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Only 1 VW Camper poly per household via [email protected]

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Comments

  • CircleKCircleK U.S. - Columbus, OhioMember Posts: 1,055
    edited September 2013
    Tevans333 said:

    tensor said:

    maques said:

    ^^ I think there are many who are timing buys at [email protected] when something extra is given. Free shipping is default now, so its either double VIP points or an interesting freebee (May the 4th rings the bell?).
    I doubt casual LEGO buyer average Joe knows about [email protected] at all...

    My problem is not the "limit" - but the way how it "works"...

    I have a problem with the limit. After all, now that the exclusive discount went away, we're only left with a stunted version of freebies, and the VIP points.

    So do you have a problem with almost all other companies who do not offer any freebies at all? TLG always has some sort of freebie every month, I think we are spoiled and it shows...
    Right or wrong, I don't view the [email protected] freebies as "freebies". I view them as an incentive for shopping with Lego directly and I absolutely consider them a part of the over all deal. If the freebie isn't going to be there then the deal isn't as good, which in my case opens the door to other sellers.

    I won't take my ball and go home just bc the freebie is no longer available to me, but I may go play in another person's yard - most likely Amazons. It's in TLG's best interest to keep me in their yard. A small freebie is a small price to pay.
    GuroooXefanFollowsCloselyCam_n_Stu
  • stevemackstevemack 1567km Drive From BillundMember Posts: 931
    Can instore staff see your purchase history easily from your vip card or do they not really care anyway how many your buying lol?
  • joel4motionjoel4motion United KingdomMember Posts: 959
    stevemack said:

    Can instore staff see your purchase history easily from your vip card or do they not really care anyway how many your buying lol?

    I am pretty sure they can see your order history. When I bought a second delorean the female behind the counter questioned why I wanted a second.

  • ckenda1ckenda1 Member Posts: 121
    edited September 2013
    I've gotten 2 VW polys from 2 separate trips to the same LEGO Store. They even gave me a Star Wars Clone Lieutenant on another trip where I didn't even purchase $50 worth of stuff and none of what I did purchase was Star Wars.

    Overall, I have gotten 2 of each in 3 trips.
  • CoyotelilyCoyotelily God's Own County, UKMember Posts: 660
    Interestingly, I decided to take a trip the the store in Leeds as I wanted a couple of things and a friend asked me to pick up the palace cinema for him and I could have the VIP points - as this sounded likea good opportunity to test my [email protected] experience off I trotted and yes I got a vw poly with each £50+ order, using the same VIP card ! Unfortunately it turned into a disastrous day as when we left the trinity centre my friend was pick pocketed and the day ended up as a horrible experience
  • indigoboxindigobox Member Posts: 470
    @Coyotelily I love the Leeds store. Yay for the VIP points + VW Camper, but poo for the pick pocketing experience :(
  • DadDad UKMember Posts: 816
    I had actually had my second order delivered today but was unaware when I posted before, and the delivery note was correct. No camper van. I tried calling them but had to listen to a message that said ' We can't answer your call right now because our staff are training which will improve your shopping experience with us' I have never had anything but great service from their staff, but one camper van per household is absolutely ridiculous. If it was 3 I could see it but 1? No way.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    Havent freebies stated one per household for a long time, they jus
  • stevemackstevemack 1567km Drive From BillundMember Posts: 931
    Just buy in store problem solved :)

    (Or am i just lucky working 5 mins from the Liverpool store hehe)
  • DadDad UKMember Posts: 816
    stevemack said:

    Just buy in store problem solved :)

    (Or am i just lucky working 5 mins from the Liverpool store hehe)

    I didn't think anyone worked in Liverpool hehe

    indigobox
  • TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
    Tevans333 said:

    tensor said:

    maques said:

    ^^ I think there are many who are timing buys at [email protected] when something extra is given. Free shipping is default now, so its either double VIP points or an interesting freebee (May the 4th rings the bell?).
    I doubt casual LEGO buyer average Joe knows about [email protected] at all...

    My problem is not the "limit" - but the way how it "works"...

    I have a problem with the limit. After all, now that the exclusive discount went away, we're only left with a stunted version of freebies, and the VIP points.

    So do you have a problem with almost all other companies who do not offer any freebies at all? TLG always has some sort of freebie every month, I think we are spoiled and it shows...
    Maybe, and I don't consider myself spoiled in any way shape or form. Why? I'm a consumer, and as a retailer, it's your job to woo me. If you fail to woo me, I'll go elsewhere.
    LegoFanTexasBumblepantschromedigiFarmer_John
  • stevemackstevemack 1567km Drive From BillundMember Posts: 931
    Dad said:

    stevemack said:

    Just buy in store problem solved :)

    (Or am i just lucky working 5 mins from the Liverpool store hehe)

    I didn't think anyone worked in Liverpool hehe

    Lol! Its a 50/50 split i'd say ;)
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409

    The T&Cs at the bottom clearly state 'One free set per household'. Sure it's a downer, but they probably only have a limited number, so that'll be the fairest way to ensure as many people as possible get one.

    I have no problem with the 1 per household, so long as they don't put it in the cart and let you checkout with it. That is the part that bothers me.

    Don't put it in the cart and we're all good.

    Except that 2 per household would be better, people do have multiple fans of LEGO and of course it makes a great gift.

    Heck, I'd buy a few extra for $10 each if they would sell them.
    hewman
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409

    They don't want freebies being just a way for people to offset the price of their purchase.

    Yea, but would they prefer not getting the order at all?

    I purchased 2 smaller SW sets, total of about $85, to get the VW Camper Van and SW figure.

    Without those freebies, I would never have placed an order.

    So they can't have it both ways. Either give me something nice to motivate me to place an order at full price, or I'm not going to buy.
    juggles7chromedigi
  • maquesmaques HungaryMember Posts: 96

    I have no problem with the 1 per household, so long as they don't put it in the cart and let you checkout with it. That is the part that bothers me.

    Don't put it in the cart and we're all good.

    Completely agreed!

    BTW, how come this thread in the shopping UK section? And how on earth LFT found this??? :-)
    LegoFanTexas
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    graphite said:


    To me this goes back to how archaic the backend of [email protected] must be. It is obvious they have no competent people working their web back end if they have to "remove" the freebie from 2nd and 3rd orders on a single account even after the order and invoice show it. In today's e-commerce driven economy these things should easily be done at order time.

    ^ This... I've heard from someone at TLG who said to me (when I questioned them on this issue), "TLG is really a manufacture, not a retailer, so our experience is in that area, we're new to retail and it is a small part of our overall business which is why our technical backend isn't as up to date as we'd all like".

    Hogwash, if 10% of all LEGO business is [email protected] and LBR stores, then the retail end is a $400+ million company.

    There is no excuse for a nearly half billion dollar company to be this sloppy when it comes to e-commerce. The technology has long since been figured out, you can buy this stuff off the shelf, you don't even have to program it yourself anymore.
    madforLEGO
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    tensor said:

    Same with the 10% coupon issue. They know people came into the store, so they'll compromise on another set and likely buy something anyway. I'd say very few actually storm out and buy nothing with it.

    Yes, but how many will come back again in a few weeks, vs. not come back at all?

    Most customers don't complain, they just never return.
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    ^Very true. I hate jumping through hoops and getting hosed on fine print exclusions. Not like 10% off (15% with VIP added) is hard to beat elsewhere. Keep it simple or the customer will make it real simple for you.
    TheLoneTensorLegoFanTexasjuggles7chromedigiYellowcastleCam_n_Stu
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768

    They don't want freebies being just a way for people to offset the price of their purchase.

    Yea, but would they prefer not getting the order at all?

    I purchased 2 smaller SW sets, total of about $85, to get the VW Camper Van and SW figure.

    Without those freebies, I would never have placed an order.

    So they can't have it both ways. Either give me something nice to motivate me to place an order at full price, or I'm not going to buy.
    What did I miss here? They got their order, you paid full price, you got your freebies..

    Still makes me laugh how many people are up in arms and throwing their toys out the pram in a "If I can't get multiple freebies, I will take my business elsewhere" style. We are a tiny minority, Lego are going from strength to strength, you act like it would harm them if a handful of random AFOL's buys their product from a different source. You are still buying their product, they are still making money from you, do you not get that??
    DougoutlegofanfromleedsJP82
  • maquesmaques HungaryMember Posts: 96

    What did I miss here?

    You missed the point... :-)

    It is mainly about HOW the freebie removal is handled..
    Dad
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    edited September 2013
    ^^If you took the double-promo issue in isolation, then not that much of a biggie. But combine that enforcement with a ban on discounts of exclusives everywhere, withdrawal from LUG support, banning of accounts suspected of reselling without notice, etc. And you still don't see the writing on the wall?

    TLG is basically getting a bit arrogant on what they think they can do to their customers and still get away with it. They are entering a very negative area and with little perceived benefit in customer happiness, if any is even possible regarding their moves (other than those few wishing prices would go up for everything). And if I'm so replaceable by some newbies, then go for it TLG, wish you all the best in persuading someone else to cough up $1K a month on your toys. I'm sure we grow on trees infinitely too. I hate the direction they are going with the Big Brother tactics. Really, they should invest those dollars into extra freebies and employee discounts instead of installing scam-ware to sniff out double-orderers ooohhhh those evil people who order more than once.
    HokieJoe99juggles7Brickarmorchromedigi
  • DaraghDaragh IrelandMember Posts: 363
    I have a major problem with the limit as I gave my nephew the freebie I got knowing I was doing another order over £50. I just placed that order now and freebie appeared in basket, it better appear in box or I will be very upset ;'-( I changed shipping address hoping that may help ensure I get it.
  • thenosthenos Twin Cities, MNMember Posts: 437
    They did this last year with the Winter bonus set, didn't they? Some got multiples, others got one. I think the inconsistency is what is irritating, you can't count on it even after you order. That and going to the mall on the weekend after Thanksgiving just because I wanted another set and couldn't guarantee getting it from [email protected] Fun times.
    juggles7
  • maquesmaques HungaryMember Posts: 96
    My momma always said, "[email protected] was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.".
    starfire2
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768
    My momma always said "read the small print dummy! And if you don't read the small print and it bites you in the ass, don't come wingeing to me!"

    Can't believe she called me dummy.... But she was right.
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768

    And if I'm so replaceable by some newbies, then go for it TLG, wish you all the best in persuading someone else to cough up $1K a month on your toys.

    Their business model is not to persuade people to spend $1K a month on their toys, we are just an added bonus.
    AND the problem is, you will continue to spend a fortune on their toys, even if not direct through [email protected]
    So if you were aiming to get say 5, TLG instead get 4 promo's out to their target market who are likely to have a positive vibe towards the company for getting something for nothing; and you are either happy with your one, or bitter and storm off and throw all your toys (except Lego) out the pram and go somewhere else TO BUY LEGO, so they win either way!

    Dougout
  • XefanXefan Member Posts: 1,149
    @princedraven You're showing a distinct lack of understanding as to how companies work. Companies are under immense pressure to show growth quarter on quarter, year on year. This is a thing companies should be able to do because the human population is always growing and normally so are other things such as individual wealth. As such any company not showing growth has problems, and questions will be asked of the leadership if they fail to achieve that.

    If someone buys a £99.99 RRP set from Amazon for £69.99 then Amazon still makes a share of profit from that, but even if it's only say, £5 then the discounted price at Amazon alone means Lego is down £35 on that product from what they could've had.

    So yes, they may still be making a sale but if others start switching like this then it effectively pushes Lego's average sale price down, and if they can't maintain their average sale price then depending on how quickly they can pull in new customers they will start to see a slowing of growth, or perhaps even negative growth.

    Given that they're such a big player and it's tough at the top they're going to be reaching a point where finding new customers is going to get ever more difficult so it's more important than ever that they keep the customers they do have paying as much as they can if they want to maintain growth.

    If they're going to start pushing people away to discounting sellers then they wont achieve that. The freebies are fundamental in helping assist them in getting people to pay RRP.

    So yes it does hurt them if people start buying elsewhere. Decreased profit is a very bad thing for a company especially if it were to get to the point where Amazon and/or other retailers become a big enough portion of their profits to start arguing for better terms such as increased profit share, decreased prices and so forth.

    Buying from non-brand stores if brand stores or [email protected] stop being competitive or stop offering incentive to buy there can very much give TLG reason to stop and reassess how it has treated it's customers.
    hantot
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768
    ^ Disagree.
    TLG are booming, however much you think you know about business, they are handling theirs very well.
    They are targeting their core demographic, and at the expense of a tiny amount of people who think they are entitled to an extra freebie.

    Lets be honest there is not that many AFOL's and I would say there are a fair percentage of those that agree that sticking to their own rules on a promotion is a good thing.

    This is NOT going to hurt them.

    There are far too many people here who think they know better than TLG, makes me laugh so much, if you guys were in charge the company would crumble within days... Oh just give them as many freebies as they want, just set up a new reseller deal where we give them all the hot products just as they are going EOL. Let them buy as many 41999's as they like (and their Mum's!).
    cheshirecatSirKevbagsDougout
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    edited September 2013
    ^^ Might be all true if looked at in isolation but combined with possible discount limits at other retailers (in the US at least, presumably elsewhere eventually), free shipping, production running at full capacity until new infrastructure comes on line, shortage of previous freebies etc etc the picture becomes more complicated.

    What we're looking at here (and other threads) is people not dealing well with change, that's almost always the case and completely understandable, we're just not very good at it and to be honest LEGO aren't helping the process with a lack of information and inconsistency.

    However, when you step away and say, OK, Lego are limiting a freebie to one per household, its stated in the small print (and I think has been for a while) and they're just enforcing at [email protected] because its easy to do - you do wonder where is all the uproar coming from?

    Sure, it could be handled better, it could be removed from the basket, they could hold up the order and email you about it. They could make the same rule apply in store (although that's harder as they don't have a household to work from without a VIP card). But really, people are going to change their buying habbits because of a limit on free poly bags?

    It would be better if LEGO explained why they are making these changes, they've given some, particularly in terms of the VW poly and it wasn't believed by many and I'm fairly sure whatever LEGO said if it didn't agree with some peoples opinion they wouldn't belive it anyway.
    Dougout
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    edited September 2013
    @princedraven I agree entirely, whilst the vast majority here seem to be happy just explaining their opinion/take of the situation (which ever side of whatever fence that is - and thats great) there are some that seem to insist on giving us little bombs of retail guru greatness in threads all over the place. They'll happily explain that LEGO retail is now a $400m business, which is presumably in the region of $399.5m more than theirs and yet insist that they know more about every aspect of retail than TLG do. Yet in practical, real, terms their retail greatness seems not to stretch much further than flipping minecraft sets to cash strapped parents. Its funny, because one question that was never answered was why, if their knowledge and understanding of retail/business is so massive, they don't put it to better use than what is in reality the small peanuts of LEGO reselling. You would imagine they are better suited to a CEO role in a major multinational? Thats all fine, but I can't help feeling that they and the world of international business is really missing out.
    SirKevbagsprincedravenLegoboyDougout
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,813
    edited September 2013
    I don't care if they impose one freebie per household. So long as it is clear during the ordering process. If you are not going to get a second freebie on a second order, then it should not be added. It doesn't really matter what the T&C say. If lego automatically adds a freebie to your order online, then you should get it even if you have had one before. If they can invest in the "technology" to spot duplicate freebies and remove them by hand from orders when they are being packed, then they need to invest in the technology to spot this earlier on and not display another freebie in the cart when a second order is placed.

    To make sure shops stick to the same policy, then they could also make it that only VIPs get freebies. Then have the requirement that each VIP card is verified to a single address.

    If they are going to do it, do it properly and consistently.
    SirKevbagsGuroooBumblepantspharmjod
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    ^ Unless their statement that this was an issue because of the VW link was correct and not an ongoing change in behaviour. In which case, there would be less point in investing in it.
  • paul_mertonpaul_merton UKMember Posts: 2,967
    Why's everyone getting so worked up about this? It's only worth £0.01 :)
    http://shop.lego.com/en-GB/LEGO-Mini-VW-T1-Camper-Van-40079
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 19,813
    edited September 2013

    ^ Unless their statement that this was an issue because of the VW link was correct and not an ongoing change in behaviour. In which case, there would be less point in investing in it.

    It should still be made clear though that something that they chose (or their software chooses) to put in your cart will be removed and will not be delivered. If it is a one off, then they can easily have a secondary title for the item informing customers that repeat orders will have the item removed, although this is still rather unsatisfactory.

    Or they could contact everyone with repeat orders informing them that they will not get the freebie before the order is sent, and allow them to cancel the order rather than have to later return it due to missing items.
  • GuroooGurooo Member Posts: 268
    ^ WHAT!!? I thought it was supposed to be FREE!

    :P
  • maquesmaques HungaryMember Posts: 96

    My momma always said "read the small print dummy! And if you don't read the small print and it bites you in the ass, don't come wingeing to me!"

    Can't believe she called me dummy.... But she was right.

    ... so I ended up working for LEGO as a webshop developer... and I'm using the "fine print" text as a seed for the random generator, based on which, the other dummies (customer "service") can remove (or not) the monthly extra without notifying the customer about it. I could simply add a field to the user database and set it on successful "gift" checkout and check it with an one-liner at subsequent purchases (and reset it every month with another one-liner), but then heh, what would we laugh on with the CS guys/gals in the dining hall?
  • coachiecoachie South WalesMember Posts: 476
    maques said:


    BTW, off the record, I have two sons, so limiting the Mini Volkswagen T1 Camper Van "one per household" could break the third world war and noone would want that I guess... (not to mention my MISP poly collection.)

    Oh the irony that a model of a 50 year old van, the symbol of peace and the chosen form of transport for hippies since the 70s would cause conflict.


    I'm not going to enter into discussion of whether or not we are entitled to more than 1 or the circumnavigation of limits, but will say that these new restrictions are clearly not working, as can be seen on the BL sales history page.

    http://www.bricklink.com/catalogPG.asp?S=40079-1

    Here's a brief extract

    Qty Each
    9 ~GBP 10.230
    4 ~GBP 10.247
    1 ~GBP 10.519
    1 ~GBP 10.520
    1 ~GBP 10.520
    2 ~GBP 10.532
    1 ~GBP 10.537
    3 ~GBP 10.875
    50 ~GBP 10.876
    20 ~GBP 10.891
    1 ~GBP 10.918
    1 ~GBP 10.926
    1 ~GBP 10.940
    3 ~GBP 11.250
    2 ~GBP 11.454
    1 ~GBP 11.498
    1 ~GBP 11.517
    5 ~GBP 11.531
    1 ~GBP 11.586
    10 ~GBP 11.615
    CCCTheLoneTensor
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768
    ^ Are you enjoying working for LEGO?

    Oh, or are you just another one that knows so much better how this multimillion dollar company should do it's business?
  • XefanXefan Member Posts: 1,149

    ^ Disagree.

    There's no "disagree" about it, my post was a simple statement of facts so unless you're disagreeing with reality then "disagree" doesn't make any sense. It's like watching a factual documentary about some well established scientific phenomenon and saying "disagree", I guess you could say that, but it just means you're wrong.

    TLG are booming, however much you think you know about business, they are handling theirs very well.

    This is a different issue, I agree TLG is doing well now, and I actually think they'll continue to do well. What I did was simply highlight ways in which customer frustration could potentially harm them and explain to you why a decrease in sales by TLG direct could harm them. Again that's simple fact, TLG just can't make as much money from non-direct sales as they can from direct sales and this is why your "disagree" didn't make sense unless you'd like to explain how a £69.99 sale at Amazon will make them as much profit as a £99.99 sale direct. My disagreement with you wasn't that TLG is doing well, but simply with your assertion that buying Lego indirectly could have no effect on the company - that's simply false.

    But it was all just an "if" and an explanation of "why" a move by customer to non-direct sales could harm them. Where you're probably right is that that move wont happen and I tend to agree with you here as I think Lego are smart enough to nip this sort of issue in the bud. I very much suspect that given Lego's quarterly satisfaction surveys citing a sizeable number of respondents as being unhappy with a perception of declining quality and poor value for money that Lego will be loathe to clamp down too much on freebies because it'd only increase these negative perceptions and hence increase the amount of negative responses in surveys. Should this happen I have faith that Lego are smart enough to spot that and stop being so difficult with customers about said freebies.

    This is also why I suspect the US is seeing a clamp down on discounts on exclusives but Europe thus far hasn't - because the US respondents to their survey have shown a better view of value for money than Europe and so they recognise they can probably get away with it there, but much less so here where there is a perception of poor value for money contrasting against the US view of good value for money.

    I may be wrong, Lego may well ignore their own survey results and shoot themselves in the foot in which case they will begin to see the impact of that on their results over time, but like you I think they're probably smart enough to know better.

    There are far too many people here who think they know better than TLG, makes me laugh so much, if you guys were in charge the company would crumble within days... Oh just give them as many freebies as they want, just set up a new reseller deal where we give them all the hot products just as they are going EOL. Let them buy as many 41999's as they like (and their Mum's!).

    May I suggest checking the "What do Brickesetters do for a living?" thread or whatever it's called. There are a number of people in there who have identified themselves as being from various positions, some for companies far more successful than TLG. To assume no one on Brickset knows anything about business that would be of value to TLG is silly and to attach some kind of deity status to those that do run TLG shows a certain naivety of what's involved in running a successful company. There's nothing magic about it and certainly nothing unique - Lego if it were a US firm wouldn't even make the Fortune 500 list and there are many more companies across the globe in their respective countries that are larger and more succesful than Lego.

    Don't get me wrong, I love Lego and it's products or I wouldn't be here, but it's silly to try and keep up some pretense that Lego can do no wrong and that they have magically solved the whole business thing such that they could never see any negative impact on their business ever, no matter what they do. So to turn around that argument that "if Bricksetters are so smart, why isn't their business as big as TLG's?", then if TLG is so perfect, then why isn't it the biggest company in the world? Why isn't it even in the top 1000 biggest companies in the world?
  • maquesmaques HungaryMember Posts: 96
    Clearly a multimillion dollar company coudln't/shouldn't fix limit handling, but use customer service monkeys to do random picks. Similar to Tesco's last year "order lottery".
  • Tevans333Tevans333 Member Posts: 152
    Xefan said:

    @princedraven You're showing a distinct lack of understanding as to how companies work. Companies are under immense pressure to show growth quarter on quarter, year on year. This is a thing companies should be able to do because the human population is always growing and normally so are other things such as individual wealth. As such any company not showing growth has problems, and questions will be asked of the leadership if they fail to achieve that.

    If someone buys a £99.99 RRP set from Amazon for £69.99 then Amazon still makes a share of profit from that, but even if it's only say, £5 then the discounted price at Amazon alone means Lego is down £35 on that product from what they could've had.

    So yes, they may still be making a sale but if others start switching like this then it effectively pushes Lego's average sale price down, and if they can't maintain their average sale price then depending on how quickly they can pull in new customers they will start to see a slowing of growth, or perhaps even negative growth.

    Given that they're such a big player and it's tough at the top they're going to be reaching a point where finding new customers is going to get ever more difficult so it's more important than ever that they keep the customers they do have paying as much as they can if they want to maintain growth.

    If they're going to start pushing people away to discounting sellers then they wont achieve that. The freebies are fundamental in helping assist them in getting people to pay RRP.

    So yes it does hurt them if people start buying elsewhere. Decreased profit is a very bad thing for a company especially if it were to get to the point where Amazon and/or other retailers become a big enough portion of their profits to start arguing for better terms such as increased profit share, decreased prices and so forth.

    Buying from non-brand stores if brand stores or [email protected] stop being competitive or stop offering incentive to buy there can very much give TLG reason to stop and reassess how it has treated it's customers.

    The majority of those effected are the savvy AFOL's who stack mulitple promos/double VIP/coupons. At some point of stacking all of these along with the overhead and cost of selling direct, it becomes better for TLG if that customer were NOT to buy direct from [email protected] or a Local LEGO Store.

    It has nothing to do with the actual amount of cash made on the sale, but rather the margin. TLG has arranged profit margins for their distribution chain that they are happy with. They are now focused on keeping their direct sales profit margins at an acceptable level. If an AFOL stacks promos and discounts along with VIP points, that margin decreases. At the end of the day it's margins on paper that matter. And sometimes it's best not to make the sale direct. And when these savvy AFOLs shop elsewhere they're protecting their margins, but are still getting the sale through their distribution chain.
    cheshirecat
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    ^ Indeed, especially with [email protected] now customers have free delivery and hence no disincentive to create lots of £50.01 orders. An argument with that as the reason for the difference between [email protected] and Lego Store policy holds a bit of water to me.

    This has been mentioned before, that by stacking lots of offers/discounts and now free delivery makes you much less of an attractive customer to LEGO, especially if you are only flipping the LEGO to get the freebies and hence just taking future sales off LEGO at a more favourable (to you) time.
  • XefanXefan Member Posts: 1,149
    The margins are always going to be lower from 3rd party sales than direct sales, even with stacked promos of VIP points etc. VIP points are at best equivalent to a delayed 10% discount if only gained during double points periods, or 5% otherwise. Even if you stack double points with a free poly every £50 perfectly you're only ever going to achieve around £10 worth of discount goods off of each £50 and that's assuming retail value, the actual cost of a poly to TLG is going to be peanuts in practice.

    That's still never going to be worse than a profits earnt from a 3rd party sale and even then relies on someone being able to split an order into exactly £50 batches and only ever on double VIP point months. About the only exception are brand store event days (i.e. grand openings) but these are strictly controlled anyway with limited quantities and such.


  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    ^ Although add in delivery (mostly international over here), staff costs (and its probably a fairly inefficient system they have) and the picture begins to change.

    We're looking at this with almost zero information about the costs but also about the why's. You would hope that (even) LEGO would have considered the impact of enforcing a 1 poly rule and taken into account some disgruntled customers that may reduce/stop future spends. Now, either they don't care or they've decided its a price they're happy to pay. I very much doubt that they haven't even considered it, even if only at a very simplistic level.
  • XefanXefan Member Posts: 1,149
    In that respect, as a follow on from my point above, I suspect as much as anything they could be testing the water to simply see if they can get away with smaller runs of polys perhaps (which might make sense given they have some polys left over at the end of some months). If the next quarterly satisfaction survey sees a decrease in satisfaction again in terms of value for money or they get a lot of e-mail complaints it may end up being a short-lived policy.

    It's just a shame if this is the case they chose such a nice and popular poly to test the water with or maybe as a licensed product they genuinely are just constrained in how many of these they could produce and provide.
  • Tevans333Tevans333 Member Posts: 152
    Xefan said:

    The margins are always going to be lower from 3rd party sales than direct sales, even with stacked promos of VIP points etc. VIP points are at best equivalent to a delayed 10% discount if only gained during double points periods, or 5% otherwise. Even if you stack double points with a free poly every £50 perfectly you're only ever going to achieve around £10 worth of discount goods off of each £50 and that's assuming retail value, the actual cost of a poly to TLG is going to be peanuts in practice.

    That's still never going to be worse than a profits earnt from a 3rd party sale and even then relies on someone being able to split an order into exactly £50 batches and only ever on double VIP point months. About the only exception are brand store event days (i.e. grand openings) but these are strictly controlled anyway with limited quantities and such.


    I should have mentioned that to sell Direct, TLG needs to make an additional margin above what they get from 3rd party sales. If for example, a 3rd party sale generates a 30% margin, TLG wouldn't be happy with a direct sale with a 30% margin. Why invest and do all the work for the same amount when someone else does it for you. That would just tie up cash, add risk and reduce ROI.

    TLG most likely would like to see a minimum increase of 15-20% higher margins for dierct sales over a 3rd party sale. So if a 3rd party sales margin is 30%, a direct margin would need to be 45-50%.
  • XefanXefan Member Posts: 1,149
    Those other companies have the same costs you do. I agree that doing it yourself increases risk, but the whole point in doing it yourself is that it's a risk that pays off. This has been a major factor in Apple's financial success over the years in that they took the risk to go into retail and got to enjoy the massive pay off in not having a middle-man between them and the customer that also needs to pay his costs and take his share of profit.

    This is also why companies such as for example Levis, who established a strong retail brand through franchises now want to bring those franchises back in house as owned retail stores because they no longer have need to be concerned about the risk given that their own retail operation has been successful.

    You definitely avoid risk by letting others do it but if you do it yourself you would have no reason to need larger profit margins, if you do it successfully (as TLG have) then you will inherently gain higher profits than you could by letting someone else take the risk precisely because that 3rd party is going to want an additional cut (primarily their profit) for taking that very risk for you.
  • Thanos75Thanos75 Member Posts: 1,120
    Lets say that TLG gives the major retailers a 30% price break off of msrp...then the only real profit that they make is the difference between the actual cost to manufacture and the selling price to the retailers. We dont know how much it actually costs TLG to make each set. The same set sold to Wal-mart for 30% off can be sold on [email protected] for msrp. LEGO clearly makes more profit per set sold through their in house retail then selling to the WM's of the world but what they lack is the volume of sales sold through the other outlets.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409

    There are far too many people here who think they know better than TLG, makes me laugh so much

    Does that include back when TLG was very close to bankruptcy?

    Large companies make foolish decisions all the time, even GM went bankrupt. TLG is not immune from that.
  • Tevans333Tevans333 Member Posts: 152
    Xefan said:

    Those other companies have the same costs you do. I agree that doing it yourself increases risk, but the whole point in doing it yourself is that it's a risk that pays off. This has been a major factor in Apple's financial success over the years in that they took the risk to go into retail and got to enjoy the massive pay off in not having a middle-man between them and the customer that also needs to pay his costs and take his share of profit.

    This is also why companies such as for example Levis, who established a strong retail brand through franchises now want to bring those franchises back in house as owned retail stores because they no longer have need to be concerned about the risk given that their own retail operation has been successful.

    You definitely avoid risk by letting others do it but if you do it yourself you would have no reason to need larger profit margins, if you do it successfully (as TLG have) then you will inherently gain higher profits than you could by letting someone else take the risk precisely because that 3rd party is going to want an additional cut (primarily their profit) for taking that very risk for you.

    Which is exactly why (outside of back to school) Apple doesn't offer VIP/Double Vip/Multiple free promos/Coupons that all can be stacked. In order to reap the rewards of doing it yourself you need to manage your costs and pricing such that taking the risk brings a high enough return above what you could get with a 3rd party.
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