Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Price Comparison- Be in it to win it!

Recently Amazon announced the release of an iPhone App, Amazon Student. The app is essentially a price comparison tool aimed at college students. Other features of the app allow the user to buy and sell books as well.

Here is another reason why college stores need to be cognizant of the value of offering price comparison, with tools like Verba. As mobile apps for price comparison becomes a common tool for customers, stores need to be aware that if they are not part of the price comparison the fail to become an option for the consumer. Price comparison is as much about consumer trust and relationships as it is about transparency.  If your store is not listed in the comparison you simply do not exist for the consumer. It’s simple, you got to be in the game to at least have a chance to win it.  Providing price comparison information is an easy way to help retain market share.

Disclosure:  NACS Media Solutions does have a partnership arrangement with Verba.  We believe strongly that this type of technology should be widely adopted by the college store community.  The move of Amazon into this space further demonstrates that this technology makes sense -- and college stores were there first!  Amazon followed our industry's example almost 18 months later! 

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