Petsmart in trouble

Super S
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Petsmart in trouble

Post by Super S » April 27th, 2018, 7:28 am

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... in-trouble

I will say that I visited one of their stores not long ago, and their prices were on the high side unless you signed up for their loyalty card (ugh). I ended up not buying anything. The store did not seem very busy at all, I think there were maybe three total customers. It seemed eerily similar to the last time I went inside a Toys R Us store.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by Alpha8472 » April 27th, 2018, 8:36 pm

Why shop in the store when you can get it for less online? I usually buy pet products from Walmart or online.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by rwsandiego » April 27th, 2018, 8:41 pm

Super S wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 7:28 am
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... in-trouble

I will say that I visited one of their stores not long ago, and their prices were on the high side unless you signed up for their loyalty card (ugh). I ended up not buying anything. The store did not seem very busy at all, I think there were maybe three total customers. It seemed eerily similar to the last time I went inside a Toys R Us store.
I've never been fond of Petsmart, whether I shopped in Chicago, San Diego, or Phoenix. They have huge stores but they never seem to have what I am looking for. Petco is the same: their stores have gotten bigger but the selection has not kept up. I really miss Petco Unleashed. Those stores are just the right size.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by rwsandiego » April 27th, 2018, 9:10 pm

Alpha8472 wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 8:36 pm
Why shop in the store when you can get it for less online? I usually buy pet products from Walmart or online.
Sometimes the shipping associated with food can add up. Walmart, Target, and the supermarkets don't sell my cats' food (Natural Balance) - yet. However, local chains like Pet Club often sell for less than Petsmart.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by pseudo3d » April 27th, 2018, 9:55 pm

Part of PetSmart's appeal is one of the biggest problems it has--the ability to bring your dog (or I guess cats are fine too) into the store. This unfortunately causes the store to smell awful all the time, and make it inconvenient if you were browsing for toys or food.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by storewanderer » April 27th, 2018, 11:31 pm

pseudo3d wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 9:55 pm
Part of PetSmart's appeal is one of the biggest problems it has--the ability to bring your dog (or I guess cats are fine too) into the store. This unfortunately causes the store to smell awful all the time, and make it inconvenient if you were browsing for toys or food.
The store should not smell awful all the time and I think that is a sanitation problem in the stores (probably due to being understaffed). It is only the past 4-5 years that the stores have started to smell awful. Before, they didn't smell awful and they've always allowed people to bring pets in.

One of the Petsmarts here, I can barely stay in for more than a few minutes due to the horrible pet urine smell in there. And I do not have a particularly strong sense of smell. I can only imagine how bad it must be for someone who does.

Petsmarts used to be really high volume stores. It has been interesting to watch them dwindle down to drugstore-like volumes when they were once more supermarket-like volume.

We also have a chain here with two stores (oddly placed) called Pet Supermarket which is a nice change from Petsmart and Petco (really hate that ripoff outfit with its deceptive specials requiring odd minimum quantity purchases and practice of charging you sales tax on the pre-tax price of certain sale items claiming the discounts are "manufacturer discounts subject to sales tax on the regular price" - no other pet/consumable retailer does that, not to mention they charge for bags in California yet pet stores are not subject to the plastic bag ban).

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by storewanderer » April 27th, 2018, 11:35 pm

rwsandiego wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 9:10 pm
Alpha8472 wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 8:36 pm
Why shop in the store when you can get it for less online? I usually buy pet products from Walmart or online.
Sometimes the shipping associated with food can add up. Walmart, Target, and the supermarkets don't sell my cats' food (Natural Balance) - yet. However, local chains like Pet Club often sell for less than Petsmart.
I am sure this is why "Chewy" is losing money. Shipping pet food (pet food!?) in those big heavy bags has got to be a money losing proposition. When you are Amazon who is selling a mix of items you can perhaps take those high shipping costs/losses to sell pet food to make more money selling someone a smaller item like a refrigerator water filter or an air filter for their vehicle, but "Chewy" has little to sell other than heavy pet food, heavy cat litter, etc. Even lighter weight items like a cage or litter box are big in size and would likely incur high shipping costs due to the odd/large measurements.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by Super S » April 28th, 2018, 7:40 am

storewanderer wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 11:35 pm
rwsandiego wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 9:10 pm
Alpha8472 wrote:
April 27th, 2018, 8:36 pm
Why shop in the store when you can get it for less online? I usually buy pet products from Walmart or online.
Sometimes the shipping associated with food can add up. Walmart, Target, and the supermarkets don't sell my cats' food (Natural Balance) - yet. However, local chains like Pet Club often sell for less than Petsmart.
I am sure this is why "Chewy" is losing money. Shipping pet food (pet food!?) in those big heavy bags has got to be a money losing proposition. When you are Amazon who is selling a mix of items you can perhaps take those high shipping costs/losses to sell pet food to make more money selling someone a smaller item like a refrigerator water filter or an air filter for their vehicle, but "Chewy" has little to sell other than heavy pet food, heavy cat litter, etc. Even lighter weight items like a cage or litter box are big in size and would likely incur high shipping costs due to the odd/large measurements.
I have a couple of locally owned feed stores near me that sell dog food for considerably less than the chain pet stores, and are competitive with stores like Walmart. I also don't like the thought of a big bag of dog food sitting on the porch, possibly getting ripped open and attracting stray animals, mice, etc. if the bag was damaged in shipping.

I will not buy online unless local prices are out of line or local selection is limited. There are only a few cases where I have had to do this. With some shipping methods where UPS turns local deliveries over to the post office, it can be unpredictable when you have a different letter carrier every day and mail is sometimes delivered to my home as late as 8:30 PM. The problem is that, with some retailers that include shipping, you don't always know how this will work at first.

Online shopping doesn't always work for people like myself that work varied, rotating shifts which can leave something sitting outside for a while until I get home.

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by BillyGr » April 28th, 2018, 8:25 am

Seems that, perhaps they need a better way of putting the two together. Something involving eiher delivering those costly (heavy) items from the local stores (which could cut costs vs. shipping from a central location direct to homes) or even an order online and pick up at the stores option like other chains are doing?

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Re: Petsmart in trouble

Post by arizonaguy » April 28th, 2018, 8:28 am

If Amazon was going to buy another brick and mortar retailer, this would be it. I believe that there is potential for growth in this format (unlike Toys R Us which was a shrinking market).

My wife used to work for the veterinary clinic (Banfield which is owned by Mars) inside of Petsmart and I've been in the stores dozens of times since 2012 and I've never seen "supermarket like" volumes inside of their stores.

I have two dogs and two cats. We generally either buy pet food online or at Costco. I buy cat litter at Target as they're the only retailer I know that sells reasonably priced, large, unscented cat litter. Cat litter bags I buy at Winco (which actually has a quite decent pet department).

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