When we shop, we like to think we are getting the best deal. One way to feel more confident in the price we are paying is by utilizing price-matching policies, either at the point of sale or by requesting a price adjustment after the fact.
So, what is price matching?
Scenario A: You walk into a store and see an item you want to buy, but you saw that item for less at another store or on the retailer’s website. You’d rather get the item now, which is where price matching comes in! If the store has a price matching policy, they may honor the other price if you can show proof.
Scenario B: After purchasing something from a retailer, you realize that they are now selling that same item at a lower price (or that a qualifying competitor is). If you can show what you initially paid for it – your receipt should suffice – some retailers will offer a refund or store credit for the difference. When price-matching a competitor, you will need to show proof of that price.
Not all retailers price match or offer price adjustments after purchase, so here is a breakdown of some popular retailers who do!
How do you price match?
In-store, you can sometimes price match right at the register if you are asking the retailer to match a competitor’s price. Every store is a bit different, but typically, if you can show proof of the competitor’s price – either by a published ad, photo, or screenshot (the actual ad is best), the cashier can grant you that price. If you are looking for a price adjustment for a previous purchase, this can typically be done at the customer service desk.
Is there a way you can ensure you are getting the lowest price at the outset?
Before you buy anything, it’s essential to look for ways to save on your purchase. By installing a browser extension, like the Sidekick from CouponCabin.com*, who I work with, you’ll be automatically alerted to available coupons and cashback offers. You can also use a tool like Google Shopping to compare prices across multiple retailers before deciding where to shop.
Top retailers and their price matching policies
I know I’m dashing your hopes here, but Amazon does not price match the competition. They will adjust your price if you see a lower price on Amazon within 7 days, however. There are several exceptions to this rule.
Best Buy will let you price match in-store and online prices but only on new merchandise (not open box or refurbished). When matching in-store, they will match local competitors within 25 miles.
Dick’s Sporting Goods
Within 14 days of purchase, Dick’s will price match local competitors within 25 miles, plus lots of online retailers. They will also match sale prices from select retailers. They have some restrictions, but they are fairly flexible in general.
Home Depot will match most local or online competitors, excluding Amazon and Sam’s Club. There are some category exclusions, like clearance items, items that are discontinued, and some seasonal products.
JCPenney matches the prices of identical items from most competitors, including Amazon – and they’ll accept coupons at the same time!
Even though Kohl’s offers price matching, they will only price match another retailer’s in-store pricing (not online). You do have the option to price match with the kohls.com pricing, but there are many brand exclusions.
Lowe’s will match local competitors and select online retailers, but only at the time of purchase. There are exclusions, including seasonal or discontinued items, bundles, and doorbuster deals.
Macy’s will offer price matching at select stores, and only if the items are purchased without a promotional code. Price adjustments are offered within 10 days of purchase.
Michael’s is a favorite for price matching because they match prices on identical, in-store items from most brick-and-mortar retailers and will beat that price by 10%. Price adjustments after purchase are offered for 7 days.
Nordstrom will allow price matching and adjustments within 10 days. Their limited list of retailers includes Amazon. There are exclusions, like designer brands or items from Nordstrom Rack.
Neiman Marcus does not price match their competitors, but they do offer price adjustments on Neiman Marcus prices within 14 days of purchase. However, there are some limitations on what they will price match.
At the time of purchase, or within 14 days of purchase, Office Depot will price match a competitor’s price for the identical, in-stock item. Competitors include Amazon, Target, and Best Buy.
Staples will price match select competitors, including Amazon, but they only do so in-store. Like Michael’s, they will beat the price by 10%! For price adjustments, you have 14 days to request one once you’ve made a purchase.
Target will price match about 30 retailers both in-store and online and there aren’t restrictions on whether the item is in-store or online. You can also get a price adjustment within 14 days of your purchase.
Walmart will only price match their own website in-store, but they will price match their website prices versus select online retainers. The item must also be identical and in-store at Walmart and you can only price match once per day.
*I have a financial relationship with CouponCabin.