So, I'm sipping some fresh, hot coffee right now - having just arrived home from doing some window shopping. I popped into Academy Sports to just browse everything in the outdoor department (basically).
I wasn't looking to buy today, but I was looking to see if there were new or different products that I might want to look into getting or swapping out with my current gear as I am in the middle of planning two cross-country hiking/backpacking/camping trips.
In the camping department, next to the typical Mountain House and Alpine Aire freeze-dried food pouches, I saw some really yummy looking meals by OMeals.
They are like the aforementioned meals except they are a mix of freeze dried meal pouches meet an MRE. They are are self-heating packages so you don't need to heat the water separate, add to the pouch, zip and wait like you do traditional freeze-dried meals. They are $7.99 at my local Academy Sports and although I didn't want or need to buy anything today, I tucked it away in my brain as something I do want to get a few of before one of my next camping trips, to try them out.
When I got home I went to the OMeals website to find out more information about them (their website is kind of crappy for those actually looking to find out about them and their products - but it 'looks' cool and has a bunch of blog articles as well as selling their products right on the site). Their ABOUT us page wasn't very informative, I had to search through one of their comparison articles between them and freeze-dried foods to find out the shelf-life of OMeals (5 years) and I didn't see some of the products available that they had in previous 'blog' articles linked to their site so they must have stopped making them (the pepperoni pizza pouch looked amazing but it was only on their article blog, not a listed available product being sold).
ANYWAY! See? I do tend to ramble. Ha Ha.
After I dug around for awhile to find out enough about their company, where they are located (Florida) and the food used in their meals, as well as the expiration dates, I did a random internet search to see who all sells them and what their price points were.
I already knew Academy Sports, and I knew Amazon would have them, but I like to give business to other retailers if I can, especially retailers that have been around a while and I would hate to see go under. But darnit. They make it so much harder than it has to be.
And skipping all my chit-chatty small talk I will say that Dick's Sporting Goods is ALWAYS HIGHER PRICED THAN EVERYONE ELSE AND IT DRIVES ME MAD.
Seriously, I used to love ya Dicks, but darnit... if you want to survive in this dog eat dog retail world, up your game. (Well, I loved you more before you bowed to the Democrats and stopped selling guns and ammo but that's a whole other post for another day...)
So everyone except for some price-gouging third party seller on Walmart is selling them for $7.99 ish. But not Dicks. Of course. Like they always do, they have their price jacked up to $9.99 each.
And if I'm buying, say, five them today, to try them out... that's a waste of ten bucks. I'm obviously not going to buy them from Dicks when they are $2 more PER package.
They, like many retailers, try to show they are willing to play ball by adding this stupid "PRICE MATCH" disclaimer.... they WILL price match but you know what?
I don't want to have to CALL YOU or waste my time doing a chat while someone looks up the price on other sites and matches it and THEN let's me purchase it. By the time I have do either of those, I would have already BOUGHT, PAID FOR and had the ORDER CONFIRMATION in my email from whatever other site I ordered them.
Yes... the sites you would be 'price matching' on.. I'm just going to buy it from them. Period.
"When you’re ready to buy, just call 1-877-846-9997 or chat with us. Please have a reference of a qualifying retailer’s website or ad that currently has the product you’d like to price match. Every online price match request is completed via phone or chat to keep your shopping simple."
Uh, that doesn't make 'my shopping simple'. Just going to any other competitor site that already offers the low, regular price - the same price the MANUFACTURER of the product is selling it for on their OWN SITE - is much, much simpler.
So no. If you want people to quickly and easily buy things on your online site, then you need to have price-matching software installed at corporate level to automatically scan and match prices or, just hire a small department of people to do so as their job if you need to. Because seriously... if the company's own site sells these packs for $7.99 and every other big name retailer is selling them both online and in their brick and mortar stores for $7.99, why would I buy them from you for $9.99 each or go through the hassle of having to call you on the phone or open up one of those oh-so-irritating and hated 'chats' and wait for someone else to price check when you should have already done that yourself.
And yeah, this is probably just the coffee talking again.....
But if you DO want to check out the self-heating OMeals, and you don't want to pay $9.99 at Dicks or jump through their price matching hoops, then as of this posting you can get them through Amazon (or at Academy Sports or REI, etc.) for $7.99 each. The Amazon 6-packs at this particular second are coming up for me around $49.99-52.98 (but remember; their pricing is in part due to the cookies on your computer and the prices change randomly). *NOTE* that as of me getting links right now the OMeal Southwestern Chicken with Rice is the only one coming up $9.99 so I'm not listing that one. Ha ha. The rest are all currently $7.99.
Omeals Homestyle Meals Mix 4 Pack
OMEALS Chicken Meal, 6 pack
OMEALS Chicken Creole with Brown Rice - Homestyle Meals
OMEALS Lentils with Beef
OMEALS Pasta Fagioli - Homestyle Meals
OMEALS Vegetable Beef Stew - Homestyle Meals