Wednesday, September 21, 2011

click click convenience...

i know a lot of you have noticed water cooler talk seems to be centered around 'where the bloody hell are my asos packages?' and 'Urrrrr i have to go down to "insert retail giant here"

as an avid online shopper the last few months have been a roller coaster of delivery timings  from standard to express with asos switching to our local carrier australia post.

water cooler talk seems to centre on peoples packages arriving well past their due, sent to the wrong address, or are simply missing in action, perhaps to be brought back to you in 7+ years by an emaciated tom hanks. 

however this morning my express post package ordered on friday turned up in record time the following monday by toll. HURRAH! so if you're in fashion desperation know that your express post pennies will again be well spent.

however standard delivery at the hands of aus post is still a hit and miss situation and if the papers are anything to go by this problem isn't limited to asos. they simply can't cope with the demand of online shopping. 

according to the age 'the carrier has had to lift staffing levels by 25 per cent at local gateways' and will be 'embarking on a a ''Future Ready'' business renewal program to help the organisation benefit from the digital economy' which has seen 'the volume of inbound international parcels grow by 56 per cent in 2010-11'.

australian shoppers are savvy and with our dollar dominating the greenback and customer service standards slipping locally we have embraced the land of etailing.

i'm a known advocate of online shopping. i love trawling through options, creating wish lists of outfits and the click click convenience it offers. unlike the trauma of trawling round the city last saturday in search of best man dresses for my sister and i. (yes i did mean to write 'best man' as my sister and i are standing up with my dad for his impending wedding. very cute i know)  

we ended up at and i won't name names but let's just say their name may or may not rhyme with my store schmyer. the whole ordeal was frustrating and for someone who has worked in retail for over 7 years and knows the pressure that can come from sales i still nearly punched a fellow floor walker in the face. 

this was after being pushed and accosted on the ground floor by make up 'experts' ( i was going to liken their facial painting to somewhat of a trannie vibe but then i thought actually this is offensive to trannies) and  sprayed in the face by 75 perfume spritzers only to cough up a lung on the escalator.

we finally cleared the toxic mist and emerged into the fashion department. after skimming racks for a while and discussing how annoying the boutique sales assistants had been my sister stopped and said 'it is kind of great here because you know no one is going to annoy you with the HI. OMG HOW ARE YOU? I LOVE YOUR SHOES! IS IT WARM OUTSIDE? IT LOOKS NICE. DO YOU NEED HELP! TRY THIS AND THIS AND THIS. OMG ARE YOU GOING OUT TONIGHT. I AM'

now in theory these questions aren't unreasonable but the problem is they aren't really talking to you but at you. much like someone on coke, they are talking for the sake of talking. it's both uncomfortable and unhelpful and is unreasonable when no groundwork has been laid. LEARN TO LAY THE FOUNDATIONS PEOPLE!

hang on i'm getting sidetracked. ok, so here we were wandering the floor, thankful for the silence which would soon cause my near postal episode. 

my sister had finally after about 3 hours found a dress she liked and after finding our own fitting room, she needed another size. with no staff member in attendance i took the dress and proceeded to begin a big game hunt. i could not find anyone. 

finally i locate a woman at a counter and proceeded to ask if it was possible for her to check the stock levels for an 8 as there were only a 10 and 6 on the floor. her response was to shoot a look at me like i was asking her to pick up baby seal carcasses. she then screwed up her face even more if that's at all possible (keep in mind this is a 40 year old woman) and said 'AHHHHH i work for "sportscraft". i couldn't possibly help you' and then proceeded to turn her back. 

i tried to explain through gritted teeth that 'could she just do me the favour of typing in the bar code of a dress that yes does hang 30 metres from her designated area' and right before i absolutely exploded my sister came back out of the change room and guided me over to the unattended desk of the dresses label. we waited nearly 20 mins. they didn't have an 8.

if this is apparently the best of the big fish then no wonder our retail industry is in trouble. perhaps spending millions on new digs may have been better spent on training staff. shopping should be exciting, entertaining and fun. it's not.

well i mean topshop is on it's way so there is hope on the horizon for consumers. not so much for local retailers because unless they embrace an online retail experience or smarten up their service strategies, topshop the queen of the high street is going to take some serious heads.

as the saying goes; closed doors, open windows so i guess with every fashion foreclosure there is the option of those out of a job to work within the booming postal industry.

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