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Retailers are getting transparent with their pricing

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“Transparent pricing is basically when a retailer breaks down everything from sourcing where a fabric comes from to transportation to how much a zipper costs,” says fashion trend analyst Charcy Evers. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) “Transparent pricing is basically when a retailer breaks down everything from sourcing where a fabric comes from to transportation to how much a zipper costs,” says fashion trend analyst Charcy Evers. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Traditionally, retailers have rarely spelled out exactly how price is determined -- until now. Several e-tailers are showing their cards with something called “transparent pricing.” (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Traditionally, retailers have rarely spelled out exactly how price is determined -- until now. Several e-tailers are showing their cards with something called “transparent pricing.” (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
When it comes to her clothes, Mary Lee Joseph likes to know she’s getting what she pays for. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) When it comes to her clothes, Mary Lee Joseph likes to know she’s getting what she pays for. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(3 ON YOUR SIDE) -

Have you ever wondered if it’s worth paying $300 for a handbag when another is only $50 or $100 on a blouse when another is $25? Sure, retailers claim “quality” controls cost, but now consumers want to know what exactly drives price tags. A growing number of retailers are listening, deciding transparency is the key to trust – and loyal customers. 

When it comes to her clothes, Mary Lee Joseph likes to know she’s getting what she pays for.

“It’s something you think about, you know, how much things cost and why,” says Joseph.

Traditionally, though, retailers have rarely spelled out exactly how price is determined -- until now. Several e-tailers are showing their cards with something called “transparent pricing.” 

“Transparent pricing is basically when a retailer breaks down everything from sourcing where a fabric comes from to transportation to how much a zipper costs,” says fashion trend analyst Charcy Evers. 

One example: while shopping online – Joseph spotted a black T-shirt for $16. Along with the price, the site shows that materials cost $1.31 – Labor $5.95 – and transport $.13 for a total cost of $7.39. That means a markup of $8.61.

“They actually surprised me a lot in terms of how detailed the breakdown was,” says Joseph.

Evers says some companies even declare the countries and factories where products are made, claiming the safe conditions and fair wages. 

“When you talk about why something is $150 versus $50, the argument for the $150 piece is where it’s coming from. ‘I’m doing good for the environment, I’m helping support fair labor conditions.’” Joseph explains, “I’d rather pay more if I know it comes from an ethical, responsible company.”

Like the transparency movement already popular in the food and beauty industries, experts say millennials demanding more information driving the retail response.

“If other companies see that companies are transparent and are successful, then I think they definitely will follow that trend,” says Evers. 

She adds that huge companies are less likely to be transparent because it’s more difficult to track each part of the supply chain. 

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Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

Click to learn more about Gary.

Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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