The Real Reason Sam’s Club Is Disappearing Across The Country

The Real Reason Sam’s Club Is Disappearing Across The Country


It’s easy to forget that both Walmart and
Sam’s Club started with one man and his five-and-dime store. They’ve become juggernauts of today’s retail
landscape, and when Sam’s Club opened in 1983, it was designed to be a one-stop shop for
business owners. Today, they’re a no-frills warehouse that’s
become as handy for families as for businesses. After all, who doesn’t love a place where
you can go and stock up on a year’s worth of toilet paper and pickles in the same trip? But in spite of Walmart’s domination of America’s
retail world, Sam’s Club has been in trouble for a while, with failing sales going back
to at least 2015. Their struggles went public in January of
2018, when some Sam’s Club stores across the country didn’t open for the day – or ever
again. What’s really going on here? Small business let them down Sam’s Club was originally founded to target
small business owners, and yes, those are the same small businesses Walmart has damaged
so badly. In a weird twist of cosmic karma, the purchasing
habits of those same people have ultimately put a hurt on Sam’s. The Motley Fool says as of 2015, about a third
of Sam’s Club memberships were held by small business owners. That’s a huge percentage, and with that group
not spending the amount of money Sam’s had expected, that created a cash flow problem
for the warehouse giant. And there’s another problem. Not only were small business owners not buying
as much as Sam’s thought they would, but when they did buy, it was mostly products for their
home and personal use. That completely skewed Sam’s targets, their
numbers, and their bottom line. Competition with… themselves Everyone knows Sam’s Club is Walmart’s sister
company, and sibling rivalry has ended up being a massive problem for them. At the time Sam’s announced they were going
to be closing about 10 percent of their locations, they had 660 stores in the US. Of those, 200 of them shared a parking lot
with Walmart – which, of course, doesn’t require customers buy a membership. Since there’s a huge amount of merchandise
that’s on the shelves at both Walmart and Sam’s Club, there are a lot of customers that
opt to just run into Walmart instead of fussing over Sam’s, their lines, and their memberships. That’s all helped make their own sister company
one of their biggest competitors, and that’s just not good business. Fulfillment center Amazon is now doing to Sam’s Club what Sam’s
Club and Walmart once did to Pop’s hardware store and Mom’s five-and-dime. So in order to stay competitive in the online
market, 12 of their Sam’s Club stores are being turned into e-commerce fulfillment centers
that will act just like Amazon’s. The goal is to try to compete with their insanely
fast delivery service, and that’s no small challenge. The first fulfillment center, located in Memphis,
Tennessee, will double as a testing ground as they find their feet, and it’s a huge decision
that’s reflective of the industry. An online shopping platform can make or break
a business, especially in an era when consumers are extraordinarily demanding. Keeping up with Costco Costco has been a near-constant thorn in Sam’s
side, and if you’re wondering how much Sam’s has been hurt by their rival, consider this:
52 of the 63 locations Sam’s Club closed in 2018 were ones that had a Costco within 10
miles. Costco’s numbers have continued to rise while
Sam’s struggles, and Sam’s Club CEO John Furner says there’s a few reasons why. He says their biggest issue is their lack
of focus, as he says they’ve spent too much time chasing too many things. They tried to cater to high-end customers,
small business owners, lower-income families… the whole deal, while Costco was quietly sitting
back and stealing customers. “I am total Costco, love Costco.” So now, Sam’s Club has cut their losses along
with all their stores in Washington state – the home of Costco. Retail analysts found that’s not a coincidence,
and bottom line? By cutting stores in high-competition areas,
they can compete elsewhere. Choosing customers carefully Part of Sam’s Club’s financial problems stem
from a bigger problem – the country’s economy. According to industry analysts at The Motley
Fool, most Sam’s Club customers come from middle- and lower-income brackets. When the economy goes bad or other disasters
happen, they’re the ones that feel it the most and they’re the ones cutting back on
spending the most. So it makes sense that many Sam’s Club stores
catering to lower-income areas in the U.S. are among those that have closed in recent
years. But the Waltons appear to have a remedy. The Wall Street Journal reported in January
2018 that remaining stores are being revamped to target a new group: families with an income
of between $75,000 and $125,000.” Sam’s Club CEO John Furner noted that the
goal was to “transform the business,” and added they needed to focus on locations more
accessible to the more resilient, higher-income brackets they were going to be targeting if
they wanted to turn business around. Sam’s Club is continuing to move forward,
but there might be more major changes on the horizon.

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  1. It used to be anything at Sam's club was the best price in my town. But the last few years, I have to comparison shop. Often Sam's stuff is more expensive these days. I do not have a Costco.

  2. Had a sam's sales lady walk into my shop to try selling me a membership. I said sure, give me 40 dollars and we can do business. She thought I was nuts. I said Oh so it's OK for Sam's to charge me to shop there, but you don't like the idea of me charging you to walk in here. Needless to say she got tongue tied and walked out !

  3. Fuck Walmart and Same club. Fuck Amazon too! All of their customers are to blame for America's troubles today. IDIOTS!

  4. All businesses would love very much to get rid of humans and only have robots working 24/7. Mad max is not a fantasy but a future reality….1% super rich and 99% in extreme poverty. It's coming fast.

  5. What the hell are people talking about? I have worked for both companies. They both treat their employees like crap, its retail. I think I made a dollar more an hour at Costco but the bonus was better at Sam's so…??? I dont shop at either anymore but when I did about 5 years ago, I liked Sam's better just because it felt less warehouse like. I think its just popular to hate Wal-Mart. Neither have good benefits, both have similar hours and employee scheduling. Oh, and the little snack place in Sam's is the bomb , you cant beat those pretzels.

  6. The “Sam’s credit card” is also a major factor. I refuse to sign up for a card just to shop at someone’s store. Is it supposed to make you feel special or something lol?

  7. I've had Costco membership for years. I decided to try out Sam's club because there was a promo to basically get a free year's membership. I shopped there twice and never returned. Prices were more expensive than getting them at a local store, but you had to buy bulk. Products were really odd. As this video mentioned, some products were geared towards higher end customers, like organic products, and some were things you would buy at Walmart. I really couldn't find anything there that enticed me to shop there. I asked the customer service rep there what's really good to buy at sam's and she basically laughed and said she doesn't know, maybe water. When I priced out water there, it was about 15% more than Costco for their brand. Also, Costco has a great brand recognition with Kirkland. I know that I'll get a quality product with Kirkland. I don't really trust Sam's brand, especially coming from a company that basically screws over their employees and really the customers for major profits.

  8. People need to calm the fuck down about Costco. They aren't your friends and while they offer good shit; in the end they are just out to make money. A business bottom line is Money > You.

    E: Oh yea forgot to mention that you still need to pay a membership fee to even get inside the store. Which by the way keep increasing on occasion! You can't even go past the front "door" without being harassed by them to show your membership card.

  9. I wish all the Sam's clubs with disappear and I wish all the Walmart mart switch disappear very evil COMPANY don't give them Your money

  10. I'm a former Sam's Club shopper. whenever I went there, I felt so bad for the employees. It seemed like they were treated terribly. When Costco opened in my area, it was like a breath of fresh air. Not only do I like Costco's products better, but is really a pleasure to shop there. I'll never go back to Sam's Club. Companies, if you want to be successful, treat your employees well.

  11. Because they used to be great now they suck. My husband ordered 2cases of pork butts for a church cook out that he was to cook for. When he went to pick them up , oops, they had sold 1 case to who knows who. Minor apologies and he had to drive 70miles to the next Sams to pick up other case.

  12. We the people know whete walmart and sams club came from the politicians got involved and we the people have subsidized after sam's exspamtion they give it to wally world and the wolly world funds their political life knot career politics has no career. Only money

  13. It is real simple, Sams club and Wal mart executives are very greedy. They have destroyed small business's across the nation. Here in Denver Wal mart has the nerve to put new amendments on the ballot so, we as consumers can pay a additional tax on every receipt, this to have a new store erected so Wal mart is not paying for it. I don't feel bad that they will go the route of K mart at some point and close stores down the road.

  14. Sam's is very convenient, so I shop there vs. Costco. But Sam's was dumb to focus on small business when small businesses can often get everything they need to operate, plus better prices, plus credit to buy it, from dedicated business distributors who will even deliver it.

  15. Reasons sams club is disappearing:
    1. Lousy hours for a big retailer.
    2. Same or higher prices as other places that dont charge a membership fee have
    3. Constantly discontinuing products so if you find something good, they may not have it later.

  16. only went to sams club for the pizza from the snack bar
    there long lines and membership made it so i stayed away for shopping purpose

  17. The problem with Sam's Club is almost everything is cheaper at Wal-Mart. Yes the big can of Del Monte vegetables cost less per oz at Sam's compared to Wal-Mart but the WM Great Value brand of everything cost less per oz/unit than Sam's. And anyone with any financial savviness knows that WM store brands are spot on comparable to name brand. There are only a few things we still buy at Sam's that is actually cheaper and that is meats, cheeses, and laundry detergent.

  18. I find this odd considering that barely even a year or two ago a new sams club opened up in my area. havent visited however so idk if it was closed or not.

  19. Costco is multitudes better than Sam's Club. They also don't ruthlessly take over an entire area like Walmart does.

  20. Why Costco does better than Sam’s and Walmart Because Walmart does not care about their members are customers they only care about the money when home-office is there everybody is concentrated on making them happy they don’t give a crap about the members

  21. malart is finally going down but its too late the kkkountry is already fuckked amazon is gonna kick their republikkkon ass i support Costco fuck malmart and fuck amazon GO COSTCO

  22. republikkkons and HEEBUS JEEBUS FREAKKKS should be banned from Costco let them shop at their shitty little malmarts i only go to a malmart to take a piss and i piss all over the toilet the walls and the floor fuckkk republikkkons fuckkk HEEBUS JEEBUS and fuckkk malmart GO COSTCO

  23. Costco and Sams Club are both near my house. I have been to both and the layout, product location, size of store, sections of product, uniforms, storefront, and food court is copy and paste. I forget which store I am in half the time. I think I am in Costco, and then I walk out to the Sams Club parking lot and vise versa. I always thought they were the same company as Costco with just a different name like Carls Jr and Hardys

  24. As a former sams employee i work there 11 yrs 9/30/18 last day there i just had enough with the company cutting hrs without notice they tell come at this hr no hiring 32 hrs for ft 22 pt theres no control on order stuff the thing they order product that doesn't sell things that sell they dont order ll yrs ago we were 27 people working night shift now we were 12 people over 50 percent cut all this yrs its not the same thing its gone get worst even on walmart its a mess well i just move on from this crap of company thank god i got a good job thats paying me alot more

  25. The business transformation line at the end is total B.S. Walmarts and sams club moved in with lower prices selling crappy foreign goods and now that they have shut down the small business' in their areas they can raise prices or as the b.s. you were led to believe, sell better quality goods. Higher dollar items carry a higher profit margin when there is a standard markup so they are just making more.

  26. When you pay for membership at $50. Plus and find a product for less at another store you wonder why I purchased a membership. Re vamping for a customer who makes more money is insane. But what do I know. When I can get a box of beef at 30% less why would I be shopping at Sam's club? If I can get better quality at another store at the same price, why not.

    I hope someone from Walmart/ Sam's club reads and listens to this, I don't have a fancy degree from any school but I know that they're killing off the Sam's club line by not listening to the consumer, just like Walmart. When a company listens to the consumer they thrive better. Mr. Walton and I had a chat about this while fishing one afternoon. He said quality, price and pride make for a perfect fit in doing business.
    Going back to old school ways would bring in a lot more business. Over working employees is another problem with the company. Everyone is starting to see the greed of the company as well. I can go on for days as to what is wrong but is anyone going to listen to me, I think not. Sam's club and Walmart need to change the image and attitude of the way they do things quick or it's lights out and the doors are closed.

  27. If Sam’s club thinks that serving the minority of the population is the right move they are clearly moving in the wrong direction.

  28. Just got screwed by Sam's online one day sale. Waited all night to buy my wife a Samsung tab A 10.1 just to have the web site crashed. My membership is up on the 25th and they can stick it !

  29. "Sibling rivalry…"Yeah, the Sam's that closed near me was in the same lot as Walmart; it was a smaller location; AND there's a Target in the next lot; lots of food stores nearby…But everyone was shocked that it closed; it was always busy over there.

  30. Everytime I buy food from Sam's there's something wrong with it. Their hamburger meat is red on the outside and brown on the inside. The bread get stale after a few days and starts molding. I stopped buying food there. It's crap. Now I understand why after reading some of the comments about the bonuses that managers get. There's no checks and balances for the quality of their products. It goes unpunished and that's what is allowing it to happen. You can't just hope that people won't be greedy or corrupt. You have to greed proof the world. Their system is built on the hope that everyone will do the right thing. Fail.

  31. Why does Sams make you stand in line to pay….( I get it)
    But also stand in a longer line to leave the store.
    I don’t know maybe have more than one person at the doorway to look at receipts instead of old man rivers that moves the pace of a snail 🐌 to check people…..

  32. We have membership for both Sam's and Costco, and I like both.

    I like Sam's Club because it's less crowded so shorter lines (usually no line) and lots of parking spaces. There's also a self-checkout for quick purchases. There seems to be more variety of snacks and beverages here than Costco, and office supplies are usually cheaper too.

    Costco has better food and I buy most household items here. Occasionally, there will be deals on tech items that I will be interested in. It is very crowded, especially during peak hours/weekends, but they seem to be quick on opening another register when the lines get toooo long.

  33. What happened was their former CEO was a black woman who was racist and demanded her managers hire and promote blacks regardless of qualifications. This hurt the store and membership dropped. She finally took a nice payout to resign. Honestly we quite Sam's after reading the story about her and are at Costco now which we like much better.

  34. I was mad about them closing because they closed the one next to where my dad works. Now we have to go to one that's far away.

  35. The membership is a huge problem, honestly. I have a Sam's club closer then a Walmart, but because it requires a membership, we don't shop there. If it didn't have a membership requirement, we'd happily go there.

  36. It's funny. A lot of people are saying Costco > Sam's Club in the comments and a lot of comments are also blaming Sam's Club and Walmart for killing small businesses. But… Isn't Costco doing the same thing to small businesses as Sam's Club? People are also ignoring an important fact. Walmart was life blood for people during the depression. Small businesses often charge more and it really doesn't matter if their quality is better when nobody can afford it. That's why they were going down. A dollar here and a dollar there might not seem like a lot, but it can add up to a whole piece of food. People might argue, but we're doing better! Some are, but many aren't and if they had to rely on small businesses, they'd either go hungry or have to rely on dollar tree. Walmart didn't kill small businesses, it was their unwillingness to adapt and the fact that they didn't have products that could compete.

    I do agree, though, that Walmart should treat it's employees better.

  37. There’s an old expression. You don’t shit where you eat. Walmart dumped on us here. I won’t spend a dime at that place .
    Walmart came to town,32 local businesses closed in the first year. Mind you Walmart has never paid full taxes once on that property. Corporate welfare. When the first10 years was ending they remodeled and did it again. Yet they damanded and received a $3million intersection and turn lanes because 2 people were killed by a walmarter running the light to enter their parking lot. They didn’t even send flowers. Or spend a dime on the access roads they promised no other Walmart’s within 75 miles. We now have 7 within 35 miles and there were 3 Sam’s closed now. They treat their help like crap and ignore charity work.

  38. I have been a Sam's Club member for 16 years. A friend took me to Costco a few years back. I have not a member for only one reason: I despise driving through that VERY congested part of town. Everything about it was far superior to Sam's Club. The patrons did not tie up the parking lot waiting for a parking space a few feet closer to the door. Every single shopping cart outside the club was placed in the cart return. People all walked on the right side of the aisles, and stepped out of the way if they wanted to carry on a conversation. The employees were extremely friendly and seemed to care that I was shopping with them. The pizza at the snack bar was better…not swimming in grease. The selection of products was more extensive, of slightly better quality, and a few cents cheaper. Sam's Club employees and patrons just leave something to be desired. Costco, if you would kindly build a new club in an area convenient for me to access, I would tear up my Sam's Club card that day and join your club.

  39. I worked at sams for 2 years , i enjoyed it , liked the pace of work , but recently corporate made some changes and ppl started dropping like flies , and what they wanted the workers to do , they wanted us to undo because they couldn't make up their mind . Overall it was a good experience.

  40. People ask me why I love the Philippines. I use to work for Walmart distribution. I got treated like crap. The equipment never word, nothing scaned, and on and on. The management did not care if you worked there, they just hire someone else. Walmart Delhi was a joke. After Sam died, all the CEOs since cut back on worker care. This company hurts themselves, any branch.
    Move to Philippines for a better life. Leave America.

  41. The reason Sam's clubs are losing is because all they care about is making money working thier employees like mules with little pay and don't really care about customers it's all about saving money .. I work there and we never have air conditioning on customers are always complaining about the heat..it's not a family oriented store to work for they are taking our bonouses away and making it to where we can't be with family during special days..they made billions and by thier confession but still say not enough for our bonouses we all earned not to mention we are short staffed for 6 months and get worked in places we have no knowledge of.. Sam's is a sweat shop money hungry I don't shop here and wouldn't recommend anyone else to.. terrible management..no one answers radios when customers need help welcome to Lubbock Texas

  42. Their prices are really not that great you can be much wiser shopper by buying on sale items. I recently joined for the reason of gas discount but really not impressed with the prices.

  43. Sams Club has just missed the bar!!!! Their customer service is terrible, try calling customer service, if they don't just hang up on you!! They are not professional at all!!!! or are not informed…….The only thing they sell worth the money are those "ZINUS BEDS"
    they are awsome!!!

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