The Customer Is King



Many, many, years ago, when I was just a young boy, I used to spend time with my dad in his shop. He used to sell hi-fi components, car audio systems, accessories and more. It was a wonderful shop; located just outside the centre of Bournemouth.

This photo was taken a long time before I was born!

As a boy, I used to love the new equipment that was for sale. Long before the days of digital technology; not an iPod in sight. This was the day of the first Walkman (does anyone remember the Sony Stowaway?) and portable music.


The days of turntables and cassette players. Ironically, the days of turntables have returned.


The shop was a haven for electronic enthusiasts who bought their resistors, transistors, bulbs, fuses, cable and connectors; not in packets, but individually. I remember the rows and rows of little drawers behind the counter, each housing many variants of components.

My dad would build a rapport with his customers, the like of which I've never seen or heard of anywhere else.


He would treat them with respect, laugh and joke with them; many times juggling two or more customers at the same time; at the end, everyone would be chatting, resulting, more times than not, in the all important sale.


To my father, the customer really was king.


I also remember, halfway up the stairs, pinned to the wall was a poster. Similar to the one here; it has always had a lasting impression.


Years later, I still remember it, and it's a mantra that holds true today.



Sadly, the shop may no longer be; but so too has customer service. Now, it's warehouse style stores, with indifferent members of staff!


Move your buying experience online, and it's a whole new ballgame.


We like the ease, accessibility, and often cheaper prices than would be seen on the high street. Unfortunately, that comes at a cost; because now we don't even get to look into the salespersons eyes; we look at a web-page.


Often designed to tempt us, but nevertheless, a static screen, with information, pictures, video and more to entice us to spend with them.


Most of the time it all works well.

Occasionally, it doesn't go so well.

What then?


Some companies are renowned for their ongoing customer service, whilst others promise the world, then fail to deliver.


What do you do then?


I do know one thing. I won't be buying anything else from that company again.


Customer service obviously means very little to them.


I am obviously not a king!


Have you ever suffered bad customer service with an online store?

Was it resolved to your satisfaction?


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