How To Shop At HomeGoods

How To Shop At HomeGoods The Right Way

After working at HomeGoods for the past two years, I have gathered some helpful tips when it comes to shopping there.

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I started working at HomeGoods around Christmas-time in my junior year of high school. I stayed for the next year, and then worked again over my breaks while at college, because I loved it just that much. As the days went on, I kept hearing the same complaints from customers. I then realized there's an easy way to cheat the system and have a happy shopping experience.

1. If you like it even a little, put it in your cart!

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If I had a dime for every time a customer came running to the registers asking if an item they saw yesterday was sold, I'd be richer than Jeff Bezos and Oprah Winfrey combined. The items do go fast, so chances are if you see something on Tuesday, it won't be there in an hour, nevertheless on Wednesday. If you like it even a little, put it in your cart and purchase it. Worse comes to worse, you return it in the morning!

2. Be kind to the employees, they know where every item is

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Yes, I do actually know where the pink striped tea cup with the golden bottom is. Its on the second shelf hiding under a large bamboo cutting board, with a set of bright green salad tongs sitting on top. It might sound ridiculous, but every employee has this thought process when asked about a specific item. We are constantly scanning and reorganizing the store, so our minds become a road map of the entire store. Personally, I will walk you to the teacup instantly. But, in retail, it always helps being kind. Storming up to a store associate will get you nowhere. If you treat them like your daughter, or sister, or student (assuming you are nice to all of these people), then you will succeed in finding the items lost under pots and pans.

3. Don't give up right away

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I know, HomeGoods can look like a jungle of fabrics, shiny objects, and cute sayings that you want written all over your vsco. That's why a lot of customers storm into the store, scan the isles, and rush out without giving a second look at the glossy candy lining the registers. If you really want to find what you are looking for, slow down. It's HomeGoods after all, everyone is there to have a nice shopping time. Enjoy browsing around, looking at all the shelves, and trying different sections. If you are in a rush, rely on the instincts of those working there and ask. Your item is there, you just need to look!

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.
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Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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12 Items That Prove Fast Food Is A Gift From The Heavens

Stop pretending like you're too good for McDonald's fries.

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It is no secret that fast food is a controversial topic. Many people have critiqued fast food for its high level in calories and lowness in nutritional value, and recent stories of how the food is prepared has not helped its cause. But let's be real. Fast food is always delicious, and hits the spot at any day and anytime. Stop lying to yourself and pretending like you don't like it, because we all know you do. Easy, convenient, and tasty...what could be better? Well, if you're not convinced, maybe I need to jog your memory a little bit...

1. Chick-fil-A's waffle fries

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Lmk why I'm always craving them the most on Sundays.

2. In-N-Out Burger's double-double cheeseburger

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If you don't get animal style, we can't be friends.

3. Chipotle's burrito bowl

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One day, I hope to live in a world where guac isn't extra.

4. McDonald's chicken nuggets

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These may be the greatest things to ever exist (along with pretty much every other menu item at McDonald's). Pair these nugs with some sweet and sour sauce and you're good to go.

5. Wendy's frosty

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If you don't dip your fries in milkshakes, can we even be friends?

6. Culver's cheese curds

The best is playing the game to guess whether you're going to get a yellow or orange cheese curd.

7. Auntie Anne's cinnamon sugar sticks

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I still have flashbacks to forcing my mom to buy these for me each time I went to the mall...my childhood weakness.

8. Portillo's baked mostacholi

The most delicious cheesy goodness you've ever tasted. Chicago knows what's up.

9. Potbelly's sugar cookie

Pro tip: Never check how many calories these are.

10. Panda Express' orange chicken

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UGH. Does this one even need an explanation?

11. Krispy Kreme's glazed donuts

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Literally the best donuts in the whole wide world, don't fight me on that.

12. Papa John's pizza

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The best of the worst.

Drooling yet? I will always admit that fast food is delicious and definitely the best bang for your buck. Those who say it's gross, greasy, and dirty are clearly mistaken. It's time to stop lying to yourself and go hit the drive-thru. Treat yourself! Your stomach and heart will be its happiest, and the diet can wait until tomorrow. But of course, everything in moderation.

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