PDA

View Full Version : Inside Apple's Retail Store Operation




MacRumors
Jun 15, 2011, 09:26 AM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/15/inside-apples-retail-store-operation/)


In the wake of yesterday's announcement regarding Apple retail chief Ron Johnson's pending departure (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/14/apple-retail-chief-ron-johnson-departing-to-lead-j-c-penney/) to take the CEO position at department store chain J.C. Penney, The Wall Street Journal publishes an extensive look (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304563104576364071955678908.html) at the company's retail store operations and philosophy, relying on internal training materials and interviews with former employees to gain a sense of what Apple is doing differently from other companies that has made its retail stores such an overwhelming success.A look at confidential training manuals, a recording of a store meeting and interviews with more than a dozen current and former employees reveal some of Apple's store secrets. They include: intensive control of how employees interact with customers, scripted training for on-site tech support and consideration of every store detail down to the pre-loaded photos and music on demo devices.While much of the information has been published in other venues (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/02/17/apple-retail-store-employee-on-product-launches-store-culture-and-customers/) or is simply common knowledge given the company's retail store workforce of 30,000 employees, the extensive report does nicely summarize much of what has gone into developing the Apple retail store experience.According to several employees and training manuals, sales associates are taught an unusual sales philosophy: not to sell, but rather to help customers solve problems. "Your job is to understand all of your customers' needs - some of which they may not even realize they have," one training manual says. To that end, employees receive no sales commissions and have no sales quotas.While Apple may not have strict sales quotas in place for its employees, the company does certainly have performance goals for metrics such as "attachment rates", the frequency with which staff members are able to convince customers to add on ancillary products such as AppleCare to their purchases. Staff members who fall short of the goals receive additional sales training or are diverted to other positions within the store.

http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/06/apple_retail_store_mbp.jpg


The report also covers the history of Apple's retail store initiative, noting that it began at a time when Apple was struggling to return to prominence following the return of Steve Jobs and when the company was having a hard time achieving appropriate visibility in third-party retail stores. Even in stores such as CompUSA where Apple had dedicated display areas, the company was frustrated over its inability to control the customer experience.

Consequently, Jobs brought in Gap president Mickey Drexler, who joined Apple's board and assisted with defining the company's retail store goals. Ron Johnson was recruited from Target to lead the effort, and the retail store push began with an extensive period of planning and mockups that ultimately led to the first two stores opening in Tysons Corner, Virginia and Glendale, California in May 2001.

Apple's meticulous attention to detail extends down to its hiring process, where prospective employees generally participate in several rounds of competitive interviews assessing a variety of details including problem-solving skills, leadership qualities, and enthusiasm for Apple products.Once hired, employees are trained extensively. Recruits are drilled in classes that apply Apple's principles of customer service. Back on the sales floor, new hires must shadow more experienced colleagues and aren't allowed to interact with customers on their own until they're deemed ready. That can be a couple of weeks or even longer.Apple's retail store chain has already grown to over 325 stores in eleven countries, and the company has been pushing forward on larger and more iconic stores in an ever-growing number of markets, continually extending its reach with what has become one the most successful retail sales models in use today.

Article Link: Inside Apple's Retail Store Operation (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/06/15/inside-apples-retail-store-operation/)



Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 09:35 AM
Can't wait to see how Apple rebounds.

He is an integral part of Apple Retail.

talkingfuture
Jun 15, 2011, 09:36 AM
I guess this shows just how committed apple are to getting everything as they want it.

dagamer34
Jun 15, 2011, 09:36 AM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

184550
Jun 15, 2011, 09:37 AM
I didn't realize the scope and depth of indoctrination Apple employees go through.

applefan289
Jun 15, 2011, 09:37 AM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

Yeah, I've always been for ordering online.

wordoflife
Jun 15, 2011, 09:39 AM
The guy who sold me my MacBook Pro was rather pushy but I'm glad Apple is not promoting that.

vincenz
Jun 15, 2011, 09:43 AM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

Who cares if they "hate" you. Go in, buy, and leave.

HelveticaNeue
Jun 15, 2011, 09:44 AM
I don't think anyone should be surprised that Apple exercises such control over every aspect of their business, right down to ensuring that their Geniuses only use positive language like "as it turns out" in lieu of "unfortunately".

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 09:44 AM
I think if a retail store wants to be truly revolutionary, they shouldn't even track "attachment rates". Train the staff to ask if they want AppleCare, or if they want to buy ___ with their purchase, sure. But if the customer says no, leave it at that. Don't divert employees for failing to sell "enough". Let them focus on being straight talkers.

For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody.

Establish a store with a reputation of honest straight talk sales staff with absolutely no pressure. Apple could pull it off, too, because of its philosophy of designing products that WOW you. Let the products sell themselves. THAT would be revolutionary.

roland.g
Jun 15, 2011, 09:44 AM
Apparently this is neither the story on Apple's Back to School promo nor is it a rumor of how that promo will be launched tomorrow or the next day or the next... :cool:

reden
Jun 15, 2011, 09:45 AM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

WhySoSerious
Jun 15, 2011, 09:46 AM
I hate purchasing things via actual stores. It's always about pressure to sell add-ons. Whether it's Apple pushing accessories/applecare or Abercromie pushing belts/cologne/hats when all you wanted was 1 pair of jeans. It's too much of a pain in the rear.

maxizod
Jun 15, 2011, 09:48 AM
I have been routinely amazed by the staff as they suggest solutions for my questions in surprising ways. One guy even suggested going to a competitor to purchase the part I needed as he knew they didn't sell it at the Apple store.

Very impressed.

radiohead14
Jun 15, 2011, 09:48 AM
slight off topic: the 5th Ave NY store has boards up surrounding it right now. i'm hoping it's for the new Macbook Air release :)

Aduntu
Jun 15, 2011, 09:49 AM
I hate purchasing things via actual stores. It's always about pressure to sell add-ons. Whether it's Apple pushing accessories/applecare or Abercromie pushing belts/cologne/hats when all you wanted was 1 pair of jeans. It's too much of a pain in the rear.

I usually just say no. That seems to work for me.

WannaGoMac
Jun 15, 2011, 09:49 AM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

Hmm, I haven't encountered that level of service. While you don't like the "service", others may like high end instant service.

"Damned if you do, damned if you don't" on apple i guess

Maddix
Jun 15, 2011, 09:50 AM
I never buy extended warranty's. I hate when being pushed to buy one even though I make it clear I'm not interested.

AdeFowler
Jun 15, 2011, 09:51 AM
The jewel in the crown.

WhySoSerious
Jun 15, 2011, 09:52 AM
I usually just say no. That seems to work for me.

A successful salesman never takes "no" for an answer. It'll work on the weak ones, but the ones who are good at their job and make a living off of it, they treat "no" as "tell me more". :rolleyes:

Tomskey
Jun 15, 2011, 09:52 AM
I used to work in The Disney Store, they used to have a very similar approach..... more about discovering what Customers (er sorry Guests) want rather than sell.... alas that all went out the window some years back and now look clearly so did their sales....

Keep it up Apple ;-)

barnetty
Jun 15, 2011, 09:52 AM
wow...i thought this was an isolated thing that happened to me last year when i went to buy a MBAir.

I had already scouted all the versions and knew exactly the one i wanted so when i walked into the store i just said i want the Macbook Air ...with such and such. They guy then starts asking me stuff like "who is it for?", "what are they going to use it for?", "does that person currently own bla bla bla?" ...ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 09:53 AM
A case study in success.

User Experience doesn't begin and end with the OS. It's a journey from cradle to grave, and it begins right when you walk into the Store. It's an integral part of the Apple ecosystem, and the attention to detail put into it reflects just that.

MacMan86
Jun 15, 2011, 09:53 AM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

Who cares if they "hate" you. Go in, buy, and leave.

No, we generally don't/didn't. The targets are never 100% - it was expected that we'd get customers who know what they want, buy and leave. To be honest, it was often quite nice to get a short, simple sale. Not having to explain the Mac from scratch everytime gives a bit of relief when you're explaining iWork all day.

They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

It's as much to discourage potential shoplifters as it is to create a welcoming atmosphere. People have done studies - if you're acknowledged when you walk in, you're less likely to try to steal.

A successful salesman never takes "no" for an answer. It'll work on the weak ones, but the ones who are good at their job and make a living off of it, they treat "no" as "tell me more". :rolleyes:

In an Apple Store, no means no - that's what you're told. You're not selling second hand cars, it's never a case of "tell me more".

Once hired, employees are trained extensively. Recruits are drilled in classes that apply Apple's principles of customer service. Back on the sales floor, new hires must shadow more experienced colleagues and aren't allowed to interact with customers on their own until they're deemed ready. That can be a couple of weeks or even longer.

Ha, in a perfect world perhaps. I've seen new recruits rushed through Core Training (normally a two week programme) in less than 3 days and put straight out onto the floor, no shadowing, with less than a day of product knowledge training.

countermind
Jun 15, 2011, 09:53 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/534.32 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8F190 Safari/6533.18.5)

"According to several employees and training manuals, sales associates are taught an unusual sales philosophy: not to sell, but rather to help customers solve problems. "Your job is to understand all of your customers' needs - some of which they may not even realize they have," one training manual says."

Not sure who writes these articles, but this is a fundamental tenet of all professional sales. People want to buy stuff, they just don't like to be "sold".

acies909
Jun 15, 2011, 09:54 AM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

I don't think it's being pushy. The people at Apple believe in their products and services. Alot of people know about the products but 50% of people buying a Mac are first time Mac owners a stat that has been the same since the stores opened. AppleCare is an amazing program. What other warranty program gives you 3 years of phone support not just I have a problem with my computer but you can call them and ask them question about iMovie or iPhoto or where you can schedule for AppleCare to call you using expresslane.apple.com. For a first time user and even veteran users One-to-One is awesome cause you learn the programs that come on your computer. I have had Apple computers for 12 years and use iMovie for my side business and I bought one-to-one for myself and I loved. I learned Final Cut Pro for $99. You can't beat that. So I think the reason that some of the Specialists in the store seem pushy is because they see the value in AppleCare and One-to-One that they don't want to see people leave without at least one of the services. I have bought AppleCare and One to One and I will tell people to buy both all the time. I also live he experience of talking to someone that isn't tryin to sell me something cause it makes their paycheck bigger but someone that actuall wants me to get a computer that better suits my need. I wanted the biggest and best 15in MBP and I ended up getting a 13in MBA and I couldn't be happier.

Blorzoga
Jun 15, 2011, 09:54 AM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

Next time you go to an Apple store, try this: when you walk through the door and they ask you if you need any help, say, "no, thanks, I'm just looking", continue walking to whatever it is you want to look at or play with. This strategy actually works in other retail stores too.

cmfilms
Jun 15, 2011, 09:54 AM
Amazed that people are faulting BUSINESSES for increasing their sales totals. Of course clerks are going to suggest add-ons. It's part of the deal. Don't go in with the attitude that a clerk is being pushy. Just remember that they are just doing their job. A quick "No, but thanks for asking" will get you out the door with the money in your wallet and the respect of the employee.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 09:56 AM
This thread is just proving how socially awkward/insecure people really are haha.

nstrudwick
Jun 15, 2011, 09:56 AM
Someone needs to bring Apple to book for its ageism however. When you look at those they look at, its clear that knowledge and enthusiasm and experience count for relatively little if you are grey-haired and not young and "hip". Very sad in this day and age (I speak from personal experience).

jamets515
Jun 15, 2011, 09:57 AM
For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody.

If the sales associate thinks a prospective customer should go and buy a Dell, he's a fool.

chriszzz
Jun 15, 2011, 09:57 AM
Regardless of what the training materials may say, Apple pushes employees to sell hard. No, you won't find a Specialist pushing a Mac Pro on someone's grandma but they will try to sell her all the attachments (AppleCare, MobileMe, and One-to-One) and every accessory in the store.

Employees are constantly monitored on their attachment performance and (at least in the stores I was at) they were forced to review their sales with a manager before the product was brought out. The store also used experienced sales people as a closer to try and push attachments when the Specialists couldn't close the deal. Plenty of people had hours cut or unwillingly moved to other positions in the store because of poor performance.

Now I'm not saying people shouldn't be judged on their performance in the workplace. Of course it makes business sense and Apple should do that. I just want to let everyone know its not a bunch of hipsters hanging around that want to be best friends with their customers and really get to know them.

Of course Apple wants to solve the customers problems and learn about their needs, because that always involves selling them more crap.

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 09:58 AM
A case study in success.

User Experience doesn't begin and end with the OS. It's a journey from cradle to grave, and it begins right when you walk into the Store. It's an integral part of the Apple ecosystem, and the attention to detail put into it reflects just that.

You mean, condescending, unhelpful salespeople who ask if you've ever used a computer before? It does match the rest of the Apple experience, I'll give you that. I'm not sure exactly where this reputation for great Apple customer service in their stores comes from; the store in Boulder is terrible.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 09:59 AM
For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody..

When you can install Windows on a Mac, there is no reason to buy a Dell other than price. The only way I would recommend a Dell, if I was an Apple employee, would be if the customer walked in with $400 in their pocket expecting to pick up a computer.

Boomchukalaka
Jun 15, 2011, 10:00 AM
Whatever they are doing, they are doing it well! Going into an Apple store is a great, positive experience. Even just to "look around" I've had friendly, courteous exchanges with the staff. And unlike so many Big Box store experiences, there are actually staff there wanting to help you. I am surprised more retailers haven't used the Apple store model as a case study to improve the retail experience in their operations.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:00 AM
wow...i thought this was an isolated thing that happened to me last year when i went to buy a MBAir.

I had already scouted all the versions and knew exactly the one i wanted so when i walked into the store i just said i want the Macbook Air ...with such and such. They guy then starts asking me stuff like "who is it for?", "what are they going to use it for?", "does that person currently own bla bla bla?" ...ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.
Reminds me of an Eddie Bauer experience. Even following me to the changing rooms and waiting outside for me. That's commission for you, or whatever statistics the employee suffers under. But they are there to serve you, apparently, so just enjoy the experience.

chriszzz
Jun 15, 2011, 10:02 AM
When you can install Windows on a Mac, there is no reason to buy a Dell other than price.

Now you sir/madam, would make a terrific Apple Retail employee. Cover your eyes and ears while screaming 'everything that isn't made by Apple sucks'.

GoKyu
Jun 15, 2011, 10:03 AM
I think if a retail store wants to be truly revolutionary, they shouldn't even track "attachment rates". Train the staff to ask if they want AppleCare, or if they want to buy ___ with their purchase, sure. But if the customer says no, leave it at that. Don't divert employees for failing to sell "enough". Let them focus on being straight talkers.

For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody.

Establish a store with a reputation of honest straight talk sales staff with absolutely no pressure. Apple could pull it off, too, because of its philosophy of designing products that WOW you. Let the products sell themselves. THAT would be revolutionary.

+1

I work retail, and don't like the fact that you get punished for not meeting some arbitrary goal. I have recommended Macs in the past (a big no-no at our store) because our store manager always said "If we don't carry it, but it may be right for the customer, recommend it." Unfortunately that thought was "re-clarified" later as "As long as we carry it, but we don't have it in stock..."

The one minor bit I might disagree with is "if the customer says no, leave it at that" - give the salesperson a chance to change the customer's mind, because they might not know the benefits of having a plan or whatever.

But absolutely, if they say no more than twice or say "I do know about that, but I still don't want it", then leave it alone and finish the sale - it saves the customer and the employee time to do other things.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:04 AM
Now you sir/madam, would make a terrific Apple Retail employee. Cover your eyes and ears while screaming 'everything that isn't made by Apple sucks'.

I didn't say that, but aside from price (which is what I mentioned), why would you buy a Dell instead? I enjoy the flexibility of running two OS's.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 10:05 AM
The guy who sold me my MacBook Pro was rather pushy but I'm glad Apple is not promoting that.

They are though. If you don't attach Procare, 1to1, APP, MobileME/Dot Mac, you're sale is considered a fail. I remember the morning meetings sales people with insane numbers but their metrics were so low. Its all about metrics.

iSimx
Jun 15, 2011, 10:05 AM
The guy who sold me my MacBook Pro was rather pushy but I'm glad Apple is not promoting that.

yea, my first experience wasn't great. the woman was pushy, and bitchy. Questionning why I'm not getting AppleCare and kept pushing until I gave in. cow.

Luckily my last experiences have been great (in another store).

Thunderhawks
Jun 15, 2011, 10:06 AM
wow...i thought this was an isolated thing that happened to me last year when i went to buy a MBAir.

I had already scouted all the versions and knew exactly the one i wanted so when i walked into the store i just said i want the Macbook Air ...with such and such. They guy then starts asking me stuff like "who is it for?", "what are they going to use it for?", "does that person currently own bla bla bla?" ...ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

You probably encountered an isolated case of a sales person that needed retraining or used to work at another place.

In sales it doesn't pay to get mad at a customer.
There are certain things one cannot do.

If that was me, I would have congratulated you on your choice, thanked you in a humorous way for making my sales life easy and asked you to let me know if you needed or were interested in anything else.

The Apple store at the NY Westchester mall has (don't know if it was fixed) a foul odor problem allegedly from the air conditioning ducts.
Whoever is running that store was content with the building managements explanation, which IMO is not good enough.

If I ran that place I would have bought an air exchanger/humidifier and started to fight with building management.

In that particular store several employees look a little disheveled and unkempt for my taste.

Again, isolated cases, but noticeable when it's not the perfect Apple.

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 10:06 AM
You mean, condescending, unhelpful salespeople who ask if you've ever used a computer before? It does match the rest of the Apple experience, I'll give you that. I'm not sure exactly where this reputation for great Apple customer service in their stores comes from; the store in Boulder is terrible.

Apple's numbers tell the tale. These stores aren't a retail success story by accident. They don't rake in insane amounts of money because the people who work there make customers feel like garbage, are dishonest, unhelpful, etc.

There's no miracle at work here. The places are well-run and they're effective. If you think there's some other force at play, do let us know.

But I'm sure your personal anecdotes are appreciated.

Thunderhawks
Jun 15, 2011, 10:08 AM
Reminds me of an Eddie Bauer experience. Even following me to the changing rooms and waiting outside for me. That's commission for you, or whatever statistics the employee suffers under. But they are there to serve you, apparently, so just enjoy the experience.

At least they waited outside:-)

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 10:09 AM
If the sales associate thinks a prospective customer should go and buy a Dell, he's a fool.

When you can install Windows on a Mac, there is no reason to buy a Dell other than price. The only way I would recommend a Dell, if I was an Apple employee, would be if the customer walked in with $400 in their pocket expecting to pick up a computer.

Well, there ya go, there's one example already. I've been on the receiving end of too many speeches from salesmen (not just Apple) where the product clearly wasn't going to work out for me, yet they kept going and trying to find convoluted ways to make the sale. Customers see right through that, and it's annoying.

If a customer were to come in with only $400 to spend on a PC, the correct answer is "sorry, I think your best bet is to look at a PC", not, say, "Well, we have this lovely iPod touch that could run the iWork app..."

Simple real-world example: I walk into a hardware store and ask if they sell ____ device. One guy smugly says "We don't carry such a thing. In fact I've never even heard of that. Are you sure it even exists?" Another says "We don't carry that, but go to XYZ store on Main street, they have them over there." Guess which guy I'm going to talk to next time I need something?

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:10 AM
You probably encountered an isolated case of a sales person that needed retraining or used to work at another place.

In sales it doesn't pay to get mad at a customer.
There are certain things one cannot do.

If that was me, I would have congratulated you on your choice, thanked you in a humorous way for making my sales life easy and asked you to let me know if you needed or were interested in anything else.

The Apple store at the NY Westchester mall has (don't know if it was fixed) a foul odor problem allegedly from the air conditioning ducts.
Whoever is running that store was content with the building managements explanation, which IMO is not good enough.

If I ran that place I would have bought an air exchanger/humidifier and started to fight with building management.

In that particular store several employees look a little disheveled and unkempt for my taste.

Again, isolated cases, but noticeable when it's not the perfect Apple.
Are you Steve's love child by any chance?

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 10:10 AM
Now you sir/madam, would make a terrific Apple Retail employee. Cover your eyes and ears while screaming 'everything that isn't made by Apple sucks'.

The poster made a good point, actually. There's certainly *less* of a reason to buy a PC other than price. In fact, the box-makers are doing just that: trying to compete on price. Look at MS' half-hearted Laptop Hunters campaign from 2009. It was all about price.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:13 AM
Well, there ya go, there's one example already. I've been on the receiving end of too many speeches from salesmen (not just Apple) where the product clearly wasn't going to work out for me, yet they kept going and trying to find convoluted ways to make the sale. Customers see right through that, and it's annoying.

No, probably 10% of customers see through that. Most people want to be told what to buy. Furthermore, if I don't enjoy the experience from a retail store, but I enjoy their products, I just order online in the future (ex. tire shopping).

macnisse
Jun 15, 2011, 10:14 AM
...Ha, in a perfect world perhaps. I've seen new recruits rushed through Core Training (normally a two week programme) in less than 3 days and put straight out onto the floor, no shadowing, with less than a day of product knowledge training.[/QUOTE]

That come as no surprise, I must have encountered several of these salespeople with little or arguably no training :mad: pain in the b***
Next buy will definitely be online... just me, myself and I, and I already know what I want, the new "ultimate" MBA :D

vagabondlife4me
Jun 15, 2011, 10:14 AM
This thread is just proving how socially awkward/insecure people really are haha.

Took the thoughts right out of my mind.

ivladster
Jun 15, 2011, 10:16 AM
wow...i thought this was an isolated thing that happened to me last year when i went to buy a MBAir.

I had already scouted all the versions and knew exactly the one i wanted so when i walked into the store i just said i want the Macbook Air ...with such and such. They guy then starts asking me stuff like "who is it for?", "what are they going to use it for?", "does that person currently own bla bla bla?" ...ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

maybe that guy came from Best Buy to work for Apple. Sometimes it takes time to wash that off.

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 10:16 AM
In sales it doesn't pay to get mad at a customer.
There are certain things one cannot do.

If that was me, I would have congratulated you on your choice, thanked you in a humorous way for making my sales life easy and asked you to let me know if you needed or were interested in anything else.


You need to talk to the car salesman that emailed me last week after bugging me with multiple emails and phone messages about when I was going to come into his dealership to see the car I inquired about. I sent him a curt reply saying "I will let you know when/if I continue to pursue this particular vehicle" thinking that he'd get the hint and back off.

His reply was so precious I've kept it in my archives. It was ALL CAPS, poorly written and punctuated, with a sarcastic tone ("WELL I WOULD HATE TO SELL YOU A CAR IF YOU WEREN'T SURE YOU WANTED TO BUY FROM ME SIR") and then went on to say "I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU HAVE TO THINK ABOUT, PERHAPS YOUR AFRAID TO COMMIT" [sic] :eek: :rolleyes:

Apparently he learned from the Biff Tannen school of sales training. Insult your customers and maybe you can embarrass them into give you their money.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:17 AM
Come to think of it, why would anyone not buy online? If you buy Apple products, you know what you want already. Why the hassle of starting the car? It's not like you go into the store wanting a laptop and come out with a music player.

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 10:18 AM
I didn't say that, but aside from price (which is what I mentioned), why would you buy a Dell instead? I enjoy the flexibility of running two OS's.

You were fine up until this point.

Not everyone needs to run Mac OSX, so why would a customer that wants to game and nothing else need to run two OSes? Especially if they aren't going to ever boot into MacOSX.

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 10:18 AM
Apple's numbers tell the tale. These stores aren't a retail success story by accident. They don't rake in insane amounts of money because the people who work there make customers feel like garbage, are dishonest, unhelpful, etc.

There's no miracle at work here. The places are well-run and they're effective. If you think there's some other force at play, do let us know.

But I'm sure your personal anecdotes are appreciated.

Making large sums of money means you're good at making large sums of money, not that your customer service is great. Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money without considering other options helps a lot. But wrap yourself up in that nice warm blanket of assuming Apple is the best at everything. I know you will.

Fugue
Jun 15, 2011, 10:20 AM
Come to think of it, why would anyone not buy online? If you buy Apple products, you know what you want already. Why the hassle of starting the car? It's not like you go into the store wanting a laptop and come out with a music player.

Lots of reasons


Instant Gratification (No need to wait for shipping)
Often times people cannot sign for delivery as they are at work
Shipping always has a greater probability for risk

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:20 AM
You were fine up until this point.

Not everyone needs to run Mac OSX, so why would a customer that wants to game and nothing else need to run two OSes? Especially if they aren't going to ever boot into MacOSX.

If they aren't ever going to boot into OSX, then why are they in an Apple store?

Vol7ron
Jun 15, 2011, 10:20 AM
I remember back in the days of CompUSA and working sales there. I hated it. I loved helping people get a computer they wanted, and loved the sales associates I worked with, but that was about it. I hated being told on a daily basis that if a customer didn't want a service plan or other items to go along with their computer to make them leave and go else where (kinda makes you understand why they went under). I treated a customer as they wanted to; if they want a service plan, they got one, if they didn't, no problem. I didn't heckle them. I told them my little story and that was it.

organerito
Jun 15, 2011, 10:20 AM
I think if a retail store wants to be truly revolutionary, they shouldn't even track "attachment rates". Train the staff to ask if they want AppleCare, or if they want to buy ___ with their purchase, sure. But if the customer says no, leave it at that. Don't divert employees for failing to sell "enough". Let them focus on being straight talkers.

For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody.

Establish a store with a reputation of honest straight talk sales staff with absolutely no pressure. Apple could pull it off, too, because of its philosophy of designing products that WOW you. Let the products sell themselves. THAT would be revolutionary.

I completely agree.

There is nothing more annoying than a pushy fondamentalist.

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 10:21 AM
then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

If I was you, I would have not had the same patience and composure. If he had said that to me, I would have looked him straight in the eye and said "Well, salesman... you just lost a sale." and walked right out the door.

cmfilms
Jun 15, 2011, 10:21 AM
Someone needs to bring Apple to book for its ageism however.

Not the case at my Apple Store. There are always mid-aged (I hate that phrase) people working the floor. Noticeably so.

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 10:23 AM
If they aren't ever going to boot into OSX, then why are they in an Apple store?

The same reason why any number of people come into an Apple store.

Just name one.

DoofenshmirtzEI
Jun 15, 2011, 10:24 AM
Come to think of it, why would anyone not buy online? If you buy Apple products, you know what you want already. Why the hassle of starting the car? It's not like you go into the store wanting a laptop and come out with a music player.

I try not to go into an Apple store to buy stuff. I'll go in if I need service or if there's a new thing out I want to play with, but the one time I bought something there (an iPad I'd reserved), it was because there had been a rash of them with faulty screens and I wanted to make sure mine was fine. What should have been a 5 minute in and out turned into 15 minutes of "wait for the pushy salesman to be free", followed by 15 minutes of "pushy salesman trying to sell attachments" before they would permit me to purchase said iPad.

Aduntu
Jun 15, 2011, 10:25 AM
A successful salesman never takes "no" for an answer. It'll work on the weak ones, but the ones who are good at their job and make a living off of it, they treat "no" as "tell me more". :rolleyes:

It has less to do with the salesman and more to do with how you say no. I assure you, no matter the salesman, my no is never interpreted "tell me more." If yours is, you need to reevaluate how you communicate.

motohooligan
Jun 15, 2011, 10:25 AM
I'm not sure exactly where this reputation for great Apple customer service in their stores comes from; the store in Boulder is terrible.

It could be that the people in Boulder are terrible (dirty hippies);)

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 10:26 AM
It has less to do with the salesman and more to do with how you say no. I assure you, no matter the salesman, my no is never interpreted "tell me more." If yours is, you need to reevaluate how you communicate.

LMBO :D

So true!

I personally like seeing them run. If they ask if I need help, I'll say, "SURE! Can you show me where the Apple earbuds are?" just to have them walk me around the store showing me things I already know.

Keeps them on their toes.

ghostface147
Jun 15, 2011, 10:27 AM
Ugh, I can't read the entire article because I have sign up.

ChrisTX
Jun 15, 2011, 10:27 AM
The guy who sold me my MacBook Pro was rather pushy but I'm glad Apple is not promoting that.

I remember when I purchased my first MacBook Pro in 2006 or so, the guy at the Apple store was actually trying to down-sell me into a regular MacBook. The difference in price had to be at least $500. Pretty weird to say the least.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:27 AM
The same reason why any number of people come into an Apple store.

Just name one.

I'm not really sure what you're trying to say?

logandzwon
Jun 15, 2011, 10:28 AM
Wow, I'm surprised by some of the things I'm hearing in this thread, only because my experience has been so different.

I live in SoFla, a high traffic tourist area. We are used to being pressured for up-sales and add-ons. I will not shop at Brand-smart and I stopped shopping at CompUSA altogether because of how bad it got.

Both of my local Apple Store are pretty no pressure. Ofcourse, they always ask if I want AppleCare and MobileMe. They are always ready to discus when I have questions, but the moment I say "no," they drop the topic instantly.

The one time I went with my brother to get him a back-to-school special I had to keep reminding the man all the thing he could sell us. He brought out the free iPod, but I had to ask for a printer, MobileMe, and iWork.

Now, I will say one time I went into the store knowing what I wanted to buy, and they asked me to wait between fourty-five minutes and an hour for someone to check me out. Needless to say, I did not wait.

YMark
Jun 15, 2011, 10:29 AM
A successful salesman never takes "no" for an answer. It'll work on the weak ones, but the ones who are good at their job and make a living off of it, they treat "no" as "tell me more". :rolleyes:

Then you say **** NO" and tell them to pound sand.

itoddm
Jun 15, 2011, 10:29 AM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

I agree. I feel like I have to explain myself to even go in the store at times. That is not welcoming. Plus it is always so busy it becomes overwhelming immediately.

pagansoul
Jun 15, 2011, 10:30 AM
Not the case at my Apple Store. There are always mid-aged (I hate that phrase) people working the floor. Noticeably so.

I've also never had a problem seeing a mature sales force on the floors of the Georgia Apple stores.

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 10:30 AM
I'm not really sure what you're trying to say?

iPhones, iPad, iPods, iTunes, Mobile Me, Mice, keyboards, hanging out with friends, being curious about Macs or any of the above products, just to piss off a Specialist, tech support, etc. etc. etc.

Most of the customers I dealt with when I worked there were Windows users with iPhones or iPods.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:30 AM
Then you say **** NO" and tell them to pound sand.

:D

As a previous poster mentioned, it's all in how you say "No".

puckhead193
Jun 15, 2011, 10:31 AM
you would think with all that training, the employes will actually know something... at times i think a monkey could do a better job.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 10:31 AM
iPhones, iPad, iPods, iTunes, Mobile Me, Mice, keyboards, hanging out with friends, being curious about Macs or any of the above products, just to piss off a Specialist, tech support, etc. etc. etc.

Most of the customers I dealt with when I worked there were Windows users with iPhones or iPods.

At the Genius bar the first 3 years at Apple I saw mostly computer users and switchers. My last 2 years at Apple I saw mostly iPod and iPhone users. The computer users couldn't get appointments so management usually would just fast track the machine. Not good service since fast track meant that the client wouldn't get the basic troubleshooting done.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:33 AM
Lots of reasons
Instant Gratification (No need to wait for shipping)
:D If so, that's sad.

Often times people cannot sign for delivery as they are at work

People work 7 days a week, morning to late night? Maybe you live in a dystopia.

Shipping always has a greater probability for risk

So you imagine they 'beam' the products to the Apple stores from China?

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 10:33 AM
I'm not really sure what you're trying to say?

There are lots of reasons someone could be coming into an Apple Store, and yet not be interested in a computer running OS X.

They could be looking at iPads, iPhones, or iPods.
They could be buying accessories for the above.
They could be coming in just to see what all the hype is about.
They could be coming in simply to check their email on the free internet.

Of course a good salesman will probe to see if maybe they'll fall in love with a Mac and buy one (the good ol' halo effect), but if the customer is clearly not interested or if it's clearly not going to work for them ("I need games! And Microsoft Access! And I'm cheap to boot!") then they need to leave it at that.

kjr39
Jun 15, 2011, 10:34 AM
Most of my experiences at the local Apple Store are negative.

I don't know if it's the people they pick or the way they train them, but they are some of the most smug 'salesman' I've ever been around.

If I wanted to be told how lucky I am to have you help me, I would go to a used car dealership.

MacMan86
Jun 15, 2011, 10:36 AM
If I was you, I would have not had the same patience and composure. If he had said that to me, I would have looked him straight in the eye and said "Well, salesman... you just lost a sale." and walked right out the door.

All lovely but it makes absolutely no difference to the salesman, he wouldn't have cared less. He didn't stand to make a commission from the sale so whether you bought from him was neither here nor there - but if it makes you feel better, go ahead.

A lot of customers who come in and think they know exactly what they need actually don't and can be saved a lot of money on a lower spec model. That's what you're trained to do. The Specialist in question should have understood the situation with fewer questions, that's all.

Making large sums of money means you're good at making large sums of money, not that your customer service is great. Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money without considering other options helps a lot. But wrap yourself up in that nice warm blanket of assuming Apple is the best at everything. I know you will.

No one expects to go into an Apple Store and essentially get sold a Dell. I don't know what reality you're living in. They are not independent stores - it's a very simple distinction.

That said, if a Mac genuinely wasn't the best choice for a customer, I would suggest to them that they look elsewhere. It rarely happened because it is genuinely rarely the case.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:36 AM
iPhones, iPad, iPods, iTunes, Mobile Me, Mice, keyboards, hanging out with friends, being curious about Macs or any of the above products, just to piss off a Specialist, tech support, etc. etc. etc.

Most of the customers I dealt with when I worked there were Windows users with iPhones or iPods.

I think you need to go back and read the beginning of the conversation. I don't understand how these are advantages to a dell over a mac? The premise of my point was, aside from price, I personally wouldn't recommend a Dell if I was an Apple employee. I don't know what tangent you're going off on.

BLACKFRIDAY
Jun 15, 2011, 10:37 AM
Apple's numbers tell the tale. These stores aren't a retail success story by accident. They don't rake in insane amounts of money because the people who work there make customers feel like garbage, are dishonest, unhelpful, etc.

There's no miracle at work here. The places are well-run and they're effective. If you think there's some other force at play, do let us know.

But I'm sure your personal anecdotes are appreciated.

I wonder why your posts are terribly downrated and you're disrespected on this forum.

It's not that you don't make fan-boyish comments. It's that most of your comments are a sensible read and I don't know why people make a fuss about everything.

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 10:38 AM
People work 7 days a week, morning to late night? Maybe you live in a dystopia.


Maybe I do. What reality do you live in where you can tell FedEx to deliver your package only during the evenings, or on the weekend?

I live alone, and I invariably end up driving to the FedEx/UPS/DHL depot to pick up any shipment I receive, since they always arrive at my doorstep between 11:00am to 3:00pm while I am at work. I wish there was an option to say "don't even bother loading it on the delivery truck, just leave it at the depot, phone me the morning it arrives, and I'll come get it".

Either that or I have it sent to my parent's house, where there's usually someone home during the day.

toddybody
Jun 15, 2011, 10:39 AM
All new employees must climb the highest peak in the land, whereupon they engage in battle with the four ninjutsu masters. Those who survive eat the sacred lotus herb and are given a "spirit katana", a blade that holds the soul of an ancient, fallen warrior.


Only then, can they be called...Apple Geniuses.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:41 AM
All new employees must climb the highest peak in the land, whereupon they engage in battle with the four ninjutsu masters. Those who survive eat the sacred lotus herb and are given a "spirit katana", a blade that holds the soul of an ancient, fallen warrior.


Only then, can they be called...Apple Geniuses.

And there's me thinking that was just a rumour.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 10:43 AM
Of course a good salesman will probe to see if maybe they'll fall in love with a Mac and buy one (the good ol' halo effect), but if the customer is clearly not interested or if it's clearly not going to work for them ("I need games! And Microsoft Access! And I'm cheap to boot!") then they need to leave it at that.

Which was my original point, no? If somebody needs a cheaper computer, recommend the Dell.

Thunderhawks
Jun 15, 2011, 10:45 AM
You need to talk to the car salesman that emailed me last week after bugging me with multiple emails and phone messages about when I was going to come into his dealership to see the car I inquired about. I sent him a curt reply saying "I will let you know when/if I continue to pursue this particular vehicle" thinking that he'd get the hint and back off.

His reply was so precious I've kept it in my archives. It was ALL CAPS, poorly written and punctuated, with a sarcastic tone ("WELL I WOULD HATE TO SELL YOU A CAR IF YOU WEREN'T SURE YOU WANTED TO BUY FROM ME SIR") and then went on to say "I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU HAVE TO THINK ABOUT, PERHAPS YOUR AFRAID TO COMMIT" [sic] :eek: :rolleyes:

Apparently he learned from the Biff Tannen school of sales training. Insult your customers and maybe you can embarrass them into give you their money.

Looks like a car salesman gave you a negative vote. I canceled it:-)

Same experience here. I stopped by to look at a car and told the salesman that I will buy whatever I will buy when I am ready.

May not be their brand.
E-mails kept on coming as reminders of sales, just checking in, prices may go up etc.

I have been in sales for many years, so of course one has to try.

With every e-mail the tone changed. You don't know what you are doing, my cars are the best etc. etc.

Same dealership wanted me to invest $ 8,000 in a car to "fix" everything that was only worth 4,000 and didn't want to give me the inspection sticker unless I fixed it.

SELLING IS AN ART, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF PEOPLE THERE THAT SHOULDN'T BE IN THAT FIELD.

Caps lock as satire:-)

iSamurai
Jun 15, 2011, 10:46 AM
Lots of reasons


Instant Gratification (No need to wait for shipping)
Often times people cannot sign for delivery as they are at work
Shipping always has a greater probability for risk



1. many items are despatched within 24 hours and you'll most likely to get it the day after. that's not really a long wait. apple has got one of the best shipping out there -- compared to dell for example, they take at least a week for a fully stocked item to arrive.

2. you can ship items to your work place (see apple store help)

3. and visiting the store yourself does not incur any risks at all? shipped stuff CANNOT get lost because they need to be signed-for on delivery.

Ijustfarted
Jun 15, 2011, 10:50 AM
Apple stores are full of douchey people. I'll stick to the online store thanks

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 10:52 AM
Which was my original point, no? If somebody needs a cheaper computer, recommend the Dell.

The problem is that some people have pretty weird expectations. It is like the Microsoft version of the switchers ads where one of them wanted a really portable, cheap laptop that is also powerful and she ended up with a 17 inch beast of a laptop with year old specs. You're essentially arguing that if someone comes in with impossible expectations you should err on the side of a cheap computer that on paper looks to fit their claimed needs (and most importantly price point) that will probably fall apart and maybe even fail to do what they want because they misunderstood their problem.

In other words, it is very easy to misjudge how much computer you need and people often err on the side of way too much computer at the expense of ability to actually do things they want (i.e. how many people could get by with just an iPad running iOS 5? I bet a whole lot of people).

At this point someone usually brings up the whole "well build your own and it is cheaper" argument failing to realize that these people would have no idea how to build a computer (which isn't a horrible thing, I have no clue how to build a car).

2. you can ship items to your work place (see apple store help)

Not every place of work smiles upon you sending personal items to the mailroom.

sishaw
Jun 15, 2011, 10:54 AM
Often times people cannot sign for delivery as they are at work



People work 7 days a week, morning to late night? Maybe you live in a dystopia.


Not at McDonald's, no, but a lot of professionals do. Where do you live where shipping services deliver on weekends and after business hours? Usually, you have to be home for the delivery, which is usually in the afternoon during work.

Defender2010
Jun 15, 2011, 10:56 AM
This report is BS....training is one or two days. Staff are assessed on their attachment rate, those with high AppleCare sales progress, the others sell headphones and cases. It's all about sales....
Behind the scenes it's as hectic as any other retail store with bad managers and the in-store favourites...customers are rude and always ask for new products based on rumours. Extensive my ass.

Rooskibar03
Jun 15, 2011, 10:56 AM
November 10th 2001. I spent the evening parked on the curb about 11th from the door of the first Apple Store to open in Colorado. (The 11th was the day the original iPod went on sale, I bought the first one sold :) )

Back when it was fun to go to the Apple store to check out new products, talk with other Apple fans that actually enjoyed talking about Apple and not just trying to push crap down your throat.

Fast forward to today and I cannot stand to step foot in this store. (and I have made my feeling well know in the surveys I get all the time) The people who work there are either rude or unhelpful, usually both. (And one perticular employee who has the worst teeth and breath ever and I somehow always end up with him ringing me up)

When I do go in just to pick something up it turns into a 15 minute ordeal just to find someone to give my money to.

I don't know if it’s gotten better, but heaven forbid you ask about an iPad 2. I about got my head bitten off telling me to come back and line up at 8am if I wanted a shot at buying one.

The place is always packed which isn't a bad problem to have if you're running a store but for the Mac enthusiast it's just not fun anymore. If it weren't for my lack of patience to wait for an item from Amazon I wouldn't ever go in there.

Oh well. They are making plenty of money without me so I guess I'm in the minority.


<end rant>

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 10:56 AM
Maybe I do. What reality do you live in where you can tell FedEx to deliver your package only during the evenings, or on the weekend?

FedEx?? Why do you assume I'm American. Oh, I know...

My reality is Japan. Delivery until 9pm and if I'm not home they just take it to my nearby workplace. It's called service with a smile.

What kind of dystopia do you suffer?

reactions
Jun 15, 2011, 10:57 AM
I didn't realize the scope and depth of indoctrination Apple employees go through.

U missed the part where prospective employees drink the apple Koolaid :)


But really it's amazing what a turn around they did with their retail stores

kingtj
Jun 15, 2011, 10:58 AM
As soon as I read that article, that's what immediately jumped out in my mind as my biggest problem with Apple retail stores. I think all in all, they're great and Apple has done a good job training their employees to be helpful, vs. trying to do a "hard sell". But it really bothers me that when the salesperson asks if they can interest me in Applecare with that new Mac, I'm hurting their performance metrics and potentially getting them in trouble when I say, "Sorry... but no. I can buy that later, on Amazon or something, for less money."

I mean, truthfully, there was no reason I had to even buy my new Mac system at their retail store in the first place. I've done it several times out of #1 convenience of the instant gratification of taking it home that evening, and #2 with the vague idea in my head that I was helping out some local residents by them getting my sale and money. But the way they've structured things, my salesperson gets no benefit, only hurt, when I buy a new machine from him or her and don't add on any "extras".


Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

aristotle
Jun 15, 2011, 10:59 AM
Here is what you do with a pushy salesman at an Apple store:
Say: "As it turns out, I already found what I needed and I would like to pay for my purchase ASAP."

They are trained to say "as it turns out" instead of "unfortunately" when if they cannot fix your problem quickly at the genius bar so just use it against them when you want them to accept payment and bugger off.
;)

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 10:59 AM
FedEx?? Why do you assume I'm American. Oh, I know...

My reality is Japan. Delivery until 9pm and if I'm not home they just take it to my nearby workplace. It's called service with a smile.

What kind of dystopia do you suffer?

We also have to put up with the good barbers closing at 5pm on weekdays and not being open on Sundays.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 11:01 AM
You're essentially arguing that if someone comes in with impossible expectations you should err on the side of a cheap computer that on paper looks to fit their claimed needs (and most importantly price point) that will probably fall apart and maybe even fail to do what they want because they misunderstood their problem.

This is the last time I'm going to explain my position. All I was saying was, a Mac computer (iMac, MacPro, Macbook/Pro/Air) can do anything a Dell can, except be cheaper. So if somebody wants a 15" Laptop, that runs Windows, and has an i7, Apple has that. But, if they want it for less than a $1000, a Mac can't do that, and if I was the employee, I would recommend looking at a PC. If they want OSX, they need to save up some more. Aside from breaking the EULA.

Edit: I guess if they were looking for a specific hardware, Apple couldn't fulfill that either. Ex. AMD processor. Macs are not the most configureable devices, but all manufactures have hardware configuration limitations.

redhanded
Jun 15, 2011, 11:02 AM
1. many items are despatched within 24 hours and you'll most likely to get it the day after. that's not really a long wait. apple has got one of the best shipping out there -- compared to dell for example, they take at least a week for a fully stocked item to arrive.

2. you can ship items to your work place (see apple store help)

3. and visiting the store yourself does not incur any risks at all? shipped stuff CANNOT get lost because they need to be signed-for on delivery.

I think you've provide one reason why people buy in-store above... little point getting stuff shipped if there is no one there to sign for delivery. Then, all you get is a little card with a number to rearrange delivery and an address where you can pick it up from, which in London anyway, is usually a god forsaken industrial estate in the middle of nowhere.

For some strange reason, delivery companies mainly deliver in the middle of the day when people are out working...

Delivery to work can be ok... but there was a strange thing that only may have been in the UK, that they would only ship iPhones to the credit card registered address which ruled out work in that case.

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 11:04 AM
All lovely but it makes absolutely no difference to the salesman, he wouldn't have cared less. He didn't stand to make a commission from the sale so whether you bought from him was neither here nor there - but if it makes you feel better, go ahead.


I was thinking about editing that post and saying "for bonus points, ask for his manager and explain why you're leaving". The OP clearly stated "I'm here to buy X, please sell one to me" and the salesman insisted on going through the whole pitch, despite the OP's repeated attempts to simply buy what he wanted, and to the point where the OP became visibly frustrated. Then in turn the salesman got haughty and arrogant ("I'm a salesman, not a clerk").

I can understand that in certain businesses they structure the sales so that it is very undesirable to "just sell me X" (think of the ads in the back of camera magazines, or car ads for the most basic trim, or any kind of custom work), where the salesperson might actually say "Well, if all you're looking is to get X, and only X, then I'm afraid it's simply not worth our while to do this sale". But this is an off-the-shelf computer. If not from the Apple Store he could have picked one out of the pile at Best Buy. That kind of attitude was unwarranted.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 11:08 AM
We also have to put up with the good barbers closing at 5pm on weekdays and not being open on Sundays.
That wouldn't bother me. I haven't got any hair: :)

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 11:09 AM
she ended up with a 17 inch beast of a laptop with year old specs

If I were trying to explain the benefits of Macs, I would not bring up the issue of selling machines with year-old specs. Really.

notjustjay
Jun 15, 2011, 11:09 AM
FedEx?? Why do you assume I'm American. Oh, I know...

My reality is Japan. Delivery until 9pm and if I'm not home they just take it to my nearby workplace. It's called service with a smile.

What kind of dystopia do you suffer?

FedEx doesn't deliver to Japan? I don't assume you're American. I'm not. I'm Canadian.

I didn't realize that in Japan they deliver in the late evening -- that's pretty convenient. Unfortunately in Canada the little paper slip always seems to arrive in the mid-afternoon. And I can't deliver personal packages to my workplace. Definitely tried, definitely was reprimanded for it.

jzuena
Jun 15, 2011, 11:11 AM
then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

If I was you, I would have not had the same patience and composure. If he had said that to me, I would have looked him straight in the eye and said "Well, salesman... you just lost a sale." and walked right out the door.

I would have said "I see... can you send one of the clerks to sell me the machine."

kingtj
Jun 15, 2011, 11:12 AM
You're talking about people working a retail job, here... If you're older, grey-haired, and experienced with technology, why would you even WANT an Apple retail position in the first place? That's like getting upset that you only see young people working the registers at Best Buy.

Sure, the job has a fair amount of respect associated with it (since people think a lot more highly of Apple than most retailers, on the whole). But the pay is going to be, basically, the higher-end of "entry level".

If you want to argue that Apple should consider paying a lot more for a few more "tech. experts" to staff their stores with, that's a whole separate issue -- and may or may not have merit. (I think it could, assuming they made smart use of that talent.) But currently, their business model is about maximizing profits and efficiency with younger, cheaper labor who like what they do/sell.


Someone needs to bring Apple to book for its ageism however. When you look at those they look at, its clear that knowledge and enthusiasm and experience count for relatively little if you are grey-haired and not young and "hip". Very sad in this day and age (I speak from personal experience).

JCanfield
Jun 15, 2011, 11:14 AM
wow...i thought this was an isolated thing that happened to me last year when i went to buy a MBAir.

I had already scouted all the versions and knew exactly the one i wanted so when i walked into the store i just said i want the Macbook Air ...with such and such. They guy then starts asking me stuff like "who is it for?", "what are they going to use it for?", "does that person currently own bla bla bla?" ...ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry and told me that he considered himself a "salesman" and if he just sells me the machine then he is nothing but a clerk.

ultimately i ended up getting the one i wanted because if was a gift a buddy had asked me to get for his dad but geez i almost turned around and just walked out of there empty handed.

My experience was just the opposite.

I walked into the store ready to buy a Mac Pro. I had researched them and was absolutely certain what I wanted. I wanted it for my photography business and thought I needed the most of of everything - the most memory, disk, best display adapter; everything that would make most sales people salivate. I was absolutely ready to buy the most expensive system on the floor (which was actually more than I needed, but I wanted it anyway) until the sales person ask me what I wanted to do rather than what I wanted to buy.

After hearing my needs, he explained that I would be better off going through the Apple's on-line store and get exactly what I needed rather than buying one of the limited-option pre-configured systems that they had in the store. He also told me that I should look in to third-party memory rather than the more expensive ones that Apple supplies.

I'd never been told "we don't have what you want" and referred elsewhere at an electronics store before. I left impressed. Yeah, it was crowded and yes, it took a bit to actually talk to anyone, but I didn't feel my time was wasted.

nylonsteel
Jun 15, 2011, 11:14 AM
The store methods and training sound good
Wondering what the retail employees pay rates are

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 11:18 AM
The store methods and training sound good
Wondering what the retail employees pay rates are

Depends on area, position, experience, and education, like any place. I believe they make more than most retail tech positions in comparison.

MrSmith
Jun 15, 2011, 11:19 AM
FedEx doesn't deliver to Japan? I don't assume you're American. I'm not. I'm Canadian.
Oops. My apologies... No, I've never used or heard of FedEx here. Even parcels from the US.

I didn't realize that in Japan they deliver in the late evening -- that's pretty convenient. Unfortunately in Canada the little paper slip always seems to arrive in the mid-afternoon. And I can't deliver personal packages to my workplace. Definitely tried, definitely was reprimanded for it.
The slip might arrive, but a phone call secures a later delivery if necessary, but the company want to deliver parcels asap so they take it to my work place without me asking.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 11:26 AM
Some people know what they want, some people believe they know what they want, some people think they know what they want, and some people have no idea.

How is a retail employee supposed to know unless there are probing questions into your needs? When I was an undergraduate, I worked at a retail store, selling computers, and you would be amazed by the number of individuals who walked in saying "do you have this, this is what I want" and later left with a different computer that better fit their needs (now and into the future) after a more personal discussion. The majority of users have no idea what they want/need.

If you're in the minority, and easily get your panties in a twist talking to a tech/salesman who is trying to fit you into the right device, then shop online or deal with it.

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 11:30 AM
If I were trying to explain the benefits of Macs, I would not bring up the issue of selling machines with year-old specs. Really.

Uh, this was a Microsoft ad where there person ended up with a year-old, 17-inch Windows laptop. As in she went to Best Buy or some other store. I may be lost here so if that wasn't a point of confusion can you explain your point to me better?

This is the last time I'm going to explain my position. All I was saying was, a Mac computer (iMac, MacPro, Macbook/Pro/Air) can do anything a Dell can, except be cheaper. So if somebody wants a 15" Laptop, that runs Windows, and has an i7, Apple has that. But, if they want it for less than a $1000, a Mac can't do that, and if I was the employee, I would recommend looking at a PC. If they want OSX, they need to save up some more. Aside from breaking the EULA.

You realize the cheaper thing is completely subjective, right? Often times the price points are extremely similar (and sometimes the mac actually is cheaper). This is an extremely old and tired point that is not nearly as cut and dry as you portray it. Maybe the reason why you need to constantly "explain" this point is because you fail to understand your explanation is wrong.

Edit: I guess if they were looking for a specific hardware, Apple couldn't fulfill that either. Ex. AMD processor. Macs are not the most configureable devices, but all manufactures have hardware configuration limitations.

And you go ahead and ignore the part of my post that addresses the build your own point. Do you really think most people know about xyz part let alone how to put all these parts together to make a computer? And if you do know all this stuff and want to make your own computer why in the world would you be in an Apple Store talking to a person about buying a computer? You know how to build a computer yet you somehow think you can do this in a retail store (Apple or otherwise). Is it because you like trolling? Because that is the only thing I'm reading here.

morespce54
Jun 15, 2011, 11:30 AM
I think it's funny (or more appropriately, interesting) that they keep spending so much time/effort/money in their retail stores these days when they try to move everybody's purchases online (Mac App Store, App store, etc.)

;)

bretm
Jun 15, 2011, 11:34 AM
Who cares if they "hate" you. Go in, buy, and leave.

You get what you expect. I know what I want and often feel I know more than the associates in my area of needs. But I often just end up talking about how cook a new product is or what I've learned about a product, etc. I think sometimes they're happy just to shoot the sheet and look busy Especially if there not making commission. None have ever pushed me to buy anything. If it's super busy they have to move on obviously, but usually there are plenty of people AR apple to help others. Unless it's ipad launch day or something.

jonnysods
Jun 15, 2011, 11:34 AM
Man Apple are intense with every aspect of their business. Pretty well thought out and cool.

MacMan86
Jun 15, 2011, 11:36 AM
I was thinking about editing that post and saying "for bonus points, ask for his manager and explain why you're leaving". The OP clearly stated "I'm here to buy X, please sell one to me" and the salesman insisted on going through the whole pitch, despite the OP's repeated attempts to simply buy what he wanted, and to the point where the OP became visibly frustrated. Then in turn the salesman got haughty and arrogant ("I'm a salesman, not a clerk").

I can understand that in certain businesses they structure the sales so that it is very undesirable to "just sell me X" (think of the ads in the back of camera magazines, or car ads for the most basic trim, or any kind of custom work), where the salesperson might actually say "Well, if all you're looking is to get X, and only X, then I'm afraid it's simply not worth our while to do this sale". But this is an off-the-shelf computer. If not from the Apple Store he could have picked one out of the pile at Best Buy. That kind of attitude was unwarranted.

Nowhere does the OP say he made repeated attempts, he just lists the questions he was asked. You're adding adjectives ('haughty', 'arrogant'), emotion and emphasis to a conversation you weren't even party to.

I'm not taking anyone's side here, I said the Specialist should have worked out the situation quicker:

A lot of customers who come in and think they know exactly what they need actually don't and can be saved a lot of money on a lower spec model. That's what you're trained to do. The Specialist in question should have understood the situation with fewer questions, that's all.

I stand by what I said, a lot of people come in with the wrong product choice in mind. You're trained that if you simply hand over the computer with no questions asked, you've done a really bad job. The fictional manager you would have called in would have said the same. A proportion of customers can be saved money, and it is your job to offer to save them that money. The questions asked are not to sell attachments ("who's it for", "what are you going to use it for"), they're clearly to make sure you're buying the right product.

I've seen what happens when the right questions aren't asked and I've read the (very negative) feedback from customers who were sold products by others without question.

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 11:36 AM
Uh, this was a Microsoft ad where there person ended up with a year-old, 17-inch Windows laptop. As in she went to Best Buy or some other store. I may be lost here so if that wasn't a point of confusion can you explain your point to me better?

I'm aware what you were talking about. My point is, Apple is also perfectly happy to sell machines at new prices with year-old (or more) processors and graphics cards. Pointing out Windows machines with old specs isn't really a selling point for a Mac. C2D for sale in 2011, anyone?

WhySoSerious
Jun 15, 2011, 11:36 AM
It has less to do with the salesman and more to do with how you say no. I assure you, no matter the salesman, my no is never interpreted "tell me more." If yours is, you need to reevaluate how you communicate.

oh my god, are you actually serious? you're saying that it's MY fault that i say "no" in the wrong way/tone?

that sounds familiar....to rape victims. "hey darlin', i know you said NO to the attacker, but, you know...you really said it in the wrong tone and it's your fault. please re-evaluate how you communicate next time you're attacked".

Aduntu.....no, means no. period. :rolleyes:

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 11:38 AM
You realize the cheaper thing is completely subjective, right? Often times the price points are extremely similar (and sometimes the mac actually is cheaper). This is an extremely old and tired point that is not nearly as cut and dry as you portray it. Maybe the reason why you need to constantly "explain" this point is because you fail to understand your explanation is wrong.

Fine, go into your local Apple store and tell them you have $400 to buy a laptop. See what they tell you. You're confused what my opinion was.

And you go ahead and ignore the part of my post that addresses the build your own point. Do you really think most people know about xyz part let alone how to put all these parts together to make a computer? And if you do know all this stuff and want to make your own computer why in the world would you be in an Apple Store talking to a person about buying a computer? You know how to build a computer yet you somehow think you can do this in a retail store (Apple or otherwise). Is it because you like trolling? Because that is the only thing I'm reading here.

You can configure a computer without even opening it. I can configure a MAC right from Apple's store. Apple doesn't supply the most options for doing this in comparison to other company's. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, just some people (the minority) might find that certain configurations are not available for them through Apple. Don't confuse configuring with building. All manufactures have configuration limitations, they choose what they feel would be the most popular options.

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 11:39 AM
Making large sums of money means you're good at making large sums of money, not that your customer service is great. Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money

Yeah, that *must* be it. :rolleyes:

They're all brainwashed. There's cheaper options out there, but they've chosen the Apple way, and they keep doing it for some mysterious, inexplicable reason. They've just got to be crazy.

It isn't because Apple's nailed the principles and practice of effective retail. No, that can't be it. It's because they're being controlled.

LOL that's ****in gold, man. Just gold.

centauratlas
Jun 15, 2011, 11:39 AM
No Unions - so employees know that if they don't do their job, they can be fired.

Incentives to actually work are a good motivating factor.

ikir
Jun 15, 2011, 11:40 AM
"sales associates are taught an unusual sales philosophy: not to sell, but rather to help customers solve problems"

It was always this way, i work in a Premium Reseller and we often sell less than we could because we want consumer spend the right money not too much for nothing. Often we suggest less powerful machine the we're asked, it depens on specific use naturally.

Only on forums and "alway crying anyway" users says the opposite. Try to go over a PC local shop and act as an clueless users they will try to sell you everything even USB banana shakers:rolleyes:

kiljoy616
Jun 15, 2011, 11:41 AM
"frequency with which staff members are able to convince customers to add on ancillary products such as AppleCare to their purchases. Staff members who fall short of the goals receive additional sales training or are diverted to other positions within the store."

The only thing I hate when I go to the store, come on Apple you do so many things well, this part makes no sense. Maybe they will change this policy. :(

kiljoy616
Jun 15, 2011, 11:43 AM
I didn't realize the scope and depth of indoctrination Apple employees go through.

You should work for Wal-Mart, heard some messed up religious type indoctrination there. Lots of successful company do some type of indoctrination for those on the sales force. Never worked in the field never want to.:mad:

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 11:44 AM
Yeah, that *must* be it. :rolleyes:

They're all brainwashed. There's cheaper options out there, but they've chosen the Apple way, and they keep doing it for some mysterious, inexplicable reason. They've just got to be crazy.

It isn't because Apple's nailed the principles and practice of effective retail. No, that can't be it. It's because they're being controlled.

LOL that's ****in gold, man. Just gold.

All you're doing is supporting my point, you know.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 11:44 AM
The only thing I hate when I go to the store, come on Apple you do so many things well, this part makes no sense. Maybe they will change this policy. :(

It's the typical "If customers do not purchase such item, then they didn't receive enough information on it".

It's an archaic kool-aid stand that still exists in most retail stores.

kiljoy616
Jun 15, 2011, 11:44 AM
Who cares if they "hate" you. Go in, buy, and leave.

The gods favor the bold.
- Ovid

The bold die you and horrible deaths. :D
- Me

ikir
Jun 15, 2011, 11:46 AM
I'm aware what you were talking about. My point is, Apple is also perfectly happy to sell machines at new prices with year-old (or more) processors and graphics cards. Pointing out Windows machines with old specs isn't really a selling point for a Mac. C2D for sale in 2011, anyone?

rarely cpu are 100% used. I'm not referring to a specific Mac, it could be last MBP model for example. You probably think they were C2D in 2011!! OMG! But with unibody, firewire, compact enclosure, led, wifi N, great OS, great software included, multitouch, SDHC, optical audio, magsafe, MiniDiplay port over fullHD res... so the fault was/is your considering a machine only for CPU and Ram.

Also most Macs at refresh use latest cpu, sometimes before PC market.

If you ask me, white MacBook are expensive and outdated, but for a normal users are incredible machines, with good specs with a fast and secure OS, better than trash notebooks you pay less and you have thousands problems. I would not buy one now, but it doesn't mean their value aren't right. IT JUST WORKS, don't care too much for specs neither if they are new or old, consumer experience is the choice.

WhySoSerious
Jun 15, 2011, 11:48 AM
Ok, so if you are an Apple salesman and sell their hardware (computers, ipads, iphones) and you are graded on your attachment rate, but do NOT work on commision.....then say your attachement rate is really low and the manager moves you to a new area to sell only headphones and cases....who cares? You weren't working on commission anyway, right? So what's the incentive to be a hardware salesman vs a headphone/case salesman vs software salesman? If no one gets commission, and you're all paid the same hourly, then I sure as hell would rather just sell headphones than deal with the issues of selling computers.

aristotle
Jun 15, 2011, 11:49 AM
Unfortunately in Canada the little paper slip always seems to arrive in the mid-afternoon. And I can't deliver personal packages to my workplace. Definitely tried, definitely was reprimanded for it.
Wow, really? I get packages delivered to work all the time and so do my colleagues. Sometimes it is something I ordered from an online store and sometimes it is something from our rewards program catalogue. We also get some free trade magazines delivered as well.

Of course, for personal packages, everyone keeps it within reason to a size than anyone can carry. When the package arrives, I get an email from reception and go pick it up.

aristobrat
Jun 15, 2011, 11:52 AM
Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money without considering other options helps a lot.
Over 50% of Mac purchases in the Apple Stores are made by current PC-owners, buying their first Mac.

Ok, so if you are an Apple salesman and sell their hardware (computers, ipads, iphones) and you are graded on your attachment rate, but do NOT work on commision.....then say your attachement rate is really low and the manager moves you to a new area to sell only headphones and cases....who cares? You weren't working on commission anyway, right? So what's the incentive to be a hardware salesman vs a headphone/case salesman vs software salesman? If no one gets commission, and you're all paid the same hourly, then I sure as hell would rather just sell headphones than deal with the issues of selling computers.
My experience from working there is that they don't move you to another area of the store, they move you off of the schedule. ie. the best/most hours go to the highest performers There was no "headphone" or "software" sales person. You're in sales (everything), or you're off the floor.

Having said that, where I worked, metrics weren't everything. We had several folks with less than stellar metrics that were "saved" by consistently being rated 9 or 10s by customers that filled out those web-based "how was your trip to the Apple Store" emails.

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 11:53 AM
Fine, go into your local Apple store and tell them you have $400 to buy a laptop. See what they tell you. You're confused what my opinion was.

This refutes my opinion that most people have insane expectations how? But I guess you're right. People really love those cheap netbooks. I mean it isn't like netbook share is tanking...oh wait...it is.

Okay, lets go ahead and play your game that price point is the most important thing about a computer and that what they're actually doing with it is irrelevant. Are you arguing that the $400 Windows laptop from Best Buy or whatnot is somehow significantly different than buying a used, $400 Mac laptop? Are you living in a world where the specs of this $400 laptop are somehow current? Please. I'd like to think you're smarter than this. Come up with some new points or at least some data to back up your claims. Your boring.

[...]MAC[...]

Pst, when you're trolling you might want to lose those tells. It subtracts from the overall experience.


I'm aware what you were talking about. My point is, Apple is also perfectly happy to sell machines at new prices with year-old (or more) processors and graphics cards. Pointing out Windows machines with old specs isn't really a selling point for a Mac. C2D for sale in 2011, anyone?

I beg to differ. Part of the argument they were using against the mac was that she wanted top of the line specs, i.e. not out of date. She then flips around and buys out of date hardware that doesn't match her ultraportable needs. In other words, how does this not support my case that most people have zero clue about what specs they actually need? Turning it around and saying Macbook Airs still use Core 2 Duos somehow makes her logic to go and get a laptop that clearly did not fit the list she was shopping for when she claimed to look at Macs doesn't work because it only further illustrates how there are two standards here.

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 11:58 AM
At the Genius bar the first 3 years at Apple I saw mostly computer users and switchers. My last 2 years at Apple I saw mostly iPod and iPhone users. The computer users couldn't get appointments so management usually would just fast track the machine. Not good service since fast track meant that the client wouldn't get the basic troubleshooting done.

Not to mention they won't know when their repair would be done of if it would cost them to get it fixed.

I think you need to go back and read the beginning of the conversation. I don't understand how these are advantages to a dell over a mac? The premise of my point was, aside from price, I personally wouldn't recommend a Dell if I was an Apple employee. I don't know what tangent you're going off on.

No, I think we all need to stay on topic. I never said you were wrong about that, I actually said you were doing fine up to that point. The point where you mentioned:

"I didn't say that, but aside from price (which is what I mentioned), why would you buy a Dell instead? I enjoy the flexibility of running two OS's."

Is were you made a small mistake. Price isn't the only thing that a Dell is good for. Take or leave the quality issues Dell's have, and personal feeling for Windows and Mac OSX. That statement is just wrong. As was the statement that no one needing Mac OSX would ever be in an Apple store.

You are 100% correct about much everything else, and I agree, that $400 isn't going to get you much of a computer, Mac or Windows PC.

MacMan86
Jun 15, 2011, 11:59 AM
Ok, so if you are an Apple salesman and sell their hardware (computers, ipads, iphones) and you are graded on your attachment rate, but do NOT work on commision.....then say your attachement rate is really low and the manager moves you to a new area to sell only headphones and cases....who cares? You weren't working on commission anyway, right? So what's the incentive to be a hardware salesman vs a headphone/case salesman vs software salesman? If no one gets commission, and you're all paid the same hourly, then I sure as hell would rather just sell headphones than deal with the issues of selling computers.

Asides from the fact that working in accessories is generally dull (a lot of your time is spent on replenishment and putting products back in their packaging because customers tend to rip everything open just to have a look...) if you want to get promoted to the Expert position (salaried, benefits etc.) you need to have good attachment rates (they're not as high as you might think).

If you have no interest in progressing (earning more money) or getting a raise (earning more money) then you are correct, there is no incentive.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 12:00 PM
This refutes my opinion that most people have insane expectations how? But I guess you're right. People really love those cheap netbooks. I mean it isn't like netbook share is tanking...oh wait...it is.

Okay, lets go ahead and play your game that price point is the most important thing about a computer and that what they're actually doing with it is irrelevant. Are you arguing that the $400 Windows laptop from Best Buy or whatnot is somehow significantly different than buying a used, $400 Mac laptop? Are you living in a world where the specs of this $400 laptop are somehow current? Please. I'd like to think you're smarter than this. Come up with some new points or at least some data to back up your claims. Your boring.

I figured you wouldn't have any substance, considering you've confused my opinion every chance you were given.


Pst, when you're trolling you might want to lose those tells. It subtracts from the overall experience.

MAC instead of Mac, I must be an 3vil PC user!

http://i51.tinypic.com/6zppis.jpg

kiljoy616
Jun 15, 2011, 12:01 PM
When you can install Windows on a Mac, there is no reason to buy a Dell other than price. The only way I would recommend a Dell, if I was an Apple employee, would be if the customer walked in with $400 in their pocket expecting to pick up a computer.

Ah lets get out the story of Dell, my favorite one of IT war stories.

Got a batch of Dell's about 200 where I use to work. Medical Lab company and we where having problems with failures. These where new Dells but they where on Lease rather than bought out rite. So we had a meeting of the minds at our department because something was up. The decision was made to open all Dells before going out, what we found was that about 1/3 of them had refurbish equipment inside of them. I like to believe that is old story for Dell but when you push sales to the lowers common denominator something has to give.

We moved away from dell a few months later and started using HP, better no but at least those had no refurbished equipment inside a new shiny box.

Mostly it was Memory and HD that where refurbished. To bad we could not go with Apple products but back then Apple was just not taken serious in the IT world. Kind of strange since I have always considered MS Windows to be a toy OS, more for Gamers.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 12:01 PM
Not to mention they won't know when their repair would be done of if it would cost them to get it fixed.

Totally. I know you know all about this stuff! Quick drop to me was one of the biggest shams and disservices to a customer ever. It basically told the customer they weren't as important as the iPhone people and we would get to it whenever we could. Most quick drops turned into NTF's which later led to angry customers which later turned into a CRU which basically means we lost money in order to appease iPhone users.

Sodner
Jun 15, 2011, 12:03 PM
My experiences both browsing and purchasing at all 3 of my local Apple stores have been, mostly positive. They do greet you every time I go in but the typical "I'm just looking" comment sends them away.

When a bought my iMac a few weeks ago I did want Apple Care so there was no need to pressure me for that but like someone else said, even though I knew and stated exactly the model and options I wanted on my iMac, the "specialist" seemed to want to go through the typical sales pitch to determine my true needs. I had to cut him off a few times before he gave in and went and got my giant white box.

My biggest problem is normally getting someone to ring me up when I'm picking up something small like ear buds, or a case. Mostly the folks in blue are busy selling or in a crowd talking to each other. :mad:

lilo777
Jun 15, 2011, 12:04 PM
Unfortu... Sorry. As it turns out, some members of this forum were indoctrinated by Apple and now are trying to do the same to others here. Remember, indoctrination of employees is not the only kind of indoctrination employed by Apple. They saturate airwaves with "think different" and "feel good" commercials to achieve the same effect on regular folks.

Aduntu
Jun 15, 2011, 12:05 PM
oh my god, are you actually serious? you're saying that it's MY fault that i say "no" in the wrong way/tone?

that sounds familiar....to rape victims. "hey darlin', i know you said NO to the attacker, but, you know...you really said it in the wrong tone and it's your fault. please re-evaluate how you communicate next time you're attacked".

Aduntu.....no, means no. period. :rolleyes:

I'm not going to pay attention to that absurd analogy.

The fact is, if you cannot convey to a salesman that you aren't interested when you say no to an offer, and they continue to offer, you're doing one of two things wrong. You're either not effectively communicating your position or you're doing yourself a disservice by allowing him to continue ignoring your responses. Your two solutions are to make yourself clear, or walk away.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 12:10 PM
Price isn't the only thing that a Dell is good for.

I agree. I might have been a little short-sighted.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 12:11 PM
Unfortu... Sorry. As it turns out, some members of this forum were indoctrinated by Apple and now are trying to do the same to others here. Remember, indoctrination of employees is not the only kind of indoctrination employed by Apple. They saturate airwaves with "think different" and "feel good" commercials to achieve the same effect on regular folks.

You're only saying that because you are a M$/Nokia employee paid to tarnish Apples name on message boards.

:eek:

Digital Skunk
Jun 15, 2011, 12:11 PM
Totally. I know you know all about this stuff! Quick drop to me was one of the biggest shams and disservices to a customer ever. It basically told the customer they weren't as important as the iPhone people and we would get to it whenever we could. Most quick drops turned into NTF's which later led to angry customers which later turned into a CRU which basically means we lost money in order to appease iPhone users.

Hmm, Memories! CRUing a computer was just about the only way to appease a business customer that was out of a laptop for two weeks because of misc. junk repairs.

I remembering telling the bar that my top case was broken (trackpad) and that it'd be nice if I could just quick drop it and get it back in a few days.

NOPE!

I saw the guy NOT listen to me and not put in the concierge system that it was a trackpad issue. 10 days later they call me up and tell me what I already knew, not that they fixed it or anything. They called to verify that is was a top case issue.

6 days later I had to call them and chew them out about a two week long repair that should've only been 10 minutes.

Sadly I knew everyone in the bar and the genius admin that I chewed out.

I agree. I might have been a little short-sighted.

Not a problem, it happens on these forums.

It's hard to keep track of EVERYTHING that EVERYONE says. Especially when 6 or 7 people want to take a stab at someone.

I usually try to keep my head down.

something3153
Jun 15, 2011, 12:12 PM
rarely cpu are 100% used. I'm not referring to a specific Mac, it could be last MBP model for example. You probably think they were C2D in 2011!! OMG! But with unibody, firewire, compact enclosure, led, wifi N, great OS, great software included, multitouch, SDHC, optical audio, magsafe, MiniDiplay port over fullHD res... so the fault was/is your considering a machine only for CPU and Ram.

Also most Macs at refresh use latest cpu, sometimes before PC market.

If you ask me, white MacBook are expensive and outdated, but for a normal users are incredible machines, with good specs with a fast and secure OS, better than trash notebooks you pay less and you have thousands problems. I would not buy one now, but it doesn't mean their value aren't right. IT JUST WORKS, don't care too much for specs neither if they are new or old, consumer experience is the choice.

Hey, I wasn't the one who brought up old hardware. Lets go through your list:

Unibody - Eh. My 8440p is built like a slab of rock, and doesn't dent.
Firewire - Less than eh. Have it, have never used it once.
Compact Enclosure: Yup, got it. Thinner bezel than a Mac laptop, actually.
LED - would be nice, not necessary.
Wifi N - Yup.
Great OS - I love Ubuntu. Check.
Great software included - See above.
Multitouch - I'll give you here I'd like a bigger trackpad. This is the one real point you have.
SDHC - got it.
Optical audio - never used once
Magsafe - Cute, but I'm not so clumsy as to have ever needed it.
MDP - Yay, so I can plug into an Apple display. Or I can buy an adapter to plug it into just about anything else. HDMI + VGA means I don't need adapters for anything I plug into.

Your list of advantages winds up looking awfully thin. Also, by the way, I have never had a problem with this laptop, which is more than I can say for many people with their Macbooks. 9400m, anyone?

Jayomat
Jun 15, 2011, 12:14 PM
Unfortu... Sorry. As it turns out, some members of this forum were indoctrinated by Apple and now are trying to do the same to others here. Remember, indoctrination of employees is not the only kind of indoctrination employed by Apple. They saturate airwaves with "think different" and "feel good" commercials to achieve the same effect on regular folks.

as does every other company in the world? who sells products with "feel bad" commercials except the healthcare/donation business? :D

WhySoSerious
Jun 15, 2011, 12:16 PM
I'm not going to pay attention to that absurd analogy.

The fact is, if you cannot convey to a salesman that you aren't interested when you say no to an offer, and they continue to offer, you're doing one of two things wrong. You're either not effectively communicating your position or you're doing yourself a disservice by allowing him to continue ignoring your responses. Your two solutions are to make yourself clear, or walk away.

no means no bro....what don't you understand?

Slurpy2k8
Jun 15, 2011, 12:17 PM
Making large sums of money means you're good at making large sums of money, not that your customer service is great. Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money without considering other options helps a lot. But wrap yourself up in that nice warm blanket of assuming Apple is the best at everything. I know you will.

Funny, out of the dozens of people I know who own macs not a single one didn't 'consider other options' before purchasing one. All of them owned a PC or previous PCs beforehand. Not a single one of these people I know are 'Apple fanatics'- they couldn't give 2 ***** about the welfare of the company itself, moreso than any other company from which they own products, yet they chose to buy an Apple product based on various factors. That makes them 'brainwashed'? Really? Does Apple engage in black magic and magically makes people from all walks of life suddenly irrational and hypnotized? Sure, why not. And somehow, they don't have buyers remorse after buying these products in a drugged/brainwashed state, and paying 'ludicrous' amounts of money for them, because these products then go on to have the highest customer satisfaction rates in the industry. Sure, Apple 'fanboys' do exist, but they make up a statistically insignificant percentage of the population. Just like fanboys of any other company.

Keep twisting your head in knots coming up with delusional and insane explanations on why people chose to purchase Apple products, instead of obvious and rational explanation. Also, 'ludicrously priced'? You're still using that ridiculous and debunked argument? Tell me, how do you determine if something is 'ludicrously' priced? Usually the market decides, and it seems most people don't agree with you, because something that is 'ludicrously priced' doesn't generate record-breaking sales. I'm sure more companies wished they had 'ludicrously priced' items they couldn't keep on shelves. Keep hating and trolling Apple on messageboards, meanwhile, they're raking in the dough and hundreds of millions of people are enjoying their products.

frjonah
Jun 15, 2011, 12:18 PM
Who cares if they "hate" you. Go in, buy, and leave.

On the other hand, we shouldn't "reward" bad customer service with a sale (or, at the very least, we should withhold repeat business) or we reinforce the faulty sales technique. It's like giving a horrible waiter/waitress a 30% tip... why should they change if things are working so well "as is"?

In this case, though, it's a conundrum in that if you have a problem with Apple's approach, there's no way to acquire their hardware without supporting them on some level... buying from a reseller, though, would reduce their margins somewhat. At the end of the logic, though, stands the sad fact that Apple is pretty much the only game in town when it comes to reliable, elegantly constructed, easy to use computers... maybe MS will change that with the new Windows (they def. improved somewhat with Win 7), but as of now, I don't consider there to be a serious alternative to Apple.

Concerning retail, I personally have had MUCH better experiences in Apple Stores than I have in reseller stores such as Be(a)st Buy, from which I will never purchase even so much as a piece of bubble gum. As cool as the atmosphere is at Apple Stores, though, I've never really been totally blown away... it's hard to get the attention of the staff, there always seems to be a line of totally relaxed people playing with the hardware I want to try out and the few times I have had an issue, they were not able to help in the least.

Solution (as others have said): shop online.

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 12:23 PM
Unfortu... Sorry. As it turns out, some members of this forum were indoctrinated by Apple and now are trying to do the same to others here. Remember, indoctrination of employees is not the only kind of indoctrination employed by Apple. They saturate airwaves with "think different" and "feel good" commercials to achieve the same effect on regular folks.

Yes, the mass-brainwashing we keep hearing about. Zombie-cosumers that can't think for themselves (aren't these usually your average Windows users??) but have a lot of money, many of whom are probably in professions and/or probably have a decent education. They probably work hard in their careers, but are also brainwashed. Right.

Apple puts out commercials like anyone else. They have slogans just like everyone else.

The difference is, they have a suite of incredibly strong products, and they have a tradition of strong products that tend to shape industry direction and society's ideas about tech. They differentiate themselves from everyone else, when no one else can really manage that level of differentiation. The fact that their success contrasts so starkly with the rest of the industry isn't due to brainwashing or any other nonsense. It's because they are *intense* in everything they do. Their attention to detail is insane. Sometimes it gets them in to trouble, but most of the time - when combined with risk-taking - results in game-changing products.

It isn't mind-control writ large. It's actually giving a damn about what you put your name to as an organization. This will obviously pay off, and it is.

jmorrison0722
Jun 15, 2011, 12:30 PM
I tell you this because I know. I've worked at an Apple Retail Store.

Employees who do not meet the attachment goals are not trained, nor are they moved to other positions in the store. In most cases, they are spoken to by management to work harder on it, then if they don't improve their hours are cut. There is an undeniable direct connection between hours and attachments, unless of course the employee was hired as a Genius or Creative, who aren't subject to attachment Quotas.

mdelvecchio
Jun 15, 2011, 12:32 PM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

er, no. it means you have social anxiety.

if they did as Best Buy does, id never be able to find anyone to help me when i need it. fail.

BMcCoy
Jun 15, 2011, 12:32 PM
Interesting that Apple seems to self-indulge in such extreme retail strategy, and yet seemingly fails at the coal face.

My short story:

I went into the London Covent Garden branch of Apple, about 6 months ago, planning to buy an iMac.
I knew roughly what I wanted, but having never owned a Mac before, I had some questions, and I wanted to be shown a few things with one, before actually buying. (And that's why I went to a store, rather than buying online.)

On entering the store, there are no signs to show me where to go, and where to find the products. I saw one iMac sitting on a table, but I still don't know if that is the only one in the store, as there was no-one available for me to ask where the iMacs are. I wandered about for a while, and went up some shiny glass stairs to the second floor, but thr second floor seemed to be groups huddled around tables, rather than general retail.. and again, no-one to ask for help.

Returned to the ground floor, and found what I think was an employee, and asked for help. Their immediate reply before I even finished the word "help" was "do you have an appointment?". I said no, and without even making eye contact, he dashed off to a nearby table where another customer was using an iPad, I think, and had the employee's full attention.

So, about 15 minutes in the store... no signs to show me where to go to look at things.. and no employees to help me. And that was just to FIND the iMacs, let alone my questions about using them, and a demonstration. So I left empty handed.

Do I actually need an appointment in an Apple shop to get service? And why aren't there signs on the ceiling, or wall.. such as "iMacs -> this way.." ?!

So I'll carry on with my Windows 7 PC.

mdelvecchio
Jun 15, 2011, 12:34 PM
ultimately i got pissed and asked the guy if there was some reason why i wasnt allowed to just buy the one i was asking for and if i needed to fill some sort of requirement in order for him to allow me to pay him for the computer? then the guy got angry

sure you did. then you turned into a pirate w/ a dagger in your mouth and ripped down a canvas sail!

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 12:37 PM
I figured you wouldn't have any substance, considering you've confused my opinion every chance you were given.



MAC instead of Mac, I must be an 3vil PC user!

Image (http://i51.tinypic.com/6zppis.jpg)

Two chances eh? I think you're mistaking me with a collection of other people. Such as claiming I'm calling you an "3vil PC user" and never addressing anything I say. Thats okay. You can be exactly what you claim I am. Not silly at all. After all, if you actually decided to have a conversation and explain your points with evidence and talk directly to points the other person makes that may or may not be intended to address everything you're saying that would make this all far too boring. You're right, best keep it interesting for yourself.

un.titled
Jun 15, 2011, 12:40 PM
Two chances eh? I think you're mistaking me with a collection of other people. Such as claiming I'm calling you an "3vil PC user" and never addressing anything I say. Thats okay. You can be exactly what you claim I am. Not silly at all. After all, if you actually decided to have a conversation and explain your points with evidence and talk directly to points the other person makes that may or may not be intended to address everything you're saying that would make this all far too boring. You're right, best keep it interesting for yourself.

Considering you're the only individual in this thread having a hard time understanding what I'm saying, I'm chalking you up as an isolate case. Good day.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 12:40 PM
Hmm, Memories! CRUing a computer was just about the only way to appease a business customer that was out of a laptop for two weeks because of misc. junk repairs.

I remembering telling the bar that my top case was broken (trackpad) and that it'd be nice if I could just quick drop it and get it back in a few days.

NOPE!

I saw the guy NOT listen to me and not put in the concierge system that it was a trackpad issue. 10 days later they call me up and tell me what I already knew, not that they fixed it or anything. They called to verify that is was a top case issue.

6 days later I had to call them and chew them out about a two week long repair that should've only been 10 minutes.


It's hard to keep track of EVERYTHING that EVERYONE says. Especially when 6 or 7 people want to take a stab at someone.

I usually try to keep my head down.

Reminds me of when we were switching out Macbook top cases and Fans like crazy. We'd quick drop them because they were coming in like crazy and just let them rot so we could CRU em.

ratzzo
Jun 15, 2011, 12:42 PM
When they say that employees should know the customer's needs, because they often don't even know them themselves... I guess they mean how they surround you like flies trying to sell you everything they can, when you already know what you came in for. Many times, it gets to the point when I feel harassed and would just like them to leave me alone to browse.

jive turkey
Jun 15, 2011, 12:42 PM
Since when is it "an unusual sales philosophy" to "not to sell, but rather to help customers solve problems"? The most successful companies have been doing that for over a century and it is a common philosophy/method in sales agent training. While it might not be the way an average business is run, I'm surprised the WSJ would write that about a company as successful as Apple.

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 12:44 PM
Considering you're the only individual in this thread having a hard time understanding what I'm saying, I'm chalking you up as an isolate case. Good day.

Sigh. This is the third time you've said this exact point. In fact, you've said this more than anything else, including where you think I'm misunderstanding you. In fact, I think you never actually addressed where that is. Maybe you're misunderstanding me. Ever think of that? :p

I made a point. My point is that most customers do not understand what computer they need. I gave some evidence of this including the Windows switcher ad, the netbook market declining after a tablets entered the market, and I also relied on metaphors like people not knowing how to build cars vs computers. If my points are tangential to your favorite argument, I'm sorry. I guess I should work harder to care more about you.

Bubba Satori
Jun 15, 2011, 12:45 PM
sure you did. then you turned into a pirate w/ a dagger in your mouth and ripped down a canvas sail!

I love this place.

Kadin
Jun 15, 2011, 12:46 PM
Have no sales quotas? Yeah right. When I was there, it was a constant push to sell as much AppleCare, MobileMe and One-to-One as you could. Every daily download was focused on these measures and we never seemed to be good enough. I understand that it's a retail business and that's always going to be a focus. But to say there are no 'quotas' is an exaggeration of the truth. There is a lot of pressure and when they (managers) saw systems going out, there was always the look and sometimes a huddle amongst them if it was going out 'naked'.

afireintonto
Jun 15, 2011, 12:48 PM
Interesting that Apple seems to self-indulge in such extreme retail strategy, and yet seemingly fails at the coal face.

My short story:

I went into the London Covent Garden branch of Apple, about 6 months ago, planning to buy an iMac.
I knew roughly what I wanted, but having never owned a Mac before, I had some questions, and I wanted to be shown a few things with one, before actually buying. (And that's why I went to a store, rather than buying online.)

On entering the store, there are no signs to show me where to go, and where to find the products. I saw one iMac sitting on a table, but I still don't know if that is the only one in the store, as there was no-one available for me to ask where the iMacs are. I wandered about for a while, and went up some shiny glass stairs to the second floor, but thr second floor seemed to be groups huddled around tables, rather than general retail.. and again, no-one to ask for help.

Returned to the ground floor, and found what I think was an employee, and asked for help. Their immediate reply before I even finished the word "help" was "do you have an appointment?". I said no, and without even making eye contact, he dashed off to a nearby table where another customer was using an iPad, I think, and had the employee's full attention.

So, about 15 minutes in the store... no signs to show me where to go to look at things.. and no employees to help me. And that was just to FIND the iMacs, let alone my questions about using them, and a demonstration. So I left empty handed.

Do I actually need an appointment in an Apple shop to get service? And why aren't there signs on the ceiling, or wall.. such as "iMacs -> this way.." ?!

So I'll carry on with my Windows 7 PC.

What a ****ing joke man.
Apple sells like 10 different computers, was it really that hard to look around for a few seconds? Jesus dude.

gnasher729
Jun 15, 2011, 12:49 PM
I didn't realize the scope and depth of indoctrination Apple employees go through.

What do you mean by "indoctrination"? Do you have a job where everyone just runs around and does whatever they like? If that is "indoctrination" then I like going to a hairdresser where the employees are indoctrinated to give people a nice haircut, take my car to a garage where the mechanics are indoctrinated to fix problems without messing anything up, go to a hotel where the employees are indoctrinated to treat customers well, and of course a computer store where employees are indoctrinated to help customers get what they need first, and selling stuff second.

grayskies
Jun 15, 2011, 12:54 PM
A couple of friends who work retail have expressed close the same thing to me.

If they don't make there goals ( whatever the measure ) they risk having hours cut.

I tell you this because I know. I've worked at an Apple Retail Store.

Employees who do not meet the attachment goals are not trained, nor are they moved to other positions in the store. In most cases, they are spoken to by management to work harder on it, then if they don't improve their hours are cut. There is an undeniable direct connection between hours and attachments, unless of course the employee was hired as a Genius or Creative, who aren't subject to attachment Quotas.

dba7dba
Jun 15, 2011, 12:56 PM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.

I just walk past them without giving them a chance to stop me...

Now I don't enjoy going to apple stores. It's always so crowded and feels claustrophobic.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 12:58 PM
Have no sales quotas? Yeah right. When I was there, it was a constant push to sell as much AppleCare, MobileMe and One-to-One as you could. Every daily download was focused on these measures and we never seemed to be good enough. I understand that it's a retail business and that's always going to be a focus. But to say there are no 'quotas' is an exaggeration of the truth. There is a lot of pressure and when they (managers) saw systems going out, there was always the look and sometimes a huddle amongst them if it was going out 'naked'.

Give this guy negatives all you want this is the truth. A few of us here worked Apple retail for years and years. I was fortunate to work at Apple Retail during the "glory days" (also know as Before the iPhone.) Things at Apple changed once the customer base and company vision changed.

Naked sales were bad. I used to be "The Closer". Hey dude go and get APP on that Naked Powerbook hurry!!!

KiraDouji
Jun 15, 2011, 12:58 PM
... My short story:...

That person at the door that everyone complains about or ignores? They could have solved all your problems if you just asked them where the imacs were or if there was a salesman (specialist) available.

:apple:

acies909
Jun 15, 2011, 01:00 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Mobile/8J2)

Im actually kinda of sad for all those that have had bad experiences in the Apple Store. You need to come to the Detroit Area, we have 4 Apple Stores and I have had the consistent service at all 4. I'm greeted with a Welcome to the Apple Store, they always say thanks for coming give me a handshake and introduce themselves to me. I love the Apple Store and the only reason I would buy online is if I was doing some crazy upgrades, but I would still buy AppleCare and One-to-One on every machine I buy

azurehi
Jun 15, 2011, 01:01 PM
Employees won't give me privacy so I can see if my favorite porn sites are available on the iPad:(

jeejeebu
Jun 15, 2011, 01:04 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Mobile/8J2)

Im actually kinda of sad for all those that have had bad experiences in the Apple Store. You need to come to the Detroit Area, we have 4 Apple Stores and I have had the consistent service at all 4. I'm greeted with a Welcome to the Apple Store, they always say thanks for coming give me a handshake and introduce themselves to me. I love the Apple Store and the only reason I would buy online is if I was doing some crazy upgrades, but I would still buy AppleCare and One-to-One on every machine I buy

Post-iPhone, my favorite Apple Store experience was at a store in Ann Arbor. A repair that a store in Miami told me would require leaving my MB overnight took them 15 minutes. They did it while I waited. (Of course, before the iPhone, every store offered service like that.)

gnasher729
Jun 15, 2011, 01:06 PM
If they aren't ever going to boot into OSX, then why are they in an Apple store?

If the MBA 11" hardware is the kind of hardware you want, or a 12 core Mac Pro, or a 27" iMac, why not? I'd just be curious if they would sell you a Mac with Windows pre-installed if you ask.

afireintonto
Jun 15, 2011, 01:08 PM
Of course, before the iPhone, every store offered service like that.

So true man. Back when I had just a regular white book, I had the all too common palm rest cracks...all the time.
And it used to be a 30 minute thing, and then once the iPhone 3G came out (I admit I bought into the iPhone then too) getting those damn cracks fixed took days.
Lol, I loved that white book, but I was at the genus bar like every three months.

MacTheSpoon
Jun 15, 2011, 01:09 PM
I like the Apple employees, usually. But the attachment thing is kind of gross.

LegacyMacUser
Jun 15, 2011, 01:13 PM
I live in So. Cal. and have done business with five Apple Stores in this area since the Glendale opening in 2001, the most recent visit 2 weeks ago at the Westfield Topanga facility. Maybe my experiences are unusual, but I have nothing but positive things to say about these establishments. Friendly, knowledgeable and extemely helpful staff and a clean, orderly display of everything right down to the 3rd-party accessories.

If these stores are over-crowded as one of the contributors complained, there's a reason for it: an Apple Store is a good place to shop. As another local retailer says, "People will do business where business is being done."

kcmac
Jun 15, 2011, 01:20 PM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.
This is absolutely not true. Good lord. That is the only way I shop at the Apple Store. Seem to like swiping my card just fine. :)

BMcCoy
Jun 15, 2011, 01:28 PM
That person at the door that everyone complains about or ignores? They could have solved all your problems if you just asked them where the imacs were or if there was a salesman (specialist) available.

:apple:

There was no-one at the door that I remember... the Covent Garden store is a bit unusual, with multiple doors, and very old architecture. I would have obviously looked like a noobie in the store, gazing around, and it's odd to heat other store experiences of over-intrusive staff.. where I found no-one!

phpmaven
Jun 15, 2011, 01:30 PM
I think if a retail store wants to be truly revolutionary, they shouldn't even track "attachment rates". Train the staff to ask if they want AppleCare, or if they want to buy ___ with their purchase, sure. But if the customer says no, leave it at that. Don't divert employees for failing to sell "enough". Let them focus on being straight talkers.

For that matter, they should take that "solve the customer's problem" to the very end and, if it really sounds like the customer really ought to go buy a Dell PC, then the associate should be free to say so. Despite the doctrine, Macs can't be 100% for everybody.

Establish a store with a reputation of honest straight talk sales staff with absolutely no pressure. Apple could pull it off, too, because of its philosophy of designing products that WOW you. Let the products sell themselves. THAT would be revolutionary.

I've never had any of the sales staff be pushy about Apple care, they mention it and when I say no thanks, that's it.

By that way, if I was managing an Apple store and one of my employees suggested a Dell PC, he would be shot on site. :D

Slurpy2k8
Jun 15, 2011, 01:32 PM
Interesting that Apple seems to self-indulge in such extreme retail strategy, and yet seemingly fails at the coal face.

My short story:

I went into the London Covent Garden branch of Apple, about 6 months ago, planning to buy an iMac.
I knew roughly what I wanted, but having never owned a Mac before, I had some questions, and I wanted to be shown a few things with one, before actually buying. (And that's why I went to a store, rather than buying online.)

On entering the store, there are no signs to show me where to go, and where to find the products. I saw one iMac sitting on a table, but I still don't know if that is the only one in the store, as there was no-one available for me to ask where the damn iMacs are. I wandered about for a while, and went up some shiny glass stairs to the second floor, but thr second floor seemed to be groups huddled around tables, rather than general retail.. and again, no-one to ask for help.

Returned to the ground floor, and found what I think was an employee, and asked for help. Their immediate reply before I even finished the word "help" was "do you have an appointment?". I said no, and without even making eye contact, he dashed off to a nearby table where another customer was using an iPad, I think, and had the employee's full attention.

So, about 15 minutes in the store... no signs to show me where to go to look at things.. and no employees to help me. And that was just to FIND the iMacs, let alone my questions about using them, and a demonstration. So I left empty handed.

Do I actually need an appointment in an Apple shop to get service? And why aren't there signs on the ceiling, or wall.. such as "iMacs -> this way.." ?!

So I'll carry on with my Windows 7 PC.

Wow. So, how big is this Apple Store that you couldn't find the damn iMacs? Like, Walmart sized? You need signs? I mean, seriously? Yeah, please carry on with your Windows 7. I'm not sure whats more pathetic, the fact that you make your hardware/software/computing decisions on a single retail experience that has absolutely nothing to do with the product itself, or that you can't find the damn iMacs in an Apple Store and request signs on the ceilings.

So far, we've had equal bitching in this thread about employees either greeting you @ the door/not leaving you alone, or the opposite, that they're too busy or nowhere to be found, and many people actual seem to be personally offended. Maybe Apple should supply them with mind-reading powers, so that they can be sure to abide by your every whim, and be sure not to talk to you when you don't want them to, and maybe cloning ability also, so they can dynamically duplicate when the store is busy?

How do some of you people deal with life on a day to day basis and actual challenging situations? Your complaints seem incredibly thin-skinned and absurdly petty/entitled. Apple employees are human beings like you and I, not some homogenous borg like presence that can be defined and generalized upon. Amazing that only on message board can I find such anally retentive people.

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 01:40 PM
If the MBA 11" hardware is the kind of hardware you want, or a 12 core Mac Pro, or a 27" iMac, why not? I'd just be curious if they would sell you a Mac with Windows pre-installed if you ask.

They don't have Windows licenses in the store, right? I think they can only sell you virtualization software but not the OS itself.

MBrod208
Jun 15, 2011, 01:54 PM
Apple stores are full of douchey people. I'll stick to the online store thanks

If I really need to see a new product I go to the store. Won't buy from them though.

My wife and I went in to buy an iPad 2. Went to one employee who asked me what I need help with. I asked if they had iPad 2's. He said they did and if I went to the iPad 2's and clicked on "I need assistance" a salesman would be right with me. Well that wasn't a big deal so we went and clicked on the button (using the iPad they now have next to every item). We waited a few minutes, playing games on the iPad's. The icon changed to say so-and-so was on his way to help us. We waited a bit longer and the icon cleared. No one showed up. We pressed it again, waited, eventually it said so-and-so was going come and help us. It cleared after a few minutes. Still no one showed up. At this point we just left.

Seems like the retail stores have lot's of good ideas but not all of them are implemented well.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 15, 2011, 01:56 PM
I live in So. Cal. and have done business with five Apple Stores in this area since the Glendale opening in 2001, the most recent visit 2 weeks ago at the Westfield Topanga facility. Maybe my experiences are unusual, but I have nothing but positive things to say about these establishments. Friendly, knowledgeable and extemely helpful staff and a clean, orderly display of everything right down to the 3rd-party accessories.

If these stores are over-crowded as one of the contributors complained, there's a reason for it: an Apple Store is a good place to shop. As another local retailer says, "People will do business where business is being done."

Those are low traffic stores. Try Manhattan Village. 30ft doing the business of a Flagship.

flipperfeet
Jun 15, 2011, 02:06 PM
Man, attachments are the reason I don't go into retail stores that much. They hate people like me who know what they want and nothing else.

I have never felt or experienced the stink eye, cold shoulder, or anything but helpfulness; and when I go into an Apple store I always know exactly what I want and generally it is a single item.

I worked in retail for nearly nine years, from entry level to store management, and can assure you that "accessorizing the sell" is SOP in the sector, but never have I felt like someone was "building a sale" while in an Apple store.

lilo777
Jun 15, 2011, 02:28 PM
Yes, the mass-brainwashing we keep hearing about. Zombie-cosumers that can't think for themselves (aren't these usually your average Windows users??) but have a lot of money, many of whom are probably in professions and/or probably have a decent education. They probably work hard in their careers, but are also brainwashed. Right.

Apple puts out commercials like anyone else. They have slogans just like everyone else.

The difference is, they have a suite of incredibly strong products, and they have a tradition of strong products that tend to shape industry direction and society's ideas about tech. They differentiate themselves from everyone else, when no one else can really manage that level of differentiation. The fact that their success contrasts so starkly with the rest of the industry isn't due to brainwashing or any other nonsense. It's because they are *intense* in everything they do. Their attention to detail is insane. Sometimes it gets them in to trouble, but most of the time - when combined with risk-taking - results in game-changing products.

It isn't mind-control writ large. It's actually giving a damn about what you put your name to as an organization. This will obviously pay off, and it is.

And that is a perfect example of indoctrination. You know all well that there is a huge difference between Apple and any other tech company when it comes to advertising yet you pretend that you do not. And the difference is not in the type of advertising but in the amount. Apple's advertising to R&D budget ration is order of magnitude higher than that of other tech companies. Take Microsoft as an example. Their R&D budget is 8 times that of Apple yet we see at least 10 times more Apple commercials on TV than the ones from Microsoft. Apple invents a little but advertises a lot.

JRoDDz
Jun 15, 2011, 02:30 PM
They should completely do away with people inside the Apple store. I'd much rather have a robot sell me a computer than an actual person. Here's an example: I walk in. Walk to the counter. Tell the robot I want xyz computer. Robot says one second I'll be right back. He comes back with xyz computer then I walk out.

thighsofsteel
Jun 15, 2011, 03:01 PM
I'm from the north east of England, I think my nearest Mac Store is in Manchester but that is still over two hours away by car.

About a year ago I was in Sydney and decided to visit the Mac Store there to buy Bioshock for the mac. I couldn't find it on the shelves and when I asked the guy working there he told me that it is not available for the Mac. I found this hard to believe because it was available on the online store and I had just downloaded a demo of the game a few days earlier! He found a copy for me in the back room and seemed genuinely shocked that it was available.

Top notch training.

pablo7
Jun 15, 2011, 03:04 PM
Sounds like working for a freakin cult. soon they'll all be wearing black turtlenecks and old ass bluejeans. :apple:

AidenShaw
Jun 15, 2011, 03:09 PM
Sounds like working for a freakin cult. soon they'll all be wearing black turtlenecks and old ass bluejeans. :apple:

Oh that's nasty (and more-or-less the truth)!

silentnite
Jun 15, 2011, 03:22 PM
It was the same way when I worked for THE GAP seems like anything that's really hot has some kind of a following, cult like type of vibe. It's just the people who over do it.

Bob Coxner
Jun 15, 2011, 03:28 PM
Ugh, I can't read the entire article because I have sign up.

Here is how to get around the WSJ paywall. It works.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-20070714-1/chrome-extension-allows-users-to-hop-wsjs-paywall/

jmorrison0722
Jun 15, 2011, 03:31 PM
It was the same way when I worked for THE GAP seems like anything that's really hot has some kind of a following, cult like type of vibe. It's just the people who over do it.

Probably because most of the middle to upper level management was recruited from THE GAP!

jmorrison0722
Jun 15, 2011, 03:32 PM
They should completely do away with people inside the Apple store. I'd much rather have a robot sell me a computer than an actual person. Here's an example: I walk in. Walk to the counter. Tell the robot I want xyz computer. Robot says one second I'll be right back. He comes back with xyz computer then I walk out.

That would never work. They would just program the robot to explain the benefits of AppleCare, One to One, etc. If attachment rates dropped, they would lengthen the amount of crap the robot would make you sit through before you could get your computer.

ArcaneDevice
Jun 15, 2011, 03:38 PM
Wow. So, how big is this Apple Store that you couldn't find the damn iMacs? Like, Walmart sized? You need signs? I mean, seriously? Yeah, please carry on with your Windows 7. I'm not sure whats more pathetic, the fact that you make your hardware/software/computing decisions on a single retail experience that has absolutely nothing to do with the product itself, or that you can't find the damn iMacs in an Apple Store and request signs on the ceilings.

And that's why Mac users get a reputation for being sanctimonious douchebags. :rolleyes:

TallGuy1970
Jun 15, 2011, 03:40 PM
I have many experiences similar to BMcCoy. The Apple store in SLC is typically so busy that if you walk in, there is no one to help you. You have to wait several minutes to even get an employee to acknowledge you are there, and the lack of a line means I may attract an employee before someone else who was there before me or it could be the other way around.

Granted, I typically go to the store during my lunch hour or right after work, but I have to say the word "chaotic" best describes my experience with Apple stores.

jmorrison0722
Jun 15, 2011, 03:43 PM
Don't get me wrong. I love Apple, I love Apple products and I love Apple employees. I just don't love Apple retail management. The employees in every store I've ever been in are friendly and love to help. The stores are great. My only 2 major complaints about Apple were:

1. They too secretive and untrusting of their employees. I know there are reasons, but unless you've worked there, you haven't seen the half of it. The worst is when they introduce a new product the day it shows up in stores and the employees know nothing about it. No training, no exposure, nothing. It's crazy how stupid it makes you feel when people come in asking about the new features of the just-released iPod and you know absolutely nothing about it!

2. Attachments / Add-ons. They preach that every computer sale should have a computer case, AppleCare, MobileMe, One on One, the "free" printer, and anything else you can think of. They show you reports at the end of your shift and point out how many computers you sold without those additional items. MobileMe sucked, and I refused to push it. I believe in AppleCare so I sold it with most every computer. One on One is great if you need it, but not everyone does.

All this being said...I still buy my products at an Apple Store. I still go there when I need support. The Apple store is still one of my favorite places to go.

lazyrighteye
Jun 15, 2011, 03:47 PM
You mean, condescending, unhelpful salespeople who ask if you've ever used a computer before? It does match the rest of the Apple experience, I'll give you that. I'm not sure exactly where this reputation for great Apple customer service in their stores comes from; the store in Boulder is terrible.

Yep. Sounds like Boulder to me. :D

All jokes aside, I'm hard pressed to suggest a better retail shopping experience than what Apple offers. And while not perfect, it does set the bar.

quik
Jun 15, 2011, 03:48 PM
A case study in success.

User Experience doesn't begin and end with the OS. It's a journey from cradle to grave, and it begins right when you walk into the Store. It's an integral part of the Apple ecosystem, and the attention to detail put into it reflects just that.

Absolutely.

We all know how it works within Apple's world, but we all love going to an Apple Store to buy products. I rather do 20km in car to get my newest Apple gear than ordering online. The experience is much better.

When I bought my iMac, I brought my GF to the Apple Store and she was surprised with the whole experience. There's ton of people learning to use Apple products, some are only looking at the products, others buying (you see all the boxes coming out of the store). It's sure a nice experience.

And this is coming from someone with a marketing degree.

Bob Coxner
Jun 15, 2011, 03:48 PM
The store methods and training sound good
Wondering what the retail employees pay rates are

From the story:

Apple store staffers are paid about $9 to $15 per hour at the sales level, and up to about $30 per hour as Geniuses, comparable to other retailers

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 03:52 PM
And that is a perfect example of indoctrination.


You're taking the whole "indoctrination" theme a little too far.



You know all well that there is a huge difference between Apple and any other tech company when it comes to advertising


That Apple's ads are actually effective? So? Good ads don't equate to indoctrination and mass brainwashing. LOL


yet you pretend that you do not.

I've been the first acknowledge that Apple puts out effective ads. I've done this at every turn.

And the difference is not in the type of advertising but in the amount. Apple's advertising to R&D budget ration is order of magnitude higher than that of other tech companies. Take Microsoft as an example.

http://www.techflash.com/seattle/2008/11/Microsoft_vs_Apple_advertising_spending_The_real_numbers_to_watch34958459.html

http://assets.bizjournals.com/cms_media/images/msftappleadspendtwo.jpg?site=techflash.com


Their R&D budget is 8 times that of Apple yet we see at least 10 times more Apple commercials on TV than the ones from Microsoft. Apple invents a little but advertises a lot.

And what do you see rolling out of Microsoft on a yearly basis compared to Apple? A whole lotta nothing. More Office retreads, another version of Windows, and a game console. And they STILL have no tablet on the market. And by the time they released their own phone it was already pointless. Then they figured Nokia might make it relevant. Of all companies. Let's not even mention the Zune. LOL

The Duke Nukem Forever of tech companies.

Where's all their R&D money going? Coffee runs? New chairs to replace the ones Ballmer throws around during quarterly reports?

Apple, with a much smaller R&D budget, churns out game-changing products on a regular basis. Talk about making the most of their dollar. And the industry and Wall Street especially have come to expect it every year. Check out the estimates. Check out the Street's expectations annually. Insane. That is just how conspicuous this sort of activity at Apple really is.

No, there's no indoctrination going on here. Only the clear light of reality. You give a damn about your products, focus on the User Experience, refine the hell out of your interfaces, and consumers will buy. Because people like to buy good stuff. Even if it costs a little more. Because they are capable of perceiving value.

Do you get it?

NAG
Jun 15, 2011, 04:04 PM
The Duke Nukem Forever of tech companies

I don't think we need to go that far (see the threatening PR debacle).

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 04:06 PM
I don't think we need to go that far (see the threatening PR debacle).

Dammit, I won't get my evaluation copy of Windows 8 now. :(

GQB
Jun 15, 2011, 04:29 PM
Most of my experiences at the local Apple Store are negative.

I don't know if it's the people they pick or the way they train them, but they are some of the most smug 'salesman' I've ever been around.

If I wanted to be told how lucky I am to have you help me, I would go to a used car dealership.

Frankly, whenever I hear people (particularly computer types) say that their experiences at any particular place are always negative or that everyone there is 'smug', I tend to look at the customer, not the store.

ArcaneDevice
Jun 15, 2011, 04:45 PM
And what do you see rolling out of Microsoft on a yearly basis compared to Apple? A whole lotta nothing. More Office retreads, another version of Windows, and a game console.

A game console?

That's a ridiculous understatement. The 360 is a massive success and massively profitable. They could easily separate the gaming division from corporate and it would exist quite comfortably on it's own given it's software and hardware output, sales, partnerships and advertising.

It's the equivalent of saying Nintendo don't do anything.

aristotle
Jun 15, 2011, 04:55 PM
A game console?

That's a ridiculous understatement. The 360 is a massive success and massively profitable. They could easily separate the gaming division from corporate and it would exist quite comfortably on it's own given it's software and hardware output, sales, partnerships and advertising.

It's the equivalent of saying Nintendo don't do anything.
Uh, the Xbox hardware group has been a money loser. Why do you think they rolled the Mac Business Unit in with the Entertainment division? To make the Entertainment division appear to be profitable. The MBU was propping them up.

satcomer
Jun 15, 2011, 05:46 PM
Uh, the Xbox hardware group has been a money loser. Why do you think they rolled the Mac Business Unit in with the Entertainment division? To make the Entertainment division appear to be profitable. The MBU was propping them up.

That is the truth!

lilo777
Jun 15, 2011, 06:26 PM
You're taking the whole "indoctrination" theme a little too far.




That Apple's ads are actually effective? So? Good ads don't equate to indoctrination and mass brainwashing. LOL


I've been the first acknowledge that Apple puts out effective ads. I've done this at every turn.

http://www.techflash.com/seattle/2008/11/Microsoft_vs_Apple_advertising_spending_The_real_numbers_to_watch34958459.html

Image (http://assets.bizjournals.com/cms_media/images/msftappleadspendtwo.jpg?site=techflash.com)



And what do you see rolling out of Microsoft on a yearly basis compared to Apple? A whole lotta nothing. More Office retreads, another version of Windows, and a game console. And they STILL have no tablet on the market. And by the time they released their own phone it was already pointless. Then they figured Nokia might make it relevant. Of all companies. Let's not even mention the Zune. LOL

The Duke Nukem Forever of tech companies.

Where's all their R&D money going? Coffee runs? New chairs to replace the ones Ballmer throws around during quarterly reports?

Apple, with a much smaller R&D budget, churns out game-changing products on a regular basis. Talk about making the most of their dollar. And the industry and Wall Street especially have come to expect it every year. Check out the estimates. Check out the Street's expectations annually. Insane. That is just how conspicuous this sort of activity at Apple really is.

No, there's no indoctrination going on here. Only the clear light of reality. You give a damn about your products, focus on the User Experience, refine the hell out of your interfaces, and consumers will buy. Because people like to buy good stuff. Even if it costs a little more. Because they are capable of perceiving value.

Do you get it?

Now let's jump from 2008 to today. In 2010 (link (http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/10/10/27/apples_2010_ad_budget_increases_by_190_million_but_still_outpaced_by_new_sales_growth.html)), Apple's advertising budget jumped to $691 million (which probably translates to about $800 for this year). It's still lower than Microsoft but getting close. Which means that advertising/R&D ratio for Apple is 6...7 times higher than Microsoft's.

And as far as "nothing" is concerned... Let's take just one year: new mobile OS (Windows Phone 7), new (some would say "rrrevolutionary") game controller (Kinect), Windows Home Server 2011 (total redesign), Windows Azure Update (BTW, this is the platform that Apple is using for iCloud), Microsoft Office 365, Windows Intune (cloud management system), Internet Explorer 9, Visual Studio LightSwitch, Silverlight 5, Dynamics CRM 2011. And I am not mentioning minor things like SQL server update or SP1 for Windows 7.

*LTD*
Jun 15, 2011, 07:33 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPad; U; CPU OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

You're taking the whole "indoctrination" theme a little too far.




That Apple's ads are actually effective? So? Good ads don't equate to indoctrination and mass brainwashing. LOL


I've been the first acknowledge that Apple puts out effective ads. I've done this at every turn.

http://www.techflash.com/seattle/2008/11/Microsoft_vs_Apple_advertising_spending_The_real_numbers_to_watch34958459.html

Image (http://assets.bizjournals.com/cms_media/images/msftappleadspendtwo.jpg?site=techflash.com)



And what do you see rolling out of Microsoft on a yearly basis compared to Apple? A whole lotta nothing. More Office retreads, another version of Windows, and a game console. And they STILL have no tablet on the market. And by the time they released their own phone it was already pointless. Then they figured Nokia might make it relevant. Of all companies. Let's not even mention the Zune. LOL

The Duke Nukem Forever of tech companies.

Where's all their R&D money going? Coffee runs? New chairs to replace the ones Ballmer throws around during quarterly reports?

Apple, with a much smaller R&D budget, churns out game-changing products on a regular basis. Talk about making the most of their dollar. And the industry and Wall Street especially have come to expect it every year. Check out the estimates. Check out the Street's expectations annually. Insane. That is just how conspicuous this sort of activity at Apple really is.

No, there's no indoctrination going on here. Only the clear light of reality. You give a damn about your products, focus on the User Experience, refine the hell out of your interfaces, and consumers will buy. Because people like to buy good stuff. Even if it costs a little more. Because they are capable of perceiving value.

Do you get it?

Now let's jump from 2008 to today. In 2010 (link (http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/10/10/27/apples_2010_ad_budget_increases_by_190_million_but_still_outpaced_by_new_sales_growth.html)), Apple's advertising budget jumped to $691 million (which probably translates to about $800 for this year). It's still lower than Microsoft but getting close. Which means that advertising/R&D ratio for Apple is 6...7 times higher than Microsoft's.

And as far as "nothing" is concerned... Let's take just one year: new mobile OS (Windows Phone 7), new (some would say "rrrevolutionary") game controller (Kinect), Windows Home Server 2011 (total redesign), Windows Azure Update (BTW, this is the platform that Apple is using for iCloud), Microsoft Office 365, Windows Intune (cloud management system), Internet Explorer 9, Visual Studio LightSwitch, Silverlight 5, Dynamics CRM 2011. And I am not mentioning minor things like SQL server update or SP1 for Windows 7.

You proved my point.

Now back to my iPad 2.

maclaptop
Jun 15, 2011, 08:04 PM
I didn't realize the scope and depth of indoctrination Apple employees go through.

That's a nice way of saying, you didn't realize how brainwashed they are. With a super control freak like Jobs, I'm surprised to learn they are free to breathe at their normal interval. :eek:

GoKyu
Jun 15, 2011, 08:06 PM
FedEx?? Why do you assume I'm American. Oh, I know...

My reality is Japan. Delivery until 9pm and if I'm not home they just take it to my nearby workplace. It's called service with a smile.

What kind of dystopia do you suffer?

I gave you a +1

The shipping schedules in the US suck compared to some other places (and I do live in the US.)

A friend of mine in Singapore had a delivery service actually *call* before they arrived, to make sure someone was home. I was amazed - I don't think any of them do that here...and if they do, you probably have to pay extra for it.

pkson
Jun 15, 2011, 09:20 PM
You probably encountered an isolated case of a sales person that needed retraining or used to work at another place.

In sales it doesn't pay to get mad at a customer.
There are certain things one cannot do.

If that was me, I would have congratulated you on your choice, thanked you in a humorous way for making my sales life easy and asked you to let me know if you needed or were interested in anything else.

The Apple store at the NY Westchester mall has (don't know if it was fixed) a foul odor problem allegedly from the air conditioning ducts.
Whoever is running that store was content with the building managements explanation, which IMO is not good enough.

If I ran that place I would have bought an air exchanger/humidifier and started to fight with building management.

In that particular store several employees look a little disheveled and unkempt for my taste.

Again, isolated cases, but noticeable when it's not the perfect Apple.

+1 for the emboldened part.

When my wife and I were looking for an AC, I looked around a couple of places and settled pretty quickly on what I wanted. The salesperson appreciated this and gave us some free stuff because we made his sale that much easier.

You sir, have a great attitude. :)

twoodcc
Jun 15, 2011, 09:48 PM
apple has really done great with their stores. i hope that continues, and they make more iconic stores

9Speed
Jun 15, 2011, 10:43 PM
A game console?

That's a ridiculous understatement. The 360 is a massive success and massively profitable. They could easily separate the gaming division from corporate and it would exist quite comfortably on it's own given it's software and hardware output, sales, partnerships and advertising.

It's the equivalent of saying Nintendo don't do anything.

Massively profitable?? Are you kidding? For the first seven years of its existence the XBox division was in the red. Even though they have been in the black since 2008, I still have no idea if they have actually made any profit. The only reason the XBox still has a presence in the video game market at all is because MS didn't mind losing billions of dollars to force its way into the market. Any other company would have written the XBox off as a complete and total failure after a couple years.

ZipZapRap
Jun 16, 2011, 12:21 AM
Any other company would have written the XBox off as a complete and total failure after a couple years.

Yet they didn't, and look where the console is today. The Xbox brand owes the games console arena.

You'd be a very very very stupid person and/or company to write off Microsoft in anything. Yeah they'll get things wrong.. even with good products (like Zune), but Microsoft have deeeeep pockets, and can afford to build the market around their products.

With the DoJ now leaving Microsoft's offices (yes, they had people working at Microsoft all these years to ensure the settlement was never breached), Microsoft, who have good products individually, can now start to UNIFY their very good product range across the board.
Windows 8, WP7, Xbox. 3 screens and a cloud (Skydrive rocks).

Microsoft have had a very hard decade, and it's a testament to them they are still so strong after being hampered for so long. Shackles are off now though...

caspersoong
Jun 16, 2011, 01:07 AM
I like the fact that Apple give training if employees are not meeting the target set. Not like those companies that just fire them.

9Speed
Jun 16, 2011, 03:57 AM
...Microsoft have deeeeep pockets, and can afford to build the market around their products.

Which was exactly my point. MS didn't enter the market by introducing revolutionary games or hardware... they simply spent and spent and spent until they forced their way in, just like they do in a lot of their markets. Sometimes it works for them, but a lot of times it doesn't.

The XBox division hasn't been financially successful in any way, shape or form for MS up to this point. For the last few years their financial quarters have been in the black, but are they even close to earning back the billions they've spent up to this point? Most other companies would have written the XBox off as a failure because it would have been the fiscally responsible, or only possible course of action, not because they lack the foresite MS has. I do not see this as a positive reflection of MS' business practices.

MS owns the games arena as long as you completely ignore Nintendo, in much the same way that MS dominates the cell phone arena as long as you completely ignore Google and Apple. Nintendo is by far more successful both in terms of console sales and profit. There is a reason for this... they release innovative hardware and continual rererereleases of well-cherished series. While hard-core gamers are polarized in their feelings towards Nintendo, most would acknowledge that Nintendo has earned the right to be the dominating video game company.

SupaAdvisa
Jun 16, 2011, 05:00 AM
The Apple store experience isnt suited to everyone. I took my teenage daughter to our local Apple Store when I bought my new MacBookPro. It just so happened that it was the day of the release of the iPad2. The OTT reaction of staff with every Ipad sold made her feel uncomfortable and she pleaded that we go somewhere else - we walked across the mall to a 3rd party retailer to buy the product from an equally well trained but far less OTT assistant.

Well done Apple you alienated the next gen of customer who are far more conservative than your genx staff!

steadysignal
Jun 16, 2011, 07:42 AM
Who cares if they "hate" you.

because a person is spending a significant amount of their money to buy a product. this task should not come with a value judgement, hate, or the generalized apathy most clerks present in today's transactions.

moderately
Jun 16, 2011, 10:07 AM
oh my god, are you actually serious? you're saying that it's MY fault that i say "no" in the wrong way/tone?

that sounds familiar....to rape victims. "hey darlin', i know you said NO to the attacker, but, you know...you really said it in the wrong tone and it's your fault. please re-evaluate how you communicate next time you're attacked".

Aduntu.....no, means no. period. :rolleyes:

This is overblown. Reread your screen name.

Mattie Num Nums
Jun 16, 2011, 10:49 AM
compared to Apple? A whole lotta nothing.

Call me when Apple has a server/enterprise solution.

thebeautyisfake
Jun 16, 2011, 10:51 AM
It's as much to discourage potential shoplifters as it is to create a welcoming atmosphere. People have done studies - if you're acknowledged when you walk in, you're less likely to try to steal.



What are they going to steal in an Apple Store, considering almost EVERYTHING is chained to the tables? If you honestly need to stand at the door to see someone hauling a Mac Pro out the store you've got more problems to think about.
If I saw employees at the door greeting people like that I wouldn't go in. When I go shopping I want to be left to myself until I ask for help.

Kadin
Jun 16, 2011, 10:54 AM
What are they going to steal in an Apple Store, considering almost EVERYTHING is chained to the tables? If you honestly need to stand at the door to see someone hauling a Mac Pro out the store you've got more problems to think about.
If I saw employees at the door greeting people like that I wouldn't go in. When I go shopping I want to be left to myself until I ask for help.

You've obviously missed the entire accessory and software walls when you've been into a store. None of that stuff is secured...

notjustjay
Jun 16, 2011, 11:28 AM
What are they going to steal in an Apple Store, considering almost EVERYTHING is chained to the tables? If you honestly need to stand at the door to see someone hauling a Mac Pro out the store you've got more problems to think about.
If I saw employees at the door greeting people like that I wouldn't go in. When I go shopping I want to be left to myself until I ask for help.

There's lots of little stuff that can be quickly pocketed (like iPod cases and software boxes), and could be hard to spot amongst the crowds in a typical Apple Store.

I've worked retail before and I too was trained to smile and greet every customer, even if it's just a "Hello" as you're walking by. I don't like it either when I'm constantly harassed with "Can I help you find something today sir?" but I have no problem being greeted with a smile and a nod.

Cubytus
Jun 16, 2011, 01:30 PM
They should work on how annoying it is to have employees blocking the entrances, and asking you if they can help you with anything all the time as soon as you put a foot in the door. It causes tension more than anything on the customer. They should just do what other stores do... If the customer needs help, let them ask for it.
In fact, most stores do have a salesperson standing near the door, especially in clothing stores, and you get around 2.25 seconds before getting asked if you want help. Choosing the right garment for my frame is stressful enough that I prefer to go when the store is full of people, or just plain leave the store.

Bubba Satori
Jun 16, 2011, 01:44 PM
Call me when Apple has a server/enterprise solution.

They do. It's called Microsoft Azure.
Apple is using in it's new data center.
Magic. :apple:

ZipZapRap
Jun 16, 2011, 08:50 PM
MS didn't enter the market by introducing revolutionary games or hardware... they simply spent and spent and spent until they forced their way in, just like they do in a lot of their markets.

yes, but.. who cares? If that's the approach they take, rather than introducing something that instantly catches on that is "magic", and it works then who cares??
At the end of the day, they earn their money. If they can afford to lose money up front (which they can) then they are obviously dedicated and committed to the cause. The original Xbox was a pariah for the games industry. Everyone wrote it off, but look at it now.
The fact that they haemorrhaged money for years is irrelevant now that they essentially own gaming in North America. They've got a unit that millions upon millions of people around the world have connected to their TVs, and the potential there is enormous.


The XBox division hasn't been financially successful in any way, shape or form for MS up to this point.

"Up to this point" is incorrect. The division turned a profit in 2008 and has steadily been increasing

then:

http://www.gamefront.com/microsofts-entertainment-devices-division-now-with-actual-profit/

now:

http://au.xbox360.gamespy.com/articles/116/1164748p1.html

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/jan/28/microsoft-profits-xbox-kinect

The percentage growth there is phenomenal.


MS owns the games arena as long as you completely ignore Nintendo, in much the same way that MS dominates the cell phone arena as long as you completely ignore Google and Apple. Nintendo is by far more successful both in terms of console sales and profit. There is a reason for this... they release innovative hardware and continual rererereleases of well-cherished series. While hard-core gamers are polarized in their feelings towards Nintendo, most would acknowledge that Nintendo has earned the right to be the dominating video game company.

Nintendo have, for the past 11 months I believe, played second fiddle to Microsoft in North American sales.
I definitely agree that they are a giant though, along with MSFT. Nintendo have the sales from day one (which by the way has plateaued after a geometric launch), and MSFT, as always being the tortoise in the race has slowly but steadily increased their sales. Kinect has been a shot of speed into that Tortoise though.

My original point stands.. ANY company (google, Apple, Nintendo, Sony) would be absolutely stupid to discount Microsoft in any market. If they're late to the party, they're late to the party. But they'll buy their way in with a heck of a lot of money (see Nokia and Skype deals).

maclaptop
Jun 16, 2011, 10:52 PM
Making large sums of money means you're good at making large sums of money, not that your customer service is great. Having a brainwashed customer base that is willing to spend ludicrous amounts of money without considering other options helps a lot. But wrap yourself up in that nice warm blanket of assuming Apple is the best at everything. I know you will.
For reasons that some people fail to comprehend, they challenge your assessment. I happen to have noticed your observations are true. It's the Apple Way, that so many are in denial about. Then when one expresses an honest opinion such as yours and mine, the Apple followers attack. Some people are never happy without chaos.

eye
Jun 16, 2011, 11:24 PM
The stores are fun. And there's a lot to do. But buying something is a hassle and the staff are laughable at times. That's just the opinion of the average Joe. But I wouldn't care about my opinion either if my job was to make money and I was doing it.