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Posted Sunday, April 16, 2006
Goods of High-Quality but Not Always Rock-Bottom Prices; Strategies for Saving Big Bucks
YONKERS, NY – Shoppers who visit stores at outlet malls expecting to scrounge through bins of mediocre merchandise should give their perceptions a makeover according to the May issue of Consumer Reports.
Consumer Reports went undercover at hundreds of outlet stores and the Consumer Reports National Research Center surveyed more than 6,000 readers to find ways to get the most value out of outlet stores. Among the findings:
Consumer Reports rated 33 top outlet stores based on survey results for value, quality, selection and service. The winners for value and quality: Lenox, L.L. Bean, Mikasa, and OshKosh B’gosh. Survey respondents noted that VF Outlets (apparel), Coach (handbags and accessories), Lenox and Pfaltzgraff (dinnerware), and Saks Off 5th (clothing) offered exceptional discounts over the prices charged at regular stores for those brands.
When looking at selection, readers’ picks included Carter’s, Corning, Harry&David, Kitchen Collection, Lenox, Mikasa, and OshKosh B’gosh. Respondents found the sales help at Harry & David to be exceptional as did CR’s nosy reporter. Readers’ picks for best service include Coach, Harry & David, Jockey, L.L. Bean, Land’s End, Lenox, Mikasa, and Pfaltzgraff.
STRATEGIES FOR SHOPPING
Consumer Reports notes that great bargains, high-quality merchandise, wide selection, and a pleasant experience are available to consumers if they shop right. Following are CR’s strategies:
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