Archived Phone Shopping

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Nothing and I mean nothing ticks me off more than "phone shoppers". Yesterday and today we had calls that were ridiculous! Do you have little girls t-shirts in robin egg blue? Do you have musical greeting cards for weddings? Do you carry glitter toothbrushes in purple? Every single lane was open, sales floor were on constant backups and the operator is yelling for people to get the calls. Really she was yelling on the walkie. Personally I would love her to say "due to the fact it is a holiday weekend there currently are no available team members to take this call. Yes we carry little girl t-shirts in multiple colors. Yes we do carry musical greeting cards, not sure what specific ones we have. Yes we do carry toothbrushes. If you are looking for something very specific you are going to have to get off your entitled ass and come in and look for yourself. The guests in the store are getting our help first. People who call on the phone will be helped AFTER we have taken care of the people who are actually IN our store."
I love our operator, she is a fantastic woman. But by the end of the day I truly hated the sound of her voice.
Rant is over. Thanks for listening
 
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agreed!! i work in softlines so when im covering fitting rooms im the operator. today people kept calling asking for items and i had to ask for sales floor team members to take the call.. i probably asked about 5 times for someone to answer a call.. i know its annoying. but sometimes the guests are so rude so i have to answer and keep calling for sales floor members. i understand people are busy and unavailable to take the call though
 

paidtosmile

Former Team Leader
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OH MY GOD RIGHT. I've been fitting room/operator full-time these past few weeks, and I always try to imply that they should come in and look at the clothes for themselves..

"I can put a couple on a 24 hour hold if you'd like to come check them out"

"Yeah we have ___ ____ and ____ models. They're right across from the electronics boat/counter if you want to come in or go online to get specific information.."

"We have a huge variety of towels, they're at the far end of the home section if you're interested in coming in to look at them."

I'm always FFF, but I make it clear that I'm a phone operator and we're a busy store with tons of guest traffic IN the building.
 
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Deli Ninja

Formerly Softlines Ninja (Now in Deli Flavor)!
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Trust me, the operators hate them as just as much as you do. We often try to help them as best as we can when it's slow enough in the fitting room (if that's where the operator is stationed) but sometimes we can't. Sometimes we BS it and give them a solid answer of "no, I don't thing we have any right now" to get it taken care of. Other times they want very specific details on an item, and that's the worst to me. One lady a while back wanted specific counts and prices on diapers and one poor SL girl had to have been helping her for half an hour on the phone before she was satisfied.
 

paidtosmile

Former Team Leader
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Trust me, the operators hate them as just as much as you do. We often try to help them as best as we can when it's slow enough in the fitting room (if that's where the operator is stationed) but sometimes we can't. Sometimes we BS it and give them a solid answer of "no, I don't thing we have any right now" to get it taken care of. Other times they want very specific details on an item, and that's the worst to me. One lady a while back wanted specific counts and prices on diapers and one poor SL girl had to have been helping her for half an hour on the phone before she was satisfied.

^^^This is true. I use my former GSA knowledge to answer 99% of the guest service questions calls we get, and the item search function to solve about 50% of my other guest questions.
 
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Oh, Lord, that would never work at our store, PTS. They want specifics. Colors, quantities, prices, stuff on hold so they can never come pick it up.

But I will caution you...probably about a 1/3 of my calls are from a TM from another store assisting a guest...so they did get off their butts and come into a store, they are just trying to get things nailed down. Those calls I am a bit more forgiving on. But the other ones? Especially the endless calls looking for Frozen crap that they want put on hold (especially anything Elsa, which we never have, so it's a waste of everyone's time to even bother with these calls) that they probably won't even come pick up, even though they are supposedly desperate for it...just make me want to scream.

But what I really hate? When a guest wants ME to call another store to ask if they have an item so they can get it put on hold. Seriously...this pretty much means that I can't help any other guests or answer my own phone (that no one else can answer unless they are at the main phone since the new phone system went in). There is no reason they shouldn't be able to call the other store themselves. I can give them the phone number, DPCI, and even a cordless phone if they need to borrow it. And don't get me started on when I have to call around to multiple stores.....
 

seasonal

Temporary Worker
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Oh, Lord, that would never work at our store, PTS. They want specifics. Colors, quantities, prices, stuff on hold so they can never come pick it up.

But I will caution you...probably about a 1/3 of my calls are from a TM from another store assisting a guest...so they did get off their butts and come into a store, they are just trying to get things nailed down. Those calls I am a bit more forgiving on. But the other ones? Especially the endless calls looking for Frozen crap that they want put on hold (especially anything Elsa, which we never have, so it's a waste of everyone's time to even bother with these calls) that they probably won't even come pick up, even though they are supposedly desperate for it...just make me want to scream.

But what I really hate? When a guest wants ME to call another store to ask if they have an item so they can get it put on hold. Seriously...this pretty much means that I can't help any other guests or answer my own phone (that no one else can answer unless they are at the main phone since the new phone system went in). There is no reason they shouldn't be able to call the other store themselves. I can give them the phone number, DPCI, and even a cordless phone if they need to borrow it. And don't get me started on when I have to call around to multiple stores.....

haha yea. I had to call dam near every store in my district for the paper towel deal we have this week.
 
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Yes. Phone shopping is the worse, especially when they want exact prices with the variety. "Sorry sir, we have too wide a selection to break down for you. A store visit may be in order."

Worst of all are when TMs call from other stores with moronic and insane requests. We had a TM today call and argue with us that we had a Frozen doll cause the system said we had one OH. Are you serious?! Another sent someone to our store for a piece of furniture and called afterwards for us to hold it and we already were sold out! Idiots.
 
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Yes. Phone shopping is the worse, especially when they want exact prices with the variety. "Sorry sir, we have too wide a selection to break down for you. A store visit may be in order."

Worst of all are when TMs call from other stores with moronic and insane requests. We had a TM today call and argue with us that we had a Frozen doll cause the system said we had one OH. Are you serious?! Another sent someone to our store for a piece of furniture and called afterwards for us to hold it and we already were sold out! Idiots.

I will send guests to another store, if the count is something I believe, like 3-5OH depending on the item. If I can't call another store I send them with the DCPI. Anything below that, I tell them more often than not they don't really have it.

But I love that " Your on hands say you have one!"
 

Ringwraith917

Professional Badass
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I'll tell a guest they "almost certainly" have it, if they have a BR loc. If not, I'll suggest they call the store and have someone visually check on the item before they drive all the way over there.
 
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When i first started working at target the worst was when you would get a call and they would ask one question at a time

"Do you have...." - Guest
(I'd go and check)

"Yes we do"- Me

"Okay, can you see how much it is?" - Guest

(I'd go and check)

"it is 15.99"- Me

"Can you see if you have a Green one?" - Guest

"I'd go and check"

Now I always ask, "were you looking for something specific?"
 

mrknownothing

purveyor of things
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When i first started working at target the worst was when you would get a call and they would ask one question at a time

"Do you have...." - Guest
(I'd go and check)

"Yes we do"- Me

"Okay, can you see how much it is?" - Guest

(I'd go and check)

"it is 15.99"- Me

"Can you see if you have a Green one?" - Guest

"I'd go and check"

Now I always ask, "were you looking for something specific?"

And it's always something far away from the phone (if it's not a cordless).
 

oath2order

Scary Socialist
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Oh, Lord, that would never work at our store, PTS. They want specifics. Colors, quantities, prices, stuff on hold so they can never come pick it up.

But I will caution you...probably about a 1/3 of my calls are from a TM from another store assisting a guest...so they did get off their butts and come into a store, they are just trying to get things nailed down. Those calls I am a bit more forgiving on. But the other ones? Especially the endless calls looking for Frozen crap that they want put on hold (especially anything Elsa, which we never have, so it's a waste of everyone's time to even bother with these calls) that they probably won't even come pick up, even though they are supposedly desperate for it...just make me want to scream.

At my store, we don't even bother checking if we have Frozen stuff. We're just "no we don't."
 
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I hate the tm's who send guests to our store with "oh, they have it, it says they have one" I got at least 3 guests tonight who had tm's at other stores tell them that.

I don't get a whole lot of phone shoppers, thank goodness. Most of the time I can answer the guests questions easily. I do get an awful lot of online shoppers who don't believe when the site says it's an online only item.
 

JustJoe

"Can you go to 3, please?" *Turns off walkie*
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I hate the tm's who send guests to our store with "oh, they have it, it says they have one" I got at least 3 guests tonight who had tm's at other stores tell them that.

I managed to get an iPad for our fitting room (mostly because I was tired of using personal devices) to do lookups. It's quite intuitive for softlines since you can check sizes and colors by typing the DPCI. When a guest asks "Well, what about this store or that store" I show them the map and explain that the red X means no, the orange exclamation point means probably not, and the green check mark means I can check to see if you want.
 
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I hate the tm's who send guests to our store with "oh, they have it, it says they have one" I got at least 3 guests tonight who had tm's at other stores tell them that.

I managed to get an iPad for our fitting room (mostly because I was tired of using personal devices) to do lookups. It's quite intuitive for softlines since you can check sizes and colors by typing the DPCI. When a guest asks "Well, what about this store or that store" I show them the map and explain that the red X means no, the orange exclamation point means probably not, and the green check mark means I can check to see if you want.
I always use a PDA(I don't have a personal device....it's a dumb phone)and tell guests (after looking at other stores....we actually only have one relatively close to us) "my equipment says that this store has 1, but that is as of close of business last night." If they have me call I will ask the tm's to put their paws on the item for the guest. If they want to do the calling (which is what I normally suggest) I give them brand, size, description AND DCPI and the instructions to actually have the team members set their hands on the item for them. If it's still active in the system I tell the guest that there is a possibility that we could get it in and to use the same information and call back to us and I will be happy to look again for them.
 

qmosqueen

Perishable Assistant Wizard
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we should have had a recording for Easter .. "Due to the extreme high volume of guest traffic in the store this Easter, we cannot take your call at this time. Please come into the store and see if the item you want is still in stock or call back after Easter. " it's that simple, do we really answer calls and hold black friday items, I think not.
 
B

Barcode

Guest
You all need to relax. It is Target's job to sell stuff, and by finding out if we carry what they need, they will make a trip to our store and purchase it (driving sales). Most people (myself included) hate making a trip to find out they don't carry what I need, or it is out of stock. I encourage guests when I inform them we are out of something to call back with the DPCI# so we can check if it is in stock before they make a trip in.

If you just ignore all of the people calling up about items, they will take their business elsewhere (Where they receive better service most likely), and you can expect a dip in sales. And once sales start to dip, you can expect hours to dip even more, something I frequently see people complaining about on here.

Now of course as with anything, they can get excessive with it (I've had people ask for 5-6+ different items which is ridiculous), but they are few and far between.


@babytrees The PDA on-hands update more frequently than once a day, they usually update hourly from what I've seen (may be tied to CAF drops). And BR Locs update almost immediately.

@Retail Girl I will call other stores to put stuff on hold for guests, unless I have other guests needing immediate assistance (in which case I print out the Merch Locate ticket with the DPCI for them, and the nearby store Phone #'s ) It really comes down to providing good guest service and going above and beyond.
 
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You obviously missed the point. The people IN the store are my FIRST priority. I will take care of the guests in the store before someone who may or may not come into the building. Phone shoppers that are calling on busy shopping days for items like I described are parasites. If someone calls to see if we have a specific item WITH a DPCI on hand is a totally different story. I along with my team give great service to people in store. If people are too lazy to come in to see if we have a "robin egg" blue t-shirt can and should go elsewhere.
 

sigma7

Former ETL-All the Things
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Item search OHs supposedly update every 15 minutes. Research OHs supposedly update once a day, I want to say around 4 am. Merch locate supposedly updates at the top of every hour. This is what I heard from HQ. this was a few years back though. So not sure if it's still right.
 
B

Barcode

Guest
You obviously missed the point. The people IN the store are my FIRST priority. I will take care of the guests in the store before someone who may or may not come into the building. Phone shoppers that are calling on busy shopping days for items like I described are parasites. If someone calls to see if we have a specific item WITH a DPCI on hand is a totally different story. I along with my team give great service to people in store. If people are too lazy to come in to see if we have a "robin egg" blue t-shirt can and should go elsewhere.

Whether or not they are actually inside the store, they are still a potential customer and should be treated the same. Of course you are supposed to help people IN the store first (that's a no brainer), but it doesn't mean you can just ignore phones because its "busy". Every effort needs to be made to help the guest on the phone; if the call is for electronics and I absolutely cannot take it, I will call on the walkie and sometimes a girl from softlines will take the call.

My store was busy Saturday too, and everyone had time to answer phones still, even if the person on the phone had to hold for a minute or two.
 
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The phone shoppers can be irritating, but not nearly as much as the "The website said you had it, I drove all the way up here!!!" people, or the "How can you put it in the ad if you don't have it in stock?!" people. I really don't mind if people are calling to check on things before they come out. That's kind of the smart thing to do. The people who ask a thousand questions require a little bit of finesse. If I'm stuck on an unreasonable call and someone is standing in front of me in need of assistance, I'll often explain that to the guest on the phone and park the call for a second to either help the guest or call for backup.

Calling other stores however - ugh. Most stores are pretty efficient, but the store closest to us is always a train wreck with the phones. Multiple disconnects, totally inept team members, it's a nightmare. It's gotten to the point where I'll ask for the TMs who have demonstrated their ability to take a call by name just so I can get something accomplished.
 
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@Barcode , of course I'll call for them, but I'm always wondering in my head why they just don't do it themselves. And your store clearly has a higher rate of hold pick ups than my store. If I'm being generous, at least 75% of the stuff is never picked up, no matter how desperate the guest claims to be for the item....it's probably closer to 90% of the stuff is never picked up. So don't put too much stock in those calls driving sales. They do, a bit, but more times than not, even when you find the item and put it on hold, it is going to be a complete waste of time at my store (and others, too, I would bet).
 
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we've always been told the other stores was just updated daily.....doesn't matter...I tell the guests the same thing. And honestly 1 OH really usually just means zippo on hand.
 
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Yeah, we were always told the on hand counts for other stores are updated in the morning before the store opens (at I assume the time displays on the merch locate function shows, since that's usually an early morning, pre-opening time).

As one TM at my store likes to say, 1 is a liar.
 
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