I have felt that more times than I care to remember Evan, and it is very demoralising for shop staff especially when the "customer" comes back after buying the product on-line to boast how much cheaper he got it, and asking you how to use it! , but as Karl Marx wrote "capitalism is savagery" and the bricks and mortar stores have had the whip hand for decades the general public are now just pressing their advantage by using the stores for demonstration purposes, and buying on-line until the stores all go bankrupt that is..
Originally Posted by eclarke
Last edited by benjiboy; 03-11-2012 at 11:47 AM. Click to view previous post history.
The stores are part of the problem. They want to carry a Canon or Nikon because it is popular. What they should do is look at what the true profit margin is, the stock turn over, and time spent selling and training staff to sell an item.
I acquired the assets of a local camera store when they became unprofitable. I was a customer and the owner became a friend of mine, and I hired the former owner, and set up shop in part of my very large office supply store.
I talked to Canon, Minolta, and Nikon, and frankly, could not see making any profit so sold only used or would buy new from one of the NY stores on special orders. The only real profit center was with walk in film processing.
Then, after several years, a big box store, Walgreen, move into town and Qualex (owned by Fuqua) open them up also. They apparently complained they we were hurting them and our account was canceled. I guess helping customers with the photo questions and problems was something the other store could not compete with, but they had a lot of stores so were a large account for Q.
Anyway, I did not see small local camera stores as a viable business. I kept selling per-owned camera and accessories. This was in the mid 80's. I did enjoy it and I made it profitable, but only because it essentially had no rent or only part time of use of some staff, not something that most camera stores could do.