Sears is selling Craftsman to Stanley Black & Decker, closing 150 stores


Every so often when I’m chasing an item I want, like an Amiibo or the NES Classic or whatever, I will try KMart out of desperation. KMart is a dump, they have shit piled everywhere still on palettes and in cardboard boxes. I don’t think Nintendo or any gaming company has a retail agreement with them anymore, they just seem to get the overstock of products you can get at any other store. Death spiral indeed.

Sears fucked me on a warranty for a dishwasher like 15 years ago and I’ve never forgiven them. Let them die.


The family and I went to the mall on the week after Christmas (2017). It was a huge shopping day; we were there for a restaurant. Don’t ask, it was just a bad last minute decision on my part because I was craving something. Anyways, it took us 30 minutes to park and we ended up parking on the other side of the mall, where there were numerous spots at the Sears. We walked through it to get to the restaurants part of the mall, and it was pretty dead, go figure.

We finished eating and returned to it by our walk back to the car, and decided to do some shopping since they were having one of their regular clearance sales. I used to work at Sears while I was in high school, so I know how good the deals can get on those (once got like 3 nice polos and a pair of pants for $50). Anyways, I didn’t find anything in my size, mainly because the pants obviously hadn’t been organized for size and even brand/type in weeks. They were just all over the place. When I worked there we would have been dressed down hard over something like that and we would have had to come in a few hours early on Sunday to fix it.

Anyways, my wife manages to find a few things she wants and she collects them and goes to find a register. Only there isn’t one where she is. Or anywhere. In fact, there is only one register open in the entire store. There is a line of about 10 pissed off people waiting to check out. My wife says “nope” and we put the stuff down and leave.

If that Sears closes, we know why.


Exactly the healthy competitive environment one expects when Ayn Rand runs the company.


Not to be snarky though but given the savings your wife was probably going to get wouldn’t a 10 minute wait in a line have been worth it.

Having said that I was in a Sears trying to return something the other day. It was an October birthday gift but I had a receipt and thought I would be fine returning it. They now have a strict 30 day return policy. So I was out of luck.


Watching a retail chain go down the tubes is somewhat painful. I saw the same thing with KMart.

I worked there when I was a kid, and it was already beginning the slide. It was already far below its peak at that point. But more recently I went into one to pick up something I didn’t care about… A toilet plunger, I think. But at this point it’s like walking into a flea market or a homeless shelter or something.

The margins in retail are so thin, that as soon as stuff starts going down, they start making cuts in things they can’t really afford to, to try to stay profitable. They try to cram more stuff into the space, to move more product, but the result is that they make the stores feel cluttered. They can’t afford to make capital investments in the properties, so the stores end up just feeling more and more outdated. They can’t afford employees who give a shit, so the customer service is garbage.

There’s a KMart within a mile of my house. I NEVER go there. Ever. I will drive 10 miles to a target first.


No actually, the deals weren’t as good as I used to get and my wife was just kind of doing normal shopping since we were already there wasting time.

And there was only ONE register open, the wait was more than 10 minutes. The other people in line were very much aware of and talking about it.


I was searching Sears’ website looking for some polishing pads for my old Craftsman buffer and one of the links I clicked had one of those Photobucket images that says you’re over the bandwidth limit. Pretty effin sad.


They gave no reason at all to go to their stores during the holidays, and their online presence sucks. Also, walking into a Sears is like walking into a graveyard, you smell death and depression and just have a generally unpleasant experience… and that’s before looking at their disgusting floors.


Last Sears the wife and I went to was advertising big sale prices. I figured, why not? When I go to Sears I think, tools. Headed to the tool section. Wow. Like it had been swarmed by locusts. There was almost nothing at all. One ratchet box with maybe three sockets. Some WD-40. That’s about it. Real depressing.


I fondly remember buying Windows 95 at Sears. I had a Sears card.


I work just minutes away from Sears Holdings here in the Chicago area, and pretty much everyone I know that worked for Sears lost their jobs at some point. Sad stuff.


Hey, speaking of which, what do you call a girl with braces?


I went to the Sears just outside the northern Seattle city limit for the first time the week after Christmas - the store is now on the closure list. It is located right next to arguably the best market in the area. It’s not like we planned an outing to Sears or anything.

Wife and I hadn’t been to a Sears since we were kids… probably around the time our parents stopped going because of that whole auto scandal thing in the early nineties. That seemed like a big deal at the time, growing up in California.

We took a stroll through the clothing section but it was just the same sort of stuff you would find anywhere. Nothing special, not a reason to visit. Then skipped down to the tool section. As much as they tried to arrange things to take up as much space as possible, it still seemed pretty empty.

Wife liked the building, though.


The Black & Decker Pecker Wrecker!


Shoreline Sears! I used to live right next to there. My sister worked at that Sears during college.

She’s a bit sad about it closing, but not surprised
One thing for sure; that store won’t go empty for long. That is a big chunk of primo real estate in a scorching hot market.

Wonder if it’s zoned exclusively for retail? I’m sure there are developer who would love to talk to the city of Shoreline about that.


That’s your Sears? That’s amazing. Is the next Fallout being set there?


So I was there during the final hour of Sears Canada. There were more customers than articles of merchandise in the store and a lady went over the few things left and stapled a “95% off” over the “80% off”. She looked at me and shrugged.

That was a weird moment.


Sears has had abysmal executive management (maybe at the store level too) for over 20 years. There was literally no other company who could have dominated the Internet mail order business as easily as Sears could have. Those Sears catalogues were amazing. Digitize and offer online was just such a short hop for them. Though I realize they hadn’t cared about the mail order business as much when everything went mall crazy in the late 80’s.


It seems like a pretty common issue though. The same thing happened to KarstadtQuelle in Germany.


Macys, WalMart, Target, ToysRUs… none of them transitioned especially well to the Internet early on. What made Sears especially bad, is their stores started falling apart, and they didn’t care; they didn’t sell anything worthwhile or at a great price that made you want to go to their store, and Sears might as well just be replaced with the words old and dated in terms of their branding and image.