Friday 3 January 2014

Is QVM Meeting Customer’s Technological Needs?

One of the leading factors in business failures in the retail sector is failure to adapt to society’s technological needs. This is according to a recent article on Smart Company where they interviewed industry experts in administration of failed businesses. Do we meet our customer’s technological needs at QVM?

Business difficulties vary according to the industry but in retail it is primarily rising rents and competition from online shopping. Failed retailers often didn’t adjust to the technological needs of their customers. QVM has a new website. It is cutting edge and has the potential to meet customer’s needs, but does it?

We have commented on Victraders before that the QVM website should primarily be a sales point. Selling goods is the main function of the Queen Victoria Market. Customers go to the QVM website for many reasons but primarily they want to find out what they can buy, where they can buy it, and when they can buy it.

We took a little online test this week. We googled “Socks – Queen Victoria Market”. Socks are a big category at QVM. We have many stalls with ranges bigger than department stores and we pretty much cover every sock and stocking need for customers. The first result on Google was an article about an old photo of a QVM sock seller (see our photo above). The next two entries included a link direct to Cosy Possums website and the Melbourne Hemp entry on QVM’s website. These two traders happen to include socks in their range at the market but would not be considered sock shops. Congratulations to them for having websites that show up on Google but the Google search didn’t really give an inkling of the rich range of socks at QVM.

Then we googled “Socks – Westfield” and the first entry took us to a Westfield website with a
shopping window of socks from a variety of retailers complete with photos and prices. The difference was that Westfield knew what their customers were looking for and gave it to them.

If you go to the QVM website and enter “Socks” in the search box you get 3 results. The first is to a 2013 shopping guide for Father’s Day, the second is an article on Horse Radish that “knocks your socks off”, and the third is to the Melbourne Hemp entry but no listing of the multiple stalls at QVM that can sell you great socks.

We know that QVM is working hard to get the link up between product categories and individual traders. It is a difficult IT task acerbated by traders moving locations but once that is complete, a list of traders who sell socks and their locations will be available for online access. In the meantime, traders need to address their own website presence. If more sock traders had their own websites they would show up on a Google search along with Cosy Possum and Melbourne Hemp.

Try googling your category of product. There may be more excellent opportunities to meet the technological needs of your customers.

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