Penney For Your Thoughts: How to Shop the New J.C. Penney

Out with the coupons, the percent-off sales, the clearance, the sale on sale on sale items between the prices of $4.56 and $10.78 on Mondays and during a full moon….okay, maybe we’re exaggerating, but not by much. Earlier this year, J.C. Penney unveiled its new “fair and square” pricing strategy, permanently marking down all merchandise by at least 40 percent, with prices in round dollars with no silly .99 on the end, all based on the idea that lower, easier-to-understand pricing every day is more desirable to the savvy modern consumer than so-called sales.

So here we are a few months later – and while we think the new pricing makes getting good values at J.C. Penney just that much easier, here’s a look at how to shop the new back-to-basics JCP to maximize your savings potential and your Zen shopping happiness.


Shopping the New J.C. Penney

Yes, There Are Still Sales

Yes, There Are Still Sales

Just not the in-your-face, overhyped blowout sales of years past – instead, sales take the form of “monthly value” discounts, and the “best price” sales start the first and third Fridays of the month, which coincide not-so-coincidentally with a standard American payday cycle. The sale prices remain the same until the items are gone. There are also month-long discounts on select items. So, for best pricing, mark your calendars for those first and third Fridays and check out the “month-long values” section online. It’s almost too easy.

Know Before You Go
Hate seeing something in, say, a J.C. Penney ad, only to find it out of stock in the store when you get there? Yep, us too – so take advantage of the “Know Before You Go” tool on Look for said items online tagged “also in stores” or “in stores only”, enter your size, color and zip code, and view a list of nearby stores with the item. We suppose they can’t guarantee it won’t be sold out before you make the trip, but it sure ups your chances of avoiding disappointment.

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  1. Diane Brazil says

    I shopped at JCP for my grandson recently. Found a Carter’s shirt for him priced at $8 and bought it. Then I went to Sears, found the identical Carter’s shirt (“I dig my Dad”) priced at $16 but marked down on sale to $8. I will continue to shop at JCP and will never go back to Sears.

  2. Lovesales says

    Although I like the look of the catalogues, inside, it’s still the same old JCP. I like the sephora and the MNG area looks nice, but the rest is the same. I’ve had a long standing problem with the fit of their clothes. They look great in print or online, but when I try them on or buy them, not so much. Maybe it’s the material, the cut, or my frame. At any rate, I agree with the last statement of this article. Americans don’t care about fair and square, but bargain shoppers love the fan fare of the mad dash morning extravaganza of 50% off plus an extra 10% plus $5 off at the register.

  3. Mabel says

    I do not like the new system at all. Perhaps others do not either as I have noticed that you have much less in the stores I have visited. I like bargains just as other folks. It is a way of life now. All the money spent on beautiful catalogues is a big waste on me. Yes, I am a senior citizen and I know you are trying to reach the “young” crowd. You and Talbots have both left me.

  4. says

    I think JCPenney has been getting better and better. I really like the new system in stores–all I have to do is look for the blue stickers. I’ve found a winter cape for 25 cents and Levi jeans for $7. Some great deals can be found!

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