What makes a retailer great?

During the survey Outdoor Enthusiasts were asked what makes a retailer great. Their open-ended answers are below.

Ready stock of quality items available. Knowledgeable staff puts it over the top.

They aren’t pushy sales people.

The variety as well as product that is beneficial and reliable to the customer.

They actually use the products, so they have real knowledge of how they work and what is best. They have items that are practical, not just selling points.

I enjoy retailers that have a big selection of different clothing items, and options. I also like the retailer to be competitive in pricing. I used to enjoy shopping at cabelas, but now I hardly go there because it was usually 10% higher priced than other sporting goods stores.

Variety and value.

Good prices, quality and reputation.

If they have a big selection at the best comparable prices.

Staying out of politics, carrying quality brands, giving back to the community, sales, parking lots that don’t suck.

A variety of products, specialty ordering, a good website, friendly personable knowledgeable associates.

Friendly, patient, knowledgeable staff. Extremely helpful when they are assigned to a department in which they have personal experience. Willingness on the part of the store to order products that they don’t have.

Variety. Knowledgeable staff. Comparable prices.

Good across the board selection and great prices!

Sellers of high quality, environmentally and socially responsible gear and apparel with friendly and knowledgeable gear heads.

Complete knowledge of every product you ask the retailer about.  The retailer knows exactly where to find what you’re looking for and offers the best and latest product out along with any sales or promotions. The retailer will also ask you several questions about what you do. Running, hiking, etc. to help them better understand what you’re looking for.

People that “look the part” at what they’re selling. Like at an outdoor store, the sales person should actually model the sport by what they wear. You can hike in a suit, but would you?

Shop for all my outdoor needs in one place.

Choices in quality.

By having all the goods I could ever want for my outdoor needs.

One that dose its research on quality equipment and then provided the quality and not just anything they find. Also if they are able to have lots of different styles of equipment for me to pick the bet match for my outdoor activity.

Knowledge of their gear and the needs of their customers is paramount.  Having good selections and fair prices helps, but local knowledge trumps a good deal.

Selection, price & knowledgeable employees.

Someone who understands the products and has suggestion based on experience.

A store sells a good variety of quality products with a highly knowledgable staff who also wears & uses the equipment. A retailer who helps provide information on how to best use the product & provides tips to have a better outdoor experience is the one I choose to give my business to.

Multiple brands available, knowledge of those brands, great pricing.

Attention to detail with regards to merchandise selection, not over assorted. Too many choices can hinder the story the brands are trying to tell as it gets too cluttered and the message becomes diluted.Often it is difficult to narrow the selection as it becomes increasingly more difficult to find/compare products. On top of this quality of the products offered and the interaction with the staff. Avoid sales pitches, but engaging staff who wants to help provide insights and share experiences without overpowering the conversation, can talk the talk and not be overly opinionated on what brands they prefer. Ability to sell to every level of user.

Knowledge of sales associates with the equipment or gear, pricing, and rewards benefits.

Good staff on the floor that are KNOWLEDGEABLE, not BS artists.

An informed sales person.

Quality, useful products at reasonable prices.

The staff should be knowledgable about the products they carry. They should be able to easily make product comparisons across brands. The best retailer’s have staff that have actually used the gear/clothing that they are selling.

Fair prices, good customer service.

Product selection, employee availability to explain products, try product on. Return policy.

High end outdoor apparel, selection.

The variety of goods to browse and the knowledge ofthe staff to help purchase the correct items.

Wide variety of options in brands, fit, and prices.

The range of products offered and the knowledge and ability of the staff to help you reach a decision on what product best fits you and your intended use.

They know and use the gear they sell. I actually come across some of the sales people in the field using the gear.

I like local retailers that stand behind their products, if there is a problem with quality.

Knowledge on how to use all the products and ability to advise what to buy and what not to buy based on what i am looking for.

Excellent customer service and knowledgeable sales staff.

Tight, curated assortment with consistent sizing.

Having reliable gear and not lying to you.

Large selection of the gear I am looking for and the knowledge/experience of the staff. We have an excellent outdoor sport retailer in Burlington, VT and it is clear that the staff are all outdoor enthusiasts who know the gear. A good retailer to me has the gear I like and am familiar with, but also has comparable gear from brands that are new to me. I trust a retailer that lives what they sell. The other outdoor retailer I shop at in town has great prices, which I love, but I would not go there seeking professional advice about the gear.  Expertise in equipment and a large selection with a fair price is my ideal retailer.

Having different categories of different brands and items.

Great selection, knowledgable friendly staff, competetive prices.

Variety of clothing and shoes with lots of sizes to choose from.

Gear that will perform and people who know how to use the gear.

Rewards discounts and/or points that are earned for buying items either online or at a store.

Section, organization of inventory, helpful staff.

They are a local family owned business.

When they have the brands I love! When the store is neatly organized into brands do items are easy to find.

Friendly but even more important they know what they are doing.   Through with analyzing my gait, my running habits and know brands to recommend.

Good sales, good inventory.

Easy to find merchandise, and has sales people that are both helpful and knowledgeable.

Face to face interactions assist in profile choice.

Quality merchandise and affordability as well as backing products they sell.

Great prices, variety of products, knowledgeable staff.

Not over priced, variety of stock, reputation, customer service.

They need to offer lots of options but high quality options.  My favorite outdoor store is REI because they have a great selection of high quality productions, plus they have an excellent return policy.

Proven gear at reasonable prices.

In general customer service goes a long way.

Great selection, competitive pricing, helpful and knowledgeable staff and easy exchanges.

Awesome customer service, as they commonly are more than online prices. Secondly return policy is paramount.

Service and prices.

Knowledgeable experienced staff who regularly engage in the outdoor activities you are shopping for OR who are experts in those sports; selection of top performing items.

They have great customer appreciation. They are willing to work with a customer if a product has a defect, and they listen to and understand what the customers want when they create new gear.

Good selection, fair prices and a knowledgeable staff.

Their diversity in products and options.

Balance of price and knowledge.

Customer service, knowledge of product and ability to make recommendations.

A wide selection of items at Amazon-competitive prices, with knowledgeable staff who have tried/tested/learned about the products they’re selling, so they can help me make the best decision possible. A “warranty” or satisfaction guarantee, like Moosejaw has where they accept returns up to a year later if the item is not to your liking, are also a huge incentive for me to give a brand my loyalty.

It is a one of a kind store with excellent customer service and knowledgeable staff.

Great variety of products and prices and friendly, knowledgeable staff.

To have not only great products but extensive knowledge of the products to accurately inform the customer. Gear is only good if you know how to use it correctly.

Curated options, sells items from small gear companies  not found at larger stores.

Customer service and product based knowledge.

Helpful associates, clean stores, and quick service.  Reasonable return policies are also a must!

Employees that know their business, REI would be a good example, if you work in bicycles you’re probably an avid cyclist.

Helpful employees.

Lower-than-MSRP and wide selection.

Selection and Pricing are the primary factors in my opinion. Availability of sales/clearance/deals is another factor that sets great retailers apart from the rest.

A retailer who can recommend based on the activity as well as give insight to specific pros and cons of an item. Someone well informed and helpful.

Convenience. How the staff interacts with me. Selection. Price.  Consistency.

Having a broad range of quality products.

You get to try on apparel, so availability of merchandise is important.

Wide range of options available in all sizes, smart and engaging staff.

They have everything you need.

Knowing your shopper.

Selection and prices, I usually do my own independent research.

Good reputation, quality products, and warranty.

Quality of service, variety of product.

First-hand experience with a product.  And, if a salesperson doesn’t have experience to bring me to another sales associate who does.

Competitive pricing & knowledge of products.

Their return policy and prices. It’s nice if I can try something out and return it if it doesn’t perform well.

Specialized products, knowledgeable staff,  easy to navigate, unbeatable prices.

Deep knowledge of the performance/technical needs for an activity and I like having a low, mid, and high range option. I also like a high-performance standard for what the retailer carries, so any price level I know I am getting good value. This is especially important if they carry brands I am not familiar with.

Knowledge and have to be nice to customers. Assortment of products to choose from.

To me, a great retailer stands behind their product. The materials and craftsmanship used for the item is very important to me. I think that USA made is a bonus and when able retailers should source accordingly. An item of clothing or gear is more interesting to me if the retailer can give a story or a personal account as to why it works so well for them.

Knowledgeable employees, quality equipment and gear that is easy to find.

Variety, knowledgeable employee’s, organized and clean store.

Product offfering, how product is displayed, knowledge of staff/access to product information online, reviews for better or worse, competitive pricing.

Good selection of products and employees that know the details of those products and preferably have experience using them.

Wide variety of items that I can get easily in my size, without having to order.

Good selection, customer service, and return policy.

Prices and standing behind their products are the most important things!

The Customer Service and style of clothes.

They have my size in stock, sales and coupons.

Diverse selection of brands.

Large variety of products, good prices (even if it means only shopping the sale rack), quality products, knowledgeable staff that are available for questions and not hiding away from customers.

Variety, easy to get to, sales.

Good varied selection in my sizes and friendly helpful staff.

Their complete knowledge of the gear, performance of their gear, and how everything will withstand the conditions.

I think some of the small local retailers are more helpful and knowledgeable about the products and the area.

Customer service. If they answer questions but don’t try to push their products on me and don’t pressure me to buy, then I’m actually more inclined to support their business over someone who clearly just wants to make a buck.

Wide selection, knowledgeable staff.

Helpful, they understand your need and the products performance.

Knowledge, options, interest in the sport.

Variety of brands, availability of items, and price point. Often times the local retailers are over priced.

Knowledgeable, wide variety of products and prices to choose from, FRIENDLY staff. Too many staff of companies are overly prejudice towards certain products and really it comes down to personal preference on most items.

To be able to explain things about the product and having a lot of knowledge about the product.

Rotating inventory. Seasonal merchandise. Knowledgeable staff.

Product knowledge, no pressure sales technique.

Knowledge of products, good quality, reasonable prices.

They have great customer service and know their products.

Quality of selection, knowledgeable staff and good return policy.

When they have a variety of quality items at reasonable prices. They also should have a good website with good shipping options.

Helpful employees.

Organized display.

Having employees that know what they’re talking about  and having a good selection of products.

Helpful staff that ask questions about how I use equipment and have knowledge of fit.  A great retail experience makes it easy to find what I’m looking for through merchandising.  I also prefer an environment that feels welcoming for all levels of ability (not judgy or exclusive).

Knowledge in the product.

Product knowledge, user credibility, character/culture.

Quality of merchandise, good selection of brands, (high end, moderate price), good selection of sizes, and helpful/knowledgeable staff.

In this time of people moving into the ‘ordering online’ behavior, I personally try to get everything I can from a brick and mortar store. Even if I find something online, I’d rather buy it, try it on, talk to a sales person about the product. So much can be learned by doing this that I find it better to judge a products worthiness by talking to a sales rep who is in most cases an avid user of the gear like me. A retailer understands that there are still people like me who need that connection physically and mentally. They also know that customer happiness is important. This is why I don’t shop at Walmart, for example.

When they can recommend me the best equipment for various outdoor activities.

Plenty of designs and styles available. Large displays and friendly knowledgeable sales people.

Knowledge of staff and the quality of product that suits my specific needs.

A big selection.

They put aside money and time, and focus on the customer needs. I work at a bike shop and one of the brands we sell has and education site that has videos on sales. One of the things it mentioned was that in any store, there’s a story about a hero. But the hero’s not the sales person. The customer is the hero, and the sales person is their guide through their quest.

Knowledge of the merchandise and selection.

Salesman that know the product and the task.

Variety of products, helpful staff, good return policy, competitive pricing.

The knowledge of the activity and the local area and how it is applicable.

Assortment and size availability.

Lots of knowledge, decent inventory, competitive prices.

Variety of options, availability of sizes/color options and staff that is attentive and knowledgeable.

What makes a great retailer is having exceptionally knowledgeable staff and a nice inventory of items to meet all sorts of needs.

They know their customers, have a thorough knowledge of all their products and the skill level of customer they are appropriate for, and they carry a variety of products, but not an overwhelming variety.

Customer service, variety of brands to choose from. Great prices.

Fair prices.

That they have experts to help when I’m making a high-cost specialty purchase. I want to trust the sales person and where I go (REI) I totally trust them.

They have more to offer. More likely to have a big sale. More sizes and colors.

Selection and product knowledge.  Everyone who works at the store participates in outdoor activities so they are users of the gear & apparel they sell.

Good quality products, good selection, knowledgeable staff and product guarantee.

Good selection at affordable prices, pleasant shopping atmosphere (well laid out, clean, well lit), knowledgeable sales associates who are available to help but let me be if I want to browse.

Appropriate customer service, selection, and items in stock.

Going above and beyond.

I believe it is two part. The product itself has to perform and withstand everything it is meant for. Also, the company itself either needs to be contributing to the environment in a specific way or back their product so well that warranties, repairs, and returns are easy.

Knowing their customers needs.

Quality brands and wide variety for specific hobbies. Think REI instead of Dicks.

Understanding of the product and how to put the item to use. Also selection available between brands, styles, etc.

Affordable selection and a knowledgable sales staff that’s not going to be judgy if I want to try stuff on then go find the lowest price online.

Excellent employees to help when needed . Also to have a variety of items to choose from.

Good selection of high performance gear, footwear and apparel.  I typically research before I go, so knowledgeable sales staff is less important.

Good products at a good price with knowledgeable staff.

Great value, knowledgeable staff.

Staff with like minded interests and experience, good selection, sales and ability to special order.

Customer service, great selection, and knowledge about the product.

Provides a wide variety of clothing and shoes in various degree of performance.

Reviews from customers, variety of great gear and if online free shipping and free returns.

Knowledge, product selection, competitive pricing.

How they pay attention to their customers.

Friendliness, knowledge of products.

Knowledgeable, helpful, good prices, convenient location, offers on line shopping.

A great retailer is in touch with its client base, modifying and making changes as needed to remain vital and up to date.

You have more options compared to local stores they might not carry everything you need and can also be more expensive.

Variety, knowledge of salesperson, availability of my size (plus size).

They must have variety and if they have the merchandise I need in stock and in the sizes I need. If an associate is available to answer any questions I may have to help me make an informed purchase is a huge factor to me.

Having selection and people who know the product!

Broad selection of choices and informative sales people who use and wear the gear.  Believable and realistic feedback as a result.

Their knowledge of specific end-use and product knowledge.

They have a lot of knowledge about the products and they don’t follow you around the whole time you ads shopping.

Honest and knowledgeable staff, that acts like they don’t care if you buy anything or not. Good selection of quality gear/clothes.

Knowledgeable staff that can assess a customers needs and point them in a direction that will satisfy all of their needs/wants. The assortment of product should also be good and offer good, better, best options.

There is enough staff that you can find someone free or if not free, close-by where they can help you after they finish with another customer (Apple and REI are both great in this). You can both see the color and fit options and then try on your size. Store makes sense. Great return policy. Free shipping.

Customer Service and good product selection.

Having knowledgeable staff.Having a great selection and always in stock.cooperative pricing and higher quality goods that last longer and can take the rugged outdoor use daily.

Knowledgeable friendly staff that is willing to help.

Good selection, helpful and knowledgeable sales people. Plnty of in stock products and the ability to check out as quickly as possible.

Good selection. Knowledge of their product.  Real world knowledge, not just what the manufacture states. I want the salesman to have used the product or has at least known people that have used the product.

Being able to try on multiple sizes and types.

Having a varied selection, but most importantly knowledgeable associates.

Mon, Aug 28, 2017
Vol 1, Issue No. 33

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