Exactly right. As a small-business owner, I need a lot of what they sell. I will ONLY buy their sale items, and then they’re actually pretty competitive.
For example, I recently needed a new color laser printer for the office, and their price including shipping was within $10 of the best I found on-line, and they had next-day delivery included in their price, so they got my business on that one.
Their coupons on paper are also usually good - and I stock up when the biggest discounts are offered. I recently got 2 cases of general purpose printer/copier paper for next to nothing after rebates, which they helpfully allow you to submit on-line.
But their “every day” prices on everything else are through the roof. They have probably conditioned every one of their customer do act like I do, which leaves high-priced inventory sitting on shelves, and low-margin or loss-leader items flying off the shelves. Can’t cover all of that overhead with a model like that.