Tried to buy local, no sale.

Started 6 months ago | Discussions
nrwhitman
Regular MemberPosts: 385Gear list
Like?
Tried to buy local, no sale.
6 months ago

looked online at a local camera store and saw they had an EM-1 in stock. Went over to handle it and check some features.   Really thought I would be walking out with one but I felt like I was at Best Buy given the quality of the service.   I asked questions to confirm some options and features and the answers I got were simply wrong.  Felt that the sales guy gave a wrong answer rather than admit he didn't know.  that or he was simply misinformed (terribly misinformed).

For example, asked about wifi. Was told it was only for photo sharing, not able to control the camera, and that to work it had to connect to a local wireless access point, and of course none where available.   All said with certainty.

Asked about the touch screen (thought it was off) and was told it doesn't have one.

Commented on the depth and breadth of the controls and he commented that the oly and panny controls are pretty confusing. Not a very good way to spin it if trying to sell the camera.

I don't know if he was making things up because he didn't want to bother looking up the answer, or if he really thought his answers were correct or what but he seeded doubt in my mind about the wifi capabilities and lost the sale. That and the thought that he may have knowingly lied really diminished the stores credibility. Really the only things they have to offer are the ability to handle before buying, product knowledge  Service and immediate gratification. i question their ability for service and product knowledge. Not worth the extra 6%.  Will probably order from B&H later tonight. Really did like the way it felt in my hands.

Should have been been a pretty easy $1400 sale for them.

Ok, got that off my chest.

Rick

 nrwhitman's gear list:nrwhitman's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus PEN E-PM1 Olympus E-30 Olympus E-1 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8 +6 more
tjuster1
Senior MemberPosts: 1,458
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

nrwhitman wrote:

looked online at a local camera store and saw they had an EM-1 in stock. Went over to handle it and check some features. Really thought I would be walking out with one but I felt like I was at Best Buy given the quality of the service. I asked questions to confirm some options and features and the answers I got were simply wrong. Felt that the sales guy gave a wrong answer rather than admit he didn't know. that or he was simply misinformed (terribly misinformed).

For example, asked about wifi. Was told it was only for photo sharing, not able to control the camera, and that to work it had to connect to a local wireless access point, and of course none where available. All said with certainty.

Asked about the touch screen (thought it was off) and was told it doesn't have one.

Commented on the depth and breadth of the controls and he commented that the oly and panny controls are pretty confusing. Not a very good way to spin it if trying to sell the camera.

I don't know if he was making things up because he didn't want to bother looking up the answer, or if he really thought his answers were correct or what but he seeded doubt in my mind about the wifi capabilities and lost the sale. That and the thought that he may have knowingly lied really diminished the stores credibility. Really the only things they have to offer are the ability to handle before buying, product knowledge Service and immediate gratification. i question their ability for service and product knowledge. Not worth the extra 6%. Will probably order from B&H later tonight. Really did like the way it felt in my hands.

Should have been been a pretty easy $1400 sale for them.

Ok, got that off my chest.

Rick

This has been my experience too. And I know they have lots of cameras to learn, but hell it's their JOB.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
SirSeth
Veteran MemberPosts: 8,903Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

I'm frankly mystified by it. These days with internet efficiency, selection, and price competition, great service is the absolute key to success. We had a local stop that had been around for a long time. The dozen or so times I was in there over the past 5 years the service made me so angry that I would have paid more anywhere else rather than give them a dime (not that their prices were really competitive to the internet anyway). That shop is closed now--deservedly so imo.

I think you should write the owner of the store--not a mean letter, just a matter of fact letter. It may not seem nice to the employee, but in the long run it could save the shop.

Best,

Seth

-- hide signature --

What if the hokey pokey really is what it's all about?
--
wallygoots.smugmug.com
wallygoots.blogspot.com

 SirSeth's gear list:SirSeth's gear list
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-3 Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus Zuiko Digital 14-54mm 1:2.8-3.5 Olympus Zuiko Digital 11-22mm 1:2.8-3.5 +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Henry Richardson
Forum ProPosts: 12,763
Like?
I also had bad experience
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

I bought my Minolta D7i for the full $1,000 price plus tax in 2002 from a local Austin, Texas camera store because I wanted to help out local retailers and because I knew I would be able to take it back if I got it home and discovered a problem. Online I could have saved something like $150 and no sales tax, if I recall. After I had paid for the camera and was about to leave the store I was in a good mood and happy to get it home. I was talking with the salesman and said something about why I had decided to buy from them instead of online. Although from the beginning of the interaction he was not particularly friendly I didn't have any real questions since I had done research online, but when I mentioned that I was content to pay extra at their local store so that if I got it home and discovered a problem I could bring it back. He got real huffy and told me they wouldn't accept it and I would have to deal with Minolta directly. It really took me aback. I should have just told him I wanted my money back, but I had been wanting the camera for awhile and I had it in my hands so I just left. I never bought another thing from that local camera store and never will and haven't bought from any other local camera stores since then either. In the U.S. I buy online or buy at retailers in Japan.

-- hide signature --

Henry Richardson
http://www.bakubo.com

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
FrankParis
Senior MemberPosts: 1,042Gear list
Like?
Thank God I live in Portland. Feel sorry for all you saps who don't.
In reply to Henry Richardson, 6 months ago

Pro Photo Supply in Portland, Oregon was great in the past, is still as great as ever, and I expect it will remain great for as long as Portland itself exists. I love going there and buying things from them. They always get the latest gear before B&H or Amazon, and if they don't know the details of a particular product, they freely admit it and start pouring through the manuals with you. One thing they're better at than you is their skill at pouring through the manuals. They do it all day long and know how to do it and are very familiar with a thousand different products so pick up on new gear with no sweat.

-- hide signature --

Frank Paris

 FrankParis's gear list:FrankParis's gear list
Olympus PEN E-PM1 Panasonic Leica D Summilux Asph 25mm F1.4 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 II R Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 75-300mm 1:4.8-6.7 +7 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Impulses
Contributing MemberPosts: 848Gear list
Like?
Re: Thank God I live in Portland. Feel sorry for all you saps who don't.
In reply to FrankParis, 6 months ago

I wish that was the default modus operandi everywhere, it seems these days the vast majority of retail employees will just make up stuff on the spot when cornered, across a variety of different industries... I was helping my mother make a somewhat complicated wireless plan change and I literally got half a dozen different answers about certain details, even from managers!

I don't expect every employee to be as much of an expert as your average enthusiast, it's just not realistic... But being honest would be far less infuriating and helpful. When I was younger I worked two different retail jobs where I really didn't know much about the product... School textbook bookstore (didn't matter, all the moms had their lists, that was more about managing frantic parents) and men's clothing at a store where they sold, did alterations, etc.

Whenever I was out of my depth I just politely excused myself and offered to find a senior salesman, never really saw a downside to that...

 Impulses's gear list:Impulses's gear list
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF6 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8 Panasonic 20mm F1.7 II +20 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Lawrence Keeney
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,009Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

And, yet most people blame the internet for all the local camera store closing.

I had a similar experience when I purchased my E300. I decided I wanted to support my local camera store so I purchased the camera there. Although they stocked Olympus cameras, they knew nothing about them. This store has since gone out of business.

For me, service is an important part of anything I purchase, yet more often than not, the majority of sales people know very little about the product they are selling, no matter what the product is.

-- hide signature --
 Lawrence Keeney's gear list:Lawrence Keeney's gear list
Olympus E-10 Olympus E-M1 Olympus E-1 Olympus E-3 Olympus E-5
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Impulses
Contributing MemberPosts: 848Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to Lawrence Keeney, 6 months ago

Plus who says you can't get excellent service online? Sure, there's no salesman to ask questions, but sites like Amazon and B&H now let you ask questions of previous owners or site curators... Plus I've gotten EXCELLENT service from both stores when handing returns, price adjustments, etc.

I'd probably try and support a local shop (if one existed around here) but it's pretty hard in this day and age to have semi competitive prices AND hire competent staff while trying to compete with online stores, it's not their fault, in most markets outside of a few big urban centers it's hopeless because you won't even have the clientele to make it work.

I'm just considering renting a lens or two the next time I'm agonizing over a decision, it's not that expensive if you're weighing expensive lenses... Others might abuse online return policies but that kinda hurts everyone in the long run.

 Impulses's gear list:Impulses's gear list
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF6 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8 Panasonic 20mm F1.7 II +20 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Ulric
Senior MemberPosts: 2,602Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

Sounds like Larry David as car salesman in Curb your enthusiasm.

 Ulric's gear list:Ulric's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm 1:3.5-6.3 EZ Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R +6 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
SirSeth
Veteran MemberPosts: 8,903Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to Impulses, 6 months ago

Impulses wrote:

Plus who says you can't get excellent service online? Sure, there's no salesman to ask questions, but sites like Amazon and B&H now let you ask questions of previous owners or site curators... Plus I've gotten EXCELLENT service from both stores when handing returns, price adjustments, etc.

I'd probably try and support a local shop (if one existed around here) but it's pretty hard in this day and age to have semi competitive prices AND hire competent staff while trying to compete with online stores, it's not their fault, in most markets outside of a few big urban centers it's hopeless because you won't even have the clientele to make it work.

I'm just considering renting a lens or two the next time I'm agonizing over a decision, it's not that expensive if you're weighing expensive lenses... Others might abuse online return policies but that kinda hurts everyone in the long run.

You can get amazing service online. I recently had a long chat session with a rep from Crutchfield about audio options--and though their prices are a little more than some other retailers--they do have excellent service and follow through support for DIY installers.

Best,

Seth

-- hide signature --

What if the hokey pokey really is what it's all about?
--
wallygoots.smugmug.com
wallygoots.blogspot.com

 SirSeth's gear list:SirSeth's gear list
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-3 Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus Zuiko Digital 14-54mm 1:2.8-3.5 Olympus Zuiko Digital 11-22mm 1:2.8-3.5 +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
photoholiko
Contributing MemberPosts: 513Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

I get similar experience with new car salesmen, when I hear "We sell a lot of these" I walk out.

 photoholiko's gear list:photoholiko's gear list
Canon EOS 400D Olympus PEN E-PL1 Canon EOS 70D Olympus Stylus Tough 6020 Minolta DiMAGE 7 +20 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
SkiHound
Senior MemberPosts: 1,184
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

I've had a pretty similar experience with our local store. It is part of a regional chain with 5-6 stores, but it is a local store and I'd kind of like to support it. I'm sure they're much more knowledgeable about Canon and Nikon but they don't seem very interested in m43 and generally don't have much in stock. When I bought my E-M5 it wasn't widely available and I had the sales folks at the local store put me on their list. I never have heard from them. They just haven't really given me any good reason to purchase much stuff there. They don't have stuff in stock to get my hands on to try. They're not knowledgeable or much interested in Olympus and Panasonic m43 equipment, etc.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
toomanycanons
Veteran MemberPosts: 9,511
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

nrwhitman wrote:

looked online at a local camera store and saw they had an EM-1 in stock. Went over to handle it and check some features. Really thought I would be walking out with one but I felt like I was at Best Buy given the quality of the service. I asked questions to confirm some options and features and the answers I got were simply wrong. Felt that the sales guy gave a wrong answer rather than admit he didn't know. that or he was simply misinformed (terribly misinformed).

For example, asked about wifi. Was told it was only for photo sharing, not able to control the camera, and that to work it had to connect to a local wireless access point, and of course none where available. All said with certainty.

Asked about the touch screen (thought it was off) and was told it doesn't have one.

Commented on the depth and breadth of the controls and he commented that the oly and panny controls are pretty confusing. Not a very good way to spin it if trying to sell the camera.

I don't know if he was making things up because he didn't want to bother looking up the answer, or if he really thought his answers were correct or what but he seeded doubt in my mind about the wifi capabilities and lost the sale. That and the thought that he may have knowingly lied really diminished the stores credibility. Really the only things they have to offer are the ability to handle before buying, product knowledge Service and immediate gratification. i question their ability for service and product knowledge. Not worth the extra 6%. Will probably order from B&H later tonight. Really did like the way it felt in my hands.

Should have been been a pretty easy $1400 sale for them.

Ok, got that off my chest.

Rick

There's a camera store in my town that's been in business for freakin' ever.  I've been going there for probably 30 years.  They're no Adorama/B&H but they do carry pro gear.

I don't really need to ask questions when I'm in there and they know me well enough not to talk stuff about the camera or lens I might be looking at.  But always, on either side of me, are those types of buyers who come in not knowing ANYTHING and expect to the sales people to know all there is to know about whatever camera they might be looking at.

As I eavesdrop I can hear the sales guy almost making up generalities about the camera they're looking at, knowing that the wannabe buyer has no idea what he's talking about anyway, whether or not he's actually telling the truth.  I can sympathize.  Each sales person can't know everything about all cameras, better to just talk in generalities.  The clueless buyer just needs to buy something and learn how to use their new gear then ask relevant questions.

So what I'm saying is, I don't get BS'd in that camera store because they know me.  And I wouldn't even call it getting BS'd when the clueless get fed generalities by the staff.  And the staff has been there forever, the store has been there forever and is profitable, I still go there, they must be doing something right.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
savonie
Regular MemberPosts: 418Gear list
Like?
Re: Thank God I live in Portland. Feel sorry for all you saps who don't.
In reply to FrankParis, 6 months ago

I don't live in Portland and don't consider myself a sap- Here in London Ontario we have two Henry's stores a Canadian chain- The one I frequent is full of friendly efficient staff who seem to be specialists on different brands- I have never left there feeling my questions were unanswered - Their selection of Olympus gear is wonderful and they allow the 'hands on' that is so important to a new purchase- I try to purchase as much as I can there unless online is a great deal cheaper - They have given me the occasional discount on open box etc- Unfortunately good knowledgeable service is so rare that when we run across it it is a surprise and we tend to comment on it!

Monty

 savonie's gear list:savonie's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-1 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus M.Zuiko ED 75-300mm 1:4.8-6.7 II Olympus Zuiko Digital 14-54mm 1:2.8-3.5 II +3 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
TrapperJohn
Forum ProPosts: 10,428
Like?
Let's be realistic
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

I bought my EM1 and EM5 from my local camera store. They're good guys, but they weren't up to every last detail on those particular cameras, and I didn't expect them to be - they sell a lot of cameras, C/N are still their mainstays, and these cameras are getting rather complex, so it's hard to be up to date on every single one of them.

On the good side, they had the EM1 in stock (I ordered the EM5 when it was first announced), they handle any warranty issues, price was about the same as it is online, and they had a nice stock of µ43 lenses, so I got to try them out when I was there.

The other nice thing about that store was, I also got to try out a lot of other cameras. Loved the Fuji XE2 and XM1, thought the Nikon Df was very handsome, and the Sony A7 was small, but pretty rough to use - felt like it was about half finished and rushed to market.

Also tried out a Canon 1DsII they had on the used rack at a nice price ($1k). Very competent, but that thing was huge! Like putting a cinderblock up to your face. Big, heavy, unwieldy. No thanks, using that isn't fun, it's just plain hard work.

We've come a long way.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Ron Evers
Senior MemberPosts: 1,074Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to SirSeth, 6 months ago

While on vacation last year, I went into a Blacks camera store in Sault St Marie, Ontario & the sales person did not know what a m4/3 camera was.

How bad is that?

-- hide signature --

The wood is clear between the knots.

 Ron Evers's gear list:Ron Evers's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus PEN E-PM1 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R +11 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
El Chubasco
Regular MemberPosts: 263Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to SkiHound, 6 months ago

I've had a pretty similar experience with our local store. It is part of a regional chain with 5-6 stores, but it is a local store and I'd kind of like to support it. I'm sure they're much more knowledgeable about Canon and Nikon but they don't seem very interested in m43 and generally don't have much in stock. When I bought my E-M5 it wasn't widely available and I had the sales folks at the local store put me on their list. I never have heard from them. They just haven't really given me any good reason to purchase much stuff there. They don't have stuff in stock to get my hands on to try. They're not knowledgeable or much interested in Olympus and Panasonic m43 equipment, etc.

I had the same experience in a local store. I got the impression that they only know canon and nikon well and that is what they try to sell. I believe they feel more comfortable showing those cameras because, aside for the sensor, their technology and handling is pretty much the same as 40 years ago. When cameras mostly sold by real local stores and 35mm was the only option.

When asking about cameras the salesman told me to forget m4/3 as an option. "The sensor is garbage, it is as small as your phone sensor and I would not consider that format" he said. I obviously walked out. I wonder why sales of m4/3 are low in the US. Sales people do not know the cameras. Olympus and Panasonic should recognize that and start a training program for camera stores, teaching about their products and their advantages if the want to in erase the market.

 El Chubasco's gear list:El Chubasco's gear list
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Sony RX100 II Fujifilm X-Pro1 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12mm 1:2 +10 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Len_Gee
Veteran MemberPosts: 7,345Gear list
Like?
Re: Tried to buy local, no sale.
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

nrwhitman wrote:

looked online at a local camera store and saw they had an EM-1 in stock. Went over to handle it and check some features. Really thought I would be walking out with one but I felt like I was at Best Buy given the quality of the service. I asked questions to confirm some options and features and the answers I got were simply wrong. Felt that the sales guy gave a wrong answer rather than admit he didn't know. that or he was simply misinformed (terribly misinformed).

For example, asked about wifi. Was told it was only for photo sharing, not able to control the camera, and that to work it had to connect to a local wireless access point, and of course none where available. All said with certainty.

Asked about the touch screen (thought it was off) and was told it doesn't have one.

Commented on the depth and breadth of the controls and he commented that the oly and panny controls are pretty confusing. Not a very good way to spin it if trying to sell the camera.

I don't know if he was making things up because he didn't want to bother looking up the answer, or if he really thought his answers were correct or what but he seeded doubt in my mind about the wifi capabilities and lost the sale. That and the thought that he may have knowingly lied really diminished the stores credibility. Really the only things they have to offer are the ability to handle before buying, product knowledge Service and immediate gratification. i question their ability for service and product knowledge. Not worth the extra 6%. Will probably order from B&H later tonight. Really did like the way it felt in my hands.

Should have been been a pretty easy $1400 sale for them.

Ok, got that off my chest.

Rick

Interesting perspective.

But, just because you happened to come across a less than knowledgable camera salesperson at THAT camera store should not have deterred you from buying the M1 from a B&M store if you really intended to do so.

Enjoy your new M1 when you get it from B&H.

 Len_Gee's gear list:Len_Gee's gear list
Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4x Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Barry Stewart
Veteran MemberPosts: 8,081Gear list
Like?
That's a brutal story, OP
In reply to TrapperJohn, 6 months ago

Two thumbs up for the camera department at my local London Drugs (western Canada chain store) in Chilliwack BC. City population is about 80,000.

Service and product knowledge is great — and if they don't know key details, they call it up on their iPads. They don't usually stock high-end gear but often have it in their centralized warehouse and can get it in-store on preorder within a few days.

As well: their pricing is either the best I can find already, or they will price match against Canadian competitors… and come part way toward U.S. vendors. When I bought my Sigma 60 and Bower/Samyang fisheye, they had THE best price in the world. The next week, B&H dropped their fisheye price and London Drugs came half way to match it. Days later, B&H put their price back up.

U.S. buyers who are visiting Canada should consider London Drugs, as your dollars may go father than at home, with the current 10¢ on the dollar differential.

-- hide signature --

Barry

 Barry Stewart's gear list:Barry Stewart's gear list
Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom Olympus Tough TG-3 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Olympus E-1 Olympus E-M1 +10 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Paul Auclair
Senior MemberPosts: 2,798Gear list
Like?
what?
In reply to nrwhitman, 6 months ago

you went to a store to buy a camera?

the camera of your choice was at the store and available for sale?

the salesperson was 'rather' lacking in his/her knowledge of the camera?

you already knew about all of the features of the camera that the salesperson did not?

you chose not to buy the camera because the salesperson knew less than you about the camera?

you leave the store empty handed and plan to order a camera sight unseen to be shipped/mailed?

OK

would you have purchased the camera if there wasn't a discussion with any salesperson?

substitute 'camera' for any item/word and the situation still does not make much sense to me.

*sure, BH might sell 'camera' for less money but most stores do price match. now you added wait time (you could using the camera now instead of waiting for it to be delivered) and what happens if/when you need to return/exchange the camera...more wait time.

-- hide signature --

Thanks,
Paul

 Paul Auclair's gear list:Paul Auclair's gear list
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-5 Olympus E-3 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 +19 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads