The Affects Of Wal Mart And Other Big Box Reatailers On A Community

2429 words - 10 pages

IntroductionEveryday millions of people are forced to shop for a variety of items. Many factors contribute to where a shopper will choose to go including: price, location, and versatility, and a big box retailer is able to offer the public all of these things. Big box businesses have changed the way people shop not only since weekly markets were common, but also they have changed shopping in the last ten years. Big box retail stores can either have a positive or a negative impact on the city depending on who is arguing. Local merchants believe that big box stores are something that no city needs, or wants, yet is the public who wants these massive stores. The city of Kamloops has seen the development of many big box stores in recent years, and there out look on them is a positive one.Shopping in the PastThe method in which people shop, and the reasons for shopping have changed drastically through out time. During the 15th century Romans Held weekly local markets outdoors (Sattertherwaite, 2001). This was not only an opportunity to buy needed supplies, but markets also provided community members an opportunity to socialize with each other. Weekly markets were important for social leveling, for it did not matter to the merchant who was rich or poor. All that was important to them was that they received the money for the goods, and all people no matter their social class everybody paid the same price (Sattertherwaite, 2001). Socialization has continued to play a primary role in shopping, but in recent years people have found shopping to be an inconvenience. No longer is shopping seem as a way to meet old friends, or as a way to escape the hectic duties that remain at home. Shopping is seen as a chore, and when consumers leave the house they have a mission they want to complete.Characteristics of a Big Box RetailerWal-Mart is in a group of much other business called Big Box. A Big Box business can be grouped together by five defining characteristics: they are generally 90 000 to 200 000 square feet, they are usually located near highway locations, the same store design is uniformly used, they are not located in pedestrian or bicycle friendly locations, and they are designed with massive parking lots to accommodate the car. Big Box stores place more importance on self-service and bulk buying (A Guide to the BC economy and the Labor Market, 2001). These stores are warehouse style, and no effort is made to make the customer comfortable. There are fewer employees on the floor, so to receive service means more work for the customer A Guide to the BC economy and the Labor Market, 2001). Big box stores often sell a wide range wide of items from clothing to furniture and appliance at inexpensive prices.Big Box Affects on CommunitiesWal-Mart and other big box retailers have a huge impact on the community not only in the manner that the consumer can now purchase their needed products at a reduced price, but they also provide tremendous social benefits. The...

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