Cloakrooms and price displays

The other day we visited a mall that's been around in Bangalore for a long time. My visit to the cloakroom at the mall had me in for a surprise. While in the act, I spied a little paper poster stuck at the top of the wall putting a cost to the act I was in. The price I had to pay for using the cloak room was Rs.2, not a big sum, by any figment of imagination. If the the money thus collected went into keeping the loo clean, hey, great by me. But what didn't cut too much of ice with me was having to know about the price for using the loo after I went in and while in the act.

Now that's not appreciated. I would rather know what I would have to pay to use a cloakroom, than go in, not even considering a price to the act, because the use of a cloakroom for free is always a 'taken' at least at a mall that looks to increasing footfalls.

Consumers in India move away from stores or showrooms because they associate premium price perceptions with stores that may actually have merchandise at competitive prices. Take for instance, the problem that Tanishq had in being perceived as selling premium priced jewellery. Today, Titan has corrected that flaw with stores aimed at the budget audience with its successful launch of Gold Plus stores, but what's interesting to note is that with increasing disposable incomes, there is a large section among the middle class in India with new found money, but with a fear towards opulence. A store's opulent ambience can turn such bonafide customers away as they fear the prices within.

How can stores correct this anomaly? Display prices where a customer can see them before he enters into a store. This doesn't just mean display it outside the actual store, but this can even be done by running advertisements with prices listed, or maybe catalogues, brochures or even posters. McDonalds in India is smart in displaying its menu outside its stores which can get everyone to see how budget-friendly its prices are.

Now I would have appreciated the price for using the loo being displayed outside. But I would have appreciated it greater if I was allowed to use it free of any charge as after all I did patronise the mall stores, did buy stuff from stores. Now I've left with that little distaste in my mouth. The saving grace? I got to go when I wanted to.


Popular Posts