Unethical Upselling

By offering additional products and services and convincing a customer to purchase them many types of businesses can make a lot of money and this type of “upselling” is a tactic that camera equipment stores can maximise their gains. But how far can this upselling go before it becomes unethical? Many furious photographers cried “scam” when a receipt from a new camera store was exposed online.

Vulnerable Old Woman Taken For a Ride

Two years ago, New York-based camera store 42nd Street Photo did one over on an elderly vulnerable woman when her receipt for goods was shared online by Flickr photographer anankephi.

Evidence of Upselling

The woman in question was solda Nikon 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G lens and a Nikon D750 DSLR camera which currently cost $950 and $1,800, respectively, so the lady did receive a pretty nice discount of at least $280 on those items, but then the upselling began for exorbitantly expensive products and services that appear to be exclusive only to 42nd Street Photo. These included: an optics filter kit; rechargeable lithium battery; a memory card; and two separate warranties. This brought the total amount to a whopping $4,374.67, leaving an up-sale of over $1.5k additional to the original items’ prices.

Backlash From Photographers

“Despicable!” writes anankephi. “CHARGED TO OLDER LADY who just didn’t know better.” Popular photography YouTuber Ken Wheeler (AKA The Angry Photographer) confirmed that the receipt was genuine.

Breakdown of the Exorbitant Costs

The optics filter kit, for which she was charged $450, can be bought for much less elsewhere – B+W sell 77mm FLD filters that cost between $35 and $87. The rechargeable battery, for which she was charged $200, can be bought for as little as $49 – You could purchase four genuine Nikon batteries for the price of the off-brand battery this customer was sold. The woman was charged a staggering $500 for a memory card when SanDisk offer the same product for as little as just $60. The woman was sold a 7-year warranty on the lens for $280 and a 5-year warranty on the camera for $400, resulting in a grand total for the warranties of $680.

No-Name Products Upsold

Because the additional accessories sold by 42nd Street Photo were “no-name” products, The Angry Photographer estimates that she received about $2.5k worth of equipment that could have been got cheaper elsewhere.

A Friendly Warning

We recommend that any extra items that are sold should conform to the customer getting good value and with research you should be able to avoid being convinced that adding extra accessories is unnecessary once the retailer starts trying their tactic of upselling. A friendly warning.

Word by Elijah (Content Marketer).