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What drives you then prompts you to buy online?

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9 LEE
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9 LEE posted on Sat, Sep 28 2013 11:43 AM

Just something that occurred to me whilst talking to one of my staff yesterday, who was explaining to me how he went on a 4 hour round trip to buy a Samsung TV last weekend..

"Did nobody have any locally?" I said

"Not at the price I wanted to pay"

"So, price was the deciding factor?"

"Well, nobody else had any of the model I wanted in stock"

"So nobody locally could order one, at the price you wanted to pay - and get it within a few days?"

"I wanted it now, so I was happy to drive and get it"

"Would you use that company again, even though they're 4 hours away?"

"If they had what I wanted, at a price I wanted to pay"

"Was their service good?"

"Yes, they were very helpful - they even carried it to my car"

"But you'd still go elsewhere if the price was right?"

"Yeah"

 Now.. this isn't a guy in his teens or twenties - he's in his 50's.  

Is that the way buying electronics has gone?  Whoever offers the best deal and can get it to you the fastest (or has it in stock for you to collect the fastest) gets your money?  Even a good experience with a seller who has previously ticked all your boxes means nothing in the future?

I'm feeling the answer is a resounding yes - as it follows the same kind of pattern for my own purchases, but I'd be interested in what leads to you making a purchase - from initial sight of a product right through to purchase.

Take myself for example - here's how it goes

1) I see an advert for, or read about a product - either in print or online.

2) I Google it and look for reviews.

3) I sniff around for the best deal

4) I find the cheapest 3-5 sellers and try and find out a bit about their reputation 

5) I call or email which I consider to be the best one and see if they have one in stock.

6) If they don't, I work down the list.

7) As long as they can deliver, quickly, I don't care where they are.  As long as there is someone who can repair it if it goes wrong it makes no difference.

8) I make my purchase.

May I just say that number one on my list is the most important one.  If a company does that badly, or not enough, or at all - steps 2 through to 8 never happen.  Note for B&O there possibly..

Anyway - your thoughts and experiences?!

Lee

 

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bidstonhall
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Hi Lee, interesting question, even though i live in Thailand i still have my home back in the U.K. which is rented furnished, so occasionally i have to replace a vacuum cleaner or a tumble dryer etc

 

now being here i have to do this online and the big factor for me is how easy is the website to negotiate, sometimes i pay a little extra just for the ease of ordering

 

for example, the last few items i had to purchase all came from Curry's, the experience of ordering thru these people is so simple and quick and problem free, in the past i have tried to order cheaper goods from say Tesco's and their site is a nightmare to go thru

 

this is the great advantage of Ebay of course, so simple and problem free if you know what you are doing, so i would have to say ease of purchase from the online shop is the big one, cheers

Jeff
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Jeff replied on Sat, Sep 28 2013 3:13 PM

Interesting post Lee. I have to say I'm similar in my purchase flow chart to you. Over here, I use Amazon a lot, we have Prime membership which we more than make up for the yearly cost in shipping. One, we live in a small town without much in the way of diversified retail, and two, we tend to be introverts who hate people, so dealing online has advantages! Surprise

I don't know though, unless it was an issue of having to have it now now now, I wouldn't drive 4 hours for a price break. You have to add the cost of fuel and aggravation/time to the purchase price. Some things require a drive, B&O for example, to Atlanta, the only city in Georgia with a dealer. I could have bought the headphones from the net, but I wanted to give the local dealer business, and also wanted to visit the mall he's in, see the shop, establish a relationship, and get out of town for a day trip (including a wonderful lunch at a nearby restaurant). Also, we didn't know we "needed" headphones until we went and my wife listened to a pair of H6's and informed me of the "need." Big Smile

I did mail order my Panasonic P65VT50 from Amazon, even though the local Sears outlet could have gotten it. I wound up getting it for a good discount that way, about $700. And certainly Sears isn't noted for a level of sales service or post sale support that could justify spending the difference.

I've been willing to pay a bit more to deal with a local dealer, even now and in past purchases of AV gear, when I could afford it and to help keep a local dealer alive. We often don't realize how much we miss then until they're gone. Even now, here in the small town, I buy a lot of stuff that I can locally, and I tend to go to the local "real" hardware store for any and everything they can supply, only hitting the Home Depot megastore when it's something the local guy doesn't carry. After the amount of continuing work I am doing on this old house, I'm on a first name basis with everyone in the small store, and get really good service, and the local gossip, when I go in. That alone is worth something!Smile Plus, you can actually find things in the small store.

Jeff

I'm afraid I'm recovering from the BeoVirus. Sad

Søren Mexico
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I totally agree with Jeff on this one, more so as I´m farther away from the butter cup. As Jeff I´m doing a lot of works on my old house myself, and use the local shops for that whenever possible, keeps them alive and gives you a better connection in the community.

I use Amazon US a lot for nearly everything else, Ebay for my vintage. The biggest problem I have is the return limit one gets on most items, mostly 7 days. I let ship to my family in TX and pick up normally 2 times a year, so returning items are mostly not an option. Amazon has been very understanding in the past about my problem.

Buying here in Mexico, after sales services are non existent, "0". If I buy something here in the south of the city and has to use the guarantee for repair or return, they send you to a difficult to find place in the north of the city (2 hour drive) getting there, they check that you bring everything from the original packing and all that was packed in it originally. If anything is missing, no guarantee, but we can take it in for repair they tell you. Repairs are normally 4-6 weeks, guarantee repairs longer. Repairs are normally bad made. For items until 2-300 USD I never bother, just shove it in the bin and forget about it, if more I may try to get an exchange, if possible to repair I do it myself.

I normally do an extensive research before buying, I never buy anything that is new on the market or a the newest model of anything, electronics today are produced under stress, they are thrown on the market as fast as possible, and nearly always with baby sicknesses, so I wait 6-12 month and then check the reviews, if ok I check the prices and mostly end up in Amazon. I also think a lot about what I really wants or needs in an item, but in electronics or computers you normally ends up with an items full of functions you never use. Take a mobile phone: I need a mobile phone for making phone calls, I dont need mail, internet access, texting, music or radio, I do need a camera at times. Try to buy a phone that does only that, phone, camera. impossible.

So I am an online buyer, I go local where I can, but even my underwear and socks I buy online. Surprise

Collecting Vintage B&O is not a hobby, its a lifestyle.

Chris Townsend
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The answer to the question for me, is very little.

I usually only buy online for small peripheral goods that would simply be more expensive to drive and collect, than to order online. But when i ordered from you Lee i used the internet to select my goods, but then used the phone to order. I like speaking to a human being, and this therefore excludes those damn automated tills in supermarkets and banks.

I still think there are a lot of improvements that can be done online. If you look how houses are marketed for £600,000 online, and then look at the few miserable poor quality pictures that are included in the sale, i would be down their shop banging tables and heads.

First impressions count, so the best quality photos you can take, and lots of them. A concise but professional description with reliable links to tech sources. A telephone number to a human being who can 1. talk and 2. knows a bit about what they are talking about. A fair price for a product that can be delivered in a fair time. B&O products take far to long to arrive with some unreliable delivery dates.

Its a television, not tripletsErm..

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vikinger
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Ideally buy from a retailer you know ( like Lifestyle!)

Beware eBay.... To many crafty sellers who know what they are selling is faulty or tell you to rely on the photographs (which invariably don't show half the scratches.)

For new goods, there are too many individuals now buying goods by the container load from China, and then setting themselves up as retail outlets on Amazon and Tesco, two sites that now seem to allow anyone to sell as an independent. No help from these people when things go wrong, and you usually lose at least the return postage.

And has anyone else noticed that a high proportion of goods appearing on the John Lewis and Curry's websites are not available in store but will be sent direct from the manufacturer (or container owner........)

Graham

Magnus
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Magnus replied on Sun, Sep 29 2013 11:12 AM

Jeff:

 ..and two, we tend to be introverts who hate people, so dealing online has advantages! Surprise

Haha, same here! I usually like to buy on the Internet because I can sit quietly for myself and think, and change my mind three or four times before I press "buy". But if I feel that I need to see a product, e.g. try it on or test it for myself, I always buy from the shop I try it in. I don't like it when people go to a store and try stuff, and then go on the internet and buy it cheep. That's unfair to the store. "you can't have your cake and eat it too".

But I try to be loyal to shops that I like. I ordered my H6's from my dealer (in another city), even though I could have gotten them sooner from the Beoplay web site...

Anders Jørgensen
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It depends on the need priority not the money so much.

With old school pre 1992 B&O you have to go where the offers come up and it is seldom dealerships that have what I am looking for.

I must say that I am not an average consumer at all.

What drives me? Beovirus though I am comming to some sort of conclussion at this time. I can now put it on a lower priority. Internet helps me finding the stuff and many times I have to look outside Denmark to find whatever I want. 

I buy small things online when it comes to electronics such as B&O. Most of the time I travel and see it upclose before a purchase. 

I have otherwise bought tons of stuff from US, UK and Germany via Ebay and got no problems exept when Canada post is involved.

One example was a Marshall Major 200 watt tube head from '71 which are a rare guitar amplifier and it was in the US when I won highbid. It got shipped + changed the voldtage to 220 and it is still Denmark playing great. If it was in Denmark it would have been more simple.

The other was a Honda CT70 bike. The Dax moped was never the big succes in Denmark so the CT version US is not available so I imported one.  

Mark
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Mark replied on Sun, Sep 29 2013 8:06 PM
Good question Lee.

When I was young I chased a rare album for 10 years and never found it. A few years ago I Google searched it and found it for sale immediately. I didn't buy it as the chase was not there and the purchase had no meaning.

But the biggest problem I have is the lack of knowledge from general salesman. Being a geek I research all my purchases normally to the nth degree and find out when I visit the store that I know more than the salesman. Today was a good example, we were looking at buying a mattress and my wife told the salesman that "he was way out of his depth", poor chap he could not recover his pitch.

It would be interesting to know what times of day you see peak traffic on your website as it's early Sunday evening and I'm looking at it along with a few others toying up my next purchase.

we tend to forget there is more to design than designing.

Secondlife
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Consumers demand a best and fast deal.

And why shouldn't they? What good is a retailer without stock? What service do we need when the manufacturer takes care with pick up and return? In most cases the buyer is better informed about specifications than the seller.

Only smart and pro active retailers will survive. And that's a good thing in my opinion; as a retailer you have to earn the order (and the profit) by doing a perfect job.
Barry Santini
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The operative word is salesperson is....TA DA!...sales! Not technician. Not authority.
tournedos
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vikinger
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Barry Santini:
The operative word is salesperson is....TA DA!...sales! Not technician. Not authority.

In the UK "Ta Da" has been registered by Boots (chemist) for their womens' make-up ranges. It works too. I read your post and thought of a TV ad for make-up!

Graham

vikinger
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tournedos:

Brilliant.

Worth at least four smileys which my iPad will not post.

[][][][]

Graham

elephant
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vikinguk:

Brilliant.

Worth at least four smileys which my iPad will not post.

[][][][]

Graham

[ : D ] without the spaces should do it

And to the topic - I still enjoy shopping when there is the Goldilock's level of customer service ("not too hot, not too cold, just right")

But I am driven online because (1) all the good music stores and book stores have been replaced by barns with barrels that are bucket load full of the same rubbish or (2) I can listen like I used to do with cans or booths or (3) as some one else posted, access to esoteric materials that would never get shipped/flown here

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