Wednesday 27 March 2013

Store Charges $5 To Browse

A specialty Brisbane grocery store has put up a poster warning customers that they will be charged $5 for browsing without buying.

Before traders go rushing off to their printers we should point out that this store is a specialty gluten free food supplier for celiac sufferers and is more likely to get inundated with questions from customers seeking specialty advice. The owner of the store said she was sick of giving advice to customers who left empty handed. It would seem that she is a victim of the trend for customers to research their purchase online and in-store before heading for the cheapest source, in this case, probably a supermarket.

Charging for browsing is wrong on so many levels but it does illustrate the frustration that many retailers experience. We give final word to the ARA Executive Director, Russell Zimmerman, who says to be competitive, smaller stores should emphasise what they offer that other stores don't and focus on providing great customer service. By putting up a confronting sign "You are missing the opportunity for the browsing customer to actually buy from you."