Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Living in Switzerland > Complaints corner  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 14.04.2012, 11:44
TrainDoctor's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reinach (BL)
Posts: 217
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 571 Times in 142 Posts
TrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond repute
Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

I recently tried to find whether or not White chocolate ice cream was available from 4 different supermarket chains and department stores, and with the honourable exception of COOP, none of the these Swiss company websites visited listed what they stocked (and we won't even talk about trying to compare prices).

The same lack of information (no information about what equipment is stocked or prices) was seen when I tried to find out whether or not MediaMarkt or InterDiscount carried a certain type of headphone.

Apart from the current "special offers" displayed these websites are uninformative and essentially useless. And this story seems to repeat itself across the entire business spectrum from model railways to professional cooks equipment...

So, why do they bother?

Surely the entire point of a company website is to inform consumers about a company's range of stock, prices and services offered. Going to a website for, say, sporting equipment and then finding that the only thing on that website is address, contact details, opening times and the statement "we carry a range of sporting equipment" is MOST frustrating.

So what's the problem, are they scared of creating competition? Are they still in the typewriter age mindset? Do they want to keep their (potential) customers in the dark? Or is it they just can't be ar**d?

Can someone enlighten me?
Reply With Quote
The following 6 users would like to thank TrainDoctor for this useful post:
  #2  
Old 14.04.2012, 12:40
Mark75's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: by the lake (either one)
Posts: 2,510
Groaned at 45 Times in 39 Posts
Thanked 3,136 Times in 1,363 Posts
Mark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

While I generally agree with you, I'd like to point out that the Interdiscount website has an availability check function which I found quite useful on several occasions.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Mark75 for this useful post:
  #3  
Old 14.04.2012, 12:47
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 21,376
Groaned at 461 Times in 352 Posts
Thanked 23,091 Times in 11,824 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Migros & Coop have home delivery , full price & ordering on line, really do not understand what the OP's problem is.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank fatmanfilms for this useful post:
  #4  
Old 14.04.2012, 15:28
TrainDoctor's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reinach (BL)
Posts: 217
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 571 Times in 142 Posts
TrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
While I generally agree with you, I'd like to point out that the Interdiscount website has an availability check function which I found quite useful on several occasions.
Thanks for that tip, Mark75, I obviously didn't find when I tried to interrogate the InterDiscount website. I'll try it next time.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 14.04.2012, 15:38
TrainDoctor's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reinach (BL)
Posts: 217
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 571 Times in 142 Posts
TrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
Migros & Coop have home delivery , full price & ordering on line, really do not understand what the OP's problem is.
I obviously wasn't clear enough in my OP. Whilst home delivery is a useful service, it only represents a subset of what these retailers stock. And with the websites as laid out, it's very hard to find exactly what they stock and where they stock it (to be fair COOP is better than Migros in this respect).

Perhaps Migros and COOP aren't the worst offenders, although they could learn from Sainsbury's, Tesco's or M&S. The worst sites, I've found to date, are the specialised hobby and equipment sites, no prices, no info on stock carried, no help at all...

I really wonder how such companies can ignore a fundamental law of business: always make it easy for the customer to give you money
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank TrainDoctor for this useful post:
  #6  
Old 14.04.2012, 19:33
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: na
Posts: 11,248
Groaned at 37 Times in 33 Posts
Thanked 26,732 Times in 8,253 Posts
meloncollie has a reputation beyond reputemeloncollie has a reputation beyond reputemeloncollie has a reputation beyond reputemeloncollie has a reputation beyond reputemeloncollie has a reputation beyond reputemeloncollie has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

I feel your pain, TrainDoctor!

Since I am allergic to shopping I buy everything possible online - but I rarely buy online from a Swiss retailer, largely due to what seems a consistent lack of product information. A website needs to give enough information about a product to convince you to buy it! My favorite pet store, Meiko, is a case in point:

This is a fantastic retailer, excellent customer service when you stop by or phone them with questions. They will go the extra mile to make sure that the product fits your needs, try as hard as they can to source some non-standard items. Excellent delivery service - free when you purchase a certain amount. Really great folks.

But an awful website. No sizing information on gear, no instructions, nutrition information on the food products is missing... and sometimes there isn't even a picture, just the name of an item and the price. If I were a new customer unfamiliar with the items they carry I would just click on by.

I once asked about the lack of product information, and the person I spoke with was surprised at my question. I guess they rely on the in-store experience to create customer loyalty, and see the website as a convenience for current customers. But they are missing a marketing opportunity - especially as they serve a niche other pet stores don't.

---

As it is, most of my on-line shopping is done in the US or UK. Even with paying shipping and taxes I still come out ahead.

---

To be fair, though, I just had a great experience with the Bosch website. The handle on my drier broke. Spoke to the retailer where I bought the machine, it would be a 2-4 week wait for a new part.

Went to the Bosch website. They ask for the e-number of your machine, which handily is printed on the machine label. Plug that in, up pops a Skizze of your machine, showing every single part. Click on the thing that looks like what you want, up pops a description and a price. Confirm the order, done and dusted.

Part arrived in 2 days, cost all of CHF 16.

Which was far better than a 4 week wait and a ca 200 bill from the repairman.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 14.04.2012, 20:02
Caviarchips's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Basel Stadt
Posts: 3,979
Groaned at 99 Times in 77 Posts
Thanked 6,677 Times in 2,388 Posts
Caviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
I obviously wasn't clear enough in my OP. Whilst home delivery is a useful service, it only represents a subset of what these retailers stock.

Perhaps Migros and COOP aren't the worst offenders, although they could learn from Sainsbury's, Tesco's or M&S.
To help me share your pain, can you post a link showing where any of the three companies you cite show the stock carried in their stores.....not the online store, but the physical ones?

Coz I can't find them
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 14.04.2012, 20:04
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Lausanne
Posts: 794
Groaned at 118 Times in 36 Posts
Thanked 765 Times in 375 Posts
Noth has an excellent reputationNoth has an excellent reputationNoth has an excellent reputationNoth has an excellent reputation
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Sounds like you're counting too much on brick & mortar shops. Maybe try the Swiss e-retailers who do try very hard. Start at http://www.toppreise.ch and work from there, it's *much* better for hard to find parts, unusual or even nearly standard accessories, etc. Brick & mortar shops just want you to go there, that's why the sites are so bad.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 14.04.2012, 22:56
Wollishofener's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Glattbrugg
Posts: 18,978
Groaned at 332 Times in 257 Posts
Thanked 11,715 Times in 6,858 Posts
Wollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
I recently tried to find whether or not White chocolate ice cream was available from 4 different supermarket chains and department stores, and with the honourable exception of COOP, none of the these Swiss company websites visited listed what they stocked (and we won't even talk about trying to compare prices).

The same lack of information (no information about what equipment is stocked or prices) was seen when I tried to find out whether or not MediaMarkt or InterDiscount carried a certain type of headphone.

Apart from the current "special offers" displayed these websites are uninformative and essentially useless. And this story seems to repeat itself across the entire business spectrum from model railways to professional cooks equipment...

So, why do they bother?

Surely the entire point of a company website is to inform consumers about a company's range of stock, prices and services offered. Going to a website for, say, sporting equipment and then finding that the only thing on that website is address, contact details, opening times and the statement "we carry a range of sporting equipment" is MOST frustrating.

So what's the problem, are they scared of creating competition? Are they still in the typewriter age mindset? Do they want to keep their (potential) customers in the dark? Or is it they just can't be ar**d?

Can someone enlighten me?
The idea of a WEBsite of a shop is to attract people to go to the shop, and NOT to DISadvantage those who go to the shop. There of course are WEBsites like LESHOP and COOPATHOME, but shops usually try to encourage you to visit the shop and do shopping, with practically all shops being self-service. Only pharmacies are the old way, with the merchandise being behind the sales-people and the customers having to enquire about
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 14.04.2012, 23:03
Wollishofener's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Glattbrugg
Posts: 18,978
Groaned at 332 Times in 257 Posts
Thanked 11,715 Times in 6,858 Posts
Wollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
The worst sites, I've found to date, are the specialised hobby and equipment sites, no prices, no info on stock carried, no help at all...

I really wonder how such companies can ignore a fundamental law of business: always make it easy for the customer to give you money
A specialized hobby and equipment shop lives of the shoppers coming round personally. And so will not try to keep a WEBsite replacing the shop. If you look at all those specialized hobby and equipment internet WEBsites selling "online" you within a short time will see to what extent those WEBsites are outdated always. That stuff listed was sold ages ago.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 14.04.2012, 23:09
Wollishofener's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Glattbrugg
Posts: 18,978
Groaned at 332 Times in 257 Posts
Thanked 11,715 Times in 6,858 Posts
Wollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond reputeWollishofener has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
I feel your pain, TrainDoctor!

Since I am allergic to shopping I buy everything possible online -.
So that you do not like shopping ! I in fact love to go shopping, even when/if in the end buying nothing or only something minimal.

I even love the real open markets where you have the real stuff in your hands, Unlike the "Online-Shops" and the "Tanta Emma Läden" where you "order" something and then, after having purchased it, will see ....
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 14.04.2012, 23:30
TrainDoctor's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reinach (BL)
Posts: 217
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 571 Times in 142 Posts
TrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
The idea of a WEBsite of a shop is to attract people to go to the shop...
But that's my whole point, if I don't know what a shop stocks or what the prices are, why should I trek down to wherever the shop may be just on the off chance the shop may have what I want in stock?

I agree that there are many specialist shops where the Internet listing of what they stock is considerably behind the times vis-a-vis what is actually in the shop (although know of at least one UK based shop and Internet trader that manages to link web site to actual inventory).

Whilst I refer to Sainsbury's, Tesco's and M&S, I recognise they are far from perfect, but at least they give a good indication of which store carries which product lines.

I actually like shopping, but I'll be d****ed if I'll make a detour to a certain shop just in the hope they may have what I'm looking for.

As said before, they don't make it easy for me to give them my money
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank TrainDoctor for this useful post:
  #13  
Old 14.04.2012, 23:51
Sbrinz's Avatar
RIP
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Murten - Morat
Posts: 11,866
Groaned at 563 Times in 354 Posts
Thanked 11,548 Times in 5,941 Posts
Sbrinz has a reputation beyond reputeSbrinz has a reputation beyond reputeSbrinz has a reputation beyond reputeSbrinz has a reputation beyond reputeSbrinz has a reputation beyond reputeSbrinz has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

I can think of a few reasons: but maybe these ideas are not correct?

Maybe Migros REALLY doesn't like Internet and all the extra work, and so they offer minimal information, and teasing you to visit them and find out.

Switzerland is by nature a secretive place, and they feel uncomfortable publishing their prices for all the world to see.

They are fearsome of publishing what they sell, because they fear the online shops will find ways to appear even more competative.

Have you noticed how housewives use Swiss supermarkets as social clubs? If they published everything on Internet, the housewives would not be curious, and they would stay away.

.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Sbrinz for this useful post:
  #14  
Old 15.04.2012, 00:03
Caviarchips's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Basel Stadt
Posts: 3,979
Groaned at 99 Times in 77 Posts
Thanked 6,677 Times in 2,388 Posts
Caviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post

Whilst I refer to Sainsbury's, Tesco's and M&S, I recognise they are far from perfect, but at least they give a good indication of which store carries which product lines.
Once again.....post a link showing that service please, showing what stock is kept in a particular store?
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 15.04.2012, 00:05
nickatbasel's Avatar
Mod, Chips and Mushy Peas
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Albisrieden
Posts: 5,311
Groaned at 160 Times in 98 Posts
Thanked 8,348 Times in 3,092 Posts
nickatbasel has a reputation beyond reputenickatbasel has a reputation beyond reputenickatbasel has a reputation beyond reputenickatbasel has a reputation beyond reputenickatbasel has a reputation beyond reputenickatbasel has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Actually if I am looking for a particular item, I am more likely to visit the shop that publishes their stock list on their website and they have the item I want. While at said shop, there is a big chance I will buy other things.

Having a website that displays a current list of product lines carried and availability at any particular branch is really not a big deal in terms of technology. This is the 21st century.

Some shops in Switzerland do it quite well - Bau and Hobby for example. Interdiscount are getting better.

Cheers,
Nick

Quote:
View Post
They are fearsome of publishing what they sell, because they fear the online shops will find ways to appear even more competative.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 15.04.2012, 00:13
red_conundrum's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Bqoiutniw
Posts: 371
Groaned at 84 Times in 42 Posts
Thanked 574 Times in 205 Posts
red_conundrum has a reputation beyond reputered_conundrum has a reputation beyond reputered_conundrum has a reputation beyond reputered_conundrum has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
Have you noticed how housewives use Swiss supermarkets as social clubs? If they published everything on Internet, the housewives would not be curious, and they would stay away.

.

Ha ha ha! At last! I think Sbrinz has hit the nail on the head as to what keeps Swiss economy buzzing like the proverbial bumblebee (you know...it shouldn't fly--their economy, that is--, but it somehow does, against all common sense).

I bet all the strange things that happen in this country can in the end be tracked down to Swiss housewives and the curious little old ladies that check the daily lint allowance on the apartment complex washing machine rooms.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank red_conundrum for this useful post:
  #17  
Old 15.04.2012, 00:32
TrainDoctor's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Reinach (BL)
Posts: 217
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 571 Times in 142 Posts
TrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond reputeTrainDoctor has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
Once again.....post a link showing that service please, showing what stock is kept in a particular store?
I sometimes get things wrong so I quickly checked at random with the M&S website just to make sure I wasn't loosing my memory...

Using their store locator page I quickly found the London branch nearest to my hotel under "details" it gave opening times, products carried at that store, services provided at that store and contact details.

It wasn't as detailed as to the actual in-store inventory (perhaps what you mean by stock), but it told me what I could expect to find there (information which will save me an unnecessary trip)
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank TrainDoctor for this useful post:
  #18  
Old 15.04.2012, 00:43
quark's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Aargh-Ow!
Posts: 1,321
Groaned at 12 Times in 11 Posts
Thanked 1,838 Times in 756 Posts
quark has a reputation beyond reputequark has a reputation beyond reputequark has a reputation beyond reputequark has a reputation beyond reputequark has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

After a completely wasted hour round-trip in the rain today, I'd be happy if shops just kept the opening times on their website accurate. Even now I know when they're actually open, me and my wallet won't be going back.

I do most of my tech shopping at digitec instead of interdiscount/MediaMarkt purely because of the accuracy of product information and availability their website provides.

Last edited by quark; 15.04.2012 at 01:47.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank quark for this useful post:
  #19  
Old 15.04.2012, 01:25
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Zurich
Posts: 3,735
Groaned at 72 Times in 51 Posts
Thanked 3,970 Times in 2,141 Posts
rainer_d has a reputation beyond reputerainer_d has a reputation beyond reputerainer_d has a reputation beyond reputerainer_d has a reputation beyond reputerainer_d has a reputation beyond reputerainer_d has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

Quote:
View Post
I sometimes get things wrong so I quickly checked at random with the M&S website just to make sure I wasn't loosing my memory...

Using their store locator page I quickly found the London branch nearest to my hotel under "details" it gave opening times, products carried at that store, services provided at that store and contact details.

It wasn't as detailed as to the actual in-store inventory (perhaps what you mean by stock), but it told me what I could expect to find there (information which will save me an unnecessary trip)
This information should be accessible and rather easy to export from their ERP-system.

But, as pointed out, if people knew something wasn't in stock, they'd go elsewhere right from the start.
If they don't know, they settle for something else instead - in 99 out of 100 cases.
The retailer can only lose by making the inventory public.

Also, I believe many "old-school" retailers are still calling the shots at Coop+Migros.

Sites like toppreise.ch work by having the business-owner make available a comma-separated list of his inventory on his website.
The toppreise-web-spider downloads, parses and indexes it and makes it available via the search-function.

I'm not working retail, but in defense of Migros+Coop, I'd speculate that if the whole inventory was online, there would also be some method to scrape that content and make it available as a database.
If the online-representation of the inventory would be reasonably correct and not too out-of-date, one could probably infer from the gathered data the success or failure or certain products at certain branches over time (and price).
Obviously, any retailer would like to keep this information secret...
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank rainer_d for this useful post:
  #20  
Old 15.04.2012, 01:42
Pachyderm's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Zurich
Posts: 1,549
Groaned at 76 Times in 55 Posts
Thanked 3,384 Times in 1,156 Posts
Pachyderm has a reputation beyond reputePachyderm has a reputation beyond reputePachyderm has a reputation beyond reputePachyderm has a reputation beyond reputePachyderm has a reputation beyond reputePachyderm has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Swiss Businesses On The Internet -Why Do They Bother?

I just wish people would stop moaning about really unimportant things.

So the Coop website tells you that they stock a certain sort of ice cream and the others don't. There you are - problem solved. Go to the Coop.

What am I missing here?

If you really need white chocolate ice cream, and are ideologically opposed to buying from the Coop, then you have a choice. You go and look in Migros, or you do without, or you buy something else instead.

However did we cope before the internet?
Reply With Quote
The following 5 users would like to thank Pachyderm for this useful post:
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Why do the Swiss drive with their lights on during the day??? ShazzaMcGowan Transportation/driving 40 30.08.2018 12:23
Why you can't win an argument on the internet Mag General off-topic 14 14.06.2011 12:19
Why do topics get moderated on the very subject they are trying to address ? breagh Forum support 159 21.02.2011 20:39
Why Can't the Swiss Ever Admit They're Wrong? Guest Complaints corner 164 23.01.2010 18:49
Why do they pile snow on the bike lanes! Starbug Complaints corner 5 30.10.2008 23:13


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 16:17.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0