Where do you order from when you're dropping significant coin?

Started 6 months ago | Discussions thread
dinoSnake
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Re: Where do you order from when you're dropping significant coin?
In reply to Impulses, 6 months ago

Impulses wrote:

Huh, I didn't realize B&H was a much larger outfit than Adorama, wonder if that reflects at all on their online business. I've noticed Adorama sometimes charges slightly less in shipping but since I started off with B&H and often had some rewards built up I just stuck with them. I'm surprised at just how competitive both store's prices are compared to Amazon.... With other kinds of electronics it's usually so lopsided, even with more niche stuff (HiFi headphones for instance, all specialty stores are never even close to Amazon's prices).

B&H's upstairs area. for their computer and camera departments, is about the size of Adorama's entire retail display space.  Adoramahas a basement warehouse area, where the mechandise comes up from when you make a retail purchase, but that area is of course unseen by the public.

The shopping experience between the two cannot be more different.  At B&H the merchandise is almost always on display; in the camera department there are 4-sided islands with cameras tethered in teirs on each side and 2 salespeople standing in the open center answering questions. You can handle the cameras on their tethers or go to the rear area, where there is are large wrap-around the corner walls glasss displays and more salespeople.  Usually you have limited time with a salesperson, and the merchandise, because they are so busy, helping so many people, and trying to keep a limited amount of merchandise out and vulnerable.

In Adorama the walls are adorned with modest displays of cameras, tech and accessories with limited central floor displays.  Only a small number of cameras or their expensive, high-tech accessories are on display to handle, some are in small but nice glass wall display cases about the size of jewelry displays.  The salespeople each have a station on a wall or junction area, and you after a wait you work directly, one-on-one with your salesperson face to face with no counter between you two.  When you want to see, handle, test or touch a product the salesperson calls it up from the warehouse, still in the box.  He/she opens the box, assembles the system if necessary and hands it to you for you to try at your own pace.  No tethers, no strings, no problems - fully operational, ready to buy.  If you want more to check out, more comes up.  If you decide to make  purchase you can buy what you actually handled yourself, based on your approval (or they can bring up yet aanother one if you see something on your sample that you didn't like).

Adorama is more like when I was selling myself - here's the sample, check it out, what can I do to help your decision and would you like to examine what you are taking home?   B&H is more like a big-box store - here's our display, representative of the item, we can answer a few questions and would you like to proceed to our checkout system?

I guess, since I sold that way myself for many years, face to face standing within arm's reach with nothing in the way and not being afraid of people to feel and try things out, I prefer Adorama's lower volume method.  When I go there, which is on weekdays, if there are 20 people in the store it is doing well and the employees are casual, talkative, friendly and super helpful.  B&H is, well, a zoo almost any time you care to go - it is practically a tourist destination in itself.  B&H has more but I like my Adorama rep and I like their style.

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