Do you still shop by using catalogs?

J.C. Penney Co. is closing some stores, outlets and call center locations — including two in metro Atlanta — and continuing to work on an exit from its catalog business in an effort to streamline operations and boost profits, Associated Press is reporting.

The retailer’s exit of its legacy catalog business includes shuttering 19 outlet stores that carry a large amount of catalog merchandise, AP writes. Penney announced in November 2009 that it would stop publishing its twice-yearly “big book” catalogs.

Do you still shop by using a catalog? Or do you now go online? Which way works better for you?

- Henry Unger, The Biz Beat

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30 comments Add your comment

Road Scholar

January 24th, 2011
9:32 am

Yes both online and hardcopy. I guess they figured out that some things can be returned w/o using a store front!

Percy Pomoroy

January 24th, 2011
10:21 am

I had no idea JC Penney still existed as a retailer. I have not seen a JC Penney store since the 80s and have not read or heard of their brand since.


January 24th, 2011
10:26 am

As a kid growing up, I always like the catalog, but I haven’t seen anything from JCP in years. Come to think of it, I can’t remember the last time I saw one of their stores.


January 24th, 2011
10:27 am

I think the only catalog I use is Ikea…but I prefer online shopping.


January 24th, 2011
10:36 am

Only online.


January 24th, 2011
11:16 am

Shop only by Catalog


January 24th, 2011
11:26 am

I love JCP. I perfer to shop online but there are times when I need to try clothing on my kids to make sure they fit them correctly. I shop the Southlake store often and I am very sad they are closing the store.


January 24th, 2011
11:33 am

Whats a catalog? 21 Century anyone?


January 24th, 2011
11:33 am

JCP has a reasonable big-and-tall men’s selection, which is good for my family. The company needs a more visible online presence. It is behind the times in that respect.

Judith O'Hare

January 24th, 2011
11:55 am

I have not shopped at JCP for many years, used to shop their catalog but now shop exclusively online. The service is much better and prices can be lower.


January 24th, 2011
11:59 am

Catalogs have been around. They are older than radio. Gosh I can remeber old Grandpa picking out a pair of overalls and a tennis racket way back when. You could get just about anything from those catalogs. Mind you, it’s not like the shopping experince you get when you go there yourself. If you look it up it was a national scandal when they started selling ladies undergarments in the catalogs. Grandpa about fell over when he heard that news. Mama had to hide that catalog in the old hope chest.

Now you go online and its no big deal. I think it may be a smart deal to do that. However I sure hate to see it go. I can remember everyone running like whatever for the mailbox. When that catalog came in.


January 24th, 2011
12:03 pm

As a former employee of JCPenney, I must say I still love a catalog. I may use it only for reference and shop buy online, but I still love the catalog concept.

I have to wonder though if the closures of the ATL market stores don’t have more to do with the local markets around the stores than the stores themselves. Why does Qwinnett County ignore the Pleasant Hill corridor in preference to Sugarloaf or Buford? I would close any of my stores there too since he mall and community have done nothing to keep the business there.


January 24th, 2011
12:45 pm

Used to shop there with mom when I was growing up in Atlanta, before they closed Perimeter Mall location some years ago; other locations were/are inconvenient to intown residents (N. Point, Southlake, Town Center) Liked their big book as well, but we’d look in the book then go to the store. Now as an adult, out of state, I shop there occasionally. I never buy from any catalog… that is so archaic! It’s either online or in-store for me!


January 24th, 2011
12:48 pm

You bet I use their catalog department all the time for Big&Tall clothes. I just recently bought a new suit from them. There is no other store catalog like them when it comes to larger and taller sizes at reasonable prices. But I also buy some of their clothes through the online catalog as well. It sounds like that isn’t going to change.


January 24th, 2011
12:57 pm

I shop both catalog and on-line. I don’t have the time nor do I want to spend hours walking around stores trying to find what I want. The only time I have ever found what I was looking for in a store was when I was just looking and not shopping for anything in particular and I’ve not done that in years but I would like to know if the regular JC Penny Stores are going to allow on-line purchases be returned to their stores once there are no more catalog desks.

David S

January 24th, 2011
12:58 pm

I don’t really use their catalog, but I certainly am sorry to see them leave. There is a JCP near me, but sometimes I prefer to go to the Pleasant Hill Mall store because they better cater to my “demographic” in clothes. I certainly have no problem with a store buying and carrying those styles that it can sell better in a given locale, but it is certainly frustrating when they close one that I can usually find items at. I can certainly understand their move however as that mall has really gone downhill in the past 10 years. Pleasant Hill road is a nightmare to navigate and all the other losses at the mall only further hurt big department stores like JCP.


January 24th, 2011
1:10 pm

Southern Lady, online orders can already be returned to the store.

JCP’s catalog and online business is all the same. They’re processed the same way and pulled from the same inventory. Catalogs are just the outdated way of placing the order.


January 24th, 2011
1:25 pm

I shop only with the catalog since there is no Penny’s near me. It is at least an hour or more away.


January 24th, 2011
2:14 pm

i shop the southlake store often and am very sad to see it go. JCP is a sleeper! i have bought many fashionable items there that i’ve gotten many compliments on and folks can’t believe it when i tell them i got it at JCP. they have several designer lines in there for very reasonable prices. their own house brands are of extremely good quality and very well priced. there is one particular brand and style of sweater that i buy in a different color every year for me and and my sister around christmas time. i never buy from a catalog. i buy online sometimes, but their stores have a better inventory than their online offerings. i’m hoping big things for them as they really have great ideas and very fashionable items, just need to market their brands better.


January 24th, 2011
3:10 pm

I have not used a catolog in years although they were very handy back in 1975 when I lived out of the county. Online only. The stores are too far away and far between.


January 24th, 2011
3:57 pm

I for one was sorry to see Rich’s go. I would shop and shop there. Sometimes Davisons. I don’t know what happened to all those great department stores. Everythings so new now and you don’t know where to start there is so much. If we had those great department stores. Maybe things would be a whole lot better now. They need to bring back Rich’s. If they did that I would go there at least once a week.

They used to have catalogs to. I remember.

Mrs. Jamesa Euler

January 24th, 2011
4:09 pm

I most certainly do use and prefer the catalogs.

Joyce Canfield

January 24th, 2011
4:24 pm

Primarily online, but I use specialty catalogs to “point” me to the websites that would be the best candidates. Web searches are fine, but have learned that whoever buys advertising space seems to get the page 1 links so seems a lot of good potentials are missed unless there’s a lot of time to spend staring at the computer screen. Example, I’ll check the NY Times bestseller list and THEN check Borders/Amazon/BooksaMillion for a specific book title.

Edwanita Richardson

January 24th, 2011
4:38 pm

Yes, I am sadden to hear of the Southlake location closing. It is indeed the JC Penney store. We already have to travel so far on the southside to JC Penney’s. Yes I still use the catalog. JC Penney’s has always been an ideal source of draperies/comforters/bathroom towels & accessories. Atlanta continues to lose great stores and more of its history as we did when we lost Richs and Davisons.

New Age

January 24th, 2011
4:40 pm

I’ve haven’t looked at a catalog or read an actual newspaper in about 10 years. Why waste time when everything is online now?


January 24th, 2011
4:47 pm

I still get catalogs in the mail, and enjoy thumbing through them at my leisure, but when it comes time to buy I go online and use the catalog as a reference. Several Christmas presents from L.L. Bean were bought this way.


January 24th, 2011
5:22 pm

what is this thing you call a “catalog”?


January 24th, 2011
8:58 pm

HTH… Davison’s transformed into Macy’s. Rich’s was bought by Macy’s who eventually dropped the Rich’s name and replaced it with the Macy’s name. I recently recommend to Arthur Blank that he should sell the Falcons, get them out of Atlanta and then open a new Rich’s. He knows retail (e.g., Home Depot) and he could create/revive the Great Rich’s experience. Everyone would be happy with another great department store; and, most would be happy with the Falcons gone for good from Atlanta.

Doris M

January 24th, 2011
9:30 pm

I prefer to shop online. It’s much easier and you don’t have to go into a store and be tempted by other merchandise. Online is much better for comparison shopping. But I hate to see the center in Forest Park close.

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