A guy opened a kayak shop and it was the only one in the area. People would come from far and wide to look at the kayaks because they knew you can’t feel quality on the Internet, or see if you fit well. The guy would ask them questions and guide them to the best boat for their purpose and budget.

However, customers would then search the same boats from their phone and find the guy’s prices were higher because he was providing a showroom, inventory and expertise. The guy could not match the Internet price because he was paying overhead and needed to be paid for his time. The customers often chose the best price and didn’t buy from the guy.

There is a value those customers got from the guy that they didn’t pay him for all in the interest of saving a few bucks. They got his time, expertise and advice. They got to see the product in real life, which saved them the trouble and costly returns. And they got to avoid the trouble of mailing a kayak. This value is not available online.

The customers used the skills of the guy, but rewarded someone else with their business. It wasn’t long before the guy went out of business because he couldn’t compete with the Internet’s prices.

Isn’t the service the guy provided worth something?

When you only look at the price, you can often end up forgetting about some of what you are getting. Looking at the value is the better way to shop.

Frugal is only good up until the point of being greedy and wanting someone else to work for free. There is a line between frugal and greedy somewhere around cheap.

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