Originally Posted by trees
The discount stores all use "Brand Name Marketing" to make their discount products look like a great value when they are not. How do they do this? They go to the Brand Name producers and negotiate a discounted version (aka cheaper). Low and behold, an IR/John Deere/Husquvarna/Stihl/etc etc etc, that is just for Lowes/Home Depot/Tractor Supply/Northern Tools/Harbor Freight etc etc. Trees
Trees, there's a place here in town, down on Broadway, that's been selling mowers and chainsaws and similar stuff for over 50 years. Wont mention the name, but you're probably familiar with it. Anyway, I bought a Stihl blower there a couple years ago, and according to the owner, Stihl is about the only one of the major yard equipment mfgrs that still won't make the cheapened junk for the big box stores. At least that was the case at that time.
He says the bigger problem is once a mfgr hooks up with Lowes or HD, before long they start putting the same cheap crap parts on their supposedly higher end stuff that the box stores don't even sell. He said they've dropped lots of different brands over the years because of this. Sell the man something, and he's back with a problem before you've even forgotten his name.
I mentioned I'd bought an Echo weed eater from his store in '87 and that it still runs like a champ even though it looks like its been thru a couple wars (on the losing side). He said the Echo stuff was some of the best money could buy back then, and was until they hooked up with the box stores. Before long, they began to see problems with the Echo equipment they were selling, and every time he turned around there was someone dragging in another dead box store Echo and expecting him to do the warranty work on it. A few months later, he told Echo to just start shipping the stuff he'd been selling on over to the box stores since he was done with them.
These stores do the same thing with products across the board. Keep the external appearance the same, but cheapen everything that can't be seen as much as possible, so they can continue to create the illusion of lower prices. And its nothing but an illusion.