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Posts: 756
Registered: ‎01-20-2012
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App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

I have read on here that some cards (Macys for one) are better to app for in store versus online. 


Why is that?


Which cards have you found better to app online?  Which ones better in store? 


If I am opted-out of promo mailings does that play a factor into which method is better?  (No file freezes/locks, just opted out).

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Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,346
Registered: ‎04-15-2011
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?


There are people that will argue that it doesn't make a difference, then there are people that have listened to me and others, gone into the store to app and been approved after online denials.   Usually it's an ID issue.


That pretty much sums it up.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,989
Registered: ‎06-25-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

If you apply at macys you might get the macys amex
Amex BCE (2500) / Amex SPG (4000) / Amex GoldPR / Merrill+ Visa siggy (5000) / BofA Amex (6000) / Bofa cash rewards (5000) / BofA Privileges Cash Rewards (5000) / Citi Forward (4400) / Citi DP (2000) / Chase Freedom (4000) / Chase CSP (5000) / Chase Hyatt (5000) / Discover IT (1700) / FNBO AMEX (3600) / NFCU cashRewards Visa signature (15000) / NFCU Flagship Visa signature (12500) / NFCU Navcheck (5000) / Nordstrom (500) / MetroCU Visa Elite (5000) / Walmart (4500) / Kays Jewerels (6600) / Kohls (300) / Macys Platinum (2500) / DCU platinum Visa (17500) / Citizens bank cash back (1100) / Bill Me Later (1631) / PayPal Smart connect (2200) / BestBuy store card (2000)
Valued Member
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎09-09-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

Yeah, some may say that it doesn't make a difference, but there's one thing that's for sure, and that's that it's easier for them to verify who you are in-store than it is online or over the phone.

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Moderator Emerita
Posts: 27,204
Registered: ‎09-13-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

I was going to app for Nordstrom online (something about the fear of rejection is not as harsh online) but I called their credit department and the rep STRONGLY suggested doing it in the store. She indicated that the process of approval would be much shorter cause of their verification process.  Subsequently,  I also read on this forum that when you apply online the 7-10 message is almost guaranteed and then you are asked to send in copies of your dl or other documents. 


I apped in the store and sure enough my verification process included telling the CSR the full account number of one of my cc (which reports a CL) AND the security code on back.  Keep in mind they also swiped my dl through their card reader.  Two minutes later, I was given my approval. 


Walmart and Chevron I had to call in with a reference number and then I was verified. However, PayPal MasterCard  was an instant online approval.  Penneys (my first card) didn't ask for I guess the moral of the story's a toss up.  Smiley Frustrated

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Posts: 3,021
Registered: ‎02-09-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

at my store, you would get declined in person, just the same as online. credit is credit is credit.
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Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,738
Registered: ‎08-13-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

It's computer decision.......but you can alway call back door for second route.

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Walmart: 10k |Usaa: 8k|BCE: 13k| Amex: NSPL|Dis: 9.4k|Cap: 5.5k|CAP: 2k|CSP: 13.4k| Pen:4.5k

Posts: 9
Registered: ‎08-16-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

Its been about 2 years so I don't know if the process has changed, but I worked at BestBuy and Radio Shack here is my experience. While working at Radio Shack you would have to call the credit department 75% of the time and a lot of people with good income and credit (so they would say) would be denied it was always 1000+ or declined nothing lower. At Bestbuy very rarely would you have to call credit services (HSBC at the time). People who would say I have bad credit or its not so good would a lot of the time be approved for the purchase amount at the time or if it was high 1500+ they would usually be approved for about 700-900. Note that's in BBY only card not the everyday card.


And on a side note I also worked at lowes for a time after that and people rarely got denied very simple and easy to get approved. I did do much with Credit Card Apps there so can't say more then that.


this was 2 yrs ago so things might have changed.

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Senior Contributor
Posts: 11,485
Registered: ‎10-21-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

Repo-ed wrote:
at my store, you would get declined in person, just the same as online. credit is credit is credit.

While this may apply in some circumstances at your specific retail business, this does not fare the same principle for other retail companies that offer instant credit promotions.


Ultimately, it all boils down to marketing incentives or seasonal promotions associated with the retail business and its credit/lending arm's portfolio.


During any sustainable growth period, lenders evaluate their growth strategy to stay competitive in the market.  From a lending perspective associated to their bottom line -- no credit, no sales, no growth.


Various retail companies can sometimes provide more flexible credit underwriting criteria using multiple channels (in-store, online, phone, apps/social media, etc.) at different times throughout the year.  Of course, no one (except those who work directly for the lender or its retail marketing division) will know for sure the advantage of you being approved online versus in-store, or any other channel as applicable.


Hence the anecdotal threads cited by individuals applying online and not getting approved instantly then visiting the store and getting approved or viceversa.  This usually stems from a couple factors, primary identification risk and/or borderline credit eligibility.  The ID verification and risk algorithm varies from in-store (POS) versus that of applying online or via telephone, etc.


Additionally, different retail credit products and eligibility requirements are only offered by specific channels.  For instance, both the Macy's and Bloomingdale's American Express cards are only offered in-store if you currently do not have a Macy's credit relationship.  Or, in the case of Comenity (fka WFNNB), some of their credit products will display a preapproval (SP) offering (for qualified individuals) during the checkout process online but not in-store.

Posts: 139
Registered: ‎07-31-2012
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Re: App'ing online vs instore, which ones and why?

Maybe in-store you get approved a higher amount (along with supposed discount or sign-up bonus) because you are there and you may buy stuff out of impulse due to the new found 'extra spending power'.

I currently have 3 store cards and my experience has been the following (applied in this order)

Wal-Mart: Online approval for $1K discover GE backed (have had an account with them for over a year and a half, pay on time and with less than 5% reporting balance)

Sears: In-store approval for $2.5K CITI backed, never had anything with them before.

Home Depot: Underwriter approval after verifying information for $1250 CITI backed, never had anything with them before. initial app was Online, this card was approved after 4 inquiries on record and still had a higher balance than the GE backed discover.


Don't know if it is coincidence, but from a logical point of view they might assume online customers 'may' plan ahead before buying and store customers go with impulse or?

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