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Health food store charges $5 browsing fee

By Mason White 7:48 PM March 26, 2013
Celiac Supplies store policy 

By: John Roberts
(Scroll down fro video) It seems like a new trend is emerging where stores charge people just for looking at their stuff for sale.

In an effort to increase its sales and serious buyers, one store is charging potential customers $5 just to browse the store.

With the increased sales online, the Celiac Supplies store manager in Brisbane, Australia, claims that many people use the store just to browse and then order the items online.

The Celiac Supplies store is a gluten free and wheat free store, with over 2,000 gluten free items under one roof, according to their video uploaded to youtube.

The $5 fee is meant to prevent people from “showrooming” which occurs when customers search items in a physical store, and then make the purchase online.

The five dollars is deducted from the final purchase price, so you’ll get your money back if you buy something.

The store has a sign letting people know about the new policy, the sign reads:

As of the first of February, this store will be charging people a $5 fee per person for “just looking.”
The $5 fee will be deducted when goods are purchased.

The sign goes on to explain why they implemented this policy:
Why has this come about?
There has been high volume of people who use this store as a reference and then purchase goods elsewhere. These people are unaware our prices are almost the same as the other stores plus we have products simply not available anywhere else.
This policy is line with many other clothing, shoe and electronic stores who are also facing the same issue.

While most stores pay a lot of money on advertisement to attract customers just to walk into their store, this one seems to send customers away.

If products are not available elsewhere as the sign states then how are people ordering it elsewhere?

If customers are walking into the store they see inventory and they are not buying, then the store owner has to find out why they are not buying and adjust the prices or service accordingly.

Recently, a bridal boutique for the rich and started charging a fee for brides to try on wedding dresses.

Brides-to-be are usually very picky with their wedding dress, and they are willing to pay a nice sum of money so they can look their best on their big day.

Vera Wang’s boutique in Shanghai China, has started a new trend of charging money just to try-on a wedding dress. It reportedly requires customers to put down 3,000 yuan or $482 just to try on a dress.

After a bride has paid Vera Wang’s boutique to try on the dress, the bride is then given only a 90 minutes time slot to be in the dressing room.

The company claims that this 90 minute time slot policy is to deter imitations of their wedding dresses.

If the bride decides to buy the wedding dress she will get the full $482 credit towards the gown. If the bride walks out without buying a dress she loses the money.

A while ago, Dolce & Gabbana brand infamously banned onlookers from taking photos at its Hong Kong store, claiming it was trying to protect intellectual property.

With so many counterfeit product being made, companies are trying to protect themselves from falling victim to imitators.

The video below is an advertisement for the Celiac Supplies store which now charges $5 to browse their store.

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