Harvey Norman rocked the industry over the Melbourne Cup weekend with a ‘Buy 1, Get 1 Free’ offer on a broad range of popular compact cameras.
The offer, which only ran for just four days, excluded cameras with interchangeable lenses, and webcams. The free camera had to be of equal or lesser value, but not necessarily the same model. Premium models such as the Canon G12 and the Sony Hx9V were included in the promotion. Shoppers reported buying two Canon G12s (pictured right) effectively at $350 per camera, half Harvey’s RRP of $699.
(By comparison, the same camera is advertised this week at Ted’s for $599 and at DCW for $569.)
It follows a similar ‘get 1 free’ Harveys promotion earlier in they year for laptop computers.
According to people commenting on shopper forum, Ozbargain.com.au, the promotion has been (unsurprisingly) well-supprted, with many Harvey Norman stores having their camera display cabinets virtually cleaned out.
The OzBargain website is set up for consumers to share information on products offered at bargain prices, ‘freebies’, and coupon offers.
The Harvey Norman promotion was advertised on radio and TV and seems to have served to clear the decks (‘no rainchecks’) ready for Christmas. Staff were encouraged to sell $100 accessory packs to accompany the cameras, consisting of a camera case, memory card and extended warranty.
Disputes emerged during the sale period as prices advertised on the Harvey Norman website were sometimes lower than in-store RRPs. When shoppers were able to prove the lower advertised price, store staff generally agreed to the lower price.
A majority of the hundreds of contributions to the Ozbargains discussion on the Harvey Norman offer were buyers seeking someone close by with whom to split a purchase.
Due to the Harvey Norman move, we can probably expect plenty of new, unopened compact cameras with Australian warranty for sale on eBay and Gumtree from now to Christmas.
As one Oz Bargain contributor noted:
Buy one, get one free…Essentially, buy 1 overpriced camera, sell the other camera brand new at a reasonable price on ebay and end up with 70-80 percent off the first camera. Which would be a hell of a saving in anyone’s opinion!