Competition lurks in the net

Competition lurks in the net

Ordering a book quickly from your laptop on the sofa just before midnight, or the latest wooden doll's pram for your little one, or a brand-name shoe in the size you tried on in the afternoon in your local shoe store – more and more people are taking advantage of online shopping. This is slowly becoming a problem not only for the retail trade in hochstadt.

One sector that suffers particularly from the internet is the book trade. Elke reitmayer draws attention to her bookstore with some curtained shop windows. "Without us, something f.Hlen" it says on the posters and "leave the click in your city". The bookstore owner has joined the campaign, which is already more widespread in northern germany.

Jobs are lost

Fewer customers and lower sales will also have an impact on personnel policy, notes bookseller reitmayer nuchtern, and she has already had to draw consequences here. She and her employees are fighting the trend. She can already offer an online store on her homepage, but propagates the purchase in the store: "we have read the books, can recommend and advise individually." The book trade still profits from the book price fixing, to which also internethandler adhere.

There is no such price fixing for toys. Birgit brehm, owner of "rappelkiste, has already experienced that customers put a haba wooden doll's pram on her store counter and wanted to know if she could undercut the internet price. Brehm: "but the internet retailers don't pay such rents, don't have representative areas and no staff." Birgit brehm experiences again and again that customers get advice in the store and then buy over the internet.

"People need to be aware of what they are doing", says the businesswoman. "Everything that is not bought in hochstadt is missing from the local retail trade". More and more empty stores and dying city centers are the consequences, which are not worth complaining about. Brehm has already heard from one customer: "you won't be around much longer anyway."

Birgit bruckner, manager of helga's shoe store, tells of customers who have had bad experiences buying children's shoes on the internet and then come back to the store for competent advice and service. But there are also people who try on shoes and ask for the article number, in order to be able to look for them more favorably in the net. With service, advice and a selection you can try on, the shoe retailer hopes to stand up to the competition from the internet.

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