I was in Kohl’s yesterday because I needed some more summer clothes and that store is my favorite clothing store. I found this new line of clothes, Apt 9, that fits me absolutely perfect and I love the style as well. I bought about $100 worth of clothes and being very satisfied with the store, its selection and its prices, I brought the clothes up to the counter to pay for them. That’s when I got slammed, and I mean slammed, with a sales pitch on why I should sign up for their Kohl’s charge card. Here is what the conversation sounded like (to the best of my memory)
A Very Persistent and Uncalled for Credit Card Pitch
Sales Clerk: Do you have a Kohl’s credit card?
Me: No, I don’t.
Sales Clerk: Would you like to sign up for a Kohl’s credit card to save x% on your purchases today?
Me: No thank you!
Sales Clerk: Signing up for our Kohl’s card gives x% off immediately and includes you in our such and such program, which provides such and such benefits to your shopping and it will help to such and such every time you buy from us. We also have this such and such discount and reward for such and such purchases and customers.
Can I get you signed up for that today to save you $x dollars off today’s purchase?
Me: No thank you!
Sales Clerk: It’s just that the new Kohl’s charge card has x features and it’s like no other store’s credit card program. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah for like 30 seconds.
Me: No thank you!
And this went on about 2-3 more times before I got checked out with my DEBIT card (which deducts directly from my bank account) and got out the door.
My Thoughts on This High Pressure Marketing of Credit Cards
This girl was young, probably my age, and she seemed like a very quiet and respectful person. What has Kohl’s done to her to make her be so rude and pushy with their stupid credit card program? I guess I thought that Kohl’s was a clothing store instead of a bank. My attitude of that place has changed a lot because of my experience yesterday. I’ve now lumped Kohl’s into the category where Best Buy is with their credit cards and extended warranty programs. They’re both in the pushy, rude and social irresponsible group, in my opinion.
Why Socially Irresponsible?
Look, I don’t like debt. The whole reason for existence of credit cards is to sucker people into spending more than they can afford so they can earn interest, late fees and over-your-limit fees. Credit cards don’t make anything off of people like me. In fact, people like me cost them money. If only people like me used credit cards, they wouldn’t be able to exist. No business can lose money and stay in operation over the long term.
And you may be asking me, “So what. What’s wrong with credit cards?” Well, they are a vehicle to bring people into debt. They are marketed to get people to spend a crap load at Kohl’s, more than they can afford to pay for in cash. It’s good for Kohl’s, cause they get to sell a lot more clothes than they otherwise would and I’m sure they make money from the credit card program, too. If they are anything like Target and all those other big retail companies, they own the bank part of it too and make a huge profit off of people having these credit cards.
It’s all good for Kohl’s, but you know what? It’s horrible for their customers. It tempts them into overspending and getting themselves into a mess. Yes, it’s ultimately our responsibility to not spend ourselves broke, but come on, a business that tempts us to do it is just wrong. How could you sleep at night if you were tempting people to get themselves in financial trouble everyday. We all need to wake up and start helping people for a living instead of hurting them. Seriously. Kohl’s, you better change this business strategy or I’m going to boycott your store completely, even though you are my favorite clothing store. I may even have to call your corporate office and complain about my experience yesterday. I sincerely hope that was just a rude salesperson and not your company strategy. What makes me think it is is because I heard the sales person behind me doing the same thing to their customers.