Sunday, September 2, 2007

5 Minutes at a Check-out Counter- Lessons for Marketers


Today I went to one of the hypermarts in the city and was impressed by the variety and display of products. After spending close to an hour, I picked up a few essentials and came down to the check-out counter. There were more than a dozen of them and I searched the one which had the smallest queue, infact had only person ahead of me and waited my turn. The person in front of me had a few items that he had purchased, and one of which was a Minute Maid Juice, newly introduced by coca cola in India. The girl at the check out counter told the person this is a new item, just come so you will have to go to another counter where they were making manual bills and get it billed. Hearing this I quietly dropped the Minute Maid which I though I would try. This was for all the display and posters that company had put up in the shop and all the hoarding in the city, the company people would feel great that they had put up a good display and dumped the shop with stocks but.....


Well the story doesn’t end here, I had only two items and after billing I gave my card and I was shown a sign according to which I hadn’t billed enough to be eligible for a card swipe, I tried complaining that the other shop where I purchase accepts cards irrespective of the amount but .... in the meanwhile the minute maid customer came back after checking his bill and told the girl that she had billed a 20/- item which was supposed to be given free. The girl started arguing that the people on the floor run schemes which are not told and this is not there in the system and so on . As a solution she told him to pick up some thing else for 20/-. The customer was not impressed he said he wanted the money back and the girl called her supervisor, who again didn’t have any idea. Knowing that all this wouldn’t be ending soon I thought it best to pay cash and move on. Even after another ten minutes I could see that they were not bale to address the problems with the earlier customer


This experience brings into focus a few essential things, first is the training of personnel who deal with customers, which is these rapidly expanding stores should look into and second in a hypermart a consumer is supposed to purchase huge quantities, now if he is worried about what schemes displayed on the shop floor is he actually getting in peak hours would mean long queue and more frustration for people following behind...


And last point back to Minuet Maid it is not enough for a marketer to ensure that the product is available, the POPs and danglers are in place, the ads are running he has also got to ensure that the products get entered into the systems of various stores to ensure customer convenience at the purchase point...

1 comments:

vindya said...


Today I went to one of the hypermarts in the city and was impressed by the variety and display of products. After spending close to an hour, I picked up a few essentials and came down to the check-out counter. There were more than a dozen of them and I searched the one which had the smallest queue, infact had only person ahead of me and waited my turn. The person in front of me had a few items that he had purchased, and one of which was a Minute Maid Juice, newly introduced by coca cola in India. The girl at the check out counter told the person this is a new item, just come so you will have to go to another counter where they were making manual bills and get it billed. Hearing this I quietly dropped the Minute Maid which I though I would try. This was for all the display and posters that company had put up in the shop and all the hoarding in the city, the company people would feel great that they had put up a good display and dumped the shop with stocks but.....


Well the story doesn’t end here, I had only two items and after billing I gave my card and I was shown a sign according to which I hadn’t billed enough to be eligible for a card swipe, I tried complaining that the other shop where I purchase accepts cards irrespective of the amount but .... in the meanwhile the minute maid customer came back after checking his bill and told the girl that she had billed a 20/- item which was supposed to be given free. The girl started arguing that the people on the floor run schemes which are not told and this is not there in the system and so on . As a solution she told him to pick up some thing else for 20/-. The customer was not impressed he said he wanted the money back and the girl called her supervisor, who again didn’t have any idea. Knowing that all this wouldn’t be ending soon I thought it best to pay cash and move on. Even after another ten minutes I could see that they were not bale to address the problems with the earlier customer


This experience brings into focus a few essential things, first is the training of personnel who deal with customers, which is these rapidly expanding stores should look into and second in a hypermart a consumer is supposed to purchase huge quantities, now if he is worried about what schemes displayed on the shop floor is he actually getting in peak hours would mean long queue and more frustration for people following behind...


And last point back to Minuet Maid it is not enough for a marketer to ensure that the product is available, the POPs and danglers are in place, the ads are running he has also got to ensure that the products get entered into the systems of various stores to ensure customer convenience at the purchase point...

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