Sunday 30 November 2014

Latest Retail News – 30/11/2014

Latest Retail News – 30/11/2014

1. ACCC warns comparative websites against misleading information.
2. COS, sister brand to H&M , opens first Melbourne store on Elizabeth St.
3. Labour promises 24hr pharmacies in Victorian election.
4. Dick Smith sticks to sales projections.
5. Di Bella coffee group taken up by RFG, owners of Gloria Jean’s coffee chain.
6. Godfrey’s moves to stock market listing.
7. Pumpkin Patch says it is relying on Christmas sales to please its banks.
8. Harvey Norman seeks to raise $120m from investors.
9. General Pants temporarily changes name to General Peace in new campaign.
10. Bakery chain, Pie Face, goes into administration.
11. ARA says outdoor leisure retailers heading for good Christmas.
12. Australian consumer confidence slowly rises.
13. Kathmandu predicts drop in half yearly sales.
14. Specialty Fashion Group brand, Rivers, continues to struggle.
15. Federal Government minister says demise of small business a problem for Australia.
16. Caltex eases away from Woolworths with some re-branding of service station sites.
17. ACCC approves Wesfarmers purchase of Yakka workwear.
18. CommBank says Australians will spend less on Christmas this year.
19. Pacific Brands sells footwear and clothing labels to private equity.
20. Harrolds to open first womenswear store.
21. Radio Rentals continues to perform well.
22. Retail Food Group calls off acquisition of La Porchetta.
23. Kate Perry opens pop-up store in Melbourne.
24. Chinese e-commerce giant, Alibaba, achieves $US9.6 billion sales in one day.
25. Solomon Lew to shut 15 Steve Madden stores in dispute over licensing agreement.
26. McDonalds global sales slip in October.
27. Williams Sonoma to open four stores at Chadstone Shopping Centre.
28. Burger King opens beef free franchise in India.

This Is Not A Christmas Commercial

After posting that wonderful John Lewis Christmas commercial with Monty the penguin we have been looking for more Christmas advertising stimulation and this one from Kmart US is very clever..... but it is NOT a Christmas commercial.

Music Week - The First Report Card

Melbourne Music Week had a significant impact on our Queen Victoria Market and our initial report gives it a fail. The event was discussed at a meeting of Trader Representatives on Tuesday.

That is not to say that there were not some good things to come out of the event for traders. The Therry St. Marquee was a standout success. A number of marquee traders reported significantly improved takings and were impressed by the impact of a more up-market location and the attitude of their customers. Apparently the different location meant that customers saw them in a more positive light. Even traders who didn't do standout business were glowing in their praise of the trading environment and the benefits of leaving your stock on site.

Another positive outcome was the glimpse into String Bean Alley's potential as a successful trading aisle. Modifying the approaches to SBA, and filling it with traders, had an obvious impact on the resident traders and was probably their first look at really successful trading outside the Night Market.

Now for the bad news - there were traders who suffered because of Music Week. Apparently, many traders found the impact of the event to be neutral but there was a core group in the J,K,L block who suffered sales decline particularly while loud music was being played in the adjacent stage area. And, of course, Sunday 15th was a disaster day with profane rap music creating a distinctly unsuitable environment for family groups, particularly with young children. Then there were those traders who were relocated into other areas of the market, sometimes in smaller stalls, who experienced sales losses.

Trader Representatives are preparing a letter to management requesting a compensation arrangement for traders who can demonstrate significant sales loss. We will also be seeking a blanket rent reduction for traders immediately adjacent to the music area particularly on the occasions when excessively loud or profane music was played.

There were other issues considered at Tuesday's meeting including -
1.     The Peel St. facade of QVM looked like the market was closed. This was probably impacted by the construction zone wire fencing and the "trendy" black and white decor of MMW. The answer would seem to be to make future events an integrated part of QVM rather than replacing a section of QVM.
2.     J shed was particularly impacted by the event. We have probably under-estimated the importance of this aisle as a thoroughfare and in future it should remain open.
3.     Closing the car park entrance into the top walkway impacted on traffic flow across the market and this sort of key entry point should remain open during an event.
4.     The blank wall at the bottom end of the stage area (the top walkway) created the illusion of a dead-end and needs to be better sign-posted.
5.     Loud music and trading do not go together.
6.     And finally, and most importantly, a music event is not conducive to market trading. Attendees at a music event are generally not your typical shopper and unlikely to add to sales performance for traders. The general view is that there are many events more likely to attract market friendly shoppers than a music event and perhaps a Jehovah's Witness conference would be a good start.

As an overall view, many traders acknowledge that any event will expose our market to a potentially new clientele and could have longer term benefits. But selecting events that are more retail friendly, and then organising them to maximise the potential return for traders, needs to be our priority. On this occasion there were winners and losers. In a fragile retail market there should not be losers. We need to learn from this event and do much better next time.

Have Your Say - click here.

04/12/2014 00:04:22 mmw and the draw "In relation to mmw I  feel all the traders, especially those in J-L, should have their rent waived for the entirety of mmw. I agree with several traders here, there should be several draws, but it should all be in market vouchers, so they at least spend it here."

Trader’s Giveaway – Cash or Vouchers?

Lucky winners of the Trader’s Cash Giveaway promotion receive their $500 in the form of $250 cash and $250 in QVM vouchers. A number of traders are asking why not give the whole $500 in vouchers so we can be sure the money comes back to traders.

This is a fair question but the proponents of the current split believe a quick bit of financial/marketing analysis will suggest that the cash component will give us a better return. Yes, by giving cash, there is the danger that the funds will be spent elsewhere. But the cash component certainly makes the promotion more attractive to customers, and this promotion is all about getting more people to our market.

Cash is just so much more liquid and who could blame customers for wanting to spend some of their winnings outside the market. By making the promotion more attractive we hope more people will hear about the cash giveaway and come along to do their shopping. They may hear about it from their friends, radio advertising, or any of the promotional mediums being used by QVM.

Some years ago a market research program concluded that the average spend at QVM was $100 per customer. If we attract an extra 500 customers to our market each day of the promotion and they only spend a conservative $20 each we are putting an extra $10,000 into traders tills.  That compares favourably with the possible loss of $250. 

Without specific data this is always going to be a bit of a guessing game and with traders contributing their hard-earned dollars to this campaign we want to get it right. But the argument detailed above seems to make sense. What do you think?

01/12/2014 09:57:44 Giveaway Voucher "I Think it would be a better idea, if we announce two winners every market day with a prize money of $250 each. May be one at 11:00 am and the other one at 1:00 pm. In this case there would be more prize winners and more sales activities in favour of all the stall holders."

01/12/2014 13:57:38 Trader Give Away "As ALL TRADERS, SHOPS, DELI, MEAT & FISH are required to take the QVM gift vouchers are we not giving them our form of cash.........They are able to spend these vouchers at any location within the QVM. The other notion you need to note, is that this giveaway is FREE to enter, they are not required to purchase a ticket, not even required to make a purchase within the market. All they need to do is collect a ticket and be at the market at 12pm......its not like they even need to wait around...... the weekday office workers can walk over at 11:55 grab a ticket, wait for the draw, if they win collect $500 (at the moment $250 cash) and walk away.....nothing making them spend the vouchers even, as they have $250 cash for going on a lunch break. A trader comment says lets give away 2 x $250 prizes, your article says the average spend is $100, so why not give away 5 x $100 prizes throughout the day......use the same raffle tickets, and make the draw every 30 mins from 10:30 till 1:00. that keeps people in the market, gives them multiple chances to win...... As the office would now know how much the traders are putting towards the draw (they would have of put the charges to those who did not say ""NO"" today, so if we have more than 250 traders supplying $1 each, lets say we have 500 traders all putting in $1, then the office is matching it, so that $1000 per day, we could offer that 5 x $200 vouchers, and if not claimed before the next draw it should jackpot, so it creates more interest in each draw throughout the day." Lance

01/12/2014 22:10:00 The Ticket Draw "I agree , two draws x $ 250 , 2 times, or even 4 draws x $125 - all spending vouches...would benefit market traders ." Andy

03/12/2014 11:41:47 Give away. "Lances comments are valid....I had a customer who told me that her and her friends had just come to the qvm to receive the free raffle tickets. They were really happy that 1) they cost nothing and 2) that the did not have to buy anything, and they might be lucky enough to go home with $250!........ .they did not care about the vouchers only the cash. What are your comments?"
Fortunately the first 4 winners of our Cash Giveaway were interstate or international customers who, as far as we know, knew nothing about our promotion before coming to the market to shop. I met each of them and they were genuinely grateful to traders for the added bonus. There will always be cynical opportunists like your customer with this type of promotion. Let's hope they remain the minority. This is a trader inspired promotion aimed at giving something back to customers and creating a buzz around the market. - Ed.

04/12/2014 00:04:22 mmw and the draw "In relation to mmw I feel all the traders, especially those in J-L, should have their rent waived for the entirety of mmw. I agree with several traders here, there should be several draws, but it should all be in market vouchers, so they at least spend it here."

Another Happy Winner At QVM

Vicki is from Perth and she was Thursday’s winner in the Trader’s Cash Giveaway promotion. She visited our market with her Mother and Auntie and was delighted to win her $500 but she was full of praise for QVM traders.

Vicki told the story of the time her Mother bought a $50 dress from Maggie at the market only to be chased up the aisle by Maggie after completing the sale because her Mother had handed over two $50 notes instead of one. Such honesty figures very highly with Vicki and no doubt she has told that story on many occasions to her friends.

On this occasion she was quick to thank trader, David, for her win. Apparently she wasn’t over enthusiastic about entering the promotion but David convinced her to go to shop F1 for a docket and she turned out to be the lucky winner.

Another happy customer benefiting from great customer service and some targeted promotion – well done to all involved.

Have Your Say – click here.

Christmas Trading Arrangements Concerns

Traders have received a letter from QVM announcing the arrangements around Christmas/New Year trading and they are proposing some variations that traders need to be aware of.

A number of traders have raised concerns about the additional trading days in lieu of Christmas Day and Boxing Day being charged in advance with restrictions on cancellation arrangements. In addition the normal process of identifying the new day as a substitute for a normal trading day has not been applied.

Traders are urged to read the letter carefully and assess the impact on their intentions for Christmas/New Year trading.

02/12/2014 21:05:43 Christmas/New Year trading "I am a SL Trader, after reading through the letter from QVM sent to me regarding to the Christmas/New Year trading day as well as talk to the office. My understanding is that I will be additionally charged for the two days ( Mon, Wed) if I would like to trade on those days. Being an SL trader mean I already paid for those day in my monthly rental, why on earth I have to pay more for something I have already paid for anyway."  

Thursday 27 November 2014

QVM Radio Advertisement

Hearing radio advertisements for our market is not easy. They generally only last for 30 seconds and it is more good luck than good management that we get to hear them. Sometimes we come across them while driving to or from the market but the nature of our work means that we are unlikely to hear them during the day. So we decided to create a link for a recent radio advertisement on MIX FM that mentions the Trader's Cash Giveaway Promotion.
Sound files are rather large so it might take some time to download but it is worth hearing what our customers hear about our market while listening to the radio. Just click on the link below.

                              QVM Radio Advertisement

Happy Customer Wins Our Thursday Cash Giveaway

Chrissy is from Adelaide and just loves visiting QVM on her trips to Melbourne. Her commitment to our market paid off today when she was the lucky recipient of the $500 Traders Cash Giveaway. Funds for the giveaway came from traders with an equal contribution from QVM.


Our photos show Trader Joe Stolarek making the draw in F shed and Chrissy being presented with her $500 by Josh from the QVM Marketing Department. Chrissy hasn’t decided whether she will spend all her vouchers today or keep some for her next trip. Congratulations to our lucky winner.

Have Your Say – click here.

Email received 28/11/2014
"Thank you so very much, I really appreciated my big win!! I did spend the vouchers & some of the cash @QVM with my daughter, it was such
a wonderful treat! 
Again thank you so much !! 
Very excited ...
Ps we come over regularly and always make a visit to QVM.


Harry Revs Up Customers For Trader's Giveaway

Our video shows Harry The Calypso King entertaining crowds in E shed as he progresses around the market while Josh hands out tickets. They were promoting the Trader’s Cash Giveaway on Thursday.

Happy Trader From Tuesday's First Cash Giveaway

Our trader received a visit from the very excited family who received $500 from the first Cash Giveaway promotion on Tuesday. Here she shows off $50 worth of market vouchers. The Cash Giveaway is a Trader inspired giveaway with market traders each giving $1 per day and management a similar amount. A draw will be held each day in the lead up to Christmas.

Our Christmas Tree Looks Great At Night

At the time of writing, work was still continuing on decorating our 9 metre Christmas tree in Queen St. However, as the photo shows, it is already looking great at night and it sets off the huge MELBOURNE sign very well. 

Have Your Say - click here.

30/11/2014 19:57:07 Christmas Decorations "Just wanted to know if all the Christmas decorations were up now or is there more to come? The re vamp of the stars at the end of each she'd is a great start but is that it ! A tree and some new or should I say old but updated stars is all we get !!!! Just think of how many people flock to see the Myers Window! If we could have all those people come to the Q V M to see our decorations think of all thoses extra customers! Why is it that An icon like the Q V M has the most crap Christmas Decorations in the city! Crown Does it so well ! We should be a destination point for Melbourne for everyone to come to at Christmas"

Trader Giveaway Vouchers

The daily Cash Giveaway that started on Tuesday will be repeated each day and our photo shows the format of the shopping vouchers that winners will be spending in the market.
If you do receive a voucher, and it is convenient, we would like you to take a photo of yourself with the winner and submit it to management or to Victraders. The idea is that we can publicise the event and promote what traders are doing to support and entertain their customers.
Photos can be emailed to or sent via SMS to 0406222020.

Tuesday 25 November 2014

Good Start For Trader Inspired Giveaway

Tuesday was the first day of the special QVM cash giveaway which was inspired by one of our Traders and basically involves a collaborative effort between Traders and QVM to give $500 to a market customer each day in the lead up to Christmas.

Traders contributed $1 each in a quick whip around in the morning with a draw at 12:00 noon which attracted quite a crowd as you can see from the video. The winners were three young tourists whose only real problem was working out how to spend their market vouchers before getting back on their plane the next day.

Future giveaways will be supported  by advertising including radio spots. QVM will match the trader contribution and cover the cost of advertising. Another whip around will be conducted on Thursday but in order to keep collection costs down it is hoped that an automatic deduction can be applied to trader rents for subsequent giveaways.

The response to our first giveaway was encouraging.  With the support of additional promotion including radio advertising, and the natural impetus of a repeat event,  it is hoped that we will achieve a significant boost to crowds in the lead up to Christmas.

Have Your Say - click here.

Ed - Trader Albert has a suggestion which involves traders giving their customers a receipt which could be presented at the F1 shop for an additional chance in the giveaway. Rewarding paying customers seems like a good idea.

26/11/2014 15:53:53 Promotion "I thought that people would qualify for a ticket in $500 draw after a purchase in the Market not be handed out WillyNilly  to all and sundry

As this seemed to be the case on Tuesday" A trader Albert

Saturday 22 November 2014

Traders Comments – Lots of Them

Melbourne Music Week and the one year license renewals are just two of the issues that have resulted in lots of comments to this website’s “Have Your Say” facility over the past week.

Rather than publish them all we are recording a brief summary here. Thank you to all contributors.

18/11/2014 19:02:11 Music Week "........The traffic flow in areas around the music event was greatly changed and hindered sales for a lot of traders around me. All of who were complaining about the poor weekends figures. I understand a number of traders have said they had better days, so its a case of good for some, bad for others, but the questions need to be asked. The traders l spoke to who had good days, were all well away from the music areas, lower section of L,R/L, R/K, J and on the other side of F shed. those around the music festival struggled.........."  Lance Dyer

18/11/2014 19:07:25 String Bean Alley "Great to hear that these traders feel the music week was a success for them. Its not that music helped them at all, its the fact with so few stalls available, the casuals were taking the stalls, in LL Laneway, the opposite side to M shed, and this created more attraction to draw people in to this area. The traffics flow of customers also being redirected to this being the only way in from peel street also would have assisted a lot. I hope the QVM management do more to get either more containers, or more full time stall holders into this area, or even better yet, get the ""L"" shed traders to trade both ways like ""E"" shed traders do, and this will go a long way to helping your businesses grow.... " disgruntled trader

18/11/2014 19:49:32 PE license for Sale "To the QVM PTY LTD board of directors, I Lance Dyer, would like to hereby offer to you the sale of my PE license. As you have decided that if l choose to sell my business, which will require me to change to an SL license l will only be able to sell with a 12 month contract, l would hereby like to offer to you the chance to purchase this PE license directly from me. My price is very fair and reasonable, it is the average of 1 years turnover, based on the last 3 years turnover, as authenticated by my accountant, and matching to my tax returns. As l am still in my late 30's l have at least 30 years of trading left at the QVM, and as l am a PE trader, l will still be trading in 30 years time, as this is my rights as a PE trader. If you would like to discuss my price with me, please feel free to come and visit me, at my stall." Lance Dyer

21/11/2014 08:10:07 CEO response "........ People have put in endless of effort, merchandising everyday,smiling,making sure the stock is right, otherwise they wouldn't survive. Relocation is one problem BUT taking away the "lease" aspect is a WHOLE different situation!  Jan,I plead with your common sense to give back those leases ASAP"   Rosalie Rockman

21/11/2014 08:44:58 Re music week "Music week has made the top half of J shed almost non existent in terms of traffic flow..... No flow no customers ..."  

22/11/2014 23:21:16 tourist buses "The buses drive off on peel st too at the moment as people who are working for mmw are leaving their vans parked there all day as well as a certain food vendor so the buses can't park there. Great way to get customers to us." Leah
22/11/2014 23:42:04 mmw again "As a trader who stood my ground and did not move for this noise, I feel, I guess as would be expected, that we have received no support in informing customers who come up F shed that there are a few traders up the top of J K and L. It's too late now, so I'm just venting. The other reason I chose to stay up there was so that to people driving past or in the tram would see us and know that the market is still open. " Leah

Bold New Face For Traders 4

We have another makeover in our Bold New Face series and this time it has been launched by trader, Bruce Pham, at his Therry Street Market stall. Bruce's new branding theme looks very contemporary and professional with a logo banner, wall banners, price cards, and shop fittings adopting the new design.

With a clever bit of photography trickery, our photo below shows Bruce and his Brother Bruce outside the stall.

Live Christmas Tree Gets The Chop

Management have advised that QVM will not be getting its giant live Christmas tree this year. The tree was to be the feature of our Christmas display but expert advice from an arborist and difficulties with securing the tree in its Queen St. location have meant a change of plan.

We will still be getting a tree, but it will be a 9 metre artificial tree with suitable decoration and, according to management, it will be an imposing addition to our Christmas theme.

Of course creating an attractive Christmas destination is not just the responsibility of management. It looks like traders may have to try a little harder with their individual stall decorations to make sure  we get the right Christmas look. 

Assessing Your Trade During Music Week

A trader was asked how her trade went over the first weekend of the Melbourne Music Week Event. She replied that it had been disappointing but admitted she was only comparing sales with the previous week’s takings.

There would be very few traders in our market whose weekly sales approach a straight line graph so the previous week’s trade may not be very relevant. There are many factors that impact on our sales at QVM. There are general matters like consumer confidence and the impact of things like State Elections. There are more specific events like sporting matches, stage shows, or cruise ships arriving in town. All these variables (sometimes happening at the same time) make it difficult to make sense of sales variations but there are some guidelines we can use. Last year’s sales for the same period can be a useful guide. Recent sales trends can also be relevant but they need to be looked at over a period of 4-8 weeks.

Some traders say they have experienced normal sales (whatever that is) over the period of the music event. There appears little doubt that many traders, particularly those in the upper part of J,K, and L sheds have experienced difficult trading caused by the event and the re-direction of customer flows. Much analysis will be conducted over coming days to determine the impact. A QVMAC Representatives meeting is to be held on Tuesday 25th November before a meeting with management on 4th December.

But before we can quantify the impact it would be useful if traders could do their homework and check last year’s sales and recent sales trends. If you believe you have relevant input please email or talk to your Trader Representative.

Thursday 20 November 2014

Why String Bean Alley Wasn't Working

Music Week and its impact on market activities have raised some interesting new theories about our market.

The impact on String Bean Alley has been particularly relevant. Re-directed traffic flow, and the fact that SBA is at last fully populated by traders, has created foot traffic that was only dreamed about in this aisle’s short history. It has now been suggested that the retail entrances to SBA may have been its limiting factor. The bottom end (Queen St.) has hardly had an inviting look about it - a coffee shop on one side followed by empty storage sheds, and then empty spaces on the other side.

A similar landscape at the top end (Peel St.) simply didn’t identify SBA as a desirable retail destination - another coffee shop followed by a container housing an ATM on one side, and a vacant seating area followed by storage sheds on the other. Unlike every other shed in the top end, SBA simply didn’t look like a retail destination and so customers chose to find alternative avenues for browsing. Music Week has changed that dynamic with a full aisle, a new “entrance” created by the top walkway and the buzz of Music Week itself.

String Bean Alley had its main car-park entrance in the middle of the aisle but it would appear that, without the traditional “S” flow up and down the aisles, it was always going to struggle. 

And there are other things we can learn from the changes forced by Music Week. The closure of J shed at Peel St. has had a significant impact on the traders in that aisle. J shed is a wide aisle and could be expected to carry a significant number of customers but we may have under-estimated its role as a very significant thoroughfare for customers moving from the top to the bottom of the market and vice versa.

There have been winners and losers in this temporary re-arrangement, and hopefully we will understand more about the dynamics of our market as a result. Other changes like the Thursday craft market in L shed may also provide us with valuable insights.

CEO Responds To Concerns Over One Year License Renewals

Since we first published the news that SL License renewals would be capped at one year back on 26th October we have received a number of concerned responses from traders.

The following comment on Victraders typifies the concern – “So management have decided that our businesses are not worth anything. How can anyone be expected to sell a business with only a 1 year lease with no options. Management says if we sell, we sell our business not our stalls, but with no goodwill margin in the sale, that's just unfair.”

Our CEO has responded today as follows –

"Dear Traders,
I write to respond to the SL Trader concerns about licences that are expiring being offered a 1-year term at this stage (rather than 3 or 6 years as may have happened previously) and the impact this has on the perceived value (by traders) of their business. I explain the context and rationale below.

As everyone knows, there are intentions to upgrade and improve facilities and the environment for traders and customers as part of the overall Queen Victoria Market Renewal Project.  We're not sure yet exactly what the timing of any building works will be, but we do know that when decisions are made as to the timing of building works, costs are known and scheduling is put in place (not likely to be known until at least mid-2015), we will need to relocate traders in affected areas so that work can proceed.

In order to ensure that the renewal project proceeds in a timely manner and the market can continue to trade during the renewal project, QVM will need to ensure that it has the flexibility to operate the market and temporarily relocate traders as and when required, after fully consulting with the traders. 

It is also possible that the total footprint of land available for SL licence holders may diminish for some period of time during the renewal, and that a policy may need to be developed to start limiting the total number of licences in place at one time.  It is prudent for QVM to retain flexibility.

This means that it is not appropriate to enter into new 3 or 6 year term licences at this time.

Traders operating under an SL may still sell their business.  QVM is not in any way prohibiting this.

Any trader who has a genuine desire to sell should let the administration know, and if you have a potential buyer in place, we will see what we can do to help facilitate a suitable outcome for you. We have already done this in at least one case.

If anyone wishes to have this explained further please speak to Russell Wheelhouse or Ian Creaton or contact me on 


Jan Cochrane-Harry
Chief Executive"

Wednesday 19 November 2014

Quick Response On Signage

On Sunday we published a request to tweak a few aspects of  Music Week including additional signage at the top walkway in J,K, & L sheds. Customers looking up those sheds from the centre walkway may have thought there was a dead-end. 
The marketing team has responded immediately with additional signage (see photo).

19/11/2014 12:19:31 Signage "Great that the QVM has responded, but could they have at least made the visible from a distance of more than 3 or 4 meters. Those signs are so small, and blend into the music week logos, that they will not provide much additional exposure. Why are they not in a bright vibrant color, to attract attention......" Lance

Tuesday 18 November 2014

Computer Malfunction May Impact On Rent Calculations

QVM experienced a major IT disruption on Sunday which has meant that rental adjustments were not able to be entered into the system.
Some rental invoices will therefore be inaccurate. For instance a trader who was relocated on Sunday to a smaller stall will not have the credit show up immediately. This will be corrected but traders are asked to pay what is shown on their invoice with an assurance that the corrections will be implemented and adjusted as soon as possible.
Management have issued the following statement – “We give our assurance that all due credits will be posted and when this has been completed retrospectively the total charges to traders for the MMW period will be the same as the total charges had this IT disruption not occurred.”

Monday 17 November 2014

How To Tweak Music Week For Better Trading

Music Week at QVM has created an amazing buzz and the full analysis of its impact on business at our market should rightly be left for when it finishes in a weeks time. However, there are a couple of tweaks that we could look at immediately which may improve things along the way.

1.     Directing Customers - the "black wall" shown in our photo does give the impression of a deadend at the top of J,K & L sheds. Some simple signage could fix that.

2.     Customer Access - this may be harder to fix in the short term but blocking off the car
park entrance to the top walkway (a small stage has been placed there) does seem to substantially impede cross market traffic. Does that need to be permanently closed during the event? - see photo.
3.     Tourist Buses - apparently buses were effectively turned away on Saturday due to difficulties with the closure of Therry St. Tourist are a very important ingredient for top end traders. We need a solution that will enable tourist buses to conveniently visit our market under all circumstances. In the short term we could dedicate Peel St. exclusively to bus parking (and Spanish Donuts).

4.     Music Volume - "If it is too loud - you are too old" is a music industry maxim and we don't necessarily argue with it but for QVM "If you can't hear your customers - the music is too loud" might be more appropriate. Organisers need to understand that this is a place of business.  A quick look at next weeks music program suggests we won't have a repeat of Sunday afternoon's music assault. Let's hope that is right.

Have Your Say - click here

Sunday 16 November 2014

CEO Ends Inappropriate Music

QVM's CEO, Jan Cochrane-Harry, held discussions with Melbourne Music Week event organisers this afternoon (Sunday 16th November). This followed a bracket of rap music containing profanities that were certainly unsuitable for a family-friendly public retail market.

It was disappointing that organisers had strayed from their format of market friendly music content and volume during trading hours. It was generally considered that the loudness of the music and the inappropriate content had a severe impact on business after 1:30pm. We have been assured this will be corrected for upcoming performances.

17/11/2014 09:58:36 Music "I'm all for music , but like it was so well written , the content, and decibel count needed to be adjusted.
I would add perhaps if we the market could have a say in the type of music that can be played in future. ie, more suitable for the kind of people, and families  who visit - not  rap. heavy metal, head banging sort.
For the first time ever after the Sunday market I had walk to my car to realise i had left my keys behind, and my wife her handbag, in the box ...Maybe we were still in a daze?" Andy

Therry Street Marquee Video

For those traders who haven't ventured into the Therry St. Marquee here is a short video of the  experience entering from Queen St.

Saturday 15 November 2014

String Bean Alley Gets Customer Flow At Last

Our photo shows String Bean Alley as a vibrant trading aisle possibly for the first time outside the Night Market and traders probably have the Music Week Event to thank for it.
String Bean Alley was filled with traders as Stall Allocators tried desperately to fit everybody into a reduced market and customers who normally walked down J, K, or L sheds for their shopping were funnelled into String Bean Alley and F shed.

Have Your Say - click here.
16/11/2014 14:13:40 String bean alley "Yippee!!! It is so nice to see people rather than tumble weeds down SBA. Most market traders think we have it made in SBA - but we have struggled to get people to know we are here . Finally a successful week and thank you to all the organisers and people involved - let's hope there are more events and functions showcasing SBA in the future."  Dana