Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Random Thoughts on Shopping

Shopping seems to be a major recreational activity in Second Life and while I don't include myself in the ranks of the hardcore shopaholics, I do spend big chunks of grid time on maddening hunts for very specific products. When I get an idea of what I want, I'm like a old coonhound beautiful spaniel of aristocratic lineage, baying loudly at the base of every tree prancing lively through the lush, green forest, searching for the perfect pair of boots.

Not that bird dogs find boots in the woods.. but anyway...

Over the years, I've developed some strong opinions about finding what I want, the following is a collection of my opinions and observations about shopping in SL:

  • I use SL search for everything. It works great for some stuff, like finding live music, but for shopping, it's not so great. To make it easier, it would be nice if the ads placed for your store actually show an image of your product. That cute little Neko cartoon character is feckin' adorable, but it's not worth a hill of beans at showing me what your design style is like. And? While your company logo is awesometastic, I'd rather know that you can make a boot look like a boot than see foggy vampiric images surrounded by dripping blood and myst.
  • I don't like spending large portions of my life, first or second, flying around ginormous malls that sell everything from super realistic lizard eyeballs to outdoor fountains. If I'm looking for sneakers, I'll be shopping at shoe stores. I don't do malls.
  • If your tag list has 500 items, including furniture, animations, clothing, skins, hair and shoes.. all from the same designer, I'll probably skip that store too. While there may be a handful of people who can design absolutely anything and do it with excellence, most people have one or two things they're really good at. If you don't design anything but formal gowns, chances are you've spent alot of time perfecting the shapes of the attachments, the amount of flexified magic to apply to them for just the right flow and hours manipulating textures and colors to create a dress that will make every woman feel like she's going to prom all over again.
  • Are doors really necessary? Do you know how many windows I've walked into, face first, because it looked JUST like the glass door beside it? Do you really need a door that opens and closes? Please, make the entrance obvious. Oh yeah and.. that six mile hike from the tp point is a royal pain.
  • Spiral staircases look nice, but do me a favor and put a nice little tp point beside it. Three years in SL and I'm still falling off spiral staircases. It ticks me off. I WANT to see what you have upstairs. I don't want to make three attempts to get up there.
  • If you list items in your seach tags that you don't actually sell, just to get people in the door, and I waste my time covering every inch of your establishment trying to find that item, I'm not going to be happy camper. Chances are, I'll never buy anything in your store. Ever.
  • Live (sorta) models displaying clothing in your store? BEST IDEA EVER!
  • Those auto greeter things popping up on my screen the moment I land at your store, demanding that I join your group so that I can get updates, special offers, marry rich, be showered with jewels and never want for everything again for as long as I live? Discard. Ignore. Mute. I haven't even made it inside. I don't know if I'm gonna care if you've updated or not before I've even seen your products.
  • An offer of a monthly free gift from a store/designer that I adore, as long as I'm wearing their group tag to grab it, positioned next to a polite sign suggesting I join their group? Heck yeah I'll join.
I'm sure some will disagree with my list, but what the hey.. it's my blog. What drives you mad while shopping in SL? Drop me a comment!


Lalo Telling said...

Yes, yes, and more yes!

OK... I'm a guy = I don't shop much. But when I do, I do it exactly the same way (Search), and have all of the same complaints.

And let's add one, while we're at it: "XStreetSL", or whatever it's called this week, is possibly the worst way to find what's available.

Besides... going to the actual store also gives you the chance to discover what's nearby.

Krissy Muggleston said...

Well said! I too love those bot models. It's the next best thing to a demo before purchase.

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