In one of the most comprehensive surveys conducted in the UK, Mobile Choice readers were asked to vote on their experience of visiting mobile phones stores: were they made to feel welcome? Did the experience live up to their expectation of how stores ought to be; what they thought of the stores’ look and feel; and, of course, how well did store staff explain and demonstrate products and services to them…
And the winner, according to thousands of consumers who bought their smartphones, contracts and SIMs in-store is...
This year Three added to its already impressive in-store experience with its Discovery programme. Discovery saw the retailer work with consumers and community groups running free sessions that taught consumers how to use technology better.
Our survey takers liked the fact that the emphasis in these outlets is on two things only; people and products. To aid this, the product range that appears in store is perfectly balanced and the staff are some of the best in the business when it comes to advice. The network’s stores don’t just shift boxes, they are community hubs. Not only do customers in many of its stores just drop by for a chat, the operator also opens its doors to community projects that help increase the public’s understanding of tech. The enthusiasm of the staff is only matched by the inventiveness of its marketing and promotions.
This year Carphone have gone through a process of integrating larger Dixon’s, Curry’s/PC World and Carphone Warehouse stores into 3-in-1 spaces, giving customers access to even more services and technology.
Coming together with PC World and Curry’s has helped it to offer a comprehensive selection of connected technology products and find favour with the paying public. Its Pinpoint sales assistant system is now synonymous with its stores and have proviced customers with increased confidence when buying a product from them.
With the helping hand of owners BT, EE have been increasing what they offer in store, as well as trialling some exciting new technology, recently playing host to a virtual reality showing of a live BT Sport Premier League game in-store.
Their stores continue to get refreshed with a new open-plan design making it easier to interact with staff and see products. As well as brilliantly showcasing all the latest handsets the new layout also brought the brand’s connected product range to customers like never before.
O2 has been experimenting with the very make-up of what a retailer is with its Stores of the Future project. Using exciting new formats these outlets push the boundaries for what a mobile phone store can be and O2 stores have continued to be a great place to go to if you had a question about your phone or a query about your contract.
The brand’s gurus are some of the best in the business when it comes to product knowledge and tips. It’s thanks to these highly skilled individuals that visits to O2 stores become such an informative and worthwhile trip.
They might not be on the high street but ensconced in larger Tesco shops, but that doesn't stop value proposition Tesco from not endearing the public.
Although they work from stands, Tesco Mobile retail staff are not just friendly but also knowledgeable and harbour a true community spirit, often helping OAPs with their contracts and top-ups. So much so that this year’s Phone Shop Idol is Tesco Mobile employee Aaron Robinson...
It is quality and not quantity that are a benchmark of Virgin’s stores. Large, very well kitted out and always with lots of goodies for consumers, they are a magnate for those wanting to refresh their quad play digital connections, whether they are broadband, mobile, phone or telly.
Vodafone has also been pushing the limits of what a mobile phone store can be and how it can function. The addition of offering a broadband hub in store has given staff another string to their bow.