I need it! Do I buy the cheap version or not?
We have all seen it. Two products that look similar, but have much different pricing. Is the higher priced item that much better? More often than not there are striking differences. Set side by side, What do you see when you look closely? Are they
- Built from the same materials?
- Do the units look sturdy?
- Does the cheaper product have a smaller power cord?
- Are the warranties comparable?
· Can you readily find repair parts and accessories?
I see the differences daily, as I work part time in retail. People look at a particular 500 dollar machine I sell. Then they see a 125 dollar version at a local discount store and buy it. Soon the differences become apparent. The discount model vibrates. It is very loud. It is mostly plastic and breaks easily. The power cord is smaller, and upon inspection, the unit has a smaller, less powerful motor. Also, the company doesnt stock accessories and repair parts are hard to come by. And even if it breaks under warranty, you have to go through the hassle of taking it back to replace it. And if its a tool for business you are going to have down time to consider. And time is money!! More than one of my regular customers have expressed regret that they didnt go ahead and buy the good quality one to start with. And talking about money? How painful is it to reach back into your wallet to buy the better product AFTER the cheap one is sitting at home broken and only good for the trash! I have been there, learned the hard way. And learning this really stunk.
Its the same with home oriented products. The local discounter sells cleaning supplies. Some are great! Some are watered down versions that are basically useless. So how do you know what to buy? Is there a way to find out?
You need a reference point. Ask friends. Look closely at the two products. Do some online research. I usually type in the product name in my search engine, and tack on review. This usually produces several sites or forums that have reviews. Read them!! Then take a sampling, in other words, dont buy because of a good review or not buy because of a bad one. Factor in all of the information. It does take a few minutes. But you will be more likely to find the product that fits your needs. You might see that the less expensive product fits your needs, and thats great! Saving money is wonderful. Or, you decide to spring for the higher priced one, because it better fits your needs.
So take some time .
There is no magic formula. Its just plain old time studying. But its well worth it to find out which item suits you best. After all, its your money we are playing with!