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Camera salespeople can be part of the problem...

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by Luckypenguin, Sep 6, 2012.

  1. Overheard tonight, straight from the mouth of a camera salesperson at a major electronics retailer.

    "SLR sensors are at least twice the size of a Micro 4/3 sensor..."

    "The Canon 600D has much better image quality than any Micro 4/3 camera..."

    Err, not quite.
  2. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    And the maddening thing is, if you had jumped in to correct the salesperson, it probably wouldn't have made any difference. Unless you had a lot of time to demonstrate you knew what you were talking about, the customer probably isn't going to listen to you over the salesperson. And the salesperson's eyes would probably glaze over within ten seconds of you opening your mouth. Old beliefs die hard. Remember: More megapixels are better. Faster computer clock speeds are better. Bigger is better. Canon and Nikon make the best cameras.

    I think the problem here is "major electronics retailer." I have yet to walk into this kind of store to buy any kind of product and have the salesperson know more - or even the same amount - as I do about the product that I want. Frankly, I think this situation is pervasive throughout our society. In fact, at some level, I think our socety actively works against competency at every level. Retailers, and companies of all kinds, routinely hire incompetent or disinterested people and then exacerbate matters by failing to provide proper training. And even if they hire good people, they habitually put them in the wrong job. It's like they're doing it on purpose.
    • Like Like x 2
  3. merosen

    merosen Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 14, 2012
    Somerville (Boston), MA
    The problem is the salesperson works for an electronics store.
    Usually camera store sales people tend to know more about the differences in sensors.
    Notice I said usually. There are exceptions
    It's an issue these days with the crossover of cameras to electronics.
    Also the fact in that there are less B&M camera stores and more big box stores
    have become dominant. I remember a time (before digital), there seemed liked there was a
    camera store on every other block (in the Boston, Cambridge area).
  4. You feel like speaking up and correcting them, but telling them that they are misinformed in front of their customers might not be received so well. The trouble is, a bunch of people go home (perhaps even with a new camera) after being given advice that isn't quite right.

    BTW, the camera sitting right beside the aforementioned 600D on the display stand was an E-M5.
  5. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
  6. zapatista

    zapatista Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Mar 19, 2012
    Albuquerque, NM
    Mike Barber
    The salesperson probably had an incentive to clear the 600D/T3i stock. Or could just be a Canikon adherent :p .
  7. KVG

    KVG Banned User

    May 10, 2011
    yyc(Calgary, AB)
    Kelly Gibbons
    I was with grinch at the Sony store looking at the rx100 and had the sales person try to tell us nex can use m43 lenses with an adapter everything will work.

    typed on my phone, sorry.
  8. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    There are a few good photography stores where that's true, but in most I don't think that's the case. The usual Ritz/Wolf salespeople are less knowledgeable than most enthusiast photographers. B&H is another story, but there are a lot fewer of them...

  9. D@ne

    D@ne Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 23, 2012
    Have you read the comments on any of the tech sites (endgadget, etc.)? First comment on any given m43 post is "why would anyone buy this when an entry-level DSLR is superior?"

    • Like Like x 2
  10. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    I agree Nick , the other day Harvey Norman guy told me that Olympus is recalling OMD and thats why they dont have it in stock. The salesman didnt know that Panasonic GF3 is a MFT camera and can take lenses which Olympus MFT can take. They were selling Canon 1100D to someone with same adv that it offers much better IQ than Oly EPL3 which customer wanted and I had to intervene and ask him to show me the proof .
  11. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    What's the difference between a used-car salesman and a mega-store "salesperson"?

    The used-car salesman knows when he's lying.
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2011
    So now your calling ME a LIAR. That's pretty brave considering you don't even know me. By the way, what is your profession, so I can make a generalization about you and your job.
  13. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    This is actually rather ironic. I frequent a car forum quite a bit, and I got in the middle of a discussion on car sales. I postulated that we don't need care salesmen in the sense that we have them now, at least here in the states. The topic was very similar to this discussion on selling electronics.

    I say blame the internet.

    Let me explain.

    First, I don't mean to offend anyone. Secondly, I'm speaking from my own experiences.

    I worked for a little over a year as a sales guy in a large electronics chain about 15 years ago. We were commission based. We were trained on the products and how to sell the products.

    In my experience in selling electronics, there were two types of salesman and two types of customers. The first type of salesman was knowledgable and sold the product that best fit what the customer was looking for. The other type was the salesman that didn't care about knowing and sold either the most expensive thing or something the customer didn't want. It was all about the sale to the salesman.

    The two types of customers I ran into the most frequent were those who knew exactly what they wanted and those who didn't. Usually the one's who knew exactly what they wanted had researched the product ahead of time. Those customers who are unsure or didn't know took the most time to sell a product. The downside of the customer who thought they knew what they wanted and really didn't was that they might bring the product back.

    We were also allowed to haggle on price. Our price was not fixed in stone. Of course, customers always wanted the best price.

    Shortly after I started retail sales, a big box company moved in and had everyday low prices on their electronics. No haggle prices. The internet also had all the information about the products online for customers to look at. Both of these things changed electronics sales forever, in my opinion.

    From a retailers point of view, they have two options. Have trained salesman and pay them well or commission. This obviously raises the prices on the products. There is still the problem of returns, though, or at the very least, customers who aren't satisfied because salesman sold them the wrong product just to make the sale. For the retailer, its a crapshoot. My girlfriend worked for a cell company and she had lots of complaints from customers who were sold the wrong phone by commissioned based salesman. This becomes an expensive proposition for many companies when they have unhappy customers.

    The other option is to have low prices and a sales staff who are paid a fixed lower wage just to facilitate the customer. In some cases I wouldn't always call them salesmen; it's not thier job to sell the product in the traditional sense of what a salesman does. The retailer handles all the marketing and all the information about the various products.

    The obvious downside to this is that they can't force customers to read or research on the products. In the example of the woman looking for a DSLR or new camera, she hasn't done any research. At the end of the day, she could find out later that the camera she bought wasn't what she wanted or there are better alternatives not explained to her and bring it back or just be unsatisfied with the purchase. She could remain happy with the product too. Again, it is a crapshoot for the retailer.

    At the end of the day, its more benificial to the retailer to offer low prices and under qualified staff.

    One thing I did was I always gave the best price to those who just walked in and bought. Usually the demanded the best price, too. If I had to spend a ton of time teaching, explaining, and selling, the price wasn't as good. The customer was still happy, until the big box stores came. Then those customers expected those prices even though we were more knowledgable about the products.

    So, again, I blame the internet. In reality, customers are always going to want the best price and the best service or sales. I've rarely seen a company stay in business that offered both.

    Keep in mind, I don't mean to offend anyone who works or has worked at one of these stores. I've actually ran into a few who were quite knowledgable and the sad thing is, 15 years ago, could have made a killing on commission based sales.
  14. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    Hrm. This isn't my experience. Both our wolfs left, and while there are a few who might not be up to what I might know or someone on this forum, they were still way more knowledgable than other places. We had an old guy working at the one I frequented who was really hooked on mFT. He said it was hard for him to sell them though because their prices weren't as good as say Amazons, and the gap difference with dSLR wasn't enough to get the customer to buy.

    Our wolfs had though some experts on printing, though. I was impressed with that.
  15. Djarum

    Djarum Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Dec 15, 2009
    Huntsville, AL, USA
    This was a problem even when I sold electronics and was commission based. It is an overgeneralization though. In my own experience, especially with the wealth of information on the net, its not in a salesman's favor to lie about a product. Most of the guys we had were smart and were good salesman, both to the company and to the customer.
  16. mguffin

    mguffin Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 10, 2011
    Westwood, NJ
    Doesn't sound like a generalization. The post doesn't say "all car salesman are liars", rather, when they lie, they know it. The big-box camera salespeople, think they are telling the truth.
  17. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    You need to grow a sense of humor, Grinch. :rolleyes: 
  18. zapatista

    zapatista Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Mar 19, 2012
    Albuquerque, NM
    Mike Barber
    This is absolutely true! As long as we confine the m43 lenses to those made by Cosina and Samyang.
  19. shizlefonizle

    shizlefonizle Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 21, 2012
    In this day and age where we have a wealth of information I still find it odd how people are willing to drop hundreds or even thousands of dollars on products without doing a little bit of research.
  20. drewbot

    drewbot Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    I think people that go out and spend big bucks on items generally do their research on the Internet more so than before.

    That being said, the consumer may be much more educated than some kid at Best Buy who may have a much less informed opinion.

    And that being said, one day I went to Futureshop (a Canadian Best Buy) and was playing with the E-PM1 and GF3. The rep told me that I shouldn't trust either camera because Olympus nor Panasonic have experience in photography. He then continued to show me a Canon S95.

    And that being said, my local camera store, Henry's, is obviously much more educated. Sometimes you get the ****** sales rep, but for the most part they're really helpful.
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