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Old 22-03-2013, 06:51   #16
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Re: Skype and vendors.

I think some of you are missing the point. I know there are lots of ways a business can communicate with customers. The problem is too many businesses seem to think that what is cheapest and most convenient for THEM is the most important thing. The customer? Screw 'em! Who cares about the customer? They're just going to have to figure it out for themselves.

It's not a question of how I COULD contact the vendor. It's a question of how I WANT to. What I care about is what is cheapest and most convenient for ME! Think that sounds selfish? Well, I'm the one with the cash and the choice of who to do business with, and I'll choose the vendor who cares more about what is convenient for ME than what is convenient for THEM.

That's just the most basic element of customer service--think about what the customer wants, not what you want.
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Old 22-03-2013, 07:51   #17
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Re: Skype and vendors.

d0n-
No doubt you believe that "the customer is always right". That's a good way to go out of business, if you take it literally. The customer is only right when and if that makes a profit for the business. Maybe you're Etruscan and you expect the business to keep an Etruscan translator on call 24x7 to answer the phone and stand watch on the Skype computer so you can Skype in at your convenience from any time zone.
AH, don't think so. There's no profit in that, your business is not worth having if you make it so burdensome to the vendor. Those four Etruscan translators (three shifts plus one relief) are gonna cost the shop maybe $125,000 a year, and that's got to come out of your pocket as part of their profits. Unless you're spending a million a year with that vendor, who's gonna pay those salaries?

Once upon a time, I sold high priced retail items that had about a 15% gross markup for the business. And every once in a while, someone would walk in and say they wanted to buy one at 40% off, because they KNEW we had that much markup, just like TVs and cameras and car stereos had at that time.
You know what the house policy was? Don't waste our time, we don't make that much money, when you're ready to pay a realistic price we'll be glad to give you a good one but if you think that's going to be 40% off, goodbye, there's the front door.
When the customer is under the delusion that they can do you a favor by demanding something that is physically impossible, they need to go to a CHARITY not a BUSINESS.
A business exists to make a profit. You can negotiate how much that profit is, sometimes, but you can't expect them to take a significant loss just because you want something they don't offer and couldn't make a profit on.
Skype? Sure, a catalogue house could put it on the computers their operators already man. But a retail operation? Has no operators sitting at consoles, has no way to conveniently add them, isn't going to change the paradigm and give all the sales reps cell phones with Skype to compete against customers on the floor. It is just too easy for you to pick up the phone--instead of demanding they change their entire way of doing business.
You won't pick up the phone? That already makes you a problem customer, and most every business tries not to serve them. Even refuses to serve them. And usually for good reason, because problem customers cost them money.

I don't say a business should be inflexible or unresponsive or afraid to try new things, but Skype? There's just no business case to be made for it.
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Old 22-03-2013, 08:02   #18
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Re: Skype and vendors.

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I don't say a business should be inflexible or unresponsive or afraid to try new things, but Skype? There's just no business case to be made for it.
^^This^^ If there was money to be made by using Skype a business would do it. It's why you still find fax machines at most businesses--a lot of companies still communicate that way, if you can believe it. In fact, it is surprising how many supposed hi-tech companies place their orders via fax. I've been in retail a lot, recently managed some retail operations, and we vastly preferred to be contacted via email. There is an accurate record of what went on, the message can be answered when someone is available (they often have other duties), it works 24/7, and it is nearly free (other than staff time).
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Old 22-03-2013, 08:06   #19
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Skype out is great if good Internet. Works poorly with bad Internet. Lots of dropped calls, poor voice, etc. I am in the Windwards. SIM card for phone has best coverage, but Skype out is bad.
I like the idea of Skype, but cheap in country cell phones and crummy broadband keep it from being a panacea for me.
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Old 22-03-2013, 12:05   #20
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Re: Skype and vendors.

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
No doubt you believe that "the customer is always right".
You are absolutely wrong. I don't believe that at all. But, once again, you have missed the point.
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