Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Boutique Pet Stores-Worth the "Boutique" Price?

The market is pushing businesses to move more of their core functioning to online models which changes the nature of business as we know it. The online cheaper price leaves service, returns and customer service a bigger issue among customers that need more. Thus, moving to a boutique storefront model may be helpful if customers can get the best of both worlds through personalized local service with a much larger online structure. 

I went to the store The Shore Thing Pet Supply in OB. Lately I have been getting into smaller stores with a more neighborhood fell to them. For me, I think we need to redesign our neighborhoods of highways and big shopping malls back to local stores, even if some of them are chains, where people can walk and get to know their neighbors. Things would have been easier in COVID if we were prepared that way and people had relatively easy localized outdoor movement and shopping. 

Very positive customer service. Exceptionally friendly and willing to talk about options (they knew their product) that you won't find in large chains. It was this localized service and feeling that your a customer that matters makes a big difference. They were willing to return if the items I had I didn't like. I asked about a mattress for my dog carrier and biodegradable poop bags and they turned me onto two great products. 

Earth Rated vegetable Compostable Poop bags were one of the items the store had that I tried. As it was explained to me these are vegetable based bags that decompose. It looks like from the package that is only a facility. I think of things as alternatives. If I can switch from a heavy bag that will contribute to pollution or I can find one that is biodegradable then I would take the later even if it is a few more dollars. I would do that based on my personal values. I'm an active consumer. It was like $8.99 for 60 bags. So that is a lot of money considering the cheaper more pollutant varieties. 

I also got a pad from PLAY Pet Lifestyle and You. A few days prior I saw the pad there and thought it was $19.99 and debated in my mind whether I could buy something online and have it delivered within a few days for cheaper. Then I realized that part of the fun of shopping was browsing but someone must support these stores so I decided to go back and buy it in an act of water it down rebellion.

Standing at the counter I realized the price was now $29.99. Debating whether I would put it back I didn't want to look cheap so I made a quick evaluation and decided I would still buy it. It was worth the price. The pad was much thicker and of higher quality than some of the other pads I have seen before. Here is the Facebook page of the company.

I took the pad and used it for flooring in Chewy's pet carrier. It collapses sometimes and to have it stay open needs a harder floor but because I want the floor to be flexible for traveling I had to find something like a pad. So a little better quality for this purpose works well for me because he is going to get a lot of use out of it.


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