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Dec 29, 2009

A flightless Dove ?

Coles Waterloo.  New packaging for the (new ?) Dove shampoo range.  It looks elegant, but I am not sure it stands out  enough in the visually cluttered supermarket environment.   The 'concave' curve seems to make it recessive.

Peace amidst Holiday Retail Madness

Tree of Life, Broadway.  Serene concept for this store surrounded by retailers discounting like mad.  Do they know something ?  :)

De Sale

Dick Smith, Broadway.  Well executed sale campaign on TV, and in-store with clever use of the new brand identity device (stylised 'd').    However, I am not sure their offers were strong enough. (which is perhaps true of their competitors as well).


Stylish Sale

L'Occitane, Broadway.  Another stylish sale concept that differentiates and reinforces the brand values.

Pink dots

Priceline, Broadway.  Great sale concept after Christmas, differentiates them from the competition's sales, reinforces their brand identity.

Dec 27, 2009

Dec 23, 2009

The Christmas Chocolate Merchandising war

Woolworths, Burwood.  Is it just me but has Ferrero Rocher beaten Lindt at the chocolate merchandising game this Christmas ?  Lindt had previously dramatically upped the stakes in seasonal merchandising, but this FR tree icon (and associated displays) has appeared in all sorts of places.  Well done to them - would have cost a few dollars though.

Puritans ?

QVB.  Well, I finally found a health supplements and food shop that has some Christmas or holiday decorations - kudos to this one, not a bad effort.  But why are the others so reluctant ?  Is Christmas automatically unhealthy for some ?

No Holiday spirit here

Black Pepper, East Gardens.  Not a single sign of holiday festivity anywhere at this store.  No shoppers there either.  Go figure.

One of the Most Innovative

Novo shoes, East Gardens.  One of the most innovative Christmas displays around - this one for the eco-friendly Ipanema brand.  

christmas shopping

Market st

The Tidy Shoe Sale

Zu, Pitt st Westfield.  I thought this store had very clear price pointing signage - a great aid to busy shoppers.

Great Vision from Optometrist

TGV Centre.  It's not often that you see an optometrist with great vision for their merchandising and window display.  This had cut-through in a busy mall. 

Retro price offer

City Beach, Burwood.  Impressive retro style window.

Aggressive Pricing

Miller's Fashion Club.  Very pointed price points.

Dec 22, 2009

The New Price Standard

PaperScissors, Burwood.   Ferocious discounting starting to appear in the run up to Christmas.  Not a lot of places to go after this ... perhaps 50% off all stock, which I saw at another retailer today ??

Cute little pumpkins

Pumpkin Patch, Burwood.  You can almost see the white picket fences, garden swingset....  evocative.

Asking for the Business

EzyDVD, Burwood.  Crude but effective.  At least they appeared to want the business.  Inside the range was excellent, prices were good, layout was average, service was just ok.  Good on them for trying though.  I bought 3 DVDs for $20.

Break A Nail ?

Sportsgirl, Burwood.  Pushing the envelope with this device, but getting the attention of their target market.

Dec 21, 2009

'Tis the season to be generous

Crabtree and Evelyn, Chatswood Chase.  Their windows are always of a high standard and this one does not disappoint.

Stately faux art deco

Chatswood Chase.  

Impressive Banners en Provence

L'Occitane, Chatswood Chase mall.  Impressive stylish banners in the mall.

Edgy Brand Attitude

Ed Hardy, Chatswood Westfield.  Edgy attitude from this brand looks cool - but note: without gratuitous sexual stereotypes (see prev. post).

Natural Tinsel ???

The Body Shop, Chatswood Westfield.  Full marks to these team members for getting into the Christmas spirit, but do tinsel and The Body Shop (natural products) mix ?

Quite an Entrance

JB Hi Fi, Chatswood Westfield.  Great image from Nikon, strategically located at the entrance.

Cool Down Sale

Mountain Designs, Chatswood Westfield.  Cool down with this up to 60% sale on outdoor gear - a striking image for summer.

Diva In Fine Song

Diva, Chatswood Westfield.  Busy store, this business is likely to do well  this Christmas with low-priced merchandise.

Howard's Perceptual Challenge

Howard's Storage World, Miranda. Just because a store is neatly arranged, as you would expect from a storage store, doesn't mean that it makes sense from a shopper's perceptual perspective.  I find this store difficult to navigate, and suspect some of the problem lies with a lack of definition (including backing) between departments, and average wayfinding signage.  When a retailer has many products to sell there is a natural clutter which needs to be managed from a perceptual point of view.  Book stores suffer a similar challenge.  Lots of lines, lots of colour and shapes require some defining elements.  What do YOU think ?

Have a Ball This Christmas

Great advertising from Ferrero Rocher, Surry Hills.

Katies goes early

Katies, Warringah.  One of the first into sale mode, with an aggressive offer [elsewhere in the group, Millers has had 30% off for some time].

The Outdoors on Sale

Kathmandu, Warringah.  An aggressive sale offer.   I like their choice of colours which are both seasonal and feel outdoor too.  The curved posters add additional perceptual depth, but are notoriously tricky to erect.

An Unhealthy Un-Christmas ?

Healthy Life, Warringah.  Clearly this health food shop does not celebrate Christmas - I would have thought it a golden opportunity to position the 'healthy' Christmas......  or maybe there is no such thing ?

The Sales are Here

Witchery, Warringah.  For those who didn't make it to  the malls this weekend, many retailers are already in [Boxing Day] sale mode.

A strong clear offer

Betts Kids, Warringah.  Strong clear offer, well presented - 50% off second item.  Good lighting too.

Dec 20, 2009

Hand it to Optus

Optus advertising on escalator, Penrith Plaza.  An increasingly popular advertising medium, quite effective.  (Thanks to Amanda, @RealizaBeautyEd for the pic :) )

Busy on a Budget

Go-Lo, Norton Plaza Leichardt. A busy discount variety store, but with only  one checkout open.

Dec 18, 2009

Cute Attractions

AeroPlus Designs, Chatswood Chase.  Affordable cute stocking fillers.

Priceline's blocking strategy ?

Priceline, Warringah.  I believe Priceline play a useful role in retail, with their range of products and pricing.  But I do have to wonder if they sometimes don't inadvertently put shoppers off with how they clutter their shopfronts - especially at this time of the year.

Magical candles and decor

dusk, Miranda.  A magical storefront.  I like the simplicity of the stars hanging from the ceiling.

Dec 17, 2009

A Study in Neighbours

Oxfamshop, Smiggle, Warringah Mall. An interesting study in the contrasts of these two up and coming retailers.  

They both use simple, striking primary colours for their frontage.  I think Smiggle is more adept at using lighting to effect, including the backlighting (and uplighting) in the window.  They have contrasting approaches to the entrance - single and (mostly) always righthand side for Oxfam, while Smiggle usually creates two entrances by putting the window in the middle. Personally I think this helps the flow in their typically small stores.  It also makes the Smiggle window work that much harder, including as it does an active plasma screen.

Captain Avenger does tinsel

YouSave Pharmacy, Warringah.  Incredibly tacky.  Goodness knows what a homped is, but would you buy one from this man ?

Not a Good Sign

Portmans, Warringah.  A stunning, impactful graphic from Portmans which is offset by the obvious neglect of their signage.  Literally and figuratively, not a good sign.

Boring and off the Pace

Suzanne Grae, Warringah. When your competitors are offering 30%+ off, you'd better not be boring.  Unfortunately, this business looks off the pace on both counts.

For those who need reminding

L'Occitane, Warringah Mall.  Good basic retailing practice - giving shoppers a sense of urgency.  By the way it's now 8 days....  and for those who still need a gift, have a look at Open Wallets - instant delivery :)

Do You Have the Urge ?

Surry Hills.  Spot-on targeted advertising from Glue.  Probably dating myself, but I had some of those 20 years ago - can't believe they are coming back ... :()

Never a Silent Night

Ben Sherman, Chatswood Chase.  Clear expression of the brand attitude - very funky.

Dotti turns 100

Dotti,  Broadway.  Story via SMH:   Fashion brand Dotti opened its 100th store on Thursday at Watergardens Town Centre, a shopping mall in Melbourne's western suburb of Taylors Lakes.  Dotti had only 10 stores when it was acquired by Just Group in 2004.

In my view, their attention to the detail of merchandising, both in the window and in the important front of store area, together with having a clear focus on what their shoppers want, have all been contributors to their success.  

Well done to them - this is quite an achievement in a tough market.

Dec 16, 2009

THE TROLL IN THE CAVE AT MYER BONDI - Guest Post by Damana Madden

Note from The Shoppologist:

Following on from Monday's  guest posting on a poor customer service experience at Myer, I received the following account of a shopper's experience also at Myer Bondi Junction.  Now, I don't intend for The Shoppologist to simply become a place where frustrated shoppers are able to vent themselves, but I will publish guest posts where I think these would add some understanding to how retailers can better serve shoppers.


From: Damana Madden

unaware of underwear

It was this time last year that I ventured off in search of some comfy Bonds cotton underwear to see me through the summer. Experience told me that Bondi  Junction is the keeper of all things purchasable so I headed there, with  David Jones and Myer in mind. It just happened that I parked near Myer. It's quite possible there were a few parking spots available near there because everyone knew better than me. They knew not to shop at THAT place.

Bondi Junction is a modern shopping mall with lots of light, natural and otherwise. Myer is the dark cave inside that brightly lit world. When you enter a cave, remember that there may be trolls and other scary types waiting for you to wander in.

After finding the Bonds section and collecting an armful of items, I joined the line at the closest cashier. There were four couples and a single in front of me, and what I calculated to be a minimum five minute wait, with the one person serving on that Saturday morning. The person at the head of queue asked for something in another size or colour and the Myer staff member had to go to the back of the store to find it. That happens. I have caused the same delay for others before. It would have been nice to have at least one more staff member on to give backup service. Patiently, the line waited.

It took 20 minutes before I gave up on that unmoving queue and headed for the designer clothes section - the nearest open register next to underwear. The woman serving seemed almost offended as I plonked down my pile of affordable cotton undies on her counter. She even picked them up to scan them as if I'd tried them on previously, on a hot and humid summer's day. Being judged by a shop assistant doesn't bother me though and I was left mostly amused by her disgust.

Then I saw something scan at a much higher price than it showed on the shelf. I asked her to correct the price to match the discount indicated on the shelf. She replied with a simple "no". I enquired as to why. She said she needed a code for that section and she "did not work in THAT area". 

We stared at each other.

Ok, I asked if she could call and find out the code or ask someone for help. She then recommended I return to the underwear section or pay full price. In the cheeriest voice I had, I explained about the stagnant line at that cashier and that was why she was seeing me there at her register.

That is when she said she didn't really care and thought I should take my underwear to THAT section for service or pay full price. Yes, repetitive.

At that point, it was easy to see that she was serious and that there was no chance of me getting any help with the discount from her. The idea of going back to THAT line in THAT section was too daunting and staying to argue seemed pointless.

After a loud sigh and humph, I left my pile of underwear on the counter in Myer's designer clothes counter with the troll and stomped out of the cave.

I have not shopped there since then and promise to never do so again.

The Pain is in the Pink(ie)

Goldmark jewellers, Warringah Mall.  More evidence of retail pain.

Simple Lacoste

Lacoste, Chatswood Chase.  Simple, elegant seasonally-appropriate Christmas window.