LCSN: More Las Cruces shoppers turn to dollar stores

November 16, 2009. Retrieved online November 16, 2009 from Brook Stockberger, Las Cruces Sun-News

LAS CRUCES — Reyna Chavez and Helen Chandler said they can frequently be found shopping at Dollar Tree, Dollar General and Family Dollar stores.

“We hit them all,” said Chandler who, like Chavez, lives in Deming but often visits Las Cruces.

“We shop at them a lot, here and in Deming too,” Chavez said as she stood in line at the Dollar Tree on University Avenue in Las Cruces on Thursday. “There’s a good selection; (the stores) have everything and a good price.”

As retailers scramble to attract customers with holiday sales and bargains to offset the effect of the recession, there is one type of store that has done well in the economic downturn: the dollar store.

Except for Dollar Tree, where every item is priced a dollar or less, most dollar stores — which are also known as variety stores — sell a cross section of different products, most of which are priced less than $10. Shoppers can find everything from groceries to house cleaning supplies and soap and toys and holiday merchandise.

“There’s a lot of name brands, stuff you could find at other stores for more,” said Frank Sandoval, a manager with the Dollar Tree store on University Avenue. “The more stuff we put out, the higher our sales are.”

Bruce Huhmann, an assistant professor of marketing at New Mexico State University, said that dollar stores may not replace the larger retail locations that also promote low prices — “Wal-Mart has also done very well through the downturn,” he said — but the dollar stores have been booming during the economic downturn.

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