The Apple Stores have changed :(

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Chip NoVaMac, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Dear Mr. Jobs,

    This past weekend my BF and me took time out to visit the Apple Store Norfolk when we were bored and had nothing better to do.

    While we both ended up getting Macbook Air's (him a 11" and me the 13") it was a far cry of the positive experiences that I have gotten from the Apple Stores at Tyson, Fair Lakes, or Reston.

    Very high pressure to get us to sign up for the Apple Care and the One-On-One lessons. Even the "free printer offers"- which they neglected to offer us in the end.

    But after two hours of being beaten with every thing under the sun... we took a break to just think about what we needed and wanted - we walked out with the computers.

    Both of us felt like we were buying a car in the end. While we went back to the hotel room to regale in our new toy's - it was a couple days later that he mentioned that we had not "bought" our "free" printers! We were just that worn down by the staff there. And just wanted to get out of the store. :(

    Not being familiar with the area; we parked at a meter that allowed us just 8 minutes leeway for the 6PM witching hour! In the end we were blessed since we did not notice that after 6PM it became valet parking - and we should have been towed by the 6:20PM time we showed back up! <eek> Just an issue that we were facing in dealing with the staff from the Apple Store Norfolk in the end.

    The point being is that without the high pressure sales tactics - we could have been out in under an hour or hour and half, or less - not the two hours! And not leaving money on the table with the free printer offer.

    Hope that we both can still get our "free printer" after is all said and done... I doubt it since we did the 12 months interest free thing...

    I will say that after buying an iPad and an iPhone this past year in my local area - I never have felt the pressure to buy add-ons - or witnessed the same as I did or my BF did at the Apple Store Norfolk!

    The only high point is that I my iPhone was low on a charge using a GPS app and they did put it in on a charger in order for us to find our way back to our hotel.

    I do hope that despite the Barclay financing for "in-store only" that we can get our receipts redone to get the "free printers".
  2. And1ss macrumors 6502a


    Oct 20, 2009
    "My boyfriend and I" <--- just pointing that out. =)

    And I agree with you. Apple Store workers are heavily pressured to maintain their metrics on sales (mobileme,1to1, APP). So, either you had a low performing sales person or the store as a whole is not so hot on their metrics. In the end, despite Apple trying to make their stores the premier shopping experience, it is slowly ending up as a car dealer shop.

    When I worked at an Apple store, I didn't really care too much about metrics. I said the usual stuff to a customer, and whatever they wanted to buy, I got it for them. No pressure.

    And you probably can still get the printer. The store will probably do a return on your computer and then resale the same computer with the printer (the printer/computer needs to be on the same receipt). You will probably need to pay 100$ or whatever the printer's cost out of your own money and then get a rebate for 100$. And since you didn't buy APP, they might be hesitant do it, but push them for the printer.

    Have fun.
  3. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Never been good at the "I" verses "me" thing LOL

    My BF did get hit up for the Mobile Me thing... I already had two that I have not activated as of yet.... but I was "pressured" to add on to it!:(

    We both understood that we would pay an extra $100 for the printer - I worker in a photo retail store with the same sort of deals.... but we were given a use or loose it sort of deal for our for the computer and printer deal for 12 months no interest with Barclay credit.

    The thing is that my store is an Apple reseller... so I can save a few $ here and there.... and even a few bucks by buying direct.. but having it now is worth the price at times...

    As many of the sales staff we had going at times, not sure how the metrics would have worked out...

    My experience in working retail I tried hard to be sure that our respective sales people got credit for the sale...

    My BF did buy APP, I decided to buy it through my job...

    In the end we are both having fun with our new toys....
  4. Loves2spoon macrumors 65816


    Jun 3, 2010
    always be ready to walk away or ask to speak to another "specialist".

    They only make $11.50/hr, but if the store makes its quarterly earnings they get a bonus of $500-$1000. One on One and Apple Care are being pushed hard right now.
  5. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    In this instance, all of the "specialists" who had less knowledge than I did about the MBA WERE more about the add-ons.. that is why we took a 15-30 minute break from the "pressure" - and why7 may have missed on the "free printer deal".

    We had to go back and forth about wether the 4GB ram upgrade was available in Store. In the end I looked it as upon two hours of hell... MobileMe, APP, One-On-One, this upgrade or another....

    In the end the only thing that was positive that the Apple Store Norfolk forgot was getting us our free printers! They were too focused on the Apple stuff to care less by that point!
  6. Moomba macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    I agree that around here most of the employees are a bit naive at best. I haven't experienced the issue of pushiness, but rather have the opposite issue. The store is always so jam packed with people there is never anyone available. Then again there is barely standing room in the store and you would be hard pressed to get your hands on a demo unit to play with even for a moment. All I can say is there is a very good reason why I do ALL my Apple purchases online. So much easier to pick exactly what you want at home and have it arrive via FedEx a couple days later.
  7. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Our experience was the opposite in the end....

    They were busy.... but in the end they were pushy compared to my experiences here with Tyson, Fair Lakes, and Reston.

    In the end we should have walked away till we got back to the stores I knew that would treat us well. Two hours of hell in the end.

    I would say stay away from the Apple Store Norfolk and buy online instead if you live down that way :(
  8. VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    Even their phone support is like this.
    I had an issue with my macbook, and they wouldn't let me mail it in because I am located in canada. Told me I had to go to an authorized repairshop (no apple stores near me).
    So after a bad experience at the repair shop (they never fixed my macbook.. AND gave it in worse condition. Missing screws, crooked hines).
    I call up apple and let them know, they basically say my only choice is to take it to another store..
    But during this they note that my apple care expires soon suggest me buying it. I told them I was seriously considering it, but with out a trustworthy place to take advantage of it, applecare would be a pointless purchase.

    Any ways, through out the whole thing they tried to pressure me into applecare a few more times. And I felt as if they were trying to sell me something rather than help me with my issue.
  9. Merthyrboy macrumors 6502

    Jul 21, 2008
    Don't you get a questionnaire to fill in if they email your reciept to you? They'll have more chance at looking at that than on macrumors. I know the feeling though sort of where I live the geniuses aren't that nice but the normal staff are just awesome to talk to.
  10. rhinosrcool macrumors 65816


    Sep 5, 2009
    In MN, I have the same experience. So, the only way to get service, is to be pushy to the other customers and staff; it sucks. Consequently, I end up ordering online. Sometimes, I'll go to BestBuy and look at the hardware. Usually, there's way less people. Unfortunately, there's also less hardware.

    One benefit of the busy stores is that they don't have time to push add-ons.
  11. Doc750 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 11, 2010
    make sure that if they go this route that you still get the zero percent financing. I've heard barclay screwing this up when this situation occurs.
  12. QCassidy352 macrumors G4


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    I haven't experienced this, but it would be a real shame to see the overall experience head in this direction.
  13. Madmic23 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 21, 2004
    Something like this happened to my brother-in-law and his girlfriend. They were in the Apple store for hours just trying to buy a MacBook.
  14. waiwai macrumors regular

    Feb 24, 2009
    unfortunately that is the shift in the apple culture over the past years. at core training, before jumping on board, they taught us that it wasn't about the numbers. but sure enough it was ALL about numbers. they brain wash you at the beginning into "thinking" it isn't about pushing the attachments, no pressure sales, and "finding the right solution" for the customer. well that's a blatant lie, that's been gift wrapped to make it appear to be true.

    #1 selling a computer alone means nothing to the managers/leaders, and its all about getting the attachments... Applecare, One to One and MobileMe.
    E.g. If you sold 2 Macs with an attachment or more per Mac, management = very very happy. If you sold 10 Macs and only got 3 attachments total, well "someone", probably Redzone Leader, will be taking you aside and asking what is the matter with you... a verbal lashing. Thats just an example, but you get the point. Its all based on proportion. After a little while, if you consistently do not produce results as far as selling attachments, they throw you on concierge duties (working store phone, POS, host/ess duties)... That's the last resort, and no one can FAIL at those tasks... if you do then you deserve to be terminated.

    The specialist you were dealing with was merely doing what they were trained to do. ALL specialists are trained the same way, its just that the ones that don't push the attachments, like their life depended on it, are the ones that get into deep **** with management. ALL specialists are given a lot of pressure to sell those attachments, and unfortunately it is EXACTLY like the stuff the salesmen at the car dealership put up with.

    I wouldn't dare say anything if I still worked there, Apple spies on this forum... Tales from an ex-Apple Store Worker.... Real Talk.
  15. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    I bought a Mac mini recently to upgrade my wife's old computer. I bought it in the Apple store and while the salesperson did mention AppleCare and OneOnOne, it wasn't intrusive or overdone. I politely declined and that was it; no hassle, no pressure. A lot probably depends on the individual store and salesperson.
  16. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    Just so you know it's not always like that, I've had very good experiences at my Apple Store (Altamonte, FL). Of course, now, I have no worries because my brother just started working there last week, but every time I went in before that I was treated very well, no pressure to add on or anything. It's mostly down to the manager and who they hire, I think. Managers that push the numbers are the ones who feel they have something to prove. When they manager doesn't feel like they have to protect their job because they know the store is doing well no matter what, then they encourage a more friendly atmosphere, and I'd guess they still end up selling just as many AppleCare's and "free" printers as the other stores, because people feel more welcomed.


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