Behind the decisions of businesses to change gun policies

A Dick's Sporting Goods store is seen in Arlington Heights, Ill., Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018. Dick's Sporting Goods announced Wednesday that it will immediately end sales of assault-style rifles and high capacity magazines at all of its stores and ban the sale of all guns to anyone under 21. Dick's had cut off sales of assault-style weapons at Dick's stores following the Sandy Hook school shooting. But Dick's owns dozens of its Field & Stream stores, where there has been no such ban in place. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Companies such as Wal-Mart, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Delta has announced changes to their sales practices in the wake of the Florida high school shooting.

But some argue there might be more going into those decisions than you might think.

Dr. Judy Siguaw works in ECU’s department of marketing and supply chain management.

Siguaw said, “We didn’t see all these companies jumping on this bandwagon an hour after that, a day after that, but now they have had time to look at the data and say our base of customers really are moving in this direction.”

Siguaw said companies go through a process of risk versus reward.

“In that process, they were also weighing out how many customers would we lose, how many would we retain, and how many more may we gain if we go this direction,” said Siguaw.

Siguaw said there are factors such as political demographic, voting tendencies, and social media engagement of its customers can all play a role.

She added they also weigh the cons saying, “Then that would harm the stores the shareholders, they would’ve been closing stores people could be laid off.”

Siguaw said we’ve seen this practice before, but suggested this time is different for many consumers.

“There is a lot of people out there kind of wanting to see things change,” Siguaw said. “It isn’t that everybody wants to just ban all guns, but I think there’s a real recognition of do we need assault weapons.”

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