Wednesday, January 27, 2010

[Brick & Mortar] Maintain Shop Discipline

I'm excited going into a new or favorite game store. It's fun!

And I think I have reason to be excited. I like game stores. So do many of you.

However, we have to remember that this is a place of business, albeit one that we are more comfortable with than other types of stores, and that we need to operate under the usual societal requirements for behavior that we display in other stores.

That means maintaining shop discipline.

Everyone knows what shop discipline is, we use it every day in all the other stores we shop in. The fact that we're very interested in the products at a game or comic store does not and should not allow us to behave like jerks. People don't want to be disturbed while shopping and your behavior may be critical to whether they come back and spend money ... or not.

Let me put it this way: stores exist to make money. If you like the store and want it to succeed then you need to behave in a way that will not detract from it making money.

And let me be blunt: I go to stores to shop, not hear you talk out your ass. I operate in game shops the same way I operate in other stores. I'm polite and there to maybe make a purchase. I maintain shop discipline and so should you.

Here are the 8 basics of shop discipline:
  1. Be courteous and quiet. Don't shout or run around. Move out of the way for people to get past you to other parts of the store.
  2. This isn't your home so don't treat it as such. That also means you need to go home.
  3. If you want to bring in food and drink, ask first. Most stores would rather have clean products to sell rather than a mess you made by bringing in food. Make sure you don't touch anything if you have dirty hands - comics and book covers smudge.
  4. If you want to use your cell phone, ask first. Most stores are happy to let you use the phone to tell a friend they have product X, Y or Z because that leads to a sale. Remember to keep the call short. Most other calls require you to step outside to make it.
  5. Know your audience. Be aware of the mother and young child behind you looking at the Yu-Gi-Oh! cards before you talk about how your character raped and killed the evil Drow princess in exacting and graphic detail. Better yet, save that story (and all questionable-content stories) for the internet.
  6. Ask questions and wait your turn. Be aware that others will want the owner's time to ask purchasing questions, so let them.
  7. Don't disparage any product in the store especially when near the front register. Adhere to the old adage: if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. Your comment could lead to the loss of a sale. Feel free to express yourself on gaming forums, blogs or on the street corner for all anyone cares, but when you go into someone's business and crap on their merchandise, you're not doing them any favors.
  8. Don't be the smelly cat-piss man. There's no excuse for that once you leave your house. Bathing at least once a day is a good thing. Society was improved by the use of water for body cleaning.
That's all I came up with. Most of the rest (if there are any) are just common sense. If you wouldn't like that behavior in your home or in your own business, why would you behave that way at someone else's?

OK, rant over. Returning to regularly programmed stuff.

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