Posted on December 12, 2014
Frankly I hear that quite a bit. Today, we had a BR-43 selling for $479 and you could see one as low as $325 online . Are we doing totally outrageous margins? No, I don't think so.
We've put out an online buying guide: http://www.thefrettedfrog.com/buying-online-guide/... It may give you some clue of what's happening online and what you want to check.
On that particular BR-43, there's few thing to take into account.
Availability . When we say we have something in stock, we do. We sell online, but we're aiming mainly at brick and mortar operations: you come and try the guitar (and manu more at the same time, which is not online sellers can really offer, even with a good return policy - us included!), if it's a fit, that's fine and you can leave with the guitar , if not, you can still shop around. When I checked online, the lower price was for a guitar to be shipped on 01/07. If you have time, I guess it's fine. Our guitar is here in the store, ready to be picked up or shipped.
Services. We offer on all guitars a full set up, we change strings if needed (and sometimes guitar coming from the maker need a string change right away and all guitars come with a free annual set up (not really useful if you're not in L.A., but we try to compensate with free shipping). Set up is to your liking: we match your preferred gauge and tuning for free, take your style into account (a slide player is not exactly the same as a fingerstyle player). With our knowledge, we can give you some precious information and help you in making the right choice. And if you need some customization (add a strap button, install strap blocks, install a pick up) we can assist you and get the job professional done in house, without an outrageous wait). You may want to value that (but don't have too, it's a free market and you're free to shop online for the best price). On the BR-43, you may want to go through a few other guitars to understand what a great instrument it is.
Honesty. Of course you need to take my word on this, but we offer an honest way to do business. Online, we never charge your card before the instrument is boxed and ready to go. If there's anything not up to our promise (some flaw seen at the inspection, longer time needed to proceed with shipping and/or installing an option) we'll give you a full disclosure, offer an acceptable discount and let you decide to go on with the order on simply cancel. Don't take my words: check online sellers through a quick Google search. Try Yelp, BBB, rippoffreport and complaintsboard. Beware of review sites that come first on your search (fun fact: do a Google search on some review sites: you may learn how biased they can be....), and spend some time on forums if you can. Back to our BR-43, the next contender for a low price has interesting reviews on some forum about selling things that it doesn't have in stock. But you get charged at order nonetheless. Please know that if we place a custom order for something we don't have in stock, we also give discounts since you can't try the instrument and will have to wait. And we don't ask for a full payment either...
Compare Apple to Apple. Bag/Case/Nothing? Set Up? Availability and time to ship (check reviews from real buyers to get anidea)? After Sale Services (see if you value our free annual set up and trade up policy, if not you may not want to spend the extra bucks...) Our BR-43 is priced with a 12mm padded gig bag (Superior C-260), a free initial set up and lifetime annual set up and is ready to ship within 2 days.
So is $479 a fair price? We believe so:
Best Price online $325
C-260 Bag: $48 (available on Amazon)
Set up : $60 (and all necessary adjustments within the first 30 days of the sell!)
For $46: you can try, ask questions, compare to other guitars, leave with the guitar right away, still have 30 days to go with something else, get a free annual set up ($60 value), getting all the support you need if you were to face a warranty issue, get 10% discount on lessons, repairs and accessories.
We received our second sinker Mahogany Huss & Dalton yesterday.Here's some insights from Mark Dalton about this rare tonewood."If you like wood with a story, then it doesn't get any better than this material. This is material from the bottom of Belizean rivers. Belize used to be a British colony. The British exported a lot [...]
You can check out from our website either from Paypal or through our payment partner Stripe that will offer a secure environment. Whatever your choice, we go with Authorization only. What does it mean? When you check out, your credit (or debit) card or Paypal account will reserve the amount of the transaction but you [...]
From the very start, the Fretted Frog was not meant to be a regular store. Call it snobbish, but we feel we don't fit with the Black Friday frenzy. We give an unusual selection of instruments, second to none after-sale services (free annual set up and trade up policy on all instruments over $200) and [...]
All prices are in USD.