All I keep hearing around me is ‘the high street is dying’, ‘shops are closing down’… well, if retailers rely on people like me (working mother of 2 boys under 10) to help them survive, they might be in a bit of trouble…
Sadly, I did most, if not all my Christmas shopping online… Where do you buy laser guns, books, a headset and crocodile dentist these days?
I wanted to go to the shops, I wanted to walk the streets under the lights, wrapped up warmly, hot chocolate at hand, you know, the Christmas shopping cliché! I wanted to get advice on which toy to buy, which headset had a microphone that would definitely work with the Xbox. In some ways, I’d even want to be lured or convinced to buy something that I didn’t even know I needed! To me, that’s what retail is all about: purchasing something from a passionate product expert, i.e. someone that made eye contact with me, smiled, asked me what I was looking for, listened, advised, suggested, wrapped, took payment and wished me a lovely Christmas on my way out.
Forgetting the fact that I wouldn’t even have known where to go and buy the things my kids wanted, I knew that wherever I would have gone, I wouldn’t have found everything under one roof, I may not have found it at all, and sadly, I don’t think the salesperson would have helped me as much as the online reviews did…
Also, in order to actually go to the shops, I’d need to arrange for someone to watch my kids for the afternoon, I would have had to carry all of my shopping home (had I found what I was looking for) on a crammed train.
Why don’t shopping centres / high streets offer something a bit like Ikea does: a free supervised area where you can drop off your kids for a couple of hours? And while you are at it a free delivery service to your house.
Actually, maybe they do offer that already. I wouldn’t know, I never go to the shops.
I don’t know who and how, but someone needs to fix this… all I want for next Christmas is NOT a recycling bin that’s bursting at the seems with smiley cardboard packaging. There has to be a compromise, save the high street and save the planet!