In an unnamed branch of Jessops last month while I was travelling around the UK a very helpful Jessops sales person said we can't get it but . . . then pulled out an AP looked up an advert told me the price and gave me the telephone number.
I feel sorry for the good staff because Senior management don't give them decent support, or provide good customer service. I've dealt wit Jessops as a potential supplier and as a customer and spent quite a few hours at their head quarters, their senior management is extremely poor.
I believe that, in this instance, Adam Smith was right: demand generates the need for supply and, if the demand isn't there, there's no need to stock it.
Digital cameras have destroyed the demand for analogue products in the consumer market and Jessops are just one store that hung onto the shirt tails of the consumer switch-over to the digital imaging market. What Jessops is experiencing now is the double-whammy of reduced demand for analogue photographic goods at the same time as the consumer digital imaging market hit saturation point.
I'm not suggesting that digital cameras are in any way superior to analogue but they produce a more instant and convenient product - and that's what the amateur market wants. We, the consumer, have created this 'monster'.
Personally, I have given up even looking in Jessops shop window. They have NOTHING that I want. The local stores in my bit of East Anglia hold virtually zero stock of film (especially 120 roll fim) and I don't do any chemical prints myself so I don't need chemicals or paper.
I am contemplating trading-in my D200 for a D700 but, as Jessops will not accept trade-ins, there's no point talking to them on that subject either. They might as well be 'Argos' as far as what they have to offer me is concerned.
I feel incredibly sorry for the employees of such shops. How do you learn about photography if all you sell is one product line which, in itself, isn't even a piece of photographic equipment? A DSLR body is, in my view, NOT a camera; it is a computer. Why, all of a sudden, is PC World pushing cameras up their product line? What do they know about 'photography'? Nothing. But they do know a computer when they see one.
I had to laugh at the prospect of selling just one brand of camera. Not because Canon was suggested but because it seems like painting yourself into an even tighter corner. What if your sole supplier's market share plummets? What if you become so reliant on your suppliers' goods that they dictate your profit margins and overall business strategy?
What a mess. I suppose most of us are quite lucky to have a more diverse interest than just digital imaging and that as internet users we can usually source what we need at the press of a few buttons.
Paul Jenkin (a late developer...)
My experience of Jessops is very hit and miss.
When they hit they usually have the film I'm after (nothing exotic, just some B&W or on the odd occassion some slide) and then others I end up with well someone who is nothing but a shop helper with no actual knowledge of the subject except the bare minimum. About a month or two ago I was not necessarily eavesdropping but someone had come in looking for a general purpose black and white film for use on a holiday. The recommendation was Delta 3200! I had to interject and make out that I had recently been on holiday and used Delta 400 and was very happy with the snaps.
I hadn't been on holiday and I have only just bought another 2 rolls of Delta 400 for the first time in about a year... (I usually use traditional emulsions) But the thought of someone's snaps being 'ruined' by needlessly grainy photos was not something I would have wanted to see.
The other week I asked for some simple MGIV RC 5x7 paper for some prints I want to do, and was walked around the inkjet section where I explained it was for use in a darkroom, the bemused response was "Wouldn't any of this lot work then?"
Granted he was a youngish lad (16 perhaps? I'm not exactly that old at 25) so maybe he had never ever used film or been aware of what goes into making a traditional print. I did see it behind the counter but decided not to bother and just waited till I got back home and popped around my local photo shop who are always brilliant and good value.
That said other times they have been great, including one time when I wanted some E100VS, and no where in town had any except them. So they're not that bad, but I prefer to support local businesses rather than chains as often they're very well priced. Also for photographic equipment I tend to buy second hand from places like MXV in Uckfield and have used places like MPB Photographic in Brighton.
"I had to laugh at the prospect of selling just one brand of camera. Not because Canon was suggested but because it seems like painting yourself into an even tighter corner. What if your sole supplier's market share plummets? What if you become so reliant on your suppliers' goods that they dictate your profit margins and overall business strategy?"
It is farcical, and the very fact that they are even thinking about this seems to be indicative of the debt-laden mess they are in.
Usually when a store reduces the brands it carries it is systemic of a business issue. The goal of the strategy is to reduce overhead, cash out inventory, and focus on what moves the best. There is some statistical support for this policy, but it usually only prolongs the agony of a business that is failing on other accounts.
Originally Posted by John Lawrence
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Just because we're talking about them..
I used to work in Jessops, it was the Southampton Commercial road store. Now Gone. It was good about 7 years ago, even when I was there though the whole corporate thing was beginning to strangle it's soul. By that I mean more and more employees were being pushed to take managerial training, people would join the group just for that.. they were always shaking up regional managers etc. The whole thing became a big ladder where those who cared about photography and the customers were trod on.
Last week I walked into Jessops Salisbury and asked for some 120 slide film.. the early 20 something girl went to the fridge, after I asked her to, and looked for some, then came back with a role of 35mm film.. I said no, 120 film.. she said this has got 36 exposures.. I looked at her blankly, I wondered if this was really happening. I said 120 film, it's a bigger film comes in a longer box? She looks at this film, confused, looks at me and says, this is 135. Now I know some people, won't know what the stuff is, but she didn't ask, couldn't believe she didn't know everything, I wasn't another dumb ass after a digi cam. Her sort of "on top of it all" attitude vanished.. I guess she was too afraid to say.. Sorry, let me ask because I'm not familiar with that film. I didn't care she didn't know what it was, although it was surprising, it was just the fact that she couldn't bring herself to be humble and offer some genuine customer service.
Jessops is an old person who has lost their memory, it's very sad to see them go down hill like this, but they are not the same store any more. The old Jessops was bopped on the head and dumped in a gutter while some greedy know it all stole his clothes and stated taking out money. Not any more.
Shops and even large chains don't have much of a future when they stop meeting their customers needs
They no longer want to sell you what you want to buy - they seem to want you to buy what they want to sell - there is a world of difference and it shows
jessops in Newbury is still rather good, just about all the staff know what film is and its formats, even invited me into their darkroom, which I declined as I was with the wife and her attention span in there is, shall we just say short of a 5 second fuse. It may be to do with the fact the local college runs photography courses but at least their on the ball. The big guy there ( I think his name is steve) is always helpfull and lets me know my mistakes etc so all in all a good bunch of guys.Oh he also tells me when their about to have an offer on and to "wait a few days"...
hi mate,i just joined,i have had unbelievable problems with jessops over the years.they screwed up prints i ordered,120 "pro service"!,lost negatives,and more.the fact is,all they are interested in is selling as much digital equipment as they can.the certainly do not cater for the film photographer.and beware of using any service when the shop has to send off any film to be processed or negs to be printed from.their "customer service" should they lose or ruin your stuff is diobolical!!!.regards,peter jenner,worc's,mids.
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
At least there are two other Photo shops in Worcester, and one is quite reasonable.
The really decent store (I forget the name) unfortunately became Jessops, but there was a very knowledgeable girl there when I last went in 2 or 3 years ago.
Welcome to APUG BTW Peter