jabberwockOG wrote:If you want the absolute least cost on bulk foods or other generic items (regardless of quality level) than Sams is great.
For a careful discerning shopper Costo is tough to beat. Costco overall stocks better quality goods - electronics, produce, specialty foods, wines, apparel, drug store items, automotive tires, small appliances, etc.
I've seen several posters make statements similar to this.
Could you please post links to these "better quality" items that are not available at Sam's Club?
I'd like to see what "careful discerning shoppers" are buying at warehouse club stores that I'm missing out on.
If you're not buying high-end olive oils, wines, sea salts, spices, organic products, etc., you probably won't notice much of a difference between Costco and Sam's. But if you are buying those things, then you'll notice their absence in Sam's. Costco is intentionally appealing to a more affluent demographic. See this article, http://www.upi.com/Expert-Costco-caters ... 346361254/
, which states, in part: "Costco was the only discount chain that attracted more ultra-affluent -- consumers with more than $250,000 income a year -- than lower-income shoppers, with income ranging from $100,000 to $249,900 a year."
Edited to add this link, http://retirementblog.ncpa.org/should-w ... Az9Lv.dpbs
, and information (taken from the linked article), which explains the two companies' business models in greater detail:
Walmart Compared to Costco. In addition to differing types of retail stores with different profit margins and labor productivity, retailers have various business models — which include the products they sell, their customer base and their sources of potential revenue. Consider the two primary stores labor activists like to compare in terms of wages, Walmart versus Costco. The inherent difference between Costco and Walmart is their business model.
Walmart operates 5,300 stores (including the smaller Neighborhood Markets and Sam’s Clubs) and tries to cater to the widest range of customers and provide quality and cost options that appeal to a range of lower to higher income shoppers.
Costco operates about 447 stores under a subscription business model, charging customers for membership. It offers relatively fewer choices to customers compared to Walmart. Costco is geared toward a smaller, more selective clientele than Walmart. Costco stores tend to be located in more affluent neighborhoods and a higher percentage of Costco’s customers are business buyers.
A Statistical Analysis of Walmart and Costco Locations. Given that Costco targets a higher income demographic than Walmart, one could surmise that both store chains would locate in areas that suit their desired income demographic. To test this hypothesis, we compiled a dataset of counties in Texas and Florida (states selected for their population size, relatively weak zoning laws, and presence of both Walmart and Costco) using five explanatory variables of interest: population, median household income in each county, number of Costco stores in each county and number of Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs in each county. The results indicate that Costco locations are largely dependent on income, while Walmart locations are not. Given two equally sized (500,000 residents) counties, if one is in the top 40 percent of median income it has a 76 percent probability of having a Costco; if it is in the bottom 60 percent, it has only a 20 percent probability.