Improve the customer service experience at my store!

Dreamer: Patrick Palmer      Business Profile
Dream Location: Hampton, IA
Contest Month: August 2010
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Voting Ends: Aug 31 11:59 PM
Dream Rank: #2
Number of Votes: 1279
Have you ever walked up to a store where there was no window in the door and you wondered what was on the other side? Have you had your arms full and couldn't get the door handle or the attention of anyone inside to help you? Have you had a checkout counter that really wasn't made for your height?

Well, if the answer to any of these questions is "YES" then I would appreciate your vote for this month's Dream Big Grow Here contest.

I want to get a new "customer friendly" door and a new "customer & employee friendly" counter for my store location.

People walk by the store and look into the window to see what I'm doing, we can't see the customers approach the door and it is a very unfriendly "Welcome" into our location. Our customer service counter is cluttered and is too low and doesn't have enough storage on the back side of it.

Will you help?

I know this won't create any new jobs, but it will increase business and will help unclutter the store as well. I'd appreciate your vote.

Watch the video as well.... you'll see what I mean.



Herk posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 9:13:58 AM You might also check your area for a habitat for humanity resale store if you end up doing this out of pocket. I saw an aluminum store door with frame, closer, deadbolt and keys at the one near us for $75 last week with full length tempered glass and it had the foil tape around the glass ready to connect to the alarm system. They took it out of a building that was converted to a store when they converted it back to a residential. Lots of other cheap building materials at the resale stores too. Also check those places that sell second hand building materials.
Herk posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 9:08:04 AM Thunder's right there - the "charity" will win by being seen as doing something noble unlike someone who works daily providing income to themselves and others if able and sending tax revenue into the system rather than being tax exempt and drawing from the system. I didnt mean anything by the note about taking items to the customers car, that was more a blanket statement for others that might not. Police department across the street doesnt make it any safer, just makes it quicker for them to respond when you call about a break in since police most times are investigative (post crime) rather than preventative (pre crime). Anyone of us realizes that we are the primary source to prevent crimes to our businesses and insure against the occasion that our methods and practices fail. I'm sure you are just as vigilant in thinking about how it can occur and preventing it. Small towns make it less risky but it also makes people less vigilant that it might happen. Anyway hope you come close even if you are beat out by the blanket makers.
ThunderDaBison posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 5:54:34 AM Hang it up, Pat! You're not going to win. You operate your business in rural Iowa, you generate revenues for the state through sale taxes, you're a for-profit business and you don't have a direct link with God!
Pat posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 12:27:01 AM We DO take the computers to the vehicles for people and we are right across from the police, break ins are probably deterred a bit. But, thanks for the great ideas... now I just need 500 votes a day!
Herk posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 12:24:50 AM Good point on having customer's machines out in the open. Small town sure but pilferage can happen anywhere and in this case people have their personal info on them plus when you are closed it makes those a target of a grab and go. You need a lockable plywood or metal cabinet for them, or a room in back that is secure would be better. All alarms do is tell you someone broke in, they dont keep people from breaking in and just makes them work faster and leave since it takes the police a while to even know an alarm was tripped.
Herk posted the following comment on 8/27/2010 12:19:38 AM 9 lite door goes for about $150 prehung, get one same size as present slab door BUT switch the door to open in with hinges on the wall side. My guess is you have to work all this out with the building owner you lease from as well. Rather than a round standard knob get a lever handled type. The window can be opened to a full single lite with a Dremel to cut the plastic crosses off the plastic leaving the outer frame only as its already a single double pane window. No need on a small shop for an energy sucking automatic door. You could get an autocloser and take the bolt from the regular door handle and use only the deadbolt for lockup, put a brass plate on the stile so people push the door but you'll have to have a handle inside to open going out. When customer pickup it's just good business and courtesy to take their unit to the car for them.
Anonymous posted the following comment on 8/25/2010 2:32:48 PM Great suggestion from Julie about the door. A common mistake of businesses is to make the whole counter be high. It is better to have two or three different height sections of the countertop, so that customers of different heights or who might be in wheelchairs can still be comfortable.
pcrcs posted the following comment on 8/25/2010 8:16:04 AM My shop has a glass door that opens into the store by simply pushing; no knobs to turn or grab. I have large windows on both sides of the door, which helps because the door is unfortunately frosted.
TekTime posted the following comment on 8/24/2010 5:20:55 PM I agree that a new, glass door will greatly improve the look of your store, and will offer a more "inviting" look.
Steve posted the following comment on 8/23/2010 7:28:18 PM A new door will make a big difference.
Michele posted the following comment on 8/20/2010 11:46:27 PM As far as the counter space....while people in town and close by know Pat others coming from other areas don't. If they walk in and see laptops sitting here, there and everywhere they may be nervous about leaving theirs with him. However, by having a better counter space and the extra storage area Pat is talking about he will have a nice area to store laptops he is working on. It builds confidence in the people leaving their items with him. The best business comes from referrals....what impression would you want to give? :-)
Dreamer posted the following comment on 8/19/2010 11:35:31 PM Computors are heavy the new door would be a great access to The Computor Guy,,,
MJ posted the following comment on 8/19/2010 11:26:36 AM As an aging "babyboomer" automatic doors are always appreciated!
dan posted the following comment on 8/19/2010 2:21:35 AM I do agree with the door. Maybe even an automatic one like julie suggested. Would you be able to get one of those with only a thousand dollars? (You've got my vote.)
nanner posted the following comment on 8/18/2010 8:49:09 PM I enjoy the sevice.The building should reflect that whaen you enter .The door should be glass to see more of the insdies.Maybe some paint too!
Pat Palmer posted the following comment on 8/18/2010 3:32:54 PM Neither will probably help draw more business.... BUT, if you have had to carry your computer here, you know that if I can get the door for you or carry your computer in, then it will help you. The counter would add a nicer look to my store. Neither will increase business, but the door won't look so forbidding.
dan posted the following comment on 8/18/2010 2:22:42 PM How will this increase business or help the community? I think people know who you are and where you work, and if they need computer repair service I don't think they're going to leave your store because of the low counter or opaque door.
Steve posted the following comment on 8/17/2010 10:44:47 AM The Computer Guy is an asset to Hampton and I'm in favor of any assistance in making this store more customer friendly. Every time I have been inside, the customer experience has been outstanding. It would be wonderful to see the facility more aligned with the high quality service provided by the company.
Hurray! posted the following comment on 8/17/2010 10:25:38 AM Congrats to any business that is willing to make improvements that will make their business more handicap accessible. I try to shop locally but many times the older buildings just are not accessible.
randy posted the following comment on 8/17/2010 10:18:16 AM I glass door preferred to allow for better sight line into the business.
julie posted the following comment on 8/16/2010 8:55:14 PM The door needs to be automatic so when I am coming in, or the many others who come in, with full hands of computer equipment we don't have to almost drop the equipment, put it down to open the doors.

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