walmart

Walmart was around decades before I was born.  Growing up in the small, rural town of Whiteville, North Carolina, Walmart was the only major attraction. This was way before the Super Center. Everyone in town used to join up and meet there  or bump into each other at random on any given day. In my mind as a little girl, I didn’t think that there would be anything greater than this store. They sold everything you could think of under one roof (except food at the time) and they weren’t pricey at all. More importantly, the employees were always super friendly and they would get you out  just as fast as you came in. A delay at the check out was rare. Asking for help didn’t make you a nuisance neither.

BOY, THOSE WERE THE GOOD OL’ DAYS AT WALLY WORLD….

Today, the store that built it’s brand off of convenience, low prices, and great customer service has now become an inconvenience to deal with all together. These same “good qualities” that the store seemed to possess are no more. In fact, these  qualities have wrecked the store’s reputation today.  You can count on Walmart always having a ridiculous line even at 2am on a Tuesday morning. The self check out isn’t any faster neither, don’t let it get late and you’re trying to buy alcohol at the self checkout. You will be lucky if there is even an employee there to assist you with that transaction. I don’t understand why there always seems to be only 2 cashiers working all the time when each Walmart has at least 20 registers. What was cool about Good Ol’ Walley World before was the fact that, when you went to Check out, your mind was made up and you were walking out the door in no time. You could easily rush into Walmart on the way somewhere and be in and out vs today, If you run into a Walmart, even for the slightest thing, expect to be in there for a minimum of 30 minutes because checking out is such a slow process.

The prices have shot up  over the recent years as well. I guess the public began to complain about the price hikes a little too much. After time, the retail giant made a few familiar changes.  In 2011, they decided to relaunch their “Lowest prices” guarantee. This means that Walmart is  guaranteeing that they  will have the lowest prices everywhere and it they don’t, they can match any competitors price. With the relaunch of Walmart’s lowest prices guarantee, not to mention the heavy celebrity endorsements that we are seeing from people like Anthony Anderson and Kevin Hart. Walmart has pretty much set off the first missal in a retail/economic war. Because of this guarantee that Walmart is honoring they now have the power to kill all competition mainly because they are so large globally.  The beauty of  competition is it works to the consumer’s benefit.  A low price leader may seem great for us consumers now but in the long run, this “great news” may end up being our greatest problem.  If you kill off all the competition, the consumer’s option of variety is virtually gone. That would give Walmart  the ultimate power and price control.

In 2014, this mega corporation was the largest employer in the United States providing over  1 million US citizen with a paycheck. The once seemingly happy worker looks as if they hate Walmart. Walmart is the largest private employer in the US.  What they don’t tell you is that Walmart doesn’t want to come up off of any bread. They pay their average employee nearly at poverty level. Their benefits package is also a joke. Who would have ever thought that Walmart, the low price leader, would have such expensive and weak insurance coverage. What is even more interesting is that an employer this powerful has zero unions. How on earth did that happen? How does the largest employer in the US have no unions?

Why are there are so many of them popping up all over recently. They are now located literally down the street from one another. This is getting to be as bad as McDonalds and we all saw what Mickey D’s was and what it has become. A community may not feel the economic effects of a new Walmart as harshly in the beginning, however, over time, Walmart can nearly level a community, depleting neighborhoods of more than 10 million dollars in a 20 year time-span. If this “one-stop-shop” keeps growing at the rate that is is , pretty soon, there will be no more mom and pop stores. Competition will be an all time minimum and we, the consumers will be the one to pay for it at the end.

This article is only scratching the surface….