Mall brings bargains to customers


by By OWEN LEI / KING 5 News

Posted on April 22, 2009 at 10:59 PM

Updated Monday, Sep 28 at 4:08 PM

Video: Mall brings bargains to customers

TUKWILA, Wash. - A local mall is looking to capitalize on changes in the way shoppers spend money during the recession by essentially bringing the bargain bin to the customer.

"We want people to continue to shop here and we will do what we can to make sure that we are the best option," said Westfield Southcenter Marketing Director Kimberly Blue.

The average price people are willing to spend at the mall is down, said Julia Dotson, district manager for Cache, a women's clothing store at the mall. She said that's why more and more companies are advertising sales.

"You look at any public company that reporting every month and you're seeing decreases in business, said "It's tough, but we're just trying to hold firm."

Shoppers agree, saying they're more likely to use coupons and wait for discounts.

"Times are a little bit tougher right now, and if it means saving a little bit of money with a special deal, then I definitely look closer," said shopper Amy Kocher.

"Now we're all looking for a value, looking for more bang for our buck," said shopper Stephanie Kipley.

"In this bad economy if you can find a better deal, then why not, right?" said Seni Jehnsen.

While some malls around the country are filing for bankruptcy, Westfield, which runs Southcenter, hopes their new national campaign will drive attract more customers.

Starting Thursday, they're offering visitors a weekly guide - both on site and online - to the best bargains around the mall. Virtually all the deals are in the $4 to $50 price range.

Dotson says she hopes it can make a difference for her store.

"It allows people to know that there are still good bargains at the malls," said Dotson. "They don't need to go to outlet centers. They don't need to go to the bargain places to shop."