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Australian store charges customers a $5 'just looking' fee

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#16 vetneufuse

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:34

Sometimes I visit a store 2 or 3 times looking at a product and doing research before buying it, gona charge me $15 AU for vising multiple times?.......


#17 shakey

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:38

I agree. People have no issue with wasting a company's time... As a whole, I think people need to be more respectful of other people's time. I always try to be very considerate of this when dealing with companies myself and see nothing wrong with people paying for this time if they have no intention of doing business with the company...


Actually... No. The business should be doing what it takes to get the customers dollar. Company's waste people's time, all the time. The way stores are designed and layed out, over 80% of the time, are for reasons that keep you wandering the store, directing you to certain things. Hell, most stores have 20+ check out lanes, with only 3 actual cashiers. This gets people to wander about a little more as they wait for lines to die down, keeps them looking at product, and other things that are " to be perceived ".
Customers should have every right to inquire, browse, and research what ever it is they will spend their dollars on.

#18 articuno1au

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:44

Absolutely, but the company isn't obliged to supply you with this right.. You can obtain your rights elsewhere.

They can choose not to service you if they feel you're wasting their time, this is just a different mechanism for the same idea.

#19 .Neo

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:46

Why would it not? It's their business, not a recreation area, and they can certainly charge an admission if they so desire...

Because I seriously doubt you can force someone to pay when you haven't seen anything you like in store. Imagine you go into a clothing store and don't happen to find something that suits you, then be forced to pay €10 (or whatever).

#20 M_Lyons10

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:47

Actually... No. The business should be doing what it takes to get the customers dollar. Company's waste people's time, all the time. The way stores are designed and layed out, over 80% of the time, are for reasons that keep you wandering the store, directing you to certain things. Hell, most stores have 20+ check out lanes, with only 3 actual cashiers. This gets people to wander about a little more as they wait for lines to die down, keeps them looking at product, and other things that are " to be perceived ".
Customers should have every right to inquire, browse, and research what ever it is they will spend their dollars on.


Well, thanks for the tangent, though it really doesn't relate to what I was saying whatsoever...

Browsing a store != wasting a company's time... LMAO

#21 articuno1au

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:48

I think it's more to do with taking up the retail staff's time on advice then going elsewhere.

As I observed earlier, they can't enforce it >.>

#22 M_Lyons10

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:48

Because I seriously doubt you can force someone to pay when you haven't seen anything you like in store. Imagine you go into a clothing store and don't happen to find something that suits you, then be forced to pay €10 (or whatever).


Admission? It really wouldn't be that tricky... I'm not saying it's a good practice or not, but I don't blame this small business in the slightest for doing so... People have no consideration for other people's time at all anymore.

#23 .Neo

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:55

Admission? It really wouldn't be that tricky... I'm not saying it's a good practice or not, but I don't blame this small business in the slightest for doing so... People have no consideration for other people's time at all anymore.

I'm fairly certain that putting an admission sign on your front door up will do you more harm than good. :laugh:

#24 shakey

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 19:58

Admission? It really wouldn't be that tricky... I'm not saying it's a good practice or not, but I don't blame this small business in the slightest for doing so... People have no consideration for other people's time at all anymore.


It's her business; She should spend time to educate people on it. If she doesn't want to do that, she can make it harder for people to ever go in or get anything. It is her choice, but from a business perspective, it is the wrong choice to make.
If I got ****ed every time someone came into my business asking questions about all the size storage units, temps, safety, and so on and on, and then left looking for something else, I'd rightfully go out of business in a short time. People will have questions. It is the business that needs to answer them. If you feel it is a waste of time to secure a sale, then maybe you are in the wrong business.

#25 OP +techbeck

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:07

Charging is really is not the way to go IMO. People will just stop coming in to the store, research products online, and probably eventually end up buying the product elsewhere. You want to get people in the door, not keep them out of it.

Just not a good time to charge people more with the economy in lots of countries not doing so well.

#26 M_Lyons10

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:11

It's her business; She should spend time to educate people on it. If she doesn't want to do that, she can make it harder for people to ever go in or get anything. It is her choice, but from a business perspective, it is the wrong choice to make.
If I got ****ed every time someone came into my business asking questions about all the size storage units, temps, safety, and so on and on, and then left looking for something else, I'd rightfully go out of business in a short time. People will have questions. It is the business that needs to answer them. If you feel it is a waste of time to secure a sale, then maybe you are in the wrong business.


I don't think she is saying there is anything wrong with answering a question at all. I think her issue is that this is not an occasional thing, but a chronic problem. And for a business like hers, with a lot of overhead, that is going to be more expensive than a large supermarket, the one thing that she is essentially selling is that one on one touch. The customer service. Because you can't get that from the cheaper supermarkets... So instead, people come to her for the customer service, then go to the large supermarket to purchase the product...

You seem to be under the miss-perception that she's upset about a single customer, or that marketing will somehow improve her position, but what is actually occurring is that the product that she is marketing (The customer service) is essentially being stolen. There is a big difference between what you are conveying and what is actually happening... :rolleyes:

Now, as I have said, I am not saying that charging a fee is the right thing or the wrong thing, but it brings light to a very real (And serious) issue for small businesses like hers. They cannot beat the large companies on price, so instead they do so on customer service and the personal touch. But what are they then to do when the product they are now selling (Being more of a service business now than a product business) is literally being stolen? They have to do something or they will go out of business. And then everyone will be very sad to see this small business close because of all the great service they will no longer be able to get for FREE, but had they actually purchased goods there to show their appreciation for the service being offered, the business would still be open.

#27 primexx

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:13

Wonder how long it takes before they go out of business...

#28 shakey

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:14

I don't think she is saying there is anything wrong with answering a question at all. I think her issue is that this is not an occasional thing, but a chronic problem. And for a business like hers, with a lot of overhead, that is going to be more expensive than a large supermarket, the one thing that she is essentially selling is that one on one touch. The customer service. Because you can't get that from the cheaper supermarkets... So instead, people come to her for the customer service, then go to the large supermarket to purchase the product...

You seem to be under the miss-perception that she's upset about a single customer, or that marketing will somehow improve her position, but what is actually occurring is that the product that she is marketing (The customer service) is essentially being stolen. There is a big difference between what you are conveying and what is actually happening... :rolleyes:

Now, as I have said, I am not saying that charging a fee is the right thing or the wrong thing, but it brings light to a very real (And serious) issue for small businesses like hers. They cannot beat the large companies on price, so instead they do so on customer service and the personal touch. But what are they then to do when the product they are now selling (Being more of a service business now than a product business) is literally being stolen? They have to do something or they will go out of business. And then everyone will be very sad to see this small business close because of all the great service they will no longer be able to get for FREE, but had they actually purchased goods there to show their appreciation for the service being offered, the business would still be open.


I fully understand it. And you said it as well, small businesses have to give a lot more on customer service and personal touch. By the attitude she has displayed, It would seem that her touch is a tad rough.
I am in basically the exact boat. Small independent storage facility. I have around 5 major branded national storage properties around me, with maybe another 10 to 15 smaller ones. What makes my place more appealing is the customer service I provide and the convenience that I offer. A customer of ours could very well go a few miles down the road and get a unit cheaper. The reason they don't, is because of what I offer to them beyond what they get at normal facilities. This is what small businesses MUST do. And all day long, I am on the phone or talking to "would be" customers. About 90% of all customers of mine call around and "waste" time of mine and other businesses. But if you actually treat it as "wasted" time, you have actually just wasted a sale. This is why you must be open to customers just stopping by, treat them like they are your best customers, and show them why their time at your business is appreciated.

#29 +GlitterBoy

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:16

This has been going on in Australia for a couple of years now.


It has? can you enlighten me? This is the only store in Brisbane I know of that does this, I work in the CBD.

#30 M_Lyons10

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 20:22

I fully understand it. And you said it as wel, small businesses have to give a lot more on customer service and personal touch. By the attitude she has displayed, It would seem that her touch is a tad rough.


I'm not sure how I can possibly be clearer...

Now, please pause and READ the below response...

Because the service she is offering, the one that her business is built upon, is being STOLEN... This isn't bad customer service, it is an attempt to charge for the service she is marketing. No "better" customer service will solve the problem. People have no respect for her time, if she offered better customer service they would surely only steal that too. Above someone referred to it as a "consultation fee", that's a very good description of it. And this fee I guarantee would be waived for actual customers (In fact the article itself says that she will refund it if you purchase something), so in actuality, this likely won't impact her business much other than reducing the number of people that come to her for free customer service before going to the big supermarket.

Now, please read that again. Maybe a few times...