Tuesday, 17 May 2011

My favorite (and not so ) retailers (part one)

So a while ago I told Marcia that I have something to say about Ackermans.The other day she reminded me about it, so I thought I will do you a run-down of my favorite, and not so, retailers. My joys and my frustrations. So here goes, without any prejudice:

I hate you dear Ackermans because:
  1. Your stores smell. I am smell sensitive and I can tell you, they smell. All of them.
  2. You are totally overpriced for claiming that you are a budget retailer. I looked for PJ's for the boys this year - you offered one set for R110, cheapest I could find was R99 - gosh, at Woollies I can get two sets for R 160.
  3. Your tracksuits make those pesky little balls after one wash only! Kid you not!
  4. L's one top's zip broke after 3 uses - not on!
  5. Your younger girls range end at age 7 - my Princess, although age 6 wears size 7-8 clothes. Your offering for that age group is rather pathetic, bordering on sexy. Black and studs etc. She wants pink and flowers and Hello Kitty.
  6. To return something is like extracting a tooth - and you are always made felt as asking too much to exchange anything.
  7. When you return or exchange something or whenever a supervisor is called, they do not greet you, or meet your eyes. They grumpily just talk rather irritated to the cashier, in a language you do nto understand. It's rude. Ok.
My rating for Ackermans: 4/10

Pick 'n Pay:
I love you Pick 'n Pay because:
  1. You have Smart shopper cards and give me Vitality points and cash back on my Vitality card.
  2. You exchanged and old lady's broken pack of biscuits the other day. I though that was rather cool of you as she as clearly eaten a few already.
  3. You have those cute girl dress and pants sets - the Princess love those and they got to age 13!
  4. You often have nice budget items for me to buy - I bought a great cardi there the other day and some super comfy R30 slippers this weekend.
  5. Your cashiers are often friendly and greet one. Talk to the kids and joke with them.Makes it all a bit more pleasant.
  6. Your Pick n Pay choice range is great quality.
  7. You give that price/gram or price/item details on your shelves. For that, I love you most.
I hate you Pick n Pay because:
  1. It was such a mission to exchange a item of clothing that was too small. In fact I think you more easily replaced the old lady next to me's biscuits.
  2. You do not have those nice "car" trolleys in all your shops. I need them - the easiest way for me to shop with 3 kids.
  3. Your no name range is really no the cheapest always.
My rating for Pick 'n Pay: 8/10

I actually do not often shop at Edgars, but if I do not find something for the kids at the usual haunts I go there. I also have a cash card where I get points at CNA too and spend at Edgars. For myself, I buy little there because I do not really like the style of their clothes.
I love you Edgars because:
  1. You often have something I do not find somewhere else.
  2. Your supervisors always greet the customer with a smile and expalin what they do if they need to be called.
  3. You exchange without asking questions - you once exchanged a top that shrank in the first wash without a tag or anything. No questions.
  4. You stock great perfumes at good prices. 
  5. You always stock good standard pants in classic styles.
I hate you Edgars because:
  1. It is never fast or easy to use cash back vouchers and a supervisor always have to be called.
My rating for Edgars: 9/10 

I hate you PEP because:
  1. Your stores also smell. Nauseatingly so.
  2. Your tracksuits make those little fur balls after the first wash.
  3. The zips on your tops fail - and soon. I am buying nothing with a zip from you ever again.
  4. You have nothing for girls 7 and over. And it looks like the same for boys.
I love you PEP because:
  1. Your cashiers are friendly.
  2. You are truly well priced. 
My rating for PEP: 6/10

I hate you Truworths because:
  1. You let your cashiers always try to convince a customer that they need a card. I do not have clothes cards - I do not work that way. I do not always have to defend my position at your tills.
  2. You seriously have the most scratchy labels in the entire industry . If I buy something from you I have to unsew the labels and make sure no bit of thread is left. (Ok I am tactle sensitive)
  3. You really are overpriced - if I compare you with more boutique like stores you are in the same price category  and really not exclusive at all. 
 I love your Truworths because:
  1. You have nice evening style stuff year round - a life saver at times.
  2. You have Ginger Mary - although in all honesty the label has gone down-hill. 
My rating for Truworths: 6/10

I love you Woolworths because:
  1.  You never have an issue to exchange anything.
  2. Your pretty younger girls clothes go to age 9 in some instances. Yeah!
  3. You always have something for me (clothes wise) that I love.
  4. You always stock pantihose, and mutlipacks of panties.
  5. You always have good, work type stuff for Hunter.
  6. Although some of your ranges are more expensive, some of the kids clothes is just as well prices as say, Ackermans, and the quality is far superior.
  7. I love those two packs of whatever - PJ's, track suit pants, T-shirts.
  8. You always have Disney Princess stuff, and Hello Kitty stuff to fill my Princess' heart with joy.
  9. Not all your boys stuff is Ben 10 or Bakugun. There is pretty ordinary stuff too.
  10. Your food is always good quality. And you do quality checks all the time.
  11. Your lightly smoked snoek must be one of the best kept secrets ever - well priced (same as frozen at Picn N Pay) and never frozen, a great 15 minute meal that everybody loves. 
  12.  Your Woolworths shopper card has discounts etc - great guys! 
  13. Those dinner for 4 under..... promotions. Great stuff.
I hate you Woolworth because:
  1.  It always takes too long to exchange something - long long queues.
  2. You do not have 10 items or less, fast tills anymore. So lunch time buys with a few items is not on anymore because you wait so long behind people with trolleys. Get those back and I will be a happy camper. 
My rating for Woolworths: 9,5/10.

I still have lots to say about both Dischem and Clicks - oh yes and Checkers and Spar, but let's just leave that for a part 2 post as the ones above is mostly clothing (and a bit food) orientated.

So what do you think about our retailers and which do you love or hate? Do you agree or disagree with me?


  1. what I was looking for, thanks

  2. I rate stores mainly by their service and ease to me, the customer. As you know, I highly value time. So, in terms of that, Ackermans is simply the worst of everyone. Going through the security at the door is the same intense process (only more cumbersome because the people are less used to admin - how tactful am I?!) as at the till and they both take Sweet Forever. I have decided if the kids get things from A and they don't fit, I am just giving them away - I cannot bear going there anymore.

    I think Edgars is the easiest to return/ exchange/ use Cashback. Esp now that you can do returns and pay for new things at the same tills.

    Woolworths I love returning things except when they tell me the thing is no longer on their system - then I give it away. Once I insisted they gave me a refund (baby shower things) and they said, "fine, R20 each, and I knew the stuff was at least R60 each"

    I never, ever shop at Truworths...

    I love P&P for food and my clothes (sweatshirts, etc) but not for babies' clothes. their stuff is not good quality (vests stretch, etc) but also easy to exchange except for ONE branch - Park Meadows who has a manager who thinks I am out to rob them, even though I spend thousands there every month, so I shop exclusively at Bedford Centre.

    Pep is my new favourite for household organising stuff. Baskets and such - go look - you'll be surprised. And I like their kids' jeans and tops. The sizes are a bit small so I have to buy one size bigger for each kid. But easy to exchange and get refunds~!

    Sorry for the essay :)

  3. @Marcia Oh I love that you wrote and essay - somehow I knew you would. I tweeted to all the retailers (apart form PEP whom I could not find, and Ackermans, who has a handle but have never used it). And only Woolworths came back to me.  I always return things very quickly so have never had that issue at Woollies.

  4. I agree with everything...except the Truworths labels dont worry me! LOL

  5. Awesome post. you should send it to all the stores and your local newspaper

  6. @feb95f4149751076e0fea22090072d26  I am totally surprised other people agree with the smell thing - I am a bit OCD with that.

  7.  Oh how I agree with you about Ackermans and Pep smelling.  I'm not even sensitive and they stink for me too.  I don't get to Pep much (cos there aint one nearby) but Ackermans at Woodlands Boulevard sucks.  The staff are RUDE, incompetent and they never have nice stuff for my boy in his size.  An seriously - purple is a colour for 7 year old boys??

  8. @5f670ff785189de1e67524b365b53953  Really purple? There is a PEP at Atterbury value mart

  9.  I miss Woolworths the most...hate Checkers and Pick 'n Pay is okay.....
    Reading this brought back lots of memories for me and reminds me why I must not buy my grandkids clothing at a few shops that you mentioned...
    The smell...oh I know that smell, we have it here as well...its certain shops with cheap clothing that smell the same all around the world...

  10. @1483693f2995fb2fb8d161d49d40acdb  Checkers might surprise you these days...

  11. I love, love Woolies...not just because they have the best quality clothing and food, but also because they have an awesome Community Responsibility policy.

  12. @526350ebf642a2873ae5bbb618e71f90  Of course, forgot to mention that, but yes, I know they do a lot.

  13. Awesome post :) made me smile when I read them because I "got" everything you said... similar to my experiences

  14. Great run down:-) 

  15. What a great post!  I hope some of your comments/thoughts get back to these stores and they work on your concerns as it sounds like you are not at all alone.  WOW! 

  16.  I kept nodding in agreement reading this.  I’m so with you about Ackermans being overpriced and smelly.  I love love love Woolies!  They rock and I would give them a 9 ½ out of 10 too

  17.  Wow!  It's interesting to hear about shopping in other countries.  Our big options are Target, Walmart, Old Navy, department stores like Macy's or small chain shops like my beloved White House/Black Market, but they only have my clothes there.

  18. Loooooooved this!!!!  I am always moaning about shops! :-)
    I agree with you re Truworths ' pricing!  I paid R400 for a COTTON only dress there a few years ago and after the first wear, the hemming came loose.  Naturally, I could not return it as it had been worn.  Sad thing is, I love their clothes as much as I hate their prices!!
    I mostly shop at Edgars or Woolies (for myself).  HATE that Edgars RARELY seem to have the correct sizes on their hangers!  Have bought a pack of panties to finde one larger size in the pack of smalls.  Naturally, it could not be returned... 
    Oh and the SMELL thing - I find it worse at Jet. Ugh.  I wonder if it's the smelly feet of those trying on shoes - it's horrid.
    With my little one growing so rapidly, the best place for me right now is Ackermans.  But I do find their quality not all that great, sadly.

  19. Great lists! Do agree about Woolies! Number One! :D

  20. LOVED this post!
    You are so right about that smell inside Ackermans and Pep. I don't really do ackermans anymore and mostly get stuff from Pep for my Toddler for everyday schoolwear. I go to Woollies for nicer clothes that he can wear to church and parties and other functions. Also, I buy both my kids shoes at Woollies only. Best quality ever. Pep don't have stuff for my Tween and I usually get nice stuff for him at Edgars - casual and smart wear. Honestly, if money wasn't an option I would only ever shop at Woollies. They rock!
    ps...I LOVE those R100 dinner for 4 promotions. Especially on the weekends.

  21. This was a fun trip down memory lane for me.  I totally agreed with you on every store, expecially Ackermans.  They sell garbage in my opinion. 

  22. good idea! I honestly haven't been out shopping enough lately to even have an opinion on anywhere! ha! Life is too busy - I'm lucky if I get to the grocery store once a week.

  23. I agree with almost everything you said - especially the lables!!! But then I have to unstich lables in all my clothes.  They drive me mad.

    With regards to Edgars - their baby vests are just ODD!  They dont fit the size of child they say and they strech so quickly.  Bably OL is still wearing 3 - 6 months there (and could only start wearing them at about 8 months because otherwise she drowned in them.  Woolworths vest are tall and skinny and have a weird shape around the leg - not good for a baby with cuddly thights - thankfuly they seem to fit better now she is a bit older.  Ackermans were the best, but a did not last as long.

    Can't wait to hear what you say about Checkers - we buy quite a bit of stuff there but avoid their chicken.  It always looks TERRIBLE!!!!

  24. I LOVE this post! mwahahahaha! I LOL at the smelly shops. I too have a sensitive nose, and HATE Ackermans, Jet and Pep for that reason.
    And yes - the quality of clothes from Mr Price, Ackermans and Jet is disgusting.... they fall apart after 1 wash x
    I love Hang Ten for me, WW for the kids and Jeep for the Hub x 

  25. Ordinary Life  Glad to meet a fellow tactile sensitive soul.

  26. Very interesting indeed! I feel similarly about most of the shops, but PnP is by far my favourite!


So what's on your mind?