Assessing the brand

Each week in association with retail and marketing consultancy Pragma, looks at a high-profile brand, assessing its performance against a range of criteria and offering suggestions to improve its overall score. Marks for each section are given out of five stars, while the overall rating is given at the end of the review.

Brand ***

When replaced Dixons many of us were surprised that a decision had been made to eliminate one of the oldest brands on the British high street. Maybe this is misplaced nostalgia because the transition appears to be almost seamless with few customers complaining and most only having to clarify this is the old Dixons.

As Currys was mainly an out-of-town retailer, with only around one-third of its 400 stores in the high street, it is sensible to not only add 5 million visitors a week to the customer base but also to sub-brand one of the most recognised retail names in the UK.

For many people Dixons represented the worst of Nineties retailing, poor customer service, screaming deals, rip-off warranties and non-existent after-sales service. appears to have dropped all that was bad about Dixons and held onto its technology credentials.

Store Experience ***

It was often a pleasure to browse at Dixons. Now, in, you can discover the latest products and it is more pleasurable to buy. Staff are much more customer friendly, they have better product knowledge and have stopped trying to desperately sell you a warranty. The window is clear of the hideous deal ‘noise’ and with the central desk and cabinets, the store is easier to manoeuvre and show the sexy products on display.

Product ***** not only has an unbeatable range of good quality, well-branded, fun products, but it now includes Currys’ white goods offer. It has to be Britain’s biggest electrical store offering a widest range of products with small electricals like hairdryers and food spas to the biggest LCD TVs. Its range includes a wide range of MP3 players, cameras, hi-fi equipment, home computers, and now kettles, toasters and washing machines.

Value Positioning ****

In a market where EDLP was invented and internet pricing is the benchmark, a serious commitment to offering the best prices is a must on the high street. As has maintained Dixons’ value positioning it doesn’t just sell the basic entry-level stock at low prices; all its products are competitive.

1. Maintain the customer standards and brand dependability
2. Create a new, interesting TV ad strategy
3. Develop a brand personality
4. Don’t change the format until customers have got used to it
5. Be careful showcasing white goods in these technology-based high street stores.

Overall: ****

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