about owning all internet sales of your product?

Hicks
10-03-2009, 15:21
Something people who welcome such a change should consider is that GW never helps anyone. If your store gets good business because online discounters disappear, chances are GW will set up their own store on the opposite side of the street and drive you out of business.

Also, not everyone goes to or likes LGSs. I don't use up space at the FLGS, I don't use their space, I might go pick up something there if I really need it now, but I just can't pay their prices on a regular basis without feeling stupid. Little soldiers have to compete with all other sorts of entertainment and they require a lot of time and hard work to look pretty, at some point I just feel like they aren't worth it moneywise. My limit just happens to be 20% off GW's american prices.

Cane
10-03-2009, 15:54
GW from a business perspective could use a lot of improvement especially if these rumors have any truth to them. I'm not saying I don't buy things retail but the majority of my shopping is through discount stores that their brick and mortar counterparts around here simply don't offer and they expect a customer to pay sales tax on top of a full retail price? GOOD LUCK!

With the amount of LGS that have hosted Warhammer tabletop games (around 3-5), some for over a decade, I always wondered why GW never made an official store here.

Emperor's Grace
10-03-2009, 16:36
Regardless of anything else: How on Earth would GW police this? Do the stores have to send in a photo of their window, with the street in view, and a copy of today's paper? A weekly video update of then showing kids how to paint? How could they define these criteria and enforce them, without it costing them so much in legal fees and extra staff for the constant monitoring for it to be completely unprofitable?

I've heard some pretty wacko things about GW before, but I can't see this as being real. It's completely impracticable. Maybe GW will prove me wrong though...


Thats how another firm I know does it. They also would like an interior shot and details of your customers, so as "to better help you manage your sales area".

"Secret shoppers" would also work. Offer a discount/minor comp to some kid/intern/etc to vet/rat out the stores in a certain area every so often...



I can see every reason why GW would want to eliminate online stores other than their own. After all whats not to love about owning all internet sales of your product?

PR issues, possible anti-monopoly issues, lowered sales to remote locations, etc... ?

I don't think that it would be a good thing for the public to perceive them as trying to up prices through stifled competition during this economic downturn.



Good though, perhaps, but it sure looks like a clumsy way of doing it. Perhaps it where only an idea born out of a brainstorming session, and never intended for actual use, but anyway presented for the retailers at some meeting or such to give the impression of caring about this particular threat the the B&M?

It's also quite possible that this is what the staffer HEARD, not what was SAID. Personal bias can color many things. Ever play "whispers"?

Osbad
10-03-2009, 16:58
I can see GW *wanting* to do this. Whether they can pull it off in the EU is something else altogether!

Personally, the day this happens is the last day I buy jack-poo from GW. I only buy stuff second hand or at deep discount as it is. If its not available at deep discount, I don't buy, simple as.

Its not like I can't find other ways of filling my time :D

Part of the reason for this is that I *hate* the idea of playing in a shop. Generally speaking they are stinky, with no facilities (not even a bog!) and filled with kids. And even if they were wonderful stores they would still not be as comfortable as my own home. Not wanting to play in a shop means I resent being taxed by GW in order to subsidise those that do.

Personally I think they should knock 20% off the price and then charge those that play in store a fee for using tables. But of course they won't do that because it puts customers off. Human nature is such that they'd not factor in the total cost of the hobby, and not be prepared to pay to play.

Answer me this: I get absolutely NO benefit from new kids starting the hobby, other than the very long term one that the hobby will die out if new kids don't join. But, believe me, GW's shareholders get way more out of the deal than I do when it comes to that. So why the frag should I be made to subsidise the new kids experience? That should come out of the pockets of GW's marketing budget, not mine! Anything else is just smoke and mirrors. If they can't see the long term dis-benefits of effectively raising their prices by 25%, then they deserve to die a long, slow, financial death!

I smell nerd-rage building...

JLBeady
10-03-2009, 18:46
Don't be fooled for a second that GW doesn't build into it's wholesale price the overhead for GW stores. That means your local indie has already paid for part of the the overhead for that GW store and when you buy from a discounter your paying the same built in overhead.

This is why I don't have a lot of qualms about buying from a discounter as I know GW is getting their pound of flesh.

GW is to blame for the current system since they compete (aggressively) with their own customers.

Long term, the best thing for GW is to limit the growth and interest in competing game system and to get indie's to promote their product more agressively, i.e. why some of the discounts cited are tied directly to a store's promotional activities. Since resources (time, space, money) is finite. This required extra promotional activity will come at the expense of promoting/supporting other game systems. For GW it is a zero sum game. If you are spending money on War Machine/Hordes/Flames of War/some FF board game then you are not spending it on GW.

McMullet
10-03-2009, 18:49
Thats how another firm I know does it. They also would like an interior shot and details of your customers, so as "to better help you manage your sales area".

So yes it is being done, just not by GW at the moment.


"Secret shoppers" would also work. Offer a discount/minor comp to some kid/intern/etc to vet/rat out the stores in a certain area every so often...

Fair dos. I wasn't trying to say it was impossible, so much as impractical and, more to the point, uneconomical. The benefits of implementing such a scheme are questionable at best. Yes, it could mean money for GW's own retail business, and a long-term improvement in marketing, as resellers are encouraged to actively promote GW products. On the other hand, it could mean a loss of revenue in the short term, and in the long term as players get priced out of the hobby.

Ths has to be set against either a lot of hassle for resellers (if there is a watertight scheme to make them prove they "tick all the boxes") or a lot of hassle for GW (if they inspect places themselves or with secret shoppers). Thus, GW loses out; either they lose sales due to resellers who think that it's too much fuss to get a sworn affidavit from every kid who gets a demo game, or they end up giving away hundreds of battalion boxes to secret shoppers.

I assume they'd have someone more knowledgeable than me to do a cost-benefit analysis and work out the particulars of the system; nonetheless, this doesn't look good to me. It just looks too easy for people to lie their way through a cheap system.


Part of the reason for this is that I *hate* the idea of playing in a shop. Generally speaking they are stinky, with no facilities (not even a bog!) and filled with kids. And even if they were wonderful stores they would still not be as comfortable as my own home. Not wanting to play in a shop means I resent being taxed by GW in order to subsidise those that do.

Personally I think they should knock 20% off the price and then charge those that play in store a fee for using tables. But of course they won't do that because it puts customers off. Human nature is such that they'd not factor in the total cost of the hobby, and not be prepared to pay to play.

Answer me this: I get absolutely NO benefit from new kids starting the hobby, other than the very long term one that the hobby will die out if new kids don't join. But, believe me, GW's shareholders get way more out of the deal than I do when it comes to that. So why the frag should I be made to subsidise the new kids experience? That should come out of the pockets of GW's marketing budget, not mine! Anything else is just smoke and mirrors. If they can't see the long term dis-benefits of effectively raising their prices by 25%, then they deserve to die a long, slow, financial death!

Well, whatever happens, GW's marketing budget comes from your pocket. It's not like they have sources of revenue other than selling minis and books.

I agree with the general sentiment of what you're sying though. I very rarely play in stores; when I do, I'm usually paying because it's a tournament. Otherwise, I do try to buy something (even if it's just a pot of paint or whatever) to support the place. If I had a regular game store to play at, I would probably buy most of my stuff from there.

As it is, I play at a friend's house, or in the past at my own place, so I've no qualms about buying from discount online retailers.

That said, it's true that GW's main marketing strategy is promotion in stores. Previously, that was, essentially, "free"; anyone who sold their products would do so in a shop, and in that shop, anyone could give advice about the game, minis could be displayed in the wndow, etc.. Now, however, the rise of online sales has reduced the amount of marketing exposure the products get per unit sold. Whatever happens, GW are going to need more cash for advertising, and those costs will have to be passed on to the consumer (the only source of revenue for GW).

If anything, I'd rather the advertising money went to game stores, rather than TV ads or something. Exactly how they would make the system workable, however, I do not know. Online sales should subsidise brick and mortar stores from a marketing point of view, because this revenue has to go into marketing somehow; on the other hand, I do feel that a game store as a gaming venue should not be subsidised by people who buy online and do not game there.

zedeyejoe
10-03-2009, 19:02
On the other hand, it could mean a loss of revenue in the short term, and in the long term as players get priced out of the hobby.

That assumes that people buying from discounters are doing so because they have to (cannot afford to pay the full retail price) as opposed to people just looking for the best deal.

I have a feeling that people who are looking for the best price outnumber those who would stop collecting if there were no discounts available. Look at Battlefront who are prepared to maintain their retail prices despite the fact that there are suppliers out there who will supply models to play their games cheaper and totally outside their control - and their business seems to work.

McMullet
10-03-2009, 19:24
That assumes that people buying from discounters are doing so because they have to (cannot afford to pay the full retail price) as opposed to people just looking for the best deal.

Not entirely. The assumption is more this: That people have a fixed amount to spend on gaming. If I buy from a non-GW source, the instant revenue for GW is the same. If I spend £100, discounted 20% from RRP, that's equivalent to £125 at retail, or £75 to GW (they sell at -40% wholesale, is that right?). If I spend the same £100 at normal RRP, GW only get £60.

I can afford to buy *something*, wherever I get it from, but I can buy more if it's at a discount. Even if they do this, I'm probably going to be able to buy at slightly discounted rates from the internet (10% off or whatever, so probably evens when you add postage), and where I am that's preferable to driving to Shrewsbury or Chester, finding somewhere to park, walking to GW and back and then driving home. Equally, someone who has a local FLGS would go shop there, but again, less of their £100 would go to GW.

So what I meant there was that, while more money would go to sources that were positive for GW (i.e., more people would buy from their local store, if they had one), less money could end up in GW's coffers, simply because there is a finite amount of money being spent on GW products. If more of that money goes to indie stores, less goes to GW.

Brinnyunlimited
10-03-2009, 19:42
I often wonder what people did BEFORE the online retail explosion. A lot of people are suggesting they'd instantly quit the hobby if online discounters died off, but there must have been a time in the past where you DID pay full price?

The sudden appearance of all these 20-25% discounters has only really happened within the last two years.

Hicks
10-03-2009, 19:49
I often wonder what people did BEFORE the online retail explosion. A lot of people are suggesting they'd instantly quit the hobby if online discounters died off, but there must have been a time in the past where you DID pay full price?

The sudden appearance of all these 20-25% discounters has only really happened within the last two years.

I had a very small army, bought used minis in horrible condition, got fed up with those insane prices and stopped buying. I picked up magic and other geeky games and almost never played GW games anymore. Then I got into online trading, at least I could swap armies when I got tired of playing with the same stuff over and over again. Online discounters got me into buying new again and it litterally single handedly made my friends start playing again. And they appeared way before 2 years ago.

zedeyejoe
10-03-2009, 20:49
Not entirely. The assumption is more this: That people have a fixed amount to spend on gaming.

Again I am going to disagree. That says the motivation for buying is money first, models second.

How about this for a model of shoppers habits. I want to buy an X army, its going to cost Y. Now I only have W to spend a month, so its going to take M time to get it (barring birthday/christmas presents). But I can also adjust my spending to get what I want when I want it, at worst put it on the plastic card.

In fact my biggest problem (thats me personally) is finding the time to get the stuff I have painted.

Again, I buy what I want, when I want it. I do search to get the best price I can but I would still pay full price if I had to. But perhaps thats just me.


If I spend £100, discounted 20% from RRP, that's equivalent to £125 at retail, or £75 to GW (they sell at -40% wholesale, is that right?). If I spend the same £100 at normal RRP, GW only get £60.

It took me a while to get my head round this. I think I figured it out right. The first premise is that you would only spend £100 as that is your budget. Fait enough lets stick with that.

a) Spend £100 with 20% discounter, GW get £75 and trader makes £25.
b) Spend £100 with indie shop at full price, GW get £60 and trader makes £40.
c) Spend £100 online with GW. GW get £100.

Now this is a multiple choice test, if you are GW which option is best for you and if you are an indie trader which option is best for you?

Of course indie traders generally go with option a) but selling at the lowest margin possible to attract customers to buy from them rather than someone else. The customer wins with option a).

And yes I did maths and economics at uni.

McMullet
10-03-2009, 21:49
Again I am going to disagree. That says the motivation for buying is money first, models second.

How about this for a model of shoppers habits. I want to buy an X army, its going to cost Y. Now I only have W to spend a month, so its going to take M time to get it (barring birthday/christmas presents). But I can also adjust my spending to get what I want when I want it, at worst put it on the plastic card.

In fact my biggest problem (thats me personally) is finding the time to get the stuff I have painted.

Again, I buy what I want, when I want it. I do search to get the best price I can but I would still pay full price if I had to. But perhaps thats just me.

There are, certainly, people in the "fixed budget" category, and I suspect they are big earners for GW. People who are building new armies and want to get playing are frequently young and, thus poor, but they also want to get new stuff to get games in. When I got back into 40K a few years ago, I was a penniless undergraduate and I knew that every £2.50 I spent on Orks resulted in one pint less on Friday night. At the same time, I did want to buy stuff, because one Warboss and 16 Boyz doesn't make much of an army. So I was buying GW stuff very frequently, but I was also very careful what I spent. A lot of gamers are even younger and poorer than that, relying on their parents, pocket money or birthdays, and these things will be controlled by a fixed budget.

Now, I'm in the same position as you - I have far too many unpainted toys lying around. For this reason, rarely buy anything new (there's no point in making the pile of sprues higher), so I'm not a lucrative customer for GW. Since about 4 years ago, I haven't bought a great deal, despite having had (for most of the time) a decent enough income.

I suppose you're right that the fixed budget is not really the right way to describe a lot of people's spending habits. However, I think the end result is the same: What it means is that most people will continue to build the army they wanted beforehand (no, no one is going to build an 1872 point army instead of a 2000 point army because the price is different), while a small proportion of armies will be pushed over their prospective collectors'/owners' price threshold.

I think what I'm trying to say here is: Surely, any increase in price has to result in a reduction in sales, overall? You're the economics graduate, so if you say no I'll take your word for it, but it doesn't seem right to me.


It took me a while to get my head round this. I think I figured it out right. The first premise is that you would only spend £100 as that is your budget. Fait enough lets stick with that.

a) Spend £100 with 20% discounter, GW get £75 and trader makes £25.
b) Spend £100 with indie shop at full price, GW get £60 and trader makes £40.
c) Spend £100 online with GW. GW get £100.

Now this is a multiple choice test, if you are GW which option is best for you and if you are an indie trader which option is best for you?

Of course indie traders generally go with option a) but selling at the lowest margin possible to attract customers to buy from them rather than someone else. The customer wins with option a).

And yes I did maths and economics at uni.

I'm not disagreeing with any of what you say there. I was not saying that implementing a policy such as the one described would result in a loss of revenue for GW, but rather that it could result in a loss of revenue. Not a certainty, but one possible outcome.

Fenlear
10-03-2009, 23:16
If GW didn't want us going out of our way to find a cheaper price they wouldn't be trying so hard to rip us off in the first place. Let's face facts; a plastic toy soldier army is worth a few dollars, not hundreds. When forced to pay such steep prices anyone with half a brain is going to look for a better deal and no matter how much they try to stop it a smart businessman will always find a way to undercut them. If they don’t want me going online then bring the prices down to reality so I don’t feel the need to shop around.

Bregalad
10-03-2009, 23:43
Just ask yourself: How many online discounters brought you or your friends into the hobby? How many online discoutners explained the game to you and made a demo game? How many online discoutners showed you how to paint your miniatures? How many online discounters brought gamers together and organised tournaments? See?

Some people love to download ripped Codices. Some people would happily buy products from child labour, if the price is right:rolleyes:

Hicks
10-03-2009, 23:50
Just ask yourself: How many online discounters brought you or your friends into the hobby? How many online discoutners explained the game to you and made a demo game? How many online discoutners showed you how to paint your miniatures? See?

I and am sure all lot of other people can say the same about stores. I learned more about playing and painting on old Portent than I did at the LGS. I never had any older gamer teaching me anything either and I still enjoy the hobby as much as anybody here.

Cane
11-03-2009, 00:03
J ust ask yourself: How many online discounters brought you or your friends into the hobby? How many online discoutners explained the game to you and made a demo game? How many online discoutners showed you how to paint your miniatures? How many online discounters brought gamers together and organised tournaments? See?



In my case I started the hobby when I was 15 so only had so much money to work with and now at the ripe age of 21 I'm still in the same "fixed budget" category. Without online stores I probably would never have been able to play especially given the army I'm fond of (Imperial Guard).

Also when I used to game weekly at the FLGS, I'd find that my group and the store owners and the people who they chilled with would generally segregate themselves from us and I can't remember ever exchanging more than a line or two of conversation. Outside of one of the 'older guys' we never faced them or was offered to, and the owners never showed much interest to the younglings unless we were around store products in which case they'd think we were trying to steal their stuff. They had painting competitions, tournaments, etc all the stuff you'd expect from GW but never shared to the likes of teens.

Nowadays that store is the most successful tabletop focused store in the city (they have more tables than all the other stores combined) but my memories aren't too fond of the ownership and the way they conduct themselves to new generations of tabletop geeks but I definitely understand the mentality behind it.

zedeyejoe
11-03-2009, 08:05
Surely, any increase in price has to result in a reduction in sales, overall?

No the only way that happens if even less things are bought than the difference in price rise of widgets sold. GW strategy assumes what is called 'inelastic demand'. I don't know if I agree with them but to a certain extent, gamers 'are' like drug addicts.


A lot of gamers are even younger and poorer than that, relying on their parents, pocket money or birthdays, and these things will be controlled by a fixed budget.

These people can also rely on the bank of 'mum and dad' and a thing called 'pester power'. Its great when the money you are spending is not your own.

BigRob
11-03-2009, 09:17
I often wonder what people did BEFORE the online retail explosion. A lot of people are suggesting they'd instantly quit the hobby if online discounters died off, but there must have been a time in the past where you DID pay full price?

The sudden appearance of all these 20-25% discounters has only really happened within the last two years.

Yes there was a time I was happy to pay full retail. When a tactical squad was £10 or when a box of 16 empire soldiers was £10 or when a blister of 4 metal models was £5 or even when paint was £1 or less a pot.

The price has almost doubled while the number of miniatures in a box/blister has almost halved and the prices are still rising. I went to buy some paint from my local GW having restarted collecting/playing after almost 7 years. It was £2.20 a pot! Thats over double what it cost when I started collecting. Yes inflation is a factor, but you can't deny it has gone up alot.

This is one of the reasons online retails have done so well. GW have allready shut down the online bits sellers (even though they scrapped their bits service in favour of overpriced "bits packs") and the move towards brick and mortar will probably happen as well. They will do everything they can to maximise their profit including leaning on any company smaller than them.

It's a shame really. Yes the stores are important and they are a good source of new hobby recruist but would I play in one, NO! My local store is filled with the 12-16 year old "sterotypical geek" and the sickly scent of sweat and superglue wafts out into the street mingled with their screams and shouts.

Osbad
11-03-2009, 10:27
I have a feeling that people who are looking for the best price outnumber those who would stop collecting if there were no discounts available. Look at Battlefront who are prepared to maintain their retail prices despite the fact that there are suppliers out there who will supply models to play their games cheaper and totally outside their control - and their business seems to work.

There are many out there who prefer to pay higher prices because it means they get "official" models, or simply because they can't be bothered to look around. It's not like 15mm WWII figures are hard to come by if you have 5 minutes and Google.

I don't have a problem with the concept of a manufacturer saying "we think our product is worth £10 (or whatever) and we want you to sell it at that."

Where I have the problem is when the retailer says. "We think the product is only worth £8, and we can sell it at that and still make a profit", and somehow the manufacturer gets away with forcing them to not pass on the discount to the consumer.

It flies in the face of the free market and open competition.

Now GW are allegedly justifying it on the grounds of supporting the development of the hobby.

Well, if they need to do that by artificially inflating prices there's something wrong. If the hobby is worth developing, then its worth the shareholders funding the development. Trying to con the customers into funding that development is just shady.

I'm a customer who wants to buy product for a game now, not in 10 years' time. I'll worry about 10 years' time then. That's not my responsibility. I could be dead, or living on another planet in 10 years' time. I'm really not bothered about what I'm going to be doing in my hobby that far in advance.

Taxing my current purchase with no option to opt out in order to fund the hobby (by which GW mean *their* business plan, not *my* hobby. *My* hobby involves little model soldiers, and I don't care who makes them as long as they look good and don't cost the earth, it does not necessarily involve GW stores or even buying GW product in a couple of years' time) in 10 years' time is just dishonest in my book. And a product of GW's monopolistic positioning. Fortunately UK and EU competition legislation tries to forbid the practice, but often a company in a strong market position vis-a-vis its distrubutors, like GW is, can often get away with shady practice because the little guy is in no financial position to resist their bullying. Its amazing what expensive and vocal lawyers can get away with!

Now, I'm not saying we shouldn't support the long term development of wargaming. But as a punter, my responsibility for this stops at getting friends and acquaintences involved and putting on club events etc. It does not involve paying a thinly disguised premium for the raw material for my hobby! As I see it the long term development of the hobby is better served by the availability of cheap raw materials (by which I mean toy soldiers and kits) rather than by relying on GW to plonk a store down near by and con the local kids into paying their inflated prices!

So, what to do about it? Online petitions and whinging don't achieve a great deal, just provide an opportunity to vent.

The only really constructive thing I can recommend is to not let yourself be locked into GW (or PP, or R or CB or Battlefront or any one proprietory manufacturer) as the source for *your* hobby. If you explore different games and just see GW (or any of the others) as suppliers of components of *your* hobby, then if their models become more expensive to obtain you can just get something else from someone else. Its a free country. GW can't force you to buy their product. All that makes you want to buy them is your own desire and peer pressure. There's no law against proxying, and most people play games outside of the store environment and so are free to do so at their own convenience.

The only reason GW can get away with artificially inflated prices is because the demand created by the mindset of vulnerable teenagers without wide knowledge of other alternatives permits them to do so. Take away that "addicition" factor and that demand drops and GW find their price elasticity of demand becomes much less conducive to high prices!

zedeyejoe
11-03-2009, 10:47
I don't have a problem with the concept of a manufacturer saying "we think our product is worth £10 (or whatever) and we want you to sell it at that."

Well its against EU law, the idea is that the consumer should be able to get the best price possible. As indeed you point out.


Its amazing what expensive and vocal lawyers can get away with!

I have noticed that with GW legal. But I (in the form of my lawyers) are just about to issue GW with their final warning, step over the line and we will have them!

yabbadabba
11-03-2009, 11:15
Hang on.

We have established that GW cannot prevent online trading. So they cannot kill it off. So any reason for this thread to continue?

RobC
11-03-2009, 11:17
Well its against EU law, the idea is that the consumer should be able to get the best price possible. As indeed you point out.There's nothing illegal in offering different discounts to different suppliers. It happens all the time in the book trade, with supermarkets and Amazon getting increasingly large discounts at the expense of 'proper' book shops.

So, assuming GW approached it from that perspective, they're fine. What they can't do is enforce an RRP.

Brimstone
11-03-2009, 11:19
So this thread started with a fairly silly rumour and has changed into a generic price bitching thread (ablit one that's fairly intelligently discussed).

Is there a reason for it to remain open, as we have plenty of these already?

yabbadabba
11-03-2009, 11:22
Not for me Brimstone.

McMullet
11-03-2009, 12:03
@Brimstone: I think most of the discussions are more about economic theory than bitching. Certainly, the topic is wandering a bit, but it's still fairly civil and (in my opinion) interesting. Your call though.


No the only way that happens if even less things are bought than the difference in price rise of widgets sold. GW strategy assumes what is called 'inelastic demand'. I don't know if I agree with them but to a certain extent, gamers 'are' like drug addicts.

I think on the scale of individual gamers that makes sense. I take it what you mean is that the demand may be assumed to be inelastic within a narrow price range (±10% or whatever)?

Fair play on the addict comment though... :p


These people can also rely on the bank of 'mum and dad' and a thing called 'pester power'. Its great when the money you are spending is not your own.

Under those circumstances, though, doesn't the price relative to other hobbies become significant? OK, so I can pester £100 of GW stuff out of Ma 'n' Pa for my birthday. Then there's a price rise, so the stuff I wanted from GW costs £120. But hang on! For £100 I can get a new XBox! The kid might not think that, but Ma 'n' Pa might say, "Hey little Jimmy, would you not rather have an XBox than those silly toy men? You could invite your friends around and have XBox parties." Parents can use pester power as well.

Of course that won't happen in every case, but averaged over hundreds of birthdays and pocket monies, the fact that another hobby/sweets/beer have become relatively cheaper might mean the GW present is substituted for something that gives more bang per buck...

Wintertooth
11-03-2009, 12:40
There's nothing illegal in offering different discounts to different suppliers. It happens all the time in the book trade, with supermarkets and Amazon getting increasingly large discounts at the expense of 'proper' book shops.

So, assuming GW approached it from that perspective, they're fine. What they can't do is enforce an RRP.

Exactly. Independent retailers who own shops are important to GW, because they give them a presence in places they don't have their own stores. They highlighted their survival as a concern in the interims, so it wouldn't be a surprise if something is in the works.

Giving those traders a better offer than "spare room" web stores just allows them to offer comparable or better discounts, and thus survive where they otherwise might not. The level of discount available to customers wouldn't necessarily change at all. A few online-only stores might disappear, but those run by traders with B&M would replace them.

Customers pay the same prices they always did; physical stores thrive; GW might take a slight hit providing better trade discounts to B&M stores, but it's probably worth it to maintain that presence. The only losers are online-only retailers.

They don't have to "ban" anything to change the market place.

mrtn
11-03-2009, 13:28
Just ask yourself: How many online discounters brought you or your friends into the hobby? The same amount as the number of shops that ever brought me into the hobby. Zero.
How many online discoutners explained the game to you and made a demo game? I've never had a demo game either. I figured out the rules by myself.
How many online discoutners showed you how to paint your miniatures? You might guess the trend, I'm self taught here as well.

How many online discounters brought gamers together and organised tournaments? See?I've never met a gaming partner in a store, and never been to a tournament. Just as Osbad I'd rather not have to pay for services I've not received.

zedeyejoe
11-03-2009, 13:33
The kid might not think that, but Ma 'n' Pa might say, "Hey little Jimmy, would you not rather have an XBox than those silly toy men? You could invite your friends around and have XBox parties." Parents can use pester power as well.

Could be, if it works that way. Certainly from the parents I knew (living on the local public housing estate) the spend is £250-500 for a childs birthday. Seems a lot to me (and might change as times are hard now). But at the kids club I used to run

http://www.jagclub.co.uk/

there were always kids with loads of unpainted models. My advice to parents always was, buy a box at a time. Once that box has been painted, they can have another one. Did not seem to happen much.

Cane
11-03-2009, 15:06
there were always kids with loads of unpainted models. My advice to parents always was, buy a box at a time. Once that box has been painted, they can have another one. Did not seem to happen much.

But the trick behind that is you can't play with your friend if all you have is a tactical marine squad and a rhino whereas your friends are fielding 1000+ point armies.

From my perspective as a teen getting into the hobby I felt I needed to get my army on the table ASAP so I could not only start learning the rules but more importantly be able to participate as a player in our battles than be an observer.

Not to say your advice isn't sound and wise (and something I'll do if I get kids) but from a gameplay perspective you need a lot of models and as long as they're based they can be played.

PsyberWolf
11-03-2009, 15:37
I think McMullet is right. GW perhaps is being a little too introspective here in looking at online vs. LGS. The real battle to focus on is other potential sources of entertainment such as video games. Think about it - if your average price for a 1500 - 2000 point army puts you in competition with a gaming system than you are overpriced. That's just buying it - now you need to do all the work to get it ready to play - oh forget it I'll just pop on a video game and play now.

The discussion of discount retailers actually is an old one. Here where I live in Ohio there was alot of concern about a Wal-mart going in - that it would kill the downtown "mainstreet" and honestly it did for a little while. But now it is booming again with all kinds of specialty shops. Online retailers can only compete on price. LGS need to leverage their strengths - convenience, the relationship building, being there to answer any gaming/modelling/painting questions. Sure and throw in a small price break. Online/discount retailers can't compete with that.

Basically what I am saying is both are good and necessary. Killing off one will probably lead to both dying out or hugely decreased sales on the one that survives.

BTW - when I got back into the hobby I only bought on eBay because it was cheap. Now I tend to buy at my LGS because I know them and it is more convenient. I still do occassionally buy for a discount online though but it has become rarer.

yabbadabba
11-03-2009, 19:11
I've never met a gaming partner in a store, and never been to a tournament. Just as Osbad I'd rather not have to pay for services I've not received.

It's a nice dream but any company will charge you for all their costs if you are buying their products - regardless of whether you benefit from those costs or not.

zedeyejoe
11-03-2009, 19:15
Not to say your advice isn't sound and wise (and something I'll do if I get kids) but from a gameplay perspective you need a lot of models and as long as they're based they can be played.

Its called patience and worth learning.

Reinholt
11-03-2009, 19:56
From a purely economic perspective:

If GW makes a profit from selling to online retailers

Then it only make sense to cut them off if the following are true:

1 - The profit is lower than GW's hurdle rate (which is a good reason to kill virtually any project)

2 - GW feels they would have enough sales elsewhere at higher prices that the net profit would be greater (this would depend on the shape of their supply and demand curves)

3 - GW feels that online stores have a net negative impact on future growth by chilling the natural evolution of the hobby in areas that cannot support an independent retailer as a result of competition from online stores

Now, disfavoring online-only retailers in terms of pricing discounts might be something GW should explore; essentially, pass along the fixed costs of the GW retail chain which allow for the hobby to spread to online-only retailers who benefit from the scope of the game.

Notice, however, I said discounts; the question is basically "do you offer a greater discount to a brick and mortar store pounding the ground to build the hobby than a group that is, essentially, online middlemen?"

A valid question, I think. I'm surprised GW hasn't addressed this clearly and decisively already, honestly.

zedeyejoe
11-03-2009, 22:08
Then it only make sense to cut them off if the following are true:

I didn't see this option listed:

They could make more money without them existing.

which for me would be the biggie (and in fact only, reason).

Its not rocket science. Every online sale to an indie is not an online sale to GW. Given that they are both using the same medium, there is no advantage for GW in having that sale go to someone else. The case has been made that if the product was not available at a discount then no sale would be made. You have to decide for yourself if that is true or not. Its the only thing that I agree with Mr Kirby on, if people are not prepared to pay full price for the product, its not worth having them as customers.

Now if there is someone prepared to sell GW product in Mason City, NE (B&M store) and GW are not planning to have a shop there, there is an advantage to GW in giving a discount to the person doing that. They are selling product without GW having to make an investment. We have already identified that it is far better (financially) for indies to sell at full retail price, as every penny of discount is paid out of their pockets.

The only winner with discounts are the customers and if possible they would like the stuff free.

Reinholt
12-03-2009, 04:43
That option is covered under the hurdle rate situation.

A hurdle rate is the minimum return required for a project to make sense, usually defined by two standards:

First, as a minimum, it must be the company's cost of capital (or equity, depending on how you are evaluating it). In other words, if you raise money at 6%, it would be stupid to take projects generating revenue of only 5%.

Second, it is the more effective of two mutually exclusionary options. In this case, if you had the choice of project A (for a 10% return) and project B (for a 15% return) with the same starting cost, but you had to pick one or the other and couldn't do both, B is the appropriate move and should be the minimum standard for any other project that would require axing B to do it.

So, if GW believes they can make a higher return by having online retailers not exist selling GW product... they should do that.

My personal guess is that some online discount retailers are probably not an active impediment, but too many or too deep discounting is bad.

zedeyejoe
12-03-2009, 09:28
So, if GW believes they can make a higher return by having online retailers not exist selling GW product... they should do that.

We agree. However such an option may not be possible in the EU due to our laws.


My personal guess is that some online discount retailers are probably not an active impediment, but too many or too deep discounting is bad.

It allows the customers to think that discounts are available. So they go looking for them.

Now to take Battlefront. I know their policy against discounters so did not expect to find any but I thought I would give it a try. To my surprise I found that I could get their stuff at discount prices. Not much of a basic discount but the volume discount added up to a tasty 15%. So I went back to my club and suggested that if we bought, we pooled the order to get the maximum discount. Now a) we will not buy direct from Battlefront and b) we have been educated to expect a discount and will avoid buying at full price. So once you know you can get it cheaper, I suggest that most people would want to buy stuff at the cheaper price (unless of course spending money makes them feel big and important).

Osbad
12-03-2009, 13:19
It's a nice dream but any company will charge you for all their costs if you are buying their products - regardless of whether you benefit from those costs or not.

Not true. Some might, but many don't.

Look at my local Chinese restaurant. I pay £10 for a course if I eat in, but only £7 if I take it home.

That makes perfect sense to me as a consumer - £3 is a fair charge to use their table, waiter, lighting and cutlery.

GW are effectively saying £10 is the charge whether I want to consume the product on their premises or at home.

Not being able to work out a way to make a differentiation in the charge between "eat in" or "takeaway" is down to the crudity of their business model. The loser in the deal is the consumer who pays for something he doesn't want.

At the minute online discounters at the moment mean because I don't "pay for where I don't play". I'm still buying new stuff and neither GW nor I lose out. Take away my option to buy at a discount and they won't force me to buy "eat in" prices, instead they will lose me as a customer as I buy more fairly priced alternatives. We both lose out.

If GW attempt to screw over those that don't want to pay full price in order to subsidise a service they don't want, in order to monetise a servise no one is prepared to pay for otherwise, then I guess that's their loss.

Bregalad
12-03-2009, 21:38
And lets produce the miniatures by Chinese child slaves. People having problems with that should just pay more for the extra service :rolleyes:

mrtn
12-03-2009, 23:00
And lets produce the miniatures by Chinese child slaves. People having problems with that should just pay more for the extra service :rolleyes:

Don't you feel silly using extreme hyperbole like that? :confused:
Not wanting to subsidize your gaming table doesn't mean that someone supports slavery. :rolleyes:

McMullet
12-03-2009, 23:11
That's not even hyperbole... it's just nonsense.

I take back my earlier comments about this thread being civil...

Wintermute
12-03-2009, 23:22
And lets produce the miniatures by Chinese child slaves. People having problems with that should just pay more for the extra service :rolleyes:

Further comments such as the one quoted, which apart from being off-topic, will result in the thread being moved to P&R.

Wintermute

Templar Ben
13-03-2009, 03:37
i think online discounters are parasites that destroy shops that help people build the hobby.

Well online discounters are the stores that make the product accessible to a wider group of players. You don't need a store to play but you do need the product. Sure people may go to GW and buy at full price but I was introduced to other games because stores like The War Store had them on their website.


They do not hold stock themselves so they do not run any risks with their business. Unlike small shops that have to buy product and invest money. Also the retail price for GW product has inbuild a margin for retailers to do something with the product. Setting up tables and running small events cost money. The higher margin they have compensates for this.

It would be just as easy to give so much product to stores instead of overcharging for every product. Sure some would turn around and sell it to but that is not unlike what many are doing with their online stores. Busy online stores have a lot of overhead with shipping that you are forgetting. There is plenty of risk. Just imagine if the distributor (GW or otherwise) fails to supply them for a couple of weeks.


But please keep buying online to save 2,5 dollars on a box. You will be thanking yourself when you losse your place to game in your town

Save $2.50 a box? How many $10 boxes are available from GW? The small boxes are $25 and those give a savings of $6.25. Since my saving money helps me pay for my house it actually keeps my gaming place.

Master Stark
13-03-2009, 03:59
I do not think it is true. Not even close. I know that I spend more money than I would otherwise had done when the models are cheap.

The problem is that so many people buy online, beacuse it is cheaper, that your FLGS has to close. Which is, of course, extremely BAD for the gaming community.

Now, of course I think there has been three people in this thread alone who insist that their FLGS has never helped them with the hobby.

Thats cool. We can compare anecdotes all day, but in the end it doesn't indicate a damn thing.

But I don't think anyone can deny that having a games store in town benefits the hobby. Maybe you are the elitist gamer who never plays against anyone outside his clique, never visists the store, and will never have to play against a new player. Congratulations, you are insulated from the rest of the gaming comunity, and the loss of a local games store will not affect you.

But for the rest of us, who enjoy participating in the wider community, the loss of a local games store is immediately debilitating to the local community, and over time impacts on the larger gaming community as well. The local store is where gamers meet, where they game, and sometimes where they get their models. It is where they get introduced to other games from other companies, and where they get introduced to the hobby as a whole.

So when people stop supporting the FLGS in favour of buying from online discounters, and the FLGS is forced to close, it is BAD.

So any change to prevent online discounters from taking sales away from local games stores would be well supported by me.

Templar Ben
13-03-2009, 04:13
And that larger number of towns that don't have a local game store? Guess it just sucks to be them.

Master Stark
13-03-2009, 04:33
And that larger number of towns that don't have a local game store? Guess it just sucks to be them.

Well, yeah. It does.

Maybe if online discounters weren't able to so effectively undercut bricks and mortar stores, it would be more viable to open a games store in some of those towns.

JCOLL
13-03-2009, 04:46
I'm the type of person who needs instant gratification sometimes. I buy in bulk online because of the tasty discounts I find, but I also like to go into the store about once a week or so and buy a few impulse models. Overall, I think I spend about the same amount online as I do in the store. I really think GW would take a big hit banning online sellers. It's not like they aren't making a lot of money anyway.

Bregalad
13-03-2009, 10:23
The problem with the "cheaper is better, no matter what" attitude is that it creates a run to the bottom: Lowest wages win, lowest production costs win, hey and making illegal copies of Codices wins as well. Currently, GW personel and indie personel already have a very low income. Demanding to make further cuts there is what makes me angry. Esp. when made by people who reaped the profit from FLEGS when starting the hobby (first encounter, look at products, demo game, painting advice, community) and now don't care if others profit as well.

RobC
13-03-2009, 10:28
All sides need to have their say here, not just consumers. If indie stores are struggling because they can't compete fairly with online sellers, then something is wrong with the system. As Bregalad points out, if the only distinction people make is which offer is cheapest, we'll eventually be left with online retailers only – is that something you want?

McMullet
13-03-2009, 12:50
Bregalad: No one has said "Cheaper is better, no matter what," except for you.

A few people have stated they do not wish to pay for services they do not use; that is not evil, and does not justify the frankly bizarre comparisons you've been making. GW is a company, in the business of making money, not a charity.

The marketing aspect of real life stores is a cost that should be borne equally by all consumers, because it should be paid centrally by GW. It's GW's business to arrange that, however. If Walker's Crisps put an ad on TV, all of the consumers pay an equal share of the cost of the ad, even if they didn't see it. I see no reason GW shouldoperate differently.

It's not a moral decision to fund stores so that they can altruistically introduce new hobbyists to the games. Much as you may like to look at your demo games and painting advice through rose-tinted spectacles, the purpose of such things is to garner your custom by making you buy GW products. If stores do not then take advantage of your desire to buy, that a failure of GW as a whole, since they set the prices for trade.

What is required to rectify the situation is not for people to pontificate about online discounters being evil. GW needs to address this by redistributing funds to those who promote their products.

As for the other purpose of stores, as a venue for gaming, you should only pay for it if you use it. I can accept the need for a beginners' club to be subsidised, as that will encourage them to play and, hence, buy, but vets would play at home if there was no club, or would pay if they had to.

Templar Ben
13-03-2009, 14:12
Well, yeah. It does.

Maybe if online discounters weren't able to so effectively undercut bricks and mortar stores, it would be more viable to open a games store in some of those towns.

That is foolish. If the market somewhere is small then a local store is not viable. You can't support a store when you only have 8 customers but that is a good size gaming group. They can simply get what they need online.

Stores are not bad but if they don't offer something of value then they can't compete. It is simple and it is fair. Online sellers offer product at a discount because there are no other services and the product itself is not worth MSRP. If a store is going to sell at MSRP then they need to convince customers that it is worth it.


All sides need to have their say here, not just consumers. If indie stores are struggling because they can't compete fairly with online sellers, then something is wrong with the system. As Bregalad points out, if the only distinction people make is which offer is cheapest, we'll eventually be left with online retailers only – is that something you want?

There is nothing wrong with the system. There is something wrong with the store as they are unable to convince people to pay MSRP or to receive less of a discount.

I am fine with a product like GW models being sold online only. There are other models that I buy online only at discount. The only time I want to go into a store is to buy food so I can examine freshness or clothing to see if it actually fits me/what the actual color is.

Given the success of online retailers across the spectrum I presume I am not alone.

zedeyejoe
13-03-2009, 15:37
What is required to rectify the situation is not for people to pontificate about online discounters being evil.

Whilst not being evil, I would love to know what online discounters bring to the party apart from cheap prices?

If those cheap prices mean that real world shops cannot stock the product, then a valuable gaming asset is lost.

It seems a bit like shooting all the Bison and then complaining that there are none left. We are supposed to be a bit smarter than that now.

McMullet
13-03-2009, 17:10
Whilst not being evil, I would love to know what online discounters bring to the party apart from cheap prices?

If those cheap prices mean that real world shops cannot stock the product, then a valuable gaming asset is lost.

It seems a bit like shooting all the Bison and then complaining that there are none left. We are supposed to be a bit smarter than that now.

It's no more evil than what GW do - it's about trying to make money. Individual retailers can't be expected to take responsibility for GW's marketing strategy. The responsibility to maintain healthy stocks of bison is GW's.

A lot of online discount retailers operate on a very small scale, and want to help their fellow gamers get a better deal, as wellas making a few quid for themselves. I have previously bought from The Dragon's Tears, for example, which is not a "discount shop" in the normal sense - it's a gaming club that got a trade account so the members of the gaming club could get stuff cheaper. Now they sell to people outside the club as well, such as me, which means they get extra money for terrain and biscuits (I assume that's what they spend it on, anyway) and other gamers get cheap stuff.

RobC
13-03-2009, 18:00
There is nothing wrong with the system. There is something wrong with the store as they are unable to convince people to pay MSRP or to receive less of a discount.The problem we have is that online retailers can and do take advantage of the bricks & mortar stores. They essentially act as a shop front - how often have people gone to a shop, looked at something they wanted, then bought it online instead? People, especially those who think cheap equals best, will buy as cheaply as possible, and to hell with the consequences.

Bookwrak
13-03-2009, 18:27
And what's wrong with that? The marketplace has changed, and it's up to retailers to adapt to these changes or throw in the towel. I don't see why I should be obligated to prop up an business that lacks the acumen to adapt to a changing market. If that were the case, I'd still be buying flour and nails from the little dry-goods shop on the corner.

McMullet
13-03-2009, 18:35
The problem we have is that online retailers can and do take advantage ...

I think "reap the benefits" is more accurate than "take advantage". It's not a conscious decision to screw the brick and mortar stores over. It's just capitalism in action.

The problem is that, for brick and mortar stores, there is no separation between rewards for sales and rewards for promoting GW products. Formerly, the two were tied together; if they encouraged people to buy GW stuff, they would then buy it in store.

The web has moved the goalposts in this regard, and the whole system needs to change; you can't just demand that people stop shopping around for cheap deals. The system outlined at the start of this thread has the potential to achieve that (though I'm still not convinced it would work).

zedeyejoe
13-03-2009, 18:47
You have it, the 'flour and nail dry goods stores' have been wiped out. There is no way for a B&M store to compete with an internet only discounter. Customers will (quite naturally) tend to buy stuff at the cheaper price.

So the proper thing is to adapt to the new environment and get out of having a physical store.

The only thing I thought of was that stores could have memberships. For a fee maybe you get access to gaming facilities and a discount on product bought (up to a fixed amount pa). Non-members have restricted access to tables and pay full RRP. This came up with a store holder when we were discussing how a customer in a shop could get the same sort of discount they get on the net (a bit of equality).

RobC
13-03-2009, 19:03
So the proper thing is to adapt to the new environment and get out of having a physical store.So what happens then? Nobody works in retail? Shopping centres vanish? Everyone shops online?

I don't think these things will happen soon, but it's worth asking whether this is something we actually want to happen.

Cost shouldn't be the sole factor. If it was, "premium" products wouldn't sell, nor would people choose to shop at the nice place down the road rather than the soulless but cheap supermarket. Everyone is right when they say that B&M stores can't compete against online stores - but they should and can compete on offering a service, with real human interaction. And, as much as I love the Internet, I'd much sooner give it up than the opportunity to meet real people, look at real things before I buy them, and experience something that costs me a bit more money if it meant it was an enjoyable experience.

zedeyejoe
13-03-2009, 19:16
So what happens then? Nobody works in retail? Shopping centres vanish? Everyone shops online?

Certainly indies get out of retail, perhaps GW might cut back as well.

As for the real world, some things sell well online, others not. I buy far more books through Amazon than I do in a book shop.

yabbadabba
13-03-2009, 20:19
The problem is that, for brick and mortar stores, there is no separation between rewards for sales and rewards for promoting GW products. Formerly, the two were tied together; if they encouraged people to buy GW stuff, they would then buy it in store.

GW were looking into a graduated discount programme where there were further discounts for additional accounts, frequent ordering and offering services like painting tables, gaming instruction etc.

I wonder what happened to that. Probably the fething EU again.

Bookwrak
13-03-2009, 20:24
You have it, the 'flour and nail dry goods stores' have been wiped out. There is no way for a B&M store to compete with an internet only discounter. Customers will (quite naturally) tend to buy stuff at the cheaper price.

So the proper thing is to adapt to the new environment and get out of having a physical store.

Actually, the proper thing to do is adapt to the new environment and decide what you can offer that will draw in customers. No matter how hard it tries, an online store is not going to be able to sell you an attractive gaming environment, while a FLGS I used to go to had a discount card, a seating area with television in the back for movies and video games and snacks for sale. You didn't get as good a discount as you did from online stores, but you didn't have to wait to get your models. It was quite an amenable location to game in, and as most gamers do seem to love their flavored beverages and munchies, on regular days, and especially tournaments, they did brisk sales of food and drink. By making itself a conducive location for TT, CCG, and PnP games, they were able to keep the customers spending money.


As for the real world, some things sell well online, others not. I buy far more books through Amazon than I do in a book shop.

Which is why one of the changes many book store chains have undertaken is to provide comfy seating and coffee lounges. You can get them cheaper from Amazon, but you don't have the luxury of skimming, perusing, and glancing through over a hot cup of somethingorother at home.

zedeyejoe
13-03-2009, 20:55
Which is why one of the changes many book store chains have undertaken is to provide comfy seating and coffee lounges.

I noticed that in New York. Luxury we Brits can only dream of.

Fenlear
13-03-2009, 21:14
I’m confused; posters keep saying that people go into the shop to check things out then go order online. From what I’ve seen most shops display cases are rather small and going into the shop to check things out means looking at the box covers, not so much looking at the minis. GW’s wed site offers multi-angle zoomed in photos of each mini/set. This makes checking out the minis before purchase a lot easier then looking at a box. Most of my purchases are from online discounters but even when I plan to buy in shop I’m usually checking things over online first.

I couldn’t say I ever enjoyed playing in a GW shop anyways. Too many teenage dorks and the sales team is always pointing out that for an extra 100$ my strategy can really improve! Seeing the FLGSs hurt on the other hand isn’t so great, but from what I’ve seen of Indies they either dominate the area as the center of all things gaming or can’t make it in the first place.

IJW
13-03-2009, 21:14
You don't need to dream about it in the UK, Costa started opening coffee shops in the larger Waterstones branches several years ago.

RobC
13-03-2009, 21:18
I noticed that in New York. Luxury we Brits can only dream of.Isn't there a Borders in Preston? They come with coffee outlets and (not so) comfy chairs as standard. Waterstone's in Manchester has always had comfy chairs, and has had a coffee shop for a good 6-7 years.

Book shops are still getting battered, though, but that's partly the fault of the publishers - who offer bigger discounts to the supermarkets and Amazon. No, that makes no sense to me either.

Patriarch
13-03-2009, 23:54
Isn't there a Borders in Preston? They come with coffee outlets and (not so) comfy chairs as standard.

There sure is. Nice choccie cakes too. 2 stores along is Hobbycraft where you can buy GW/FoW at RRP.

Anyway, the LGS I learned to play Space Hulk at tanked shortly after GW opened a store in the area. So I don't really buy the "we must pay to support the growth of the hobby" stuff. I agree with the sentiment that Osbad (I think) is making - bringing in new blood must pay for itself, not as a result of enforced charity on my behalf.

Crazy Harborc
14-03-2009, 00:53
IMHO, the corporate level goals of GW have included moves towards cutting out all selling on the net of GW products except that done by GW itself.

It was acomplished about 4-5 years ago in the USA. I've no doubts at all that GW's suits are trying to get the same thing done across the Pond, at home and on the continent as was done in the USA.

Master Stark
14-03-2009, 03:05
That is foolish. If the market somewhere is small then a local store is not viable.

Surely that depends on how small it is though?


Stores are not bad but if they don't offer something of value then they can't compete. It is simple and it is fair.

That would imply that the average person is capable of making well thought out and adjusted decisions that plan for the long term and consider the needs of people other than themselves.

As it is, the services that local stores offer aren't always immediate, while saving $15 on plastic-crack is. And I feel comfortable saying people almost always favour instant gratification over long term benefits, even when that instant gratification results in an over-all downturn.


A few people have stated they do not wish to pay for services they do not use.

While that is fair enough, I think it is a bit narrow minded of some people. A games store is a great place for new people to be introduced to the hobby, and to form links with the local gaming group or groups.

If that goes away, the entire gaming community will suffer.

You might be one of the ornery old coots with your clique of four friends who only ever play at each others houses, and so that change might not affect you much. But everyone else will start losing numbers in their groups, and many young kids (who most despise, but who grow up into the next generation of gamers) simply won't start and those numbers won't be replaced.


It's not a moral decision to fund stores so that they can altruistically introduce new hobbyists to the games. Much as you may like to look at your demo games and painting advice through rose-tinted spectacles, the purpose of such things is to garner your custom by making you buy GW products. If stores do not then take advantage of your desire to buy, that a failure of GW as a whole, since they set the prices for trade.

I can't argue with that. But I would add that the victim in that instance is not GW, but the LGS.


GW needs to address this by redistributing funds to those who promote their products.

I would argue that it should be addressed by preventing online discounters from selling at a significant price reduction. People are naturally short-sighted creatures, and will only make the 'best' (and I use the term with hesitation) choice when it affects them personally and immediately. And they will only choose to buy at their LGS when the prices are near-as-dammit to the online stores. And a local games store can't afford the same discount on thier goods.

I can't say exactly why I don't like the idea of GW subsidising the LGS to make it more affordable for them to put a discount on their goods, but I don't. Further musing required, methinks!

Templar Ben
14-03-2009, 04:10
Surely that depends on how small it is though?

It is possible to have a small group that is too small to support a store. We can run some numbers if you want but any small group can be easily served by an online store.


That would imply that the average person is capable of making well thought out and adjusted decisions that plan for the long term and consider the needs of people other than themselves.

So a store makes sense if you want to be altruistic and pay for someone else to have a place to go? See I don't pay as I plan for the long term where stores give you a reason to patronize them.


As it is, the services that local stores offer aren't always immediate, while saving $15 on plastic-crack is. And I feel comfortable saying people almost always favour instant gratification over long term benefits, even when that instant gratification results in an over-all downturn.

Actually if that local store has a value then people will see it. Too often people assert a value to the existence of a store that just is not there.


While that is fair enough, I think it is a bit narrow minded of some people. A games store is a great place for new people to be introduced to the hobby, and to form links with the local gaming group or groups.

If that goes away, the entire gaming community will suffer.

A better place is at a person's home or in a club. Dragging someone into a store to explain a hobby is just you being an unpaid sales person. If you want the hobby to grow then go and make a friend and introduce them to it. It is not my responsibility to subsidize a store I am not using.


You might be one of the ornery old coots with your clique of four friends who only ever play at each others houses, and so that change might not affect you much. But everyone else will start losing numbers in their groups, and many young kids (who most despise, but who grow up into the next generation of gamers) simply won't start and those numbers won't be replaced.

I won't lose numbers because I make friends. I have taught gaming to kids as young as 8 and as old as 50. The sky won't fall.


I would argue that it should be addressed by preventing online discounters from selling at a significant price reduction. People are naturally short-sighted creatures, and will only make the 'best' (and I use the term with hesitation) choice when it affects them personally and immediately. And they will only choose to buy at their LGS when the prices are near-as-dammit to the online stores. And a local games store can't afford the same discount on thier goods.

People can buy a sandwich for $5 or they can buy that same sandwich down the street for $10. Some will buy the $10 one. People will pay what they think it is worth. Online stores are selling the item at commodity price. If a brick and mortar is going to sell it for more then it needs to be for some good reason. They needs to give me some service that makes me wish to pay more. Otherwise, styrene is styrene.


I can't say exactly why I don't like the idea of GW subsidising the LGS to make it more affordable for them to put a discount on their goods, but I don't. Further musing required, methinks!

I am against subsidies on principle. That is true for banks just as much as gaming stores.

rivers3162
14-03-2009, 05:54
I think this issue as a whole depends on where individual posters are situated and on the prevalence of FLGSs in that region.

For instance, in the UK there are very few B&M indie shops that I know of that stock GW as their main range. My local shop in Glasgow has a relatively small stock of GW stuff which often has 10% off but it isn't the main miniatures range (FoW, Privateer, AT43, Reaper, Historicals and CCGs mainly). The same is true for the (admittedly few) independant shops I've been to in the UK - either GW isn't their main miniatures range or GW miniatures are stocked at art & craft type shops which make the majority of their profits from non-GW stuff. As someone said in another thread, the vast majority of wargames shops in the UK are GW stores.

That means that online discounters generally aren't hurting GW as still make their 60% trade from supplying online retailers. Meanwhile the "attracting newcomers to the hobby" part is done by GW stores themselves, which charge full MSRP, thus covering the costs associated with providing gaming space and staff to help with advice etc.

Places like the USA have larger numbers of independant shops (and presumably this is the case in other regions) and so online discounters will have a more negative impact.

However, the important difference between the UK & Europe and the rest of the world is that generally, only the EU is covered by the quite strict EU laws which prevent anti-competition measures designed at creating monopolies. This means that in those regions where online discounters can harm FLGSs, GW can take action to cut down on online discounters. In the UK, they generally can't once online retailers have their forr in the door but the problem is generally smaller (however I can't comment on the situation across Europe).

All that aside, I don't think online discounters are as bad for the hobby as they're made out to be and to some extent, the negative effects are overstated. GW stores offer instant satisfaction and many models are now mail order only. This means that even if you but 80% of your army at 75% of MSRP online, 25% of it is still going to cost the standard retail price. Then there are certain models that you might want to look at and probably buy in store (for instance I went and checked out the new Ork bosses in store and ended up buying them).

In addition to that, online discounts are generally only worthwhile if you're placing a big order as P&P costs tend to eat up most savings on smaller orders. Plus, the discount online might encourage people to buy more online than they would in stores - the effect of feeling that you're getting a good deal might make you buy an extra couple of bits and pieces that you'd been hankering for for a while but couldn't really justify buying.

Jack Spratt
14-03-2009, 10:11
Hey everybody

I agree with a lot of what has been said here. If it is true its just crazy :wtf:. I think it would be illigal as well - in Europe anyway. I love online stores and buy most of my stuff online.

As to the rumour itself I just repeated what I was told. I do not know the guy very well. As he was about to close his shop he might have been angry at online stores and blamed them or whatever. But why make something like this up? Lets hope someone just told him for laughs and he believed it.

Also, it would be a strange move for GW as they have for the first time ever started to make the hoppy cheaper. Good cheap plastic models that convert into loads of points (WoC Knights, DE Cold Ones, ...) looks like its here to stay :D.

I will try to make a new thread with a poll to see if most people buy online or in stores.

Jack Spratt :)

Bregalad
14-03-2009, 12:37
Some points:

1.) In the UK, GW has the biggest number of B&M stores, being almost omnipresent. In the UK, GW is the most established and best known to everyone. Mere coincidence?? :rolleyes:

2.) GW doesn't believe in marketing. They only tell people about their products in their own stores, their own little magazine and that's it. No store, no advertisment. If you think, a toy branch can prosper on its current scale just relying on people accidentally googling the GW online shop, think again. Warhammer would shrink to the scale of historical tabletops, a scene economically non-existent outside UK and USA and small even there.

3.) Of course, there are a lot of people going to the B&M store to flip though the new Codex/armybook/rulebook, have a look at the new Stegadon and then order online. Guess that a large percentage of "customers" and gamers in a store prefer buying online and browsing/gaming instore.

4.) Some people buy online because there is no shop in the neighbourhood (e.g. in USA). Some people complain that there is no shop and/or that their store closed for "unknown" reasons. Most people buy online because it is cheaper. They don't list other reasons, so it is fair to add "because it is cheaper no matter what".

5.) Economy may say, that with current pound exchange rates, only UK online stores should sell GW products and all non-UK stores should just die. Economy may say that paying wages is welfare and luxury (except for manager salaries of course;)), but that obviously would destroy this hobby.

zedeyejoe
14-03-2009, 13:10
That means that online discounters generally aren't hurting GW as still make their 60% trade from supplying online retailers.

I would like to have the other 40% as well but I realise that we think differently.


5.) Economy may say, that with current pound exchange rates

You got to ask yourself what the reasons are for the current exchange rates and how long that is likely to last. I see the current exchange rates mostly due the very poor interest rates in the UK at present. Better to have your money somewhere where it makes money. I also see that as a short term thing. The government presently wants to encourage spending, that is not going to last (in fact it cannot).

Bluto
14-03-2009, 15:08
Over the years, I've probably bought GW products in every available way - direct from GW online, GW stores, FLGS, Ebay, and online discounters.
I've worked at my FLGS. I know the pressures they have - it's not an easy business.

However, my philosophy today is that I need to apply the same principles to my own money as every company does to theirs. Every company, large or small, wants as much of my money as I will give them. Nothing is done for free without the expectation of reward. Free painting clinic? Sure. With the expectation that some of those taught will immediatly buy some paints to take home. That's not something to be scorned - it's just business.

But in the same way, me keeping as much of my money in my pocket as possible is just business.

Think of it this way: I want the newest box of whatever cool thing is out this month. In my FLGS its going for full retail of $50. Online, it's mine for $40, shipped free!

So, the question is, is $10.00 worth my week of waiting? For me, I think so - I have so much to paint that it's not like it was going to happen this week anyway. If I still decide to purchase from my FLGS, then functionally I'm donating $10.00 to them. I like my FLGS. But they are not a charity. I wouldn't stroll right in and just hand them a $10 bill. That is what some people seem to be asking me to do.

So, what will I do for them? Well, when I run out of a paint - I'll happily pay retail and go pick it up that day. I play in their tournament, I'll pay their entrance fee, buy my drinks and snacks from them, and if I get lucky enough and win a prize (usually a gift cert that goes right back into the store) I will spend it there! I think all of that is good value for my dollar.

For those of you who feel that dedicated to your FLGS, here is my suggestion. Buy your new box set online for $40. Split the difference, keep $5 for you, and go donate that $5 to your FLGS. They get pure profit on that, no overhead, no staff time for stocking shelves - it's better profit than if you had bought the product from them.

Or better still - go put that $5 into your community. Find a real charity, and help them out. And hey, you are still $5 richer than before, and can buy the next box set even sooner.

RobC
14-03-2009, 16:00
For those of you who feel that dedicated to your FLGS, here is my suggestion. Buy your new box set online for $40. Split the difference, keep $5 for you, and go donate that $5 to your FLGS. They get pure profit on that, no overhead, no staff time for stocking shelves - it's better profit than if you had bought the product from them.So you're suggesting it's better to treat your FLGS as a charity case than to simply buy directly from them?

You're right about spending money locally though - every pound/dollar/euro you spend in a local shop goes much further locally than if you're buying online or from a chain. But that's a different issue.

As for "it's just business" – every financial decision we make has a knock-on effect. Nothing is "just business". That kind of statement falls into the same category as blaming eveything on "market forces" – ultimately, somewhere, people have made decisions, and blaming the invisible hand of capitalism for whatever outcome occurs. Where you spend your money is just as important as how you spend it.

But this is massively off-topic now - my apologies.

Cane
14-03-2009, 16:18
This post is mainly directed to people with knowledge and experience in store business.

Do all these B&M stores in question really rely so much on GW product? I'd imagine a gaming speciality store would carry other lines than just GW. If not then they are shooting themselves in the foot since online retailers offer better prices and in my case service than a FLGS.

For example a LGS around here sells cards, GW products, comics, toys, and is an internet gaming cafe to boot. Why couldn't a LGS sell GW products at a discount via online/mail order and still sell their in-store products at retail? Something like thewarstore (not sure if they sell at retail in the store though)?

McMullet
14-03-2009, 16:28
While that is fair enough, I think it is a bit narrow minded of some people. A games store is a great place for new people to be introduced to the hobby, and to form links with the local gaming group or groups.

If that goes away, the entire gaming community will suffer.

Yes indeed, but the benefits for the business are far more tangible. Yes, I get a potential for more people to play with, but the store and GW actually make more money. They stand to gain more than I do.


You might be one of the ornery old coots with your clique of four friends who only ever play at each others houses, and so that change might not affect you much. But everyone else will start losing numbers in their groups, and many young kids (who most despise, but who grow up into the next generation of gamers) simply won't start and those numbers won't be replaced.

Ornery old coot eh? I would say it's more that I don't have a great deal of time for gaming these days, or for seeing my gaming friends. I prefer to combine the two than play someone I don't know.


I can't argue with that. But I would add that the victim in that instance is not GW, but the LGS.

It's both. The indie store and GW lose sales, but GW has lost a marketing tool. It's one thing to lose the sales from the store; they can be made up by online sales. However, the point is that GW lose a store that used to promote its products, replacing it with an online store that simply sells them.


I would argue that it should be addressed by preventing online discounters from selling at a significant price reduction. People are naturally short-sighted creatures, and will only make the 'best' (and I use the term with hesitation) choice when it affects them personally and immediately. And they will only choose to buy at their LGS when the prices are near-as-dammit to the online stores. And a local games store can't afford the same discount on thier goods.

I can't say exactly why I don't like the idea of GW subsidising the LGS to make it more affordable for them to put a discount on their goods, but I don't. Further musing required, methinks!

Preventing online retailers selling at a discount is both unworkable (in my opinion) and possibly illegal in Europe. Reconising the role that B&M stores play in promoting GW products and paying them for it is not subsidy, it's just properly rewarding the job they do.



2.) GW doesn't believe in marketing. They only tell people about their products in their own stores, their own little magazine and that's it. No store, no advertisment. If you think, a toy branch can prosper on its current scale just relying on people accidentally googling the GW online shop, think again. Warhammer would shrink to the scale of historical tabletops, a scene economically non-existent outside UK and USA and small even there.

Call it what you like, using shops to promote the product is a form of marketing. GW aren't promoting the product because they love games and they love you; they are doing it to make money. They have chosen stores as their marketing system, and the current climate has made it less effective. Their reaction (and yours) appears to be proclaiming that things were great before, and insisting that all the changes be reversed and everything go back to how it was.

A better alternative is to look at the problem and find the best solution, rather than trying to simply ignore the fact that things have changed.


4.) Some people buy online because there is no shop in the neighbourhood (e.g. in USA). Some people complain that there is no shop and/or that their store closed for "unknown" reasons. Most people buy online because it is cheaper. They don't list other reasons, so it is fair to add "because it is cheaper no matter what".

No it is not. Just because people choose their sources based on economy, you are not entitled to compare them to people who advocate sweatshop labour. If the shop says, "25% discount!" then I'll buy from them. If it says, "25% discount and we drown a cute little puppy with every order," I won't...

zedeyejoe
14-03-2009, 16:50
Preventing online retailers selling at a discount is both unworkable (in my opinion) and possibly illegal in Europe.

I totally agree. However stopping businesses that only have an online presence might be possible.

Because of their cost structure, online only discounters have distinct cost advantages that allow them to operate on lower margins. So if they were gone I predict that although there would be some discounting but not so extreme as it is now.

The advantage for the traders is that they would get more money for the same items and that B&M stores would have the chance to trade successfully.

Customers would be paying more, so not good for them (in terms of prices). However it would mean that there would be a hobby structure outside of cyberspace. You should have tried finding wargames shops back in the 1970's, it would be awful to return to those days.

Hellfury
14-03-2009, 17:12
While this seems like a fair statement that GW could do this in the states (GW controlling how they do business with their buyers) it seems unlikely given several factors.

If GW makes it more difficult for retailers in the states, retailers may very well just simply buy from online retailers in europe because they would actually save money as opposed to buying from distributors or GW themselves in the states.

Why buy from a distributor with only a savings of 20% when you could buy from europe currently where the saving reaches nearly 45-50%?

It would make no sense for GW to do this. It would only promote online retailers, not kill them off.

Master Stark
14-03-2009, 17:45
If I still decide to purchase from my FLGS, then functionally I'm donating $10.00 to them.

I suppose this is a fairly accurate reduction of the issue.

And I'm pretty cool with it. Not just with doing it myself, but with making other people do it as well.

RobC
14-03-2009, 17:47
Preventing online retailers selling at a discount is both unworkable (in my opinion) and possibly illegal in Europe. Reconising the role that B&M stores play in promoting GW products and paying them for it is not subsidy, it's just properly rewarding the job they do.I don't think it would be illegal. Manufacturers can't tell a seller what to charge, but they can offer variable discounts to sellers. This happens all the time in publishing – one of the reasons why Amazon can undercut B&M stores so heavily.

Osbad
14-03-2009, 22:38
So what happens then? Nobody works in retail? Shopping centres vanish? Everyone shops online

That would work for me! Ironically (given the topic of discussion) the only shop I ever visit is GW, and then its only to browse and shoot the breeze!

I hate shopping with a passion, and I just don't get the whole concept of shopping as a pastime. If everything moved online tomorrow it would have zero impact on my lifestyle. I can get food, clothes, books, household goods, presents, cars, in short anything I need (bar, I think, petrol) online, so why bother stirring of my lardy-butt to go out in the cold, drive/get the buss, pay for parking/petrol/busfare and get hassled by staff and the great unwashed public? To me it makes zero sense.

Hanging with friends, going to the pub, out for a meal, I can all understand. Wandering round some boring shop with musak and screaming kids..... er no, thankyou, but no.

And as for malls.... *shudders*... Spawn of the devil!

Seriously, my wife does any shopping in our family as she enjoys it. Anything I need to get myself I get online. I even bought our last car off ebay!

As I see it, there is no moral imperative involved in paying a retailer to sell me something someone else made, packaged and despatched. They're middlemen, providing a service of convenience. Nothing wrong with that, but nothing essential either.

Now, relating specifically to wargaming, they can (not always, but sometimes) offer space to play, tables to play on and an opportunity to meet opponents who may become friends. What out of all of this can't be offered, and for less money and hassle, by a decent club?

Clubs offer all the benefits of "growing the hobby", without any of the nasty commercial overtones, as no-one is trying to make a living out of them.

At a club you can play any game you can convince anyone to play with you - you aren't stuck with one "proprietary" system. At a club you don't have staff setting rules based on "company policy", you have rules set by the concensus of the members.

Sure they are more effort as they depend on volunteers not paid staff. But that doesn't have to be very onerous - booking premises, organising terrain, etc., doesn't have to be *that* much hassle.

To be honest, there is a good case for saying if stores weren't there then clubs would thrive. Certainly in the UK, where (non-GW) stores with space to play are pretty thin on the ground, clubs are all over the place. I live in the ****-end of no where, and there are half a dozen within an easy drive of me.

In the US, where the "indie store" is more the norm, there seem (according to what I've heard on D6G and such) to be less clubs knocking around.

Maybe we Brits are less commercial-minded or something? Or maybe its a function of GW's stranglehold of wargame retailing over here?

Certainly it's not clear cut, and doom-mongering predictions that the death of B&M stores spells ill for the long-term future of "the hobby" I think is rather over-egging the pudding. Sure it may impact on the "GW Hobby", but that's not my problem, that's GW's!

And as for online discounters being "bad for the hobby"! Baloney! What is bad for the hobby is higher-than-necessary prices! Personally I think the whole "online discounters are bad for the hobby" is just GW's propaganda. Sure, it doesn't necessarily fit their business model, but I think their business model is a heap of poo anyhow!

Hicks
14-03-2009, 22:55
Now, relating specifically to wargaming, they can (not always, but sometimes) offer space to play, tables to play on and an opportunity to meet opponents who may become friends. What out of all of this can't be offered, and for less money and hassle, by a decent club?

In the defence of gamestores and it might be very different around where you are, but around here if you buy a beer in a pub or bar it's going to cost you a lot more than if you had bought it in a grocery store and I'm not including tips either. A pub is very similar to a gamestore if you see it as a store that sells you a product and allows you to use it and meet people in the shop.

Crazy Harborc
15-03-2009, 02:11
I do want to do business with a B & M store. 40 plus years ago there were several stores (hobby shops) in my area that stocked 25mm and 54mm minies/toy soldiers/military miniatures and needed accessories. Owners got older, retired, sold the shops, whatever.

New owners took over and a couple of shops opened up to replace closed ones. People were moving out of the city, into suburbs, shops opened in those areas too.

Now, no hobby shops sell those minies. It's comic shops that took over the selling of minies. They dropped the other/historical minies and loaded up on GW's goodies. There were several fair sized GW gaming communities playing in their local area indie stores.

Along game a GW official store. 5-6 years later there are only 4 stores left that stock GW products. GW has left town...no plans to open another store (not in an enclosed mall) were mentioned.

Now......one B & M store with 6 branches has GW goodies at their main store only. They have been around for many years (15 to 20??). The owner started with one store....Our/we customers provided the money that did it. Never a discount....not for longtime customers, not for frequent customers, not for senior citizens. Now a store has opened up that stocks GW goodies plus other minies and rules and offers a discount. Guess who will get MY money.

GW can keep the "direct only" products. As long as GW is charging full price PLUS shipping and handling on top of full list price...with no discounts. I will not buy from GW direct.

IMHO, we the buying public do not "owe" indies stores (of any kind), chain stores or whoever our money/business for allowing people to buy from them. Without customers how long will a store (of any kind ) last?;)

zedeyejoe
15-03-2009, 08:52
Yes indeed, but the benefits for the business are far more tangible. Yes, I get a potential for more people to play with, but the store and GW actually make more money. They stand to gain more than I do.

No its a win, win situation. Everyone gets a benefit. Its like love, great for everyone.

BigRob
15-03-2009, 09:41
GW can keep the "direct only" products. As long as GW is charging full price PLUS shipping and handling on top of full list price...with no discounts. I will not buy from GW direct.

IMHO, we the buying public do not "owe" indies stores (of any kind), chain stores or whoever our money/business for allowing people to buy from them. Without customers how long will a store (of any kind ) last?;)

Having finally got my wife interested in trying warhammer, I'm getting back into GW after a long absence. I'm looking for the best deal when I buy my models. I brought AoBR, the Hobby starter set and the paint set from a webstore and saved around £20 on what I would have paid if I had gone round the corner to my local GW.

IMO waiting the 3 days for the stuff to arrive was well worth the £20. We don't have a huge amount of disposable income since we have kids. £20 is alot of money to anyone and if we continue to buy from the online seller we will be making these kind of savings everytime.

A group of our friends with kids have started getting back into warhammer as well and we are going to put together a large order to save even more with postage etc. The only one of us who can't use the online store is my friends wife who collects battlesisters. She was told by the guy in the store that the whole range was going direct only so she can only buy her army from GW Direct. Given the high cost of sisters allready and the extra cost of GW shipping she will be getting alot less for her money.

If GW want to cripple online only stores and take control of the web they can do it by just switching the bulk of all ranges to direct only and only make the core boxes available to trade customers. That way they force people to use the GW website.

thinkerman
15-03-2009, 11:15
I don’t know if this sounds 100% true but it wouldn’t surprise me having worked for the company and knowing that GW consider themselves all powerful - there’s also a mood of arrogance both in GW stores and certain staff and all over higher head office.

I wouldn’t be surprised that more price rises are to follow in the next few years weather for ourselves as collectors, gamers, hobbyists etc - the economy is screwed over, costs are for ever going up, people have less income and are less likely to spend on the fun stuff and more in the essentials.

From my experience too GW doesn’t really give a crap about Indies - its sell sell sell all the way now, not the caring stuff that the company used to be.

Done get me wrong were seeing nice new shiny stuff coming out but its getting to the point where your expected to buy something every month - weather is the stompa and shadowsword this month and other bits next month.

I think and feel that GW is expecting too much from its customers/gamers/hobbyists and turn Indies in the economic climate were all in. Again if this rumour is true then it shows massive lack or care and control from GW and as many have suggested put GW up the river that leads to one end.

I for one don’t believe that some of the stuff is value for money nor do I see the stores as such. In my local store there are no facilities provided, no glue, bring your own paints, your asked to leave if your not buying and just popping in to say hi etc, and the manager treats you and everyone else as a child.

With all of the above and more why should I go to a GW store and buy my goods - id much rather go to an indie, support that store be it web or high street, get what I need but also get an unbiased view or what else is out there and there is some FANTASTIC stuff being produced by other companies and a lot cheaper too.

ehlijen
15-03-2009, 11:33
When buying from a store, you are not just 'charity money' for the store. You are the demand (or part of it) that keeps the store running. Stores only exist because of demand. If no-one buys there, ie there is no demand, they'll go away. And then there are no stores to draw in new people to the (or any) hobby.

If you need to learn about the existence of a game online and are only able to get those minis online, what do you think your chances are of finding a gaming group in your area?

The games would die because the 'looks cool, but who'd I play with?' attitude would spread. That would lead to sales declining in general and that would lead to even the online retailers going away.

Bleak, but a distinct possibility.

IJW
15-03-2009, 11:34
From my experience too GW doesn’t really give a crap about Indies - its sell sell sell all the way now, not the caring stuff that the company used to be.
When was that? GW have been very aggressive in the marketplace since they started the retail chain in the early Eighties.

P.S. Don't forget that 'cheap' luxuries (not things like luxury cars, obviously) generally do better in a recession, not worse.

The Ape
15-03-2009, 15:23
I dont think GW could ever be called caring but certainly during the LOTR-bubble era there wasn't the same push on sales that there is now.

I remember GW helping out local stores by organising tourneys etc.

End of the day I think the more places to buy from the better. Online stores are vital as sometimes it simply isnt affordable for a B&M store to open- where I live commercial rent etc make the cost of opening a store prohibitive unless you have serious start up capital - I know because I've looked into it

blongbling
15-03-2009, 20:46
From my experience too GW doesn’t really give a crap about Indies - its sell sell sell all the way now, not the caring stuff that the company used to be.



and what experience is that exactly? having first hand knowledge of GW's trade business i havent seen any of this sell, sell, sell attitude for over 10 years. in fact these days most of their trade departments will spend as much time tunring away sales from products that the store wants but wont sell then they do trying to "sell" to their customers.

If you can provide some facts then fine, otherwise your second hand specualtion does those GW guys involved a diservice and shows that you know nothing. Perhaps Rich from Wayland would talk about the relationship he has with GW?

rich1231
15-03-2009, 21:16
I can only praise GW trade. Customer service is great as with the rest of GW.
They seem to get alot of stick on here and its usually by people that I would guess dont quite understand how business works.

I'm chatting with them most days even when not placing orders. Good relationships are absolutely key for any business to survive in the current climate.

If GW are anti indie then I have yet to see any tiny glimpse of evidence.

Bregalad
16-03-2009, 03:01
If GW are anti indie then I have yet to see any tiny glimpse of evidence.
How about profit margins getting smaller and smaller?
How about let them sell White Dwarf full of mail order ads?
How about selling more and more mail order only items, so that people have to buy from GW online?
How about almost no support?
How about no marketing outside GW stores and GW magazines?
How about price policy, putting it out of reach for the intended customer target: teens?
How about selling them cheaper in UK online than in USA/Canada/Europe retail?
How about ...

rich1231
16-03-2009, 03:27
How about profit margins getting smaller and smaller?
How about let them sell White Dwarf full of mail order ads?
How about selling more and more mail order only items, so that people have to buy from GW online?
How about almost no support?
How about no marketing outside GW stores and GW magazines?
How about price policy, putting it out of reach for the intended customer target: teens?
How about selling them cheaper in UK online than in USA/Canada/Europe retail?
How about ...

How about a reality check.

Margins getting smaller? They to me look pretty standard for most retail markets. And I know not all sectors are the same. But GW items generally are easy to buy, easy to sell and the market is pretty robust.

WD is their own magazine, what does it matter if its full of their own ads for Mail order. White Dwarf is not read by all Workshop Gamers, its reach is small, no matter how much people want to think. As are individual Forums.

Mail order only items can be a pain, but they tend to be slow moving items. And I think its actually a pretty good thing for stockists, as it can mean that most of us dont get lumbered with slow selling items and can concentrate selling the popular stuff. This means our money is put to better use on fast moving, profit generating stock.

Almost no support? What support would you need to buy and sell product? All I need is the stock reasonably quickly and some warning of its release.

No Marketing outside stores and GW mags? Simple marketing will not work for the average target hobbyist. Gaming isnt a pickup and play market. I would hazard a guess that GW are doing ok considering they dont advertise heavily. It is a niche product, a large niche product yes but its not mainstream. Where would you advertise if you were head of GW marketing?

The price policy is fine. GW have costs and overheads to cover. They need to invest in future products and they certainly need to turn a profit. There is no point in being critical of their pricing policy unless you are able to understand the reasons for the current pricing. Else its just whining.

Currency Flucatuations are always going to bite. Its a result of a Global market. And costs and oppurtunities for profit vary in each country. GW can choose to take advantage of that as they see fit.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 03:31
I suppose this is a fairly accurate reduction of the issue.

And I'm pretty cool with it. Not just with doing it myself, but with making other people do it as well.

I am very much against making people pay for no other reason than because I like a policy. I am sure that is why I have my political views.


No its a win, win situation. Everyone gets a benefit. Its like love, great for everyone.

A benefit that is not realized is not a benefit.

ehlijen
16-03-2009, 03:44
Who says you don't realise the benefit?

Just because you don't play in the store does not mean that the fact that others do is what keeps the hobby as widely spread as it is. If GW were to close all its shops and move to an online only system, they'd loose large portions of new customers. Those losses would mean less new products for those who do still play, including you. It would also mean a general reduciton in interest in the hobby: less tournaments, less gaming clubs, less supply/demand in second hand places and eventually, less online stores actually offering discounts (they'd move on to more popular products).

Just because the benefit is not direct and obvious does not mean it's not there.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 04:10
Who says you don't realise the benefit?

Just because you don't play in the store does not mean that the fact that others do is what keeps the hobby as widely spread as it is. If GW were to close all its shops and move to an online only system, they'd loose large portions of new customers. Those losses would mean less new products for those who do still play, including you. It would also mean a general reduciton in interest in the hobby: less tournaments, less gaming clubs, less supply/demand in second hand places and eventually, less online stores actually offering discounts (they'd move on to more popular products).

Just because the benefit is not direct and obvious does not mean it's not there.

You are making a lot of assumptions there. First that GW having that millstone around their figurative neck which is the retail arm results in higher sales than a strong network of clubs and independents. Second that the loss of customers would result in fewer products. Third, that the products that are not introduced would have some benefit for me. Fourth, that GW is what is keeping people in wargaming (since PP is what is so strong here I doubt that).

There is no benefit for me if Timmy's parents are able to drop him off at GW. To say there is some potential benefit because his purchases at full retail means that GW will release a Fishman army in four years takes some serious mental gymnastics. It is not unlike people that advocate breaking a window so the store owner will replace it, creating jobs.

I would love for you to convince me that something inefficient is better.

ehlijen
16-03-2009, 05:11
1) There wouldn't be any independent stockists of GW products if online dealers kill them off. There aren't going to be any strong gaming club networks for their games if GW turns into an obscure online only seller.

2) And yes, less customers means less income and that means less money to develop new products.

3) So you'd be happy if they never renewed codices like 3rd ed orks or 3.5 chaos? If we still had the toilet stance 2nd ed marines?
If you don't buy any GW products anymore, this discussion doesn't even apply to you, but if you do, surely you must be happy that every now and then to produce something new you like?

4) GW is the biggest wargaming company. It's also the only that has chosen the path of stores over the path of advertising. That path is the reason why it is bigger than it's competitors: they take wargaming (something very obscure) and make it visible to the public. Without at least one company doing that, yes, wargaming as a whole will be put back into obscurity.

PP may seem big, but it's only so in the small cirlce of people who know about it. Their advertisement does not lend itself to breaking out of that niche.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 05:44
1) There wouldn't be any independent stockists of GW products if online dealers kill them off. There aren't going to be any strong gaming club networks for their games if GW turns into an obscure online only seller.

2) And yes, less customers means less income and that means less money to develop new products.

3) So you'd be happy if they never renewed codices like 3rd ed orks or 3.5 chaos? If we still had the toilet stance 2nd ed marines?
If you don't buy any GW products anymore, this discussion doesn't even apply to you, but if you do, surely you must be happy that every now and then to produce something new you like?

4) GW is the biggest wargaming company. It's also the only that has chosen the path of stores over the path of advertising. That path is the reason why it is bigger than it's competitors: they take wargaming (something very obscure) and make it visible to the public. Without at least one company doing that, yes, wargaming as a whole will be put back into obscurity.

PP may seem big, but it's only so in the small cirlce of people who know about it. Their advertisement does not lend itself to breaking out of that niche.

1. There will be if those stores give someone a reason to buy from them. I can buy a bottle of soda from the grocery store for about half of what I would pay at 7-11. There are still selling the products because they are not selling based on price.

2. Fewer customers doesn't necessarily mean less income and less income with lower costs can still mean more profit which is more important.

3. My gaming happiness doesn't come from one manufacturer. GW has the fantastic ability to make a lot of stuff that I don't care about. To say that I need them to develop a new space marine to sell the new codex is beyond ridiculous.

4. You realize that saying GW is big and must be doing something right is just bad logic right? http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/appeal-to-popularity.html So how is that small company PP growing? By word of mouth of people saying how nice it is and then showing them a game. No network of stores is required.

ehlijen
16-03-2009, 06:33
There is a reason to buy from the stores, you just don't feel that it applies to you.

Fewer customers generally means you make less money. And what GW would save in store costs, they'd need to spend on advertising to keep their sales. And it'd quite possibly still be less sales than now. If profit is all that matters, even at the cost of creating a sustainable customer base (not bringing in new customers will eventually see the demand die), then your are reaping the now while sacrificing the future.

If you're not interested in any new stuff ever, then what are you still buying in GW products? Wouldn't you sort of have everything you need by now?

Word of mouth has a hard time breaking the boundaries of population groups. Good word of mouth is important, but it's not going to take wargaming and turn it into something that the mainstream media are aware of. GW has managed to make wargaming something that is widely known to exist and offers obvious ways to get into it. If it weren't for them having chosen the odd path of taking all the money they'd have spend on adds and using it to put wargaming stores into highly visible places, wargaming wouldn't be what it is today.
While the other companies fight over their share of the nerd market (that's us), GW is trying to actually increase the size of that market. You don't want that? Fine, don't support it.

Brinnyunlimited
16-03-2009, 08:54
How about profit margins getting smaller and smaller?


Actually, it was only two/three years ago that the Games Workshop trade department INCREASED it's discount for all indies by about 5%.

xowainx
16-03-2009, 11:30
Actually, it was only two/three years ago that the Games Workshop trade department INCREASED it's discount for all indies by about 5%.

Hey man, don't let facts get in the way of his rant!

Bregalad
16-03-2009, 12:10
Actually, it was only two/three years ago that the Games Workshop trade department INCREASED it's discount for all indies by about 5%.
Actually, in Germany it was decreased at that time. GW has country specific indie policies, with Canada and USA the worst I guess. That's why so many indies quit a few years ago and only a few are coming back now.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 14:41
There is a reason to buy from the stores, you just don't feel that it applies to you.

If it doesn't apply to me then there is not a reason for me to do it. As I said before, a benefit that is not realized is not a benefit.


Fewer customers generally means you make less money. And what GW would save in store costs, they'd need to spend on advertising to keep their sales. And it'd quite possibly still be less sales than now. If profit is all that matters, even at the cost of creating a sustainable customer base (not bringing in new customers will eventually see the demand die), then your are reaping the now while sacrificing the future.

It depends on the customers on if it means you make more or less money. There are issues of cost to serve but if I get into explaining marketing to you we may get too far off topic.

GW doesn't try to build a sustainable base. They grab as much money as they can from kids over about 2 years. Then they move on to the new batch. That is not an internet rant, that is GW's stated policy.


If you're not interested in any new stuff ever, then what are you still buying in GW products? Wouldn't you sort of have everything you need by now?

I am rarely interested would be a more accurate description.


Word of mouth has a hard time breaking the boundaries of population groups. Good word of mouth is important, but it's not going to take wargaming and turn it into something that the mainstream media are aware of. GW has managed to make wargaming something that is widely known to exist and offers obvious ways to get into it. If it weren't for them having chosen the odd path of taking all the money they'd have spend on adds and using it to put wargaming stores into highly visible places, wargaming wouldn't be what it is today.
While the other companies fight over their share of the nerd market (that's us), GW is trying to actually increase the size of that market. You don't want that? Fine, don't support it.

So word of mouth won't work but a random person walking into a store will? You realize that flies in the face of years of experience not to mention literally thousands of research articles right?

GW is trying to pump and dump teens. To assert there is some motive beyond getting every cent before they get girls does not follow since GW has stated why they do what they do.

This is not just GW though as this is also a discussion of stores in general versus online stores. As I have said, some stores will compete on price alone. If a store is not going to be able to give me some value beyond the styrene itself then I am going to buy based on price. You have the thought that I have never bought from a storefront and that is not true.

I will buy from a store that gives me a reason to do so. The easiest reason is price but if you have some service that you are offering that would be worth me paying MSRP then I would pay that. I have in the past and I will again.

Jormi_Boced
16-03-2009, 16:04
I wouldn't be able to buy GW products if it weren't for the Internet. The closest store for me is about 2 hours away.

Bregalad
16-03-2009, 16:12
Is is normal that "manufacturer suggested retail price" is considered luxury/charity and internet dumping prices are considered the fair norm? MSRP is what the manufacturer considers a fair price in a given market and after reaping its own fixed profit.

And esp. people with low disposable income ("those damn cheapo internet stores forces my boss to lower wages") should think twice to support price dumping.

Hicks
16-03-2009, 16:25
Is is normal that "manufacturer suggested retail price" is considered luxury/charity and internet dumping prices are considered the fair norm?

People usually work hard for their money, it's normal that they want to get the most from it. Buying the same product at a lesser price is completely normal.


MSRP is what the manufacturer considers a fair price in a given market and after reaping its own fixed profit.

What GW thinks has nothing to do with what the rest of the world should think. Most gamers think GW's prices are a rip off and non gamers must trully find those prices insane.


And esp. people with low disposable income ("those damn cheapo internet stores forces my boss to lower wages") should think twice to support price dumping.

Well since that thread seems to have proven that a LGSs survival is 100% linked to it's sale of GW products I'll say this. If all the lower income people just stop buying, that's lots of money that doesn't go in GW's pockets, potentialy killing the company and thus the LGSs. :rolleyes:

Or, it's either I buy at a discount and continue to enjoy my hobby or I quit and have one less hobby to enjoy.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 16:30
It depends on the item if MSRP is seen as accurate.

Just because GW says that 12 cents worth of styrene should cost $50 doesn't make it fit the market reality. It is not price dumping to charge what the market will bear.

Stores should charge what they will and keep in mind that customers will base their buying decision on one simple rule. When the price is less than the perceived value, they will make a sale. A box that says GW is no more valuable to me than a box that say Tamiya. For me to pay more there should be some additional value. If a store can give me a reason to pay for their markup then I will. If they cannot then I will purchase at the price that best fits the value I receive for the item.

IJW
16-03-2009, 16:37
non gamers must trully find those prices insane.
Actually... non-gamers either find the idea of spending any money on gaming stuff insane, or don't really have anything to compare the prices with.

zetaplus
16-03-2009, 16:41
In regards to online stores, here is an example of what drives me away from GW stores and independents here in Melbourne. A battleforce/battalion is priced as follows:

$90-100 depending on the day including post from an online store
$135 from an independent retailer
$150 from an official GW store

Also, items that are priced differently in the UK are all grouped into the same price band here, so the cost of certain items increases by a few dollars.

The more recent 10 troop plastic box sets, such as Ork Boyz, all the VC stuff, and all the new all plastic cavalry boxes, cost around $23 posted from an online store, or around $35 from an actual store that I can visit.

yabbadabba
16-03-2009, 17:02
You know, it really doesn't matter to GW financially. Their webstore cannot compete with online discounters because either they will compete with their own stores or they will gain an unfair advantage. So, as long as someone buys the goods from a GW source, GW will make it's money.

The main reason for GW's "dislike" of online discounters is because, as a whole, they do not build the customer base. They might maintain it, but not build it. B+M stores do that with great customer service, and understanding of the product and, where available, resources like gaming and painting sessions. GW see B+M stores as being the prime advertising and recruiting tool in their business (with WD raising brand awareness). Servicing existing customers is important, but as all our business students out there know, if you don't try and grow a business, it will die.
As far as I can tell, this is one of the benefits of GW streamlining it's available product (not the only one!). By concentrating on products that could be considered essential for a beginner, or conveniant for an established customer. At least they have their stockists focussing on products that sell quickly and are more likely to sell.

GW will not try and stop selling to online discounters. That will be illegal in the EU. But they wouldn't lose any sleep over it either.

As for the MSRP - welcome to consumerism. If you don't think the product is worth it, don't pay. If someone wants to work harder for less money and offer you that product cheaper, let them. As GW are still selling their product successfully for full MRSP, more fool the discounters.

ps: Can anyone think of a market that is more certain to go out of business, the more successful it gets, than Undertakers?

blongbling
16-03-2009, 17:18
Actually, in Germany it was decreased at that time. GW has country specific indie policies, with Canada and USA the worst I guess. That's why so many indies quit a few years ago and only a few are coming back now.

actually there is one policy for all of europe, one for North America and Canada....and then the others

Tokamak
16-03-2009, 17:31
When buying from a store, you are not just 'charity money' for the store. You are the demand (or part of it) that keeps the store running. Stores only exist because of demand. If no-one buys there, ie there is no demand, they'll go away. And then there are no stores to draw in new people to the (or any) hobby.

So it IS charity money.

Templar Ben
16-03-2009, 23:58
So it IS charity money.

No because charity money can be deducted from your income for tax purposes if you itemize. :p

Master Stark
17-03-2009, 02:43
If everything moved online tomorrow it would have zero impact on my lifestyle.

Except for the massive spike in unemployment in your area, of course?

Thats the problem with people. Only ever thinking of themselves, and only ever thinking in the short term.


So how is that small company PP growing? By word of mouth of people saying how nice it is and then showing them a game. No network of stores is required.

It's interesting that most people playing PP games have had prior experience with GW games.

It's also worth considering that PP products are also sold at your local games store.

zedeyejoe
17-03-2009, 09:31
Stores should charge what they will and keep in mind that customers will base their buying decision on one simple rule.

I have seen that method in use in the Middle East. There the shopkeeper and the customer agree what the price will be, usually over a cup of tea.


Thats the problem with people. Only ever thinking of themselves, and only ever thinking in the short term.

Absolutely. The Bison and the Dodo would tell you the same.

shin'keiro
17-03-2009, 10:04
I think GW should catch up with the 21st century! and stop living in the 80's.

yabbadabba
17-03-2009, 10:32
I think GW should catch up with the 21st century! and stop living in the 80's.

Can you explain you comment please?

Osbad
17-03-2009, 10:46
Can you explain you comment please?

I think he's implying that today, businesses should factor in that an ever-increasing proportion of business is transacted over the internet as opposed to face-to-face.

There appears to be an inevitable rise in internet trade and an associated decline in High Street shopping (unless you are a supermarket chain).

Trying to stifle the internet therefore is seen as a somewhat retrograde step.

I personally agree with this opinion.

Businesses that only see The Internet as some sort of unwanted baggage and hinderence are missing out on oportunities.

GW has an internet presence, but as their somewhat lame attempts at podcasting demonstrate, they just don't "get it".

Web 2.0 is all about user participation, and GW is so "control-freak" in its thinking it is missing out on massive opportunities to develop its business.

Stuff like 40kRadio is happening despite GW, not because of it - look what they said to TSOALR, for instance.

If GW harnessed the power of the internet instead of trying to cage it, they'd reap greater rewards. Instead they treat it as some sort of contagious disease that's out to rob them of their ridunkulous mark-up.

yabbadabba
17-03-2009, 10:55
It certainly is an option Paul, to withdraw from the highstreet and go back to WoM, show and club visits, and exploiting the internet as a way of maintaining the business. But I can't see how it would keep GW at the size and dominance it is.

Still, that will only happen in the event of a buy out. Although massive retail chains might be condemned to the past, I think having just one all product encompassing store in every major city might be the way to go.

Osbad
17-03-2009, 10:55
It's also worth considering that PP products are also sold at your local games store.

Not anymore. Both my (not so) friendly local stores dropped PP. Now the ONLY place I can buy PP is online.

Tell me. My local store provides no place to play, doesn't stock the inventory I want. And charges more than online. Remind me why I should patronise them again?

I don't wish store owners ill. But I want them to earn my money, not expect me just to hand it to them out the goodness of my heart...

I work hard for my money. I expect anyone wanting to take it off me to do the same!

ehlijen
17-03-2009, 11:26
If your B&M store truly does not provide you with anything more than the online store but for more money, than yes, you should not buy there. People's call for B&M stores that support the hobby to be supported in turn by the hobbyists is in no way an excuse for shops that don't do so to demand support they don't deserve.

Templar Ben
17-03-2009, 14:07
But if there is a move to stop online selling (with the resultant discounts) it will help all stores. The point I (and perhaps Paul) was trying to make is that there is no reason to pay for a service that I don't want as it does not benefit me.

It is almost as if all vehicles came with seat warmers, prestarter, and snow tires and all cost an extra $3K. I don't live in an area that gets snow so I don't want to pay extra even though by making that standard it would save lives up north.

There is no reason for me to pay extra so some kid can play at a store instead of on his dining room table with his friends from school. There is no reason for me to pay extra so someone else can get painting lessons. If a store wants to offer me a reason to come in and pay more then I am willing to give them a try.

ehlijen
17-03-2009, 14:19
And my point was: Are you completely sure that the fact that stores with gaming and painting tables drawing people into the hobby and thus creating tomorrows market for wargaming miniatures is of no benefit to you?

To go with your car analogy: What if a company build more fuel efficient cars that use 75% of the normal fuel consumption but they cost twice the money? If fuel is cheap enough it won't benefit you directly, so you don't buy it. But then what fuel we have is used up more quickly and the prices rise more quickly as a result. So in the long term, getting that more efficient car may have been better for you.

The here and now is one thing, how things look in 10 years is another. It may still not benefit you, but there's more to making that call than 'how many bucks do I have to shell out right now?'.

Osbad
17-03-2009, 14:45
It certainly is an option Paul, to withdraw from the highstreet and go back to WoM, show and club visits, and exploiting the internet as a way of maintaining the business. But I can't see how it would keep GW at the size and dominance it is.

Frankly its hard to see how any individual strategem can keep GW at the level of size and dominance that it is. GW's strength is that it is of a size that it can try multiple strategies and pick the ones that work best.

GW is obviously convinced that store fronts can be beneficial, but their closure of dozens a year or 2 back indicates that they have to be smart about location to ensure they don't lose too much money.

Clearly, their retail arm is high cost and delivers lower margin profit than their wholesale arm. There have been multiple ex-staff posters on here who have confirmed this. So in essence this indicates that if GW closed their stores and they were replaced with Indie stores (online or otherwise) selling the same volume of product, then GW would actually make a larger profit. In the short term.

GW are therefore convinced that in the longer term, independent stores would not make such a good job of pushing sales of GW items (and thereby growing the "GW hobby") as GW's own stores would, and therefore it is in GW's long term interest to push sales via their own stores.

GW need to retain control of the "pushing of the hobby" in order to grow their business. They need to generate a growing, core clientèle of "addicted fanbois" (to use a pejorative term) who love "GW hobby", and are ignorant of, or are unattracted by the wider "wargaming hobby". This core clientele are willing to pay a high relative price for GW's IP over and above anyone else's. They need to generate GW brand-loyalty in other words.

Now, I've nothing against people expressing personal choice. If people genuinely prefer the look and feel of GW's offering over the wider one, then good on GW.

The shame is that GW have fastened on a certain demographic (teenage boys) that by nature is tribal (i.e. easy to instil brand loyalty in), will be prepared to pay higher prices than other demographics are because they want to impress their peers and in general are vulnerable to aggressive marketing techniques.

Something just sticks in my craw at the feeling I get when I look at GW's marketing strategy.

GW's model range is good-to-average (there are worse and better sculptors and casters out there). Their rules development is poor-to-average (there are many better rulesets out there, and not many worse), and their product development is good-to-excellent (there are many products that GW produce that no-one else does - foundation paints, Baneblades, plastic terrain boards).

If they justified higher prices because they were invested in product and range development (If they, for instance were prepared to say "20% of our turnover goes to provide an army of playtesters and FAQ response, therefore we charge 20% higher than the going rate") then I wouldn't argue with them.

However, they try and defend their higher prices by justifying their subsidising their retail store chain which I don't need, and I am not at all convinced does anything to promote the "Wargames Hobby" (which I am interested in) as opposed to the "GW hobby" (which I am not).

Osbad
17-03-2009, 14:48
And my point was: Are you completely sure that the fact that stores with gaming and painting tables drawing people into the hobby and thus creating tomorrows market for wargaming miniatures is of no benefit to you?

The here and now is one thing, how things look in 10 years is another. It may still not benefit you, but there's more to making that call than 'how many bucks do I have to shell out right now?'.

Yes I am convinced. The last thing "the wargames hobby" needs is an army of indoctrinated GW clones. What would be far better for the hobby, is if the crutch of "store participation" was not funded by a mandatory tax, and that saved revenue was made available for distribution to a network of independent clubs.

I learned about "the hobby" from friends who played. I didn't need GW then, other than as a source of product, and I don't particularly need them now. Word of mouth is the primary engine of growth in the industry, and that has little or nothing to do with stores. The only impact stores have is where they offer a place to play. And it is arguable whether if they closed, a gaming club wouldn't set up to offer the same or better facilities. At least for "deicated" gamers. Gamers who just want everything laid out for them on a plate of course are another matter.

That would really benefit the "wargames hobby" over and above the vested interests of profit-making concerns.

loveless
17-03-2009, 15:10
I'll buy the occasional box or blister from a B&M store, but if I'm making a major purchase, I have 2 options:
1) Use a discount program from one of the stores in another town (20-43% off MSRP...yes please)
2) Go online and order from someone that gives an inherent discount.

If I'm in a rush and need another model for a game, I'll pay full price - I look at the offset as a "convenience charge". If I'm fleshing out an army when I have plenty of time, I'm not about to spend more money than I have to.

I'd be perfectly willing to shop at a GW store (or a standard B&M store) if they gave me some incentive for giving them business - a punch card, a loyalty system, whatever. Admittedly, when I had a store in my area that supplied gaming space, I typically bought a few blisters or a box every month. But, that store also had a punch card system - spend $100, get 20% off your next purchase. It made me feel better about shopping with them, since I knew I was getting something back in addition to using their dusty spare room every weekend.

Now, the current store I live by has a terrible "discount program" (Spend $100, get $5 off your next purchase...uh...sure...) so I very rarely shop there (and I've yet to play there, due to them playing Saturday mornings, which is when I catch up on sleep...) outside of paints and hobby tools. The difference in the two stores is that the one with the good discount only supplied a gaming space, nothing more, while the current one also has painting days, modeling days, and gaming days according to the schedule. Now, as these are "free" services, I'd probably not mind paying MSRP from them if I were taking advantage of them. However, I don't need tutorials anymore, so why should I pay for them?

It's like the portion of my taxes that goes to public education. I don't have kids in school, why should I pay for Mr. and Mrs. Smith's kids to go to school? Now, I still pay it because I have to, obviously. But if the Government gave me the option to opt out because I didn't have school-age children, I would in a heartbeat.

I look at B&M hobby stores and online stores as the same thing. If you take advantage of all of the services that the B&M store offers, there's no reason not to shop there. If you don't need all of their services, I see no reason to have to shop there exclusively if you can get more for your money elsewhere.

venus_redscar
17-03-2009, 20:34
This is like the opposite of all other business. They want everyone to get the stuff from them instead of just worrying about moving numbers.

This will just shrink the hobby by limiting who can get product and who can afford product. Management like this can't live to see the end of a recession.

marv335
17-03-2009, 21:18
Yes I am convinced. The last thing "the wargames hobby" needs is an army of indoctrinated GW clones. What would be far better for the hobby, is if the crutch of "store participation" was not funded by a mandatory tax, and that saved revenue was made available for distribution to a network of independent clubs.

I learned about "the hobby" from friends who played. I didn't need GW then, other than as a source of product, and I don't particularly need them now. Word of mouth is the primary engine of growth in the industry, and that has little or nothing to do with stores. The only impact stores have is where they offer a place to play. And it is arguable whether if they closed, a gaming club wouldn't set up to offer the same or better facilities. At least for "deicated" gamers. Gamers who just want everything laid out for them on a plate of course are another matter.

That would really benefit the "wargames hobby" over and above the vested interests of profit-making concerns.


You say that the stores have no impact on you.
Did any of your gaming buddies start gaming in GW or other indy shops?
If so, they've provided you with opponents.

yabbadabba
17-03-2009, 21:20
Yes I am convinced. The last thing "the wargames hobby" needs is an army of indoctrinated GW clones. What would be far better for the hobby, is if the crutch of "store participation" was not funded by a mandatory tax, and that saved revenue was made available for distribution to a network of independent club
I learned about "the hobby" from friends who played. I didn't need GW then, other than as a source of product, and I don't particularly need them now. Word of mouth is the primary engine of growth in the industry, and that has little or nothing to do with stores. The only impact stores have is where they offer a place to play. And it is arguable whether if they closed, a gaming club wouldn't set up to offer the same or better facilities. At least for "deicated" gamers. Gamers who just want everything laid out for them on a plate of course are another matter.
That would really benefit the "wargames hobby" over and above the vested interests of profit-making concerns.

Sorry mate, I have to disagree. And here is an example. When I lived there, the Watford store had an average customer count (till transaction count) of about 1000 per month. The local club had about 20 members a session. As far as I knew, the were maybe 3 other clubs in the area, with roughly 20 or less members. So even taking into account a high amount of repeat custom (say 50%) thats still over 6 times the number of club goers being serviced by their local store. I can't believe that number would remain consistent if you replaced the store with more clubs. I think, unusually, you are being a little narrow minded about this.

In the end if you buy original GW product first hand, no matter where you get it from, you will pay towards Warhammer World, Bugmans, the laptops the accountants use - even the new steering wheel cover for Kirby's Aston Martin. You don't get the choice of where your money goes mate.

Osbad
17-03-2009, 21:34
You say that the stores have no impact on you.
Did any of your gaming buddies start gaming in GW or other indy shops?
If so, they've provided you with opponents.

I don't deny stores have grown the hobby. I'm just saying that "the hobby" wouldn't die without them.

It also wouldn't die without them.

It predates both GW's store chain and the internet, and can suvive without either.

ideally, it can incorporate both without a problem.

Osbad
17-03-2009, 21:49
Sorry mate, I have to disagree. And here is an example. When I lived there, the Watford store had an average customer count (till transaction count) of about 1000 per month. The local club had about 20 members a session. As far as I knew, the were maybe 3 other clubs in the area, with roughly 20 or less members. So even taking into account a high amount of repeat custom (say 50%) thats still over 6 times the number of club goers being serviced by their local store. I can't believe that number would remain consistent if you replaced the store with more clubs. I think, unusually, you are being a little narrow minded about this.

Well, see my post above. If I gave the impression that stores have contributed NOTHING to the growth of the hobby, then I was incorrect. Sure many people learned to play games via stores.

And if the hobby to you (using the pronoun in the general, not personal, sense) is all about gaming in stores and official events, then B&M stores are clearly important.

However, for many people, particularly in the UK, wargaming, even sci-fi wargaming has nothing whatsoever to do with GW, or PP for that matter. Salute now has over 5,000 attendees. That's around 1/2 the size of Gamesday, but still pretty sizeable. Add in the multitude of other shows - there's pretty much one or more every weekend throughout the UK, and that is a sizeable gaming population who do not require B&M stores and their gaming space, to survive and thrive.

Both our PoV's aren't particularly scientific, so I won't press the point as to which is the most "powerful" segment of the population. Certainly GW stores are the most visible.


In the end if you buy original GW product first hand, no matter where you get it from, you will pay towards Warhammer World, Bugmans, the laptops the accountants use - even the new steering wheel cover for Kirby's Aston Martin. You don't get the choice of where your money goes mate.

Oh, quite right. But, as a punter I don't object to paying for the accountant's computer, or even the shareholders' bubbly.

I do object to having a service bundled into my product that I don't require.

But of course there's sod all I can do about it, other than not buy if the price is too high.

Which brings me round to my main point again.

I think the impact of restricting trade as rumoured by the OP, would be to reduce sales volume which woudl have a significant impact on the "growth of the hobby". How many, if faced with paying full MSRP as the only option will say "Sod it, I'll not bother"? Not everyone, granted, but a fair few might.

And that lost of wholesale turnover for GW might, in the end, be more significant than they care to believe. I'm not sure how much online trade the likes of The Warstore and Maelstrom do compared to B&M stores, but I'm willign to wager it is not insignificant - the Warstore had a MASSIVE stand at last year's GenCon, so that would indicate that Neal at least makes a pretty penny out of it. Can GW do with losing a large percentage of that trade?

What would be the impact on the "future of the hobby" that everyone is concerned about if effectively overnight there is a 25% hike in prices across the board? How many would go on to other things and leave "The GW Hobby" behind?

yabbadabba
17-03-2009, 21:57
Paul, as always, you have my utmost respect. And if anyone thinks that the hobby consists exclusively consists of going to their local GW then they need to get out more. But I think having a local hobby store allows that area to support a far higher number of hobbyists than if there was just a few clubs and th'internet. I also think that, actually, GW does have a positive knock on effect on other wargaming companies. And that is just down to the fact that there is a shop there with a dedicated crew willing to spend the time and effort to keep the interest going.

The OP is just rumour. GW won't stop supplying online discounters. We might be all suprised at how much these businesses actually generate for GW, but they won't be dropped.

Master Stark
17-03-2009, 22:03
Not anymore. Both my (not so) friendly local stores dropped PP. Now the ONLY place I can buy PP is online.

Tell me. My local store provides no place to play, doesn't stock the inventory I want. And charges more than online. Remind me why I should patronise them again?

Now thats a very good point, and one I hadn't really considered: there is a sliding scale of FLGS quality, and obviously some will not deserve the patronage of the local gamers.


It is almost as if all vehicles came with seat warmers, prestarter, and snow tires and all cost an extra $3K. I don't live in an area that gets snow so I don't want to pay extra even though by making that standard it would save lives up north.

Eh, sort of I guess.

I think a better analogy would be:

One car is manufactured in China, and costs $20,000.

An identical car is maufactured in your town, and costs $24,000.

Which one do you buy, and why?


I learned about "the hobby" from friends who played. I didn't need GW then, other than as a source of product, and I don't particularly need them now. Word of mouth is the primary engine of growth in the industry, and that has little or nothing to do with stores.

I obviously can't comment for yourself, but before GW pushed gaming onto the high street, it was a very small and niche affair. Of course, it still is but it has also come leaps and bounds forwards from the 70's and 80's, mostly due to GW and their retail chains.


Yes I am convinced. The last thing "the wargames hobby" needs is an army of indoctrinated GW clones.

I need to be clear that I am talking about supporting your local generic games store, NOT your local GW store.

I mean, I've been playing games of Warmachine or Confrontation down at the local games store, and had other gamers come up and ask what the models were, and what game we were playing. If other gamers, already involved in gaming, have no idea about Rackham and PP, what chance do those companies have of dragging non-gamers off the street and turning them into gamers?

Even if a LGS focuses primarily on GW product, it is inevitably going to introduce people to other games systems.


It's like the portion of my taxes that goes to public education. I don't have kids in school, why should I pay for Mr. and Mrs. Smith's kids to go to school? Now, I still pay it because I have to, obviously. But if the Government gave me the option to opt out because I didn't have school-age children, I would in a heartbeat.

Honestly? I mean, have you really thought about that? About how the public school system would suffer, and the knock-on effects of that?

I think thats really a prime example of the short-sightedness I'm talking about.

Now, government funds going to private schools is another matter altogether

Templar Ben
18-03-2009, 00:36
Eh, sort of I guess.

I think a better analogy would be:

One car is manufactured in China, and costs $20,000.

An identical car is maufactured in your town, and costs $24,000.

Which one do you buy, and why? Well how about this? I could get a car from eBay for $20000 or from a local dealer for $24000. I go with eBay. The reason is the item is identical and I am not going to pay for a markup that doesn't add value.

ehlijen
18-03-2009, 01:46
So having a car factory nearby to employ people and create a base of cash holding potential consumers for whatever you are doing on the local market is not value? Let's all go buy chinese cars on ebay and screw the local economy!

Templar Ben
18-03-2009, 02:21
So having a car factory nearby to employ people and create a base of cash holding potential consumers for whatever you are doing on the local market is not value? Let's all go buy chinese cars on ebay and screw the local economy!Actually the local car manufacturer makes Mercedes so local is relative. Even though as I tried to point out that doesn't fit since it is not an issue of local production but an unneccasary markup. In any event I will not pay more just to keep someone employed. Why subsidiZe buggy whip makers when they should transition to the new economy?

Crazy Harborc
18-03-2009, 04:01
For decades, in the USA, in the USA White Dwarf, at various cons, GDs as well as over the phone.....We USA customers were and still are told that GW has had to charge a little bit more to fund developement of new rules, minies AND to finance opening new official GW stores across the USA. Now....those same store are closing...Some of the areas have heard "promises" of future stores (reopening) in different locations (as replacement stores?).

By the by......I am NOT likely to game in Canada, Europe, the UK or wherever. Why pay higher prices to finance stores opening there? The only GW store in my state OR within over 300 miles closed in Janurary 09. (Before GW opened up here there were 14 indies stocking GW...now it's 4)

I did meet a couple of newbies at the local GW store that I still game with now. I do still know about 150 wargamers who DON'T play GW rules/games on use GW products. GW had little to no impact on their wargaming hobby habits.

GW does create, manufacture and sell (wholesale) to those online discount giving indies. GW makes money because of those merchants. Many of those online stores are the only affordable way for customers to be able to buy GW products. AND I am not the only person who refuses to buy direct from GW and pay shipping and handling twice for the same items.

blongbling
18-03-2009, 10:27
the reality of the situation is this....whenever you buy a GW product you are contirbuting to the running costs of GW as a whole, whatever that be its stores, its warehouses or its staff. whatever you buy your goods online and cheaply or in a GW store that is all factored into the final sums so to GW it dont really matter where you buy though there are preferred places that give them more profit.

If you dont like the thought of supporting GW's domination of the world then go buy someones elses products and their rampage will continue without you :D

Templar Ben
18-03-2009, 12:52
I must have missed where people said that they were buying online to stick it to GW.

boogle
18-03-2009, 15:19
If that's the case, they should then shut down their own website as it offers none of the 4 criteria listed in a personal format that is

Glabro
19-03-2009, 20:51
So having a car factory nearby to employ people and create a base of cash holding potential consumers for whatever you are doing on the local market is not value? Let's all go buy chinese cars on ebay and screw the local economy!

I can assure you that in the end you'll lose money by trying to influence macro-economic factors. But if it helps you sleep at night, go for it. Yeah, I know, that is cynical.

But hey, you could just donate that 4000 bucks to a charity of your choice?
It's weird how people accept "paying more and the extra helping some cause" much more readily than simply donating.

I'm with Osbad here.

shakespear
19-03-2009, 21:47
I figure sooner of later GW will go mail order only. No interenet stores, no FLGS. Why wouldnt they? Its more money for them and no matter what they do people still buy.

Glabro
19-03-2009, 22:54
Nope. GW relies on the "new army urge" to stay in business, along with new customers. The urge doesn't translate into sales if the price goes up for a good portion of people, and you can use common sense about the new customers.

Fenrir
20-03-2009, 10:18
I now buy online to get the most for my money. I've found that GW has hit my price limit in the last few years, so I reduced spending on them and bought where I could get it for a better price. Thats not to say I can't afford GW's prices, 'cos I can. I choose not to though as I think they are getting to be too much. There has been improvements lately though, with the £12 cavalry boxes and such.

Latest Marine codex was an example - £18? No way am I paying that for a book, and I'm a big codex/army book buyer (always have been). The rest of them going up to £15 has taken them over what I think they are worth (£12 was fair enough), so I'll only get the ones needed as they come out (roll on Beastmen book) - but for the best price I can find.

Theres also the instance of going into a GW shop recently (Kensington) to impulse buy blisters of two Dark Riders and a Wild Rider - all of which were unavailable instore. "We can order them and get them delivered to home" was the answer, but I may as well go and do it myself for a discount and to bump up my moneyback on Maelstrom games.

xowainx
20-03-2009, 10:57
That's a problem too, I know GW have cut down stuff to only the most popular lines, but almost every time I go into the store looking for an impulse buy, they just don't have what I want..

Araby/Pirate/Paymaster maneater? No
Wood Elf Lord with bow? No
Wood Elf female spellsinger with her arms outstretched? No
"Fat" Night Goblin Shaman? No
Dwarf Bolt Thrower? No

I understand why it's like this, so stores don't end up with mountains of stock they can't sell but it's still frustrating.

Tazok
20-03-2009, 14:03
I know this goes against GW policy, but in situations where they get too many items that don't seem to be moving well, they could have a sale on them (like virtually every other retailer on the planet does) :D

Fenrir
20-03-2009, 14:31
I know this goes against GW policy, but in situations where they get too many items that don't seem to be moving well, they could have a sale on them (like virtually every other retailer on the planet does) :D

Thats crazy talk.

IJW
20-03-2009, 14:51
When you're the manufacturer as well as the retailer, and have product lines that are in production for anything up to fifteen years, yes it's crazy talk. ;)

Shorter-lived products suit themselves more to sales because there's a much more limited window of opportunity to sell at full price, and after that the stock is almost worthless.

shakespear
20-03-2009, 16:16
When you're the manufacturer as well as the retailer, and have product lines that are in production for anything up to fifteen years, yes it's crazy talk. ;)



Talk to FASA about that. Long established companies can end up in the red and bought by other companies and/or bankrupt