Discussion in 'News - Discussion' started by CSBC, Jan 7, 2013.
Certainly things are not improving on the high street, a situation that does not appear likely to change in the short term and Jessops are certainly not immune. The last independent photographic store in Newcastle closed down on Saturday, following the closure of Jacobs some months ago. Only Jessops now survive, with a move to a more central location due in the next few months, presumably becoming an upgraded format outlet.
Judging by the way that the display cabinets in my local branch have been getting emptier and emptier over the past year, I suspect that it may be one of those that will suddenly close
I think Jessops have been in decline for the last ten years, they just seem not to have seen the writing on the wall. I remember buying my 50mm 1:2 L prime from somewhere else after the local Jessops (now closed) refused to price match of the sake of £25 on a £1100 lens. Their stock seems to be getting thinner, their staff seem to lack technical knowledge (Im sure not all of them). It has been clear to most of us for years that we are in a digital age, I can't believe how many of these retailers were so slow to jump on board.
Maybe, but if that was the case most of their stores would be facing the axe!
Maybe they are ... in fact I think the trend is unstoppable. Whether this is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing is debatable but essentially moot.
The sad thing about this is that Jessops bought up and rebranded as their own many of the high street independent camera shops - now they too are disappearing bit by bit. The virtue of the independent shops is that they specialised in say two brands - if you wanted a Pentax or a Nikon in Gloucester you went to Walwins, and if you wanted a Minolta or a Canon you went somewhere else - by having limited brands they also had the item in stock at the shop. It's not too hard to see Jessops having what they did to the independents.
I have a long staying relationship with Jessops over the years.
If they close my store, then that's it they lose my business.
Bought my first digital there, film and other kit. Bought Kodachrome in the 80/90s from them.
They can change the business structure I reckon and still keep a high street position.
Either that or expand the business into more close related areas ie other electronic products.
Its a shame to see any high street shop closing, but lets face it, photography is now such a road and varied subject that its impossible to maintain any meaningful or useful level of stock, and the only reason I buy in store, instead of on-line is if I can have it there and then - however a lot of the internet suppliers don't hold the stock they sometimes claim to do either
For several months before my local Jessops closed a couple of years or so ago, it was very obvious with their run down of stock. Even then, the local camera shop around the corner consistently undercut them and even Argos across the road was cheaper than Jessops and had more stock in store with even more available within a few days to order.
In recent years I have rarely purchased anything photographic locally. Nothing to do with my local independent, from whom I obtained some memory cards back in September, simply that what I am now interested in is rarely in stock anywhere other than in specialist stores. Jessops wouldn't be in business long if they were reliant on my purchases.
Unfortunately they seem positioned to supply the people who are now satisfied with cameras in their phones. When I was last in my local Jessops store they didn't appear to have much of anything. They are expensive for memory cards and short of any accessories other than cases for compact cameras. They also seem reliant on own brand items which wouldn't be a problem if they also stocked branded equivalents. I used to buy Epson paper from them but their prices went up, closely followed by Epson paper disappearing from the shelves.
If my local store closed would I miss it? I very much doubt it, in fact I am not even sure they are still there!
GeoffR is saying what I was tempted to distill into a shorter para - Jessops have become a business that doesn't serve what it's customers need. In my last 7 visits to Jessops they only had what I wanted once.
They had what you wanted on one occasion, you was lucky. they always seem to have everything but when I go in!
[QUOTE]staff seem to lack technical knowledge][/QUOTE]
Also customer skills. I never ever go into the Salisbury branch as they are always rude to their customers, unless you are spending money.
Well I have to say they're much improved over the last few years. Three years ago, they had gone lowest common denominator, but these days in the branches I go in there's much more interesting stuff (although too dear) and staff with some knowledge. They seem much busier again, too, as a result. Admittedly, there are still lots of old-format stores, but the newer format seems to cater for enthusiasts again. I'm sure they do need to close some stores, but I do think they're much closer to getting it right now than for many, many years.
Insolvency is a symptom rather than a cause - but Nipponcamera has a point - here's to the resurgence of the independents !!!
That simply is not happening, and imho it is unlikely that it will. The last independent store in Newcastle city centre (Bonsers) closed on Saturday, Jacobs of course went last year. The last independent in Darlington also closed in the latter part of last year. Simply many of them will not survive, a combination of the economic climate, the digital changeover and the huge internet marketplace at the buyers fingertips. Some of course will thrive, but just think of the number of casualties in recent years. Jessops realistically should probably be looking at closing more than fifteen outlets, at least the new store format is a great improvement, but sadly many will use them as a viewing or demonstration facility and then order from a cheaper supplier.
The independents best hope is lack of local competition, or specialisation. Hopefully some of those remaining, such as Dale and Ffordes will continue to trade successfully, but they are not really in the same arena as Jessops, or many other independents.
Multiple chain stores come with higher costs than can be supported, now that they do online retailing they need fewer shops.
In the past high streets could support several shops selling the same products as this was where price comparisons were done.
To day a single outlet may be the only one within thirty miles or more. Next day delivery does not even need that.
These products (or people) who need hands on decisions, are increasingly having to sent or travel further.
It will soon be the norm except for weekly commodity supplies.
Word on the Twitter gossip grapevine is they're about to announce they're going into administration: http://www.bitterwallet.com/deathwatch-jessops-heading-into-administration/61686
Better get my 32Gb memory card or hell to pay!!
On a more serious note, not sure they will be missed. Sad for the 2 thousand jobs though.
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