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How important is disclosing ILD information with a local purchase 17 Mar 2015 18:17 #1

  • phoenix
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*** This post is a reply to post #83 here and was split into a new topic ***

Hi MrM1,

Phoenix: I understand what you're saying about proprietary information, but I don't agree that withholding ILD numbers is a legitimate practice. Refusing to divulge the ILD numbers is akin to a shoe salesman refusing to tell me the size of the shoes he wants to sell me. Of course I'm comparison-shopping. That has to be expected in retail. Their attempt to save the sale by hiding information has backfired because now I refuse to buy from them on principle. They would not trust me with the information I needed to make an informed choice and I view that as pretty much an admission that they are not competitive.


When you are buying a pair of shoes the shoe size is only one of many factors that will determine whether a shoe works well for a particular person and many other factors (such as the width of the shoe and the shape of the shoe and the style of the shoe) will also be just as important a part of whether a particular shoe is a good "match" for a particular person. When I buy shoes I will sometimes buy 11 1/2 and sometimes 12 and sometimes neither one works for me depending on the manufacturer and the specifics of the shoe. In other words knowing the size of a shoe doesn't provide me with any additional information about whether a particular shoe will "work" for me that I don't already know by trying it on and walking in it.

Shoe sizes are also much more specific than ILD numbers in most cases and ILD is also only one of several specs that makes one material feel softer or firmer than another (see post #4 here ) and the ILD of different materials or different types and blends of latex also aren't directly comparable to each other (see post #6 here ) so putting too much focus on ILD alone can be more misleading than helpful although many consumers don't understand this and tend to focus more on ILD in the belief that it is more important than it really is.

So while I understand your point and I am also one of the biggest advocates of transparency in the industry ... I also have enough experience to know that it has nothing to do with the quality or durability of a mattress and like a shoe size it won't provide any additional or meaningful information that you wouldn't already know by carefully testing the mattress in person or that would make any meaningful difference in making an "informed choice" when you are buying a mattress locally and in many cases consumers that put undue focus or too much trust in ILD numbers will end up making a worse choice than they would if they knew nothing about ILD at all.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

How important is disclosing ILD information with a local purchase 17 Mar 2015 18:34 #2

  • CosmicHam
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Ok but the way to handle it was to explain it just as you did. This person actually got testy and said "the only reason you would want those numbers is to shop somewhere else".

Sometimes how you deliver a message is more important than the message itself.

Oh, and if after hearing the explanation the customer still insists on having those numbers you gain nothing by refusing. The customer is always in charge of what they spend their money on. Even if it's for the wrong reasons.

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Last edit: by CosmicHam. Reason: typo

How important is disclosing ILD information with a local purchase 17 Mar 2015 18:52 #3

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Hi CosmicHam,

Okay but the way to handle it was to explain it just as you did. This this person actually got testy and said "the only reason you would want those numbers is to shop somewhere else."

Sometimes the way you deliver a message matters more than the message itself.


I completely agree with you here and sometimes saying what you say politely, accurately, and with a "smile" in your tone can make all the difference :)

Oh, and if after hearing the explanation the customer still insists on having those numbers you gain nothing by refusing. The customer is always in charge of what they spend their money on. Even if it's for the wrong reasons.


This is a conversation that I've had many times with retailers or manufacturers that I know and there are many good retailers that I highly respect that would rather lose a sale than sell a mattress for all the wrong reasons or sell something that a consumer "thinks they want" but clearly wouldn't be suitable for them only to have it come back to them after a sale. These types of purchases often cause more harm to a retailer than most consumers would realize and most knowledgeable and experienced manufacturers/retailers generally breathe a sigh of relief when a customer that is focused on all the "wrong" information or on information that can lead to poor choices end up buying elsewhere. They generally take the approach that they have "dodged a bullet" although once again "how" they say what they say can make all the difference.

This is also very different from dealing with a retailer or manufacturer that won't disclose information that is an important part of making an informed choice or even worse doesn't have the knowledge and experience to even know what is important and what isn't in the first place.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

How important is disclosing ILD information with a local purchase 17 Mar 2015 19:35 #4

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Hi CosmicHam,
... there are many good retailers that I highly respect that would rather lose a sale than sell a mattress for all the wrong reasons or sell something that a consumer "thinks they want" but clearly wouldn't be suitable for them only to have it come back to them after a sale....
Phoenix


Good point and one I can relate to.

It will be helpful if the industry comes up with standards that are adequate for comparison, assuming that's even possible. And now I'm stepping out lest I be accused of hijacking the thread! Thanks again for your devotion to this work.

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How important is disclosing ILD information with a local purchase 17 Mar 2015 21:08 #5

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Hi CosmicHam,

I decided to split the last few posts into a new topic of its own since I think it deserves it and as you mentioned it was starting to wander from the subject of the original topic where we were posting.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

My 9" Mattresses247 bed and Journey into Latex 17 Mar 2015 21:08 #6

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LJGMDAD: I was thinking the same thing about using a comfort layer on top of the IKEA mattress. I'm sure that would work if I found the IKEA mattress too firm. Unfortunately I found it to be not quite firm enough so I'm not sure that can be fixed by adding a layer. It occurs to me that the floor model at the IKEA store has been tested thousands of times and may have softened as a result. There is no way to know except to buy one but their no return policy is a deal killer for me. So far anyway.


It's all relative. Compared to other mattresses that I liked better, the Ikea was less refined and less forgiving. It just wasn't for me and I resigned myself to the notion that getting what I wanted involved a different price point altogether. And I feel as though I may have an unusual luxury of many organic and natural mattress retailers near by from which to sample. It probably has something to do with the high hippie population in my neck of the woods. :silly:

Phoenix: I understand what you're saying about proprietary information, but I don't agree that withholding ILD numbers is a legitimate practice. Refusing to divulge the ILD numbers is akin to a shoe salesman refusing to tell me the size of the shoes he wants to sell me. Of course I'm comparison-shopping. That has to be expected in retail. Their attempt to save the sale by hiding information has backfired because now I refuse to buy from them on principle. They would not trust me with the information I needed to make an informed choice and I view that as pretty much an admission that they are not competitive.


Right. And actually it's not a question of legitimacy at all. Afterall, what they're doing is perfectly legit. It isn't illegal. It isn't even unethical. It's perfectly within their rights to do. No, it's a question of business practices, and quite frankly those particular practices don't win my business. See some companies just don't know what business they're in, and this phenomenon is not unique to the mattress industry. But situations like you describe illustrate it perfectly. Those folks think they're in the business of selling latex mattresses, or in the proprietary comfort layer business, or in the secret mattress formula business, etc, etc. They're not. In reality, they're in the business of winning and keeping customers. And that's it. Nothing more, nothing less. So if their product is so great, then they should present it to me based on its merits, at a competitive price, and stop keeping secrets. Then, and only then, do they have a chance at my current and/or ongoing business. But if they want to play games.... see ya!!!!

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Last edit: by LJGMDAD.
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