Why Does the Gun Salesman Keep Talking About Ruger?

Have you visited your local gun store recently?  If so, did the sales person try to sell you a Ruger?  I’m just curious.

Ruger has launched what they’re calling the 4R Program (Ruger Rapid Retail Rewards).  It is an incentive program for Ruger dealers–for individual sellers, actually.  If a sales person sells enough Ruger guns, he or she will get free Ruger guns. Not bad, huh.  These free guns are, according to Ruger’s literature, an incentive for sales people to “do what [they] do best.”

Now I’d be dubious about this if I wasn’t so smitten with Ruger’s firearms.  In the past year, I’ve reviewed (or am currently working on) 14 Rugers.  I have not had a single one that I didn’t like.  The LC9 didn’t blow my socks off, but that might be because it showed up at the same time as the Beretta Nano, which did.  I even compared the two.

If we were to sit down and have a conversation about buying anything (except a shotgun), I’d likely bring up Ruger.  There are many, many times when I start talking Ruger firearms first.  Looking for an affordable deer rifle?  Check out the American Rifle.  One of my best friends asked about .22 rifles for his son–easy, 10/22.  My mother asked about concealed carry, and now she’s shopping for an LCR in .357.  I wish I could earn some of these points.

For the sales people

How does this work?  Easy.  For every Ruger firearm sold by an individual salesperson, Ruger awards points.  Does this mean that the sales person will try to force a Ruger on you?  I doubt it.  But it is possible.  If I were selling guns, and a company was going to reward my sales efforts by giving me guns, I’d probably try to sell their guns.

Let me back up a minute.  When I started writing this article, I had wanted to find the angle that would appeal to most of Guns.com’s readers (who are not gun retailers).  After all–could there be a dealer out there who hasn’t already heard of this?

Rebel Sprting Goods, Keysville, VirginiaI called my local gun store and asked if they were participating.  They had not heard of the program.  Rebel Sporting Goods, in Keysville, Virginia, is off-the-beaten-path and no one at Rebel knew about the deal.  But Meg Fears, Rebel’s manager, said she thought it was a good idea.  “Ruger makes good guns,” she said.  “It isn’t like I’d be pushing crappy guns.”

Fears is already motivated to sell Rugers.   Fears is an honest salesperson who has built a career on customer loyalty and return business.  “We hardly ever have to send a Ruger back,” she said.  And this isn’t true for all of the guns they sell.  If someone at Rebel recommends a Ruger, it is because she trusts Ruger’s guns, not because Ruger is giving her anything.

Still. Free guns.  I guarantee when Fears hung up the phone she went back through her records to see how many Rugers she sold last month.

The point system varies based on price.  Certain Ruger firearms are given points based on their prices.  Earned points can be cashed in, so to speak, and Ruger sends that salesperson a new gun.

Here is the breakdown on how to score points, in convenient graphic form, courtesy of Ruger.  Sell…
Ruger's point system
So if you buy a 10/22, the salesman gets five points.  That makes sense–the 10/22 practically sells itself.  Buy a Gunsite Scout and he gets 15 points.

What do the dealers have to choose from?  There are eight guns available as rewards.

  1. Ruger 10/22 Carbine 75 Points
  2. Ruger 22/45 Target Barrel 100 Points
  3. Ruger LCP 100 Points
  4. Ruger SR22 125 Points
  5. Ruger 10/22 Takedown 125 Points
  6. Ruger LCR .357 125 Points
  7. Ruger American Rifle 150 Points
  8. Ruger SR556E 400 Points

I’m jealous.  These are some nice incentives.  The only one I haven’t shot yet is the SR556E, but I hear it is nice.  Sellers, you need to hurry.  This isn’t going to last long.  The promotion ends Sept. 30.

For the rest of us

Is there a benefit for those of us who don’t sell guns for a living?  Maybe.  Look at it this way.  If you are serious about buying a Ruger, you might have a nice bargaining point to work with.  Perhaps the seller would be willing to come down on the retail price in order to get some points in his pocket.

Everyone is entitled to an opinion, and I know some people who don’t like Ruger’s guns as much as I do.  But I think they make great guns.  I own a Ruger or two,  and will likely own more.

If you have any hesitation about this sort of incentivized sales practice, go into the gun store informed.   You’re here on the internet–the greatest library every compiled.  At worst, the salesperson will try to sell you a reasonably priced, well built, reliable and accurate firearm.

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