RIP Jessops.

Discussion in 'Coffee Bar' started by mobias, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. mobias

    mobias TalkEmount Regular

    57
    Nov 4, 2012
    So Jessops have finally called it a day, very sad news indeed. For those of you outside the UK Jessops were a big UK wide photographic chain. They had stores in pretty much every major UK city. They'd been in financial trouble for a while and they almost closed down two years ago but as of today they closed all their stores. It means the UK has no major camera chain other than Calumet. Its sad since nothing beats going into a camera store and actually playing about with a camera you're interested in buying. There's no way I would have bought my 5N if I hadn't just picked one up in my local Jessops out of curiosity and had a play with it. Buying online isn't the same thing at all.
     
  2. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Yeah, I've read this a few days ago :(
     
  3. gio

    gio TalkEmount Veteran

    382
    Sep 12, 2012
    Manchester, uk
    did you buy online after trying in the shop.?
    Jessops problem was their customer service,you went in for a specific camera and they tried to sell you another, when you are trying to compete with online stuff you must offer something special,Jessops never did.
    Sad to see them go though,but remember, they put a lot of individual shops out of business when they hit the high streets.
     
  4. mobias

    mobias TalkEmount Regular

    57
    Nov 4, 2012
    Yeah I got my 5N from them, ex demo model, very good deal. They've done pretty well out of me over the years. Pretty much every camera I've owned in the last 20 or so years has come from them. In the days before eBay their second hand nation wide inventory was a great thing for getting the kit you wanted that bit cheaper. I have a thing about buying expensive items like cameras from high street stores in case you have issues and need to take things back. My A700 went back about three times with back focus problems.
    There were a lot of criticisms over the years over their customer service. Basically all the staff were under a bonus system where by whether or not they got a bonus every month was governed by how much profit they made the company. Not on how many sales they made but on how much profit they made. What that meant was all the staff knew how much profit certain items made over others and would push the more profitable ones, whether that was what the customer wanted or not. Thats why their high end gear counters got smaller and smaller and no one wanted to man them. There's very little profit on high end equipment apparently.
     
  5. WoodWorks

    WoodWorks Super Moderator

    Dec 12, 2012
    Ashland, OR, USA
    David
    Sad news, especially for the employees. But it's a trend, I fear. And if you're like me, living in a place where the nearest decent camera store is more than 300 miles away (I don't consider Best Buy "decent"), then the Internet is the only place you can go to buy a camera. And that makes forums (fora?) like this all the more valuable to me. They're pretty much the only place I can go for honest evaluations of potential purchases.

    So thank you! All of you!
     
  6. teefin1

    teefin1 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    618
    Sep 7, 2012
    Jessops were my favourite! I always bought from their clearance section online, great prices and great service if ever a problem. :(
     
  7. Bugleone

    Bugleone TalkEmount Veteran

    210
    Aug 21, 2011
    I think this was a long time actually coming, but had to happen eventually. Jesopps were essentially a very bad company both for their emplyees and their cutomers. They tried to maintain an outdated business model into the internet age with disregard to any consequences.........

    ........And I can't agree about them having good prices either,.....until recently they had a policy of selling at about twice the best online price, just for the doubtful benefit of being able to deal with a human salesman who did not really know about what he was selling but expected you to believe his bullshit...!! Then again, if you pay peanuts you tend to get monkeys......

    Fortunately there are still other high street players who are ready to step into Jesopp's shoes and who won't be caught out the same way,....Curry's Digital, John Lewis, Cameraworld, and Tesco all come to mind as having upped their camera selling operations recently and frequently offer a 'similar to online'price policy.

    Part of this is historical;...there have always been large and clumsy high street photo chainstores with histories of bad business ......Dixons and Greens come to mind and there were others who all went the same way......As has been said; 'you can fool the people some of the time but you can't fool all the people all of the time'.
     
  8. gio

    gio TalkEmount Veteran

    382
    Sep 12, 2012
    Manchester, uk
    this is true, especially John Lewis and Selfridges in Manchester Trafford Centre are excellent and have knowledgeable staff,and are/were cheaper than Jessop with a lot better shopping experience.
     
  9. Rich

    Rich TalkEmount Veteran

    253
    Nov 20, 2012
    Salisbury UK
    Richard
    I never really took to Jessops, they never had what I wanted, and although they could get "it" they were never competitive on price. The hard sell approach was ever present aswell, which I do not appreciate. Nevertheless, it is sad to see another high street store disappear, and I feel dreadfully sorry for the staff. A miserable start to the year.

    I am fortunate in that I have two very good London Camera Exchange branches near me, both of whom I have dealt with since the early 70's, so I can still buy my gear from a "real shop".
     
  10. Dioptrick

    Dioptrick TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 4, 2012
    New Zealand
    ^ Oh I so miss being able to do that!

    We've lost our 'real' shops a long time ago when film processing died. Direct from digital self-service printing machines in malls and appliance stores may have been the final nail in the coffin I think. We still have small camera stores here and there but their inventory is very limited so they have to order-in stuff for me, so I might as well go on-line and order it myself. There's one big camera store in Auckland that's still going (got my 5N there :))... but even then I had to go on-line to order from them, so I don't get to try, feel, and smell the other goodies like before... :(
     
  11. Orange

    Orange TalkEmount Veteran

    203
    Jan 4, 2013
    England
    It's not Orange!
    Agreed. Nothing beats picking up and handling equipment in your own hands, and trying to negotiate a freebie to throw in, ah the good old days!

    I remember waking in to Dixons with my dad to get my then brand new Canon T50 kit, then years later going into a specialist camera dealer (now gone) to get a "last one left" deal on a Canon T90 which had just finished production. Man I loved that camera.

    I walked into Jessops just before Christmas to have a go with the NEX 6. Never a Jessops fan, but still another sad casualty all the same ;(
     
  12. gio

    gio TalkEmount Veteran

    382
    Sep 12, 2012
    Manchester, uk
    Remember when Jessops hit the High streets they put loads of independents out of business, as for buying on the high street etc,for the past 7 years I have done my purchasing via Hong Kong saving 1000s of pounds and the stuff gets here faster than most UK based companies,I have never had a problem with returns for any reason ( only 1 in the last 7 yrs though). The company I use is called PANAMOZ and they provide an absolutely brilliant service,all taxes paid,the other I use occasionally is called digitalrev (they also do quite entertaining camera reviews on youtube) never had a problem with either and have also got friends buying from them. I don't think there is the same need to handle the camera as in the past , we have youtube and thousands of reviews on the web to enable us to make a decent decision.
    I am in the process / thinking seriously about the Sony 35mm 1.8 e mount, I am in the process of trying to convince myself a wee bit more, that, I really, really need this lens ,you know how it is yourself.
    Have a look at uk based companies prices and then look at this £303.00 plus postage,no more, and if I order it on Thursday it will be with me Monday or Tuesday and I can track it all they way and get a text when it is delivered.
    They even have a free - at the moment - 1 year brand new replacement if anything goes wrong.They also have a UK based agent. I am in no way connected with this company, but I appreciate good service and prices and feel that it is worth passing on to like minded people.

    Panamoz Sony - Lens Electronics
     
  13. Orange

    Orange TalkEmount Veteran

    203
    Jan 4, 2013
    England
    It's not Orange!
    Good points gio, I never thought about all the small independents that got put out of business by the likes of Jessops. How life goes on, eh? Agreed with the import stuff though, why spend more when you can get better service from the Internet?! Times they are a changing ...
     
  14. Amamba

    Amamba TalkEmount All-Pro

    Apr 13, 2013
    SE MI
    If Jessops was anything like the Worst.. eh, Best Buy, they had it coming.

    It's hard enough for a brick & mortar store to compete with Amazon. Some (like B&H and Adorama) had adjusted and can actually often command a slightly higher price due to their outstanding customer service (and lots of times they are very price competitive). I was to both of these stores while in NYC and their efficiency, organization, and expertise are very impressive. Their employees seem very engaged and are obviously treated well.

    Best Buy and Circuit City were full of idiots who didn't know sh#t about the product they were selling, their prices were high, their inventory was lacking. Their employees are mainly college age kids who clearly don't give a cr@p. They had outrageous restocking fees. CC went out of business and frankly, good riddance. BB is trying to adapt. I don't have much faith in their ability to adapt. I assume Jessops was the same way.
     
  15. Selten

    Selten TalkEmount Regular

    188
    Oct 22, 2012
    Rhineland, Germany
    Lusi
    I bought a tripod from Jessops in London in April, and their website is running. I don't know how or why they are still around when there was news they would not be, but I'm glad.

    The few times I visited their shops, their employees were friendly, knowledgeable and fun to chay with. Sure, they did try once to sell me something I wasn't interested in, but that happens in most places these days.
     
  16. Rich

    Rich TalkEmount Veteran

    253
    Nov 20, 2012
    Salisbury UK
    Richard
    Seemingly the Jessops name was bought by Peter Jones (Dragons Den the UK TV programme).

    He is opening some 30 branches (I believe) in major UK cities. No sign of the Salisbury branch re-opening at the moment. Can't say as I am sorry. I never liked them much. Understocked, overpriced, and staffed by kids who didn't have a clue about photography or customer service.
     
  17. MikeCaine

    MikeCaine TalkEmount Rookie

    21
    Nov 28, 2012
    Isle of Man
    My wife bought a NEX-6 from their Shrewsbury store the other week and we bought a Nat Geo bag for that and my NEX-7 in the Birmingham store. I'm glad to see some of their stores open again.
     
  18. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave


    The past 20 years saw a transition from Mom and Pop specialty shops to Big Box stores like Wal Mart, Target and Best Buy. We traded knowledgeable staff built relationships for speed, massive inventory and lower costs. You still see some smaller shops survive, but they had to specialize or die.

    I will be interesting to see where we stand in 5-10 years. How many physical stores will survive the digital age? Hello Circuit City, Blockbuster, etc.

    On the one hand I love the discounts on-line versus in store. Hard to compete when you have floor space, electricity and merchandising to pay for, thousands of employees to staff, etc. Several are doing well, by adapting how they present themselves, but it is tough. Best Buy and Fry's Electronics will match a certified on-line price, from a certified vendor. They have to. However this must cut away at their profit big time.

    On the other hand, especially with electronics, I NEED to play with them. I NEED that interaction time. Reviews and videos are great, but no substitute for actually holding a product. For example when buying my first NEX I was going to get the 5 over the 3, but when I played with them in the store I was sold on the 3 because it just fit my hand better.

    My upgrade from NEX-3 to F3 was a typical one. Play with it at the store, then search for it on-line. I happened to get one from Ebay for $150.00 less than it was going for in the store.
     
  19. Amamba

    Amamba TalkEmount All-Pro

    Apr 13, 2013
    SE MI
    That's why many online retailers have generous return policies. It encourages buyers to spend the money without necessarily trying their hands on the product first, knowing that as long as they don't obviously abuse the system they should be able to easily exchange or return the item. Works for Costco, too. The amount of extra sales offsets the losses due to returns.

    There's more to online sales than just price. We have two kids, demanding jobs, after school activities, a house to take care of, very busy schedules. Absolutely the last thing I want to spend my time on is going from store to store looking for something. I would much rather order it online and have it shipped to my door, as long as I can return it without much hassle if it's not what I expected.