Queensland retailers are revolting. Well, they’re fighting back against the trend of people who enter their shops, try on their stuff and then leave without buying it.

Something to be said for in-store shopping. Pic: Brooke Whatnall

What shoppers are doing is sizing it so they can buy it online.

As an online shopper, I take a lot of risks with my purchases. Ask anyone I know if they’ve been given something I’ve bought online because it was too small or too big.

While I use a tape measure, I may not have used it correctly, and when it comes to measuring for pants I know I have a lot to learn about where the tape goes.

However, I have checked the garments against the measurements when I’ve got them home and found they don’t fit, and sometimes the manufacturer has got them wrong.

But getting it wrong is the risk I take for buying online and from overseas.

And this is the risk other online shoppers have to take, too.
Friends who work in retail have revealed some disgusting habits of women shoppers. Trying on swimwear or underwear and taking the plastic out of the crotch is just half a horror story, and the other half is so disgusting I won’t go any further.

Then there are the people who leave things on the floor in a tangled mess for staff to clean up. Have their mothers not taught them about caring for their clothes? Have their mothers not taught them they don’t own the clothes until they’ve paid for them?

I’m not saying that people should never buy online. I don’t just believe in online shopping, I live it.

For example, a friend’s child had a drink container which didn’t leak. They’d purchased it from a shop that wasn’t in Queensland. So I Googled it, and bought it online. Two days later, my child has the same leak proof drink container (with a top so hard she can’t chew through it.)

Nor am I saying shoppers shouldn’t try on clothes in a shop and make the honest choice of not to buy it. Or buy one item and buy similar items online. Particularly if they are brand loyal.

But I can’t believe anyone would walk away from an item which fits them beautifully with a view to buying it cheaper online. Retailers are discounting like crazy at the moment. How greedy do you have to be?

For example: a pair of jeans in a major retailer was reduced from $100 to $70. With the added bonus of an old gift card with $10 left on it, they were $60 jeans. Why would I walk away to try to find a better deal?

It’s swings and roundabouts. The money you save on a top or jacket bought online from an end-of-season discount shop offsets the little bit more you pay for the item you buy from an Australian retailer because you are not prepared to risk getting the size wrong.

You get a cheaper item online because you’re not paying for a showroom, staff to set out the merchandise and take care of it.

If you buy online, you will make mistakes and you will lose your money. But there is Ebay for mistakes and grateful family and friends who benefit from your inability to use a tape measure.

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51 comments

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    • TChong says:

      07:11am | 23/04/11

      “...digusting habits of women shopper” - with the punch line too nauseating to reveal.
      There you go ladies.
      Hard to argue with the observation, isnt it?
      What is it about some of the gals, and such a self centered -dont give a damn about anyone else, attitude.?
      Is it grrl power?, throwing off the shackles of patriarchal domination? or does it show that some women ( like some men) are just ignorant pigs?
      Women and men : as good and as bad as each other.

    • John says:

      10:23am | 23/04/11

      WTF TChone I don’t recall Julia stating women were better than men. How about you write something relevant to the story rather than grinding your own ideological axe.

    • TChong says:

      11:33am | 23/04/11

      Axes to grind johnboy?
      Settle down there big fella.
      My comment is tongue-in- cheek.
      Dont take everything so serios. No good for your blood pressure.
      But, a big wink may be needed , just so you know.

    • thatmosis says:

      07:16am | 23/04/11

      This will add another nail into the retail sector in Australia. Everybody knows that the retailers charge what they like here and a quick check of internet sites lets us know that. Add the try on price and people will stay away in droves. If the retailers kept thier prices resonable instaed of ripping off the public this wouldnt be a problem but the greed of some retailers serves them right. I buy 90% or more of what I need on line and have only ever had one bad experience and have saved myself thousands. Dont give me the crap about jobs in Australia eother as it is just a type of blackmail the retailers use to try and make us feel bad, guess what, it doesnt.

    • SKJ says:

      08:35am | 23/04/11

      Don’t be ridiculous. Often the item is $150 at retail and $80 online. The nerve and the ethics of charging almost double is the same as trying it on at the store and buying online. No one is worse than the other. One is smarter though. Which one?

    • acotrel says:

      08:46am | 23/04/11

      Even when we had tariff protection, the importers mark-up was about 100% above the landed cost of imported goods. What is it now?

    • Cate P says:

      09:23am | 23/04/11

      acotrel, 100% is a conservative mark-up for some goods.

    • acotrel says:

      08:42am | 23/04/11

      @Thatmosis It’s often claimed on this forum that the actions of unions fighting for fair wages for workers , is the main reason that our manufacturing industry has moved offshore.  I’m critical of the mark-up on inported goods.  If the top end of town wants to pay third world wages in Australia, they should volutarily charge third world prices for imported goods.  We cannot expect Australian workers to accept peanuts if the cost of living is not reduced?

    • Mik says:

      02:29pm | 23/04/11

      Don’t worry, both are coming. The government already said taxes, because of low business income for the year, are 4 billion down. Soon with no one buying in Australia, there will be no money for social security and social programs like Medicare and free schools. Many business streams are down, it is just that mining income is covering up the disaster.  One of the Asian prime ministers once said Australia would become the white trash of Asia - maybe it’s on it’s way. Many people are coming into my work to say they have been retrenched because the businesses they work for are not getting orders/jobs/contracts-maybe I am next?

    • Mik says:

      02:29pm | 23/04/11

      Don’t worry, both are coming. The government already said taxes, because of low business income for the year, are 4 billion down. Soon with no one buying in Australia, there will be no money for social security and social programs like Medicare and free schools. Many business streams are down, it is just that mining income is covering up the disaster.  One of the Asian prime ministers once said Australia would become the white trash of Asia - maybe it’s on it’s way. Many people are coming into my work to say they have been retrenched because the businesses they work for are not getting orders/jobs/contracts-maybe I am next?

    • Kika says:

      06:58pm | 24/04/11

      Look at the Aussie dollar - we are punching way above our weight at the moment. The economy isn’t as rosy as they are trying to make out. We’re going to crash and people are pulling in the reigns as we speak.

    • Lyn says:

      08:50am | 23/04/11

      Why would I pay $80 for my foundation at a department store when I can colour match there and pay $30 cheaper online, giftwrapped, free shipping and a further discount of 15% for being a loyal shopper. All for the inconvenience of having to wait an extra 3-4 days

    • acotrel says:

      09:11am | 23/04/11

      @Lyn How much can you buy a pair of bloomers for online? Can you make do without them for 3-4 days?

    • Cate P says:

      09:27am | 23/04/11

      pretty much nailed it, Lyn.  Retail is a competitive business and the e-retailers are winning at the moment.  Australian retailers need to look at where they can compete and work on it.  Don’t blame the customer, we’re always right, remember??

    • Justin says:

      11:55am | 23/04/11

      So dumb and short sighted. Either color match yourself, and buy online, or use the services of the store and buy in store. You’ll be the first to whinge how greedy the retailers are when they start making you to pay for the color matching.

    • Jemima says:

      12:04pm | 23/04/11

      I’ve been trying to buy a waterproof mp3 player and can only find them online - no Dick Smith, Harvey Norman or JB hiFi have them in sight.
      With technology, and you’ll find the same with cutting edge fashion and other categories of retail goods, online is the only option. retailers need to pick up the pace to retain business.

      That said, trying on clothes then buying them online - Think it’s very cheeky and completely agree with the tone of the article

    • Amused says:

      10:27pm | 23/04/11

      I’ve worked in retail for a long time now, and people ask me for all sorts of weird and wonderful devices which may, and sometimes may not exist, but NEVER has ANYONE asked me for a waterproof MP3 player.

      The reason none of us stock them is purely because there is no demand for such an item.

      In order to sell things, you need people who want to buy them. If there is no demand, you just don’t bother.

    • Edward James says:

      12:26pm | 23/04/11

      Times have changed the meaning of a size tag often changes with brands. On line shopping for clothes will steamroll over bricks and mortar shopfronts it is only a matter of time. Unless you buy made to measure clothing, or make your own. Under garments for women, well thats their problem init.

    • Kika says:

      04:01pm | 23/04/11

      Online retail only equates to 3% of the market, isn’t it? We aren’t all buying online. I know myself that I haven’t bought a pair of shoes for 2 months, and clothes for maybe 6 months. I am desperate to get new clothes - but I just don’t have the budget for it. I think the story is that we’re all a little more tight with our cash now after the GFC and retailers aren’t doing enough to get us to cough up the money.

    • Alicia says:

      04:51pm | 23/04/11

      Ditto! I’m not shopping in stores because I simply can’t afford it. I would love nothing more than to throw my cash around on new clothing but I don’t HAVE any to spare.

      The only clothing I’ve purchased online is a Rugby shirt I couldn’t get in Darwin and costumes from overseas for a birthday party, again because I couldn’t get anything decent in Darwin.

      I would be reluctant to go into a shop charging a try-on free, especially for shoes because I have wide feet and it can be hard to find something that fits and is comfortable.

      This whole “online shopping is killing us” cry is bullshit anyway.

    • Steve says:

      05:38pm | 23/04/11

      Kika. 2 months without new shoes! 6 months without new clothes! This is a truly deperate situation that you are in. When shoppers like you withdraw from the market then retailers are in trouble. sit down with your grandparents and ask them what the depression was like. You don’t know what desperatiopn is.

    • Audra Blue says:

      06:28pm | 23/04/11

      I, too, would love to buy new clothes, mainly for work, but the budget won’t allow it.  And it’s not a matter of “poor me”.  I’ve lost a lot of weight over the last 12 months and my old clothes just don’t fit any more.  I still wear some of them but I’ve had to bodgy them up to make them fit properly.

      You know life is pretty difficult when you have to save for a whole month just to buy a $25 skirt.  As for shoes, don’t get me started.  I have two different pairs for work and I rotate them and try to be as gentle as I can with them.  But I will have to start budgeting now to buy another pair so that all pairs can last a little longer.

    • KIka says:

      06:48pm | 24/04/11

      Well Steve lucky for my grandmother she had the skills to make clothes herself. She didn’t pass these skills onto my mother and then onto me. So unlucky for me, I can’t make my own clothes and am reliant on overpriced poor quality imported clothes from China which fall apart within at least a year - maximum - of moderate usage.  So you go to Portmans and buy a skirt - you know the type - the latex-cotton blend type. Spend $60.00 because it’s from ‘Portmans’ and not Target or Big W and then within a few weeks the hem is falling out and you need to get the zip fixed at the tailors which costs you another $30.00 to keep it going another 6 months…

      The retailers have no sympathy from me. They sell us junk from China at top dollar rates (don’t give me the whole woe is me I have massive overheads…oh yeah? So you are still in business and your CEO’s look like they are doing ok) so it’s no wonder people are turning to buy the same useless poor quality junk themselves at prices that are fair and reasonable for the product they are buying.

    • Rossco says:

      04:02pm | 23/04/11

      “But I can’t believe anyone would walk away from an item which fits them beautifully with a view to buying it cheaper online. Retailers are discounting like crazy at the moment. How greedy do you have to be? “

      Fixed it for you below.

      But I can’t believe anyone would sell an item and over charge their customers by 0-200 on overseas prices and not expect people to buy it cheaper online. Customers are looking for a good bargain at the moment. How greedy do you have to be?

    • libertarian vegetarian says:

      06:15pm | 23/04/11

      I suppose you also can’t believe that retail shops have to pay retail rents, or pay retail staff time and a half or double time or even triple time so people can come in on Saturdays, Sundays or public holidays and try things on and then buy them elsewhere, from someone who is only paying for a warehouse and regular 9 - 5 staff to process the orders and pick and pack.  Or from overseas where the staff are paid a tiny percentage of what employers are forced to pay here.
      Idiot.

    • Katie says:

      04:47pm | 23/04/11

      A girl at my work tries on shoes at David Jones then goes home and buys them straight from the shoe company online instead. Why? Because the shoe company’s online sites give better service, have all the colours/sizes in stock and and often hundreds of dollars cheaper.

      So why’s David Jone’s marking up shoe prices by $500, $600 dollars? It’s just asking for people to buy online instead!

      Now I wouldn’t buy shoes that expensive myself, but in a time when a lot of us are pinching our pockets to pay bills, it’s hardly a surprise that when they know they’re being ripped off in store, they’ll go online.

    • Bikinis On Top says:

      04:55pm | 23/04/11

      Your comment:
      Buy? whats that term mean?

    • stephen says:

      07:48pm | 23/04/11

      Buy buy ?

    • Audra Blue says:

      06:21pm | 23/04/11

      I never would have thought to try stuff on in a store and then buy it online.  And even now that I know about the practice, I still won’t do it.  Why?  Because the only things I buy online are books and CDs.  Maybe the occasional DVD if I can’t get it here.

      Clothes and appliances, I buy in the stores.  Always.  But with my personal policy of buying only what I absolutely need with clothes and appliances, I don’t spend that much money anyway.

    • libertarian vegetarian says:

      06:24pm | 23/04/11

      The only things I buy online are things I can’t easily purchase locally.  I can’t even conceive of what type of ill bred bogan tries on something in a shop or gets a cosmetics staffer to waste their ‘colour matching’ and then buys online. Peobably the same type of ill bred bogan that goes into a bridal shop or jeweller and takes photos of what they like so they can have it made up cheaply. Stealing someone elses ideas and the time and effort put into the creation.
      I suppose karma gets them when they buy all these so called designer good on line for so much ‘cheaper’ and they are fakes anyway.

    • marley says:

      08:44am | 24/04/11

      It isn’t necessarily “bogans” that are doing this….Otherwise, though, I agree with your point.

    • Kika says:

      06:55pm | 24/04/11

      I love the flippant use of the word bogan to describe people within our own culture who you can’t understand or agree with. It’s like using the word ‘un-Australian’. What’s so bogan about looking for a bargain? Perhaps you work or own a retail store?

      Well… put it this way. I am the type of customer where if I get too much harassment in a store by a sales person I will simply walk out. It doesn’t matter how much you try, I will leave. I like to do my shopping by myself and will ask for help if and when I need it. A lot of people actually like purchasing things online because you can sit and relax and actually do the research, planning and shopping on your own without having salespeople in your face trying to convince you to buy something else.

    • libertarian vegetarian says:

      12:58pm | 26/04/11

      Kika, the article is not about shopping on line, it’s about going into a store, trying things on and then buying them elsewhere.
      I have my own business, not in retail though, so I can understand the concepts here. It is beyond ‘looking for a bargain’, it is the deliberate wasting of staffs time and causing shop wear to items you have no intention of buying.  How many times do you see items on the reduced rack because they have make up smears or dirt or tears or pulls from being tried on.
      As you say you prefer to be left alone when you shop, it must be safe to assume you are not guilty of any of the behaviour listed in the article.
      And bogan is as bogan does, whether you are from Vaucluse or Mt Druitt, if you have no manners or respect for others, you are a bogan.

    • marley says:

      07:25pm | 23/04/11

      I’m not much of a clothes buyer, so cannot comment.  But I was some upset when I passed up an opportunity to buy a camera while visiting the US at $495 USD, only to find the same camera (manufactured in Asia, of course) selling in Australia for $799 AUD.  There is no way the exchange rate (the AUD was worth about .95 USD at the time) accounted for the differential. 

      So no, the local camera shops didn’t get my money. This is not the 1970s, and Australian retail businesses cannot operate as though they are in a protected environment.  Manufacturers learned the hard way about competitiveness when the tariffs came down and they had to deal with offshore competition; some adapted and survived, some didn’t.  Retailers are now learning the same lesson about competition.

      I don’t mind paying a bit more for the convenience of shopping locally, but there is no way I’m going to pay 50 or 75 or 100% over the mark for that privilege.  And the sooner retailers work that out, the better they’ll be.

      Until then, I’ll buy a lot of stuff on-line from abroad, and you’d better believe my next trip back to Canada I will be taking an empty suitcase.  And yes, I’ll declare and pay duty on whatever - but there’s no way that will cost me more than buying from an Australian retailer.

    • JJJ says:

      09:04am | 24/04/11

      I am not sure it is fair to compare the prices of goods in shops O/S with Austalia. Firstly, we have a minimum wage that employees have to pay their workers (unlike the US). Secondly, rental prices in Australia are relatively costly compared to those in most other countries (from what I am led to believe). Shops need to take that into account when selling goods.
      Eg. I was in Kenya last year and they sell bananas for 3c (Aust). I bought bananas for $3 EACH last week here in Aust. It’s ridiculous to compare the two, as most Kenyans are lucky to earn 30c (Aust) a day. I know Americans (generally) earn less than Aussies too(hence ‘tipping’).
      The internet HAS changed shopping, however as a few commenters have said, you shouldn’t be surprised when shop keepers start charging people to ‘try’ if they aren’t selling enough product! It is a difficult situation though, as I have never gone to a shop with the intention NOT to buy - the item(s) just haven’t fit/suited me.

    • Correctal says:

      10:31am | 24/04/11

      JJJ
      The US has a minimum wage.

    • marley says:

      01:08pm | 24/04/11

      @JJJ - sorry, but I do not buy your argument.  Your bananas were cheaper because Kenyan labour is cheaper.  But the camera wasn’t built by Americans or Australians, it was built in Asia, so labour costs for production are the same.

      As for the actual process of selling the camera, the US does have minimum wages (lower than Australia’s, but I doubt that the effort to sell me a camera is worth $300 of the clerk’s time).  And I ‘d be a bit surprised if store rental costs are lower in Waikiki than in Canberra or Melbourne or small-town NSW - and oddly enough, the camera price was pretty much identical in all three.  And, for that matter, on the internet from Australian vendors.  All at a mark up a good $300 above what I could get it for from a storefront shop in the US.  Something’s wrong there.

      That being said, I wouldn’t go to a store with the intention of sizing something and ordering from the internet.  But if I price something in Australia and know I can get it for a fraction of the price on-line (books are a good example) I have no compunction about hitting the internet.  Book prices in particular are ridiculous here anyway.

    • stephen says:

      08:03pm | 23/04/11

      I was at Myers today and bought kitchen and cooking stuff at 40% discount.
      I saw what I wanted, had a good look, felt the quality, liked what i saw and took the goods to the young girl at the till, paid for my purchase, was offered a special wrap which I accepted, walked away and felt the better for it , cause the notion of a sale, e.g. the actual act of buying something, is a particular relationship of dealing.
      May I suggest that the only reason we are kind to each other is not because we are all Poets or all breeders or all a part of history or a part of each other’s destiny… but because our we have been trained to be civil because it is in our ‘market sense’ to be so.
      Capitalism makes us social and relevant.
      And the relationship between buyer and seller is imperative.
      Online buying is cheating, and those who demand the lowest price at all cost incur no risk, (except fot their honour.)

    • marley says:

      08:51am | 24/04/11

      @Stephen - why is online buying “cheating?”  I’m not talking about the people who waste the time of people working in brick and mortar stores then order online, I’m talking about people such as myself who buy things like books and cameras online without using up anyone’s time but my own.

      Why do you think I’m cheating by purchasing something at a considerably lower price than I would get from a regular outlet, but Myers isn’t cheating by charging some of its customers 40% more for their cooking gear than the price you ended up paying?

      There are two parties to a business transaction - and if one of them is being overcharged, the buyer/seller relationship is exploitative and most “unsocial.”  And it’s the retailer whose honour is in question, not the buyer’s.

    • stephen says:

      03:13pm | 24/04/11

      Marley@
      A retailer is really a feedback merchant between the inventor/producer/maker and the consumer/customer.
      A retailer should be trained in the mechanics of the product they sell, so that when a new product comes to the market, the seller can be a more responsible agent for an article’s success.
      A product’s efficacy can be relayed to the producer. Any improvements can be investigated and subsequent info. relayed to the manufacturer.
      This all sounds hi-falutin, but perhaps the role of a seller can be improved upon, thereby vitiating online sales.
      I’ve bought clothes online. (only because there was no local agent - ‘listening, Abercrombie and Fitch’ - and they were the wrong style. No chance to return them.)
      In future i will pay the right price and have the option of getting only the right product.
      If you think retailers overcharge, you can still barter, which I sometimes do.

    • marley says:

      05:02pm | 24/04/11

      @Stephen - sorry, but I don’t see why an on-line vendor is any less of a feedback merchant than a store-front vendor.  Both can tell an inventor/manufacturer pretty quickly that something is selling, or isn’t, and whether they’re getting complaints about a product. 

      Anyway, a lot of what you’re saying is just not relevant to a whole lot of things one buys on-line. I don’t need a clerk to explain to me how a book works.  Or a CD.  Or for that matter a computer or a camera.  (And in fact most of the sales clerks, assuming you can find one, do a damn poor job of it anyway).  I can do all my research on the ‘net before selecting a product (and I do that with a lot of things, whether I’m going to buy them on-line or in-store - so I quite often know more than the saleperson anyway).

      No, when I want a particular item, I want the right product at the right price.  Books are a particular bugbear with me - why is it that a book sold in Australia can be purchased for 30 to 50% less on-line (or in real stores in Canada, the US and the UK?)  Frankly, I think you’d be out of your mind to pay Australian prices for books.  CDs - likewise, plus the choice is generally pretty poor unless you’re into rap or garage.  Heck, I even buy pet products on-line - quite a bit cheaper than getting the same items from the local pet store.  We buy wine on-line as well, and some electronics (my experience with buying a computer was quite positive, by the way). 

      I seldom buy clothes on line, though my other half does occasionally.  Again, prices here are quite inflated compared with overseas. 

      As to bargaining, do it all the time - but, there’s no way a camera shop is going to knock $300 of an $800 camera to get it down to a price comparable to what I can get if for in the States or on-line.  That’s the problem.

      And none of this really tells me why you think on-line buying is “cheating.”  I think it’s just sensible.  If the storefront vendor cannot compete on price (and most of them aren’t particularly competitive on service either) well then, I think it would be foolish to pay over the odds for something.

    • Kika says:

      07:02pm | 24/04/11

      You really think you got a good deal at 40%?
      Does it matter if you spoke to a human? You arent talking to a human on this blog - you are typing it into cyberspace for other people to read and ponder. If what you say is true, then shouldn’t you be out debating the pros and cons of online retail to a real person?
      And who cares if she wrapped it up pretty? Are you actually going to use the pans or keep them on decoration?

      It’s not the 1960’s anymore. It’s 2011. Consumers are tech savvy and can use the net to do pretty much whatever they want. If the big retailers can’t handle that, then maybe they’ve totally underrated the intelligence of their customers for way too long.

      Why can’t they have a proper online catalogue? The Myer website is ridiculous and David Jones is even worse.  They can still have their stores for their customers still stuck in the 80’s and have a warehouse stocked full of their stuff for online customers too.

    • stephen says:

      10:01pm | 24/04/11

      I think the value of something is its usefullness, ie. at the development stage, and this is determined as feedback. The worth of it, however, is set by the retailer who sets a price according to what the market will bear.
      This is what happens now, I think.
      But if the retailer has a stake, and indeed a risk in a product’s success in sales, (which I noted above) then a final price would be an agreement between manufacturer and seller.
      Currently, the seller gets his stock and kicks up the retail price at 100%.
      But if a seller has an investment, (necessarily) in a product’s innovation and development, (even at the post -production stage) then he incurs a risk in it’s sales success.
      The seller wouldn’t really have been involved in its development, but would have more to lose, if it fails to sell, than merely a new shop elsewhere.
      A customer knows that currently a product is sold at twice the price of its acquisition by the retailer, which is a motive for online buying.
      Someone needs to change this equation.

    • stephen says:

      03:13pm | 25/04/11

      Hmmm…I was hopin for a disputation.
      Tell’em what I thought : not mere elaboration.

    • Lisa says:

      09:52am | 24/04/11

      Don’t know about you guys but it seems that whenever I TRY to buy something at myer, target or big w, they NEVER seem to have the size I’m looking for.  It’s amazing!  Yesterday, I TRIED to buy a bra… no size (14B), 2 children’s dresses… no size (size 3).  It then occurred to me that this always happens.  Even if the shelf is full with the same item none of my required size is left.  No wonder people shop on line.

    • Cate P says:

      02:24pm | 24/04/11

      absolutely true.  I have gone to shops countless times, catalogue in hand, only to be told they haven’t got the item and don’t know when its coming in.  I’ve tried rainchecks, but I’ve never yet got the call saying its here.

    • stephen says:

      03:24pm | 24/04/11

      A 14B size bra you can only get at Nimbin.
      (Amazing how at such a place girls knockers are gynormous yet the only living thing wearing ‘suspenders’ are very very expensive steers.)

    • Rachel says:

      11:22am | 24/04/11

      I buy everything I can online for two reasons. First, I don’t have the time to try to find what I’m looking for, and second, if I can’t get it for half the price of a retail store, then I probably can’t afford to buy it at all. I buy from Australian online stores preferentially. I prefer to buy appliances, clothing and shoes from brick and mortar stores for fitting and warranty reasons, but if a store tries to charge me a fitting fee (as has become normal for wedding dresses), I will walk out and never go back.

    • marley says:

      01:58pm | 24/04/11

      I don’t know why the big retailers don’t change their business model - have their storefronts to show their range and let people try things on, then have the whole thing backed up by an ultracompetitive internet service, so regardless of whether someone buys the nifty little dress in the shop or on-line, they get the business.  They need to start treating their storefronts as loss leaders for the real business of on-line selling.  But of course, to make the model work, they have to keep their prices competitive - and that might mean slicing their profits.  Too bad.

    • Destry says:

      10:52am | 21/11/11

      You’ve really captured all the essnteails in this subject area, haven’t you?

    • erasseunfaids says:

      10:13am | 29/05/12

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The Punch is moving house

The Punch is moving house

Good morning Punchers. After four years of excellent fun and great conversation, this is the final post…

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

I have had some close calls, one that involved what looked to me like an AK47 pointed my way, followed…

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

In a world in which there are still people who subscribe to the vile notion that certain victims of sexual…

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choice ringside rantings

From: Hasbro, go straight to gaol, do not pass go

Tim says:

They should update other things in the game too. Instead of a get out of jail free card, they should have a Dodgy Lawyer card that not only gets you out of jail straight away but also gives you a fat payout in compensation for daring to arrest you in the first place. Instead of getting a hotel when you… [read more]

From: A guide to summer festivals especially if you wouldn’t go

Kel says:

If you want a festival for older people or for families alike, get amongst the respectable punters at Bluesfest. A truly amazing festival experience to be had of ALL AGES. And all the young "festivalgoers" usually write themselves off on the first night, only to never hear from them again the rest of… [read more]

Gentle jabs to the ribs

Superman needs saving

Superman needs saving

Can somebody please save Superman? He seems to be going through a bit of a crisis. Eighteen months ago,… Read more

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