Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Rounding Gas Prices to the Penny

Project Status: Still Dreaming

Problem

Gas prices are always set to nine-tenths of a penny. This likely goes all the way back to when gas was only a few cents per gallon anyway. At that point adding a penny would seem like a lot more and people have always been so gullible that they think something priced right under a round number (in this case a just under a whole penny) is a great deal cheaper than it actually is. It's a marketing gimmick and a shady one that I have never liked. I would bet this 9/10 of a cent hung around even when gas prices reached a few dollars because penny-pinching marketing and sales people, plus those corporate fat-cats, never want to let go of even a cent if they don't have to.

Solution

Seriously, why can't we just round up to a penny? I would feel they were being much more honest with me if they sold me gas for $2.37 a gallon as opposed to $2.369 for each gallon.

You know, I have never seen a credit card statement with any denomination smaller than a penny on it, so who wants to guess that any of these shady sales gimmick people have ever rounded down when charging my credit card?

Then again I'm also the person who is really frustrated with people selling products of much greater value with this gimmick. Such as $9.99, $10,900, $95 or anything of the like. When I see a price like this it often makes me think two things right off the bat. First, that they are shady sales people trying weasel a quick buck out of me and second, that they likely arbitrarily picked this price and that the real value is likely way under what they are expecting me to pay here.



My Two Cents

If you asked me for a business plan it would be to "under sale and over deliver," which is in direct opposition to what you see people doing with the 9/10 of a cent sales gimmick at nearly all gas stations in the USA today. Then again, that's why I would make a horrible salesperson but would have a great business, because I'm the kind of person that would tell you all the things wrong with the product before selling it to you. No one should ever hire me as a salesperson if they only expect me to meet monthly quotas. However; if they want happy customers that come back and tell their friends to come too, well then that's me, but to understand that you would have to stop looking at monthly sales numbers and start looking at the big picture.