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QUOTE The London based web design and e-commerce consultancy agency will provide the brands with a streamlined and efficient shopping experience. The objectives of the redesign are to dramatically increase web traffic and on-line sales.

Unfortunately for Hornby it doesn't really matter how good your website is, if your prices are silly people wont buy and Hornbys website prices are full price.
 

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QUOTE (Dennis David @ 27 Jun 2006, 00:51) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>or Australia


I have to admit I never used mail order or the internet as much till I came here.


It really is mandatory nowadays to have a good website if you are selling any product. How many times do you persist with a crappy one? The Hornby one is too slow. When you want to find something specific you have to trawl through pages and pages as their search function is pretty hopeless.

QUOTE Lets have a bit more support for the retail trade please - the mark ups are narrow enough as it is for the retailer.

This hobby is pretty expensive as it is and I am not in the habit of giving money away. I will always seek out the best price before buying.
 

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QUOTE (Lancashire Fusilier @ 27 Jun 2006, 14:46) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>When I was looking into live steam I found the Hornby site quite informative with its presentation on the live steam. Admit though I haven't purchased anything from them though. I don't think we can from here in Australia it says to contact local stockist.

For some reason it says they don't sell to Aus or NZ. I beleive they recently added the States and Canada to that too. They're probably doing us a favour though as you'll get it a hundred quid cheaper from Hattons or Rails.
 

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It's always best to confirm whether it is surface mail or not as there is a major difference in delivery time. I'm not sure how heavy the item is to guess if it was surface or not. But if the item is selling for say 400 quid then about seventy would come off that in vat which should cover airmail. I paid 100 quid for four day delivery of a model boat kit from the UK which weighed 11 kg as a bit of a guide.
 

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QUOTE I don't see the point in shelling out cash for a catalogue when you can get the information from websites (be that the manufacturers or retailers) - just seems to be a waste of cash to me.

Absolutely. Some of the German dealers actually put entire catalogues online so you can peruse them at leisure, like Lokshop. You can also print of pages as required. I long ceased buying catalogues because of this.
 

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From memory, I think you do have to provide details to register on the Hornby forum. I did it once so I could enter the competitions.

Hornby's forum is very much train set world but everybody has to start somewhere and that is the general level of chat there. This forum has a broader spectrum with some very knowledgable individuals. I've never met anyone in my life who knows more about model trains than Ozzie. But it takes a long time to accrue a lot of knowledge about this subject given it's breadth. Most people on this forum have specific areas of expertise. Most people on Hornbys wouldn't.

The chat on Hornbys site will be tailored to Hornby product but lets face it thats why it's been provided. I don't think it is impartial but given the people using it I don't think it's that important. They are unlikely to be looking at other product anyway. The average user has got a train set and is thinking about adding to it and may not be sure which way to go. I think it's a good facility for the beginner to get basic information which wont be confusing and them not having to go to far from what they know. It's the first step in a learning curve.

Dennis, if I want to read my catalogue in the toilet I print off the relevant sheets from the website. They could also come in handy in case of emergency too.


Seriously though catalogues are good to look through. I stopped buying them as there didn't used to be much change from year to year. I may buy a Hornby one to see what the latest one looks like.
 

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QUOTE (mow @ 6 Oct 2006, 02:43) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The recent changes on heljan's website are worth looking at. They have a five minute video link showing off their new turntable, which shows that some one has used their imagination. The company has confidence to highlight closeup detail of a new product, and show off its capabilites. Dapol's website has been used to encourage comments on CAD CAM designs on a couple of N guage wagons and coaches, which may illustrate how a company can use customer feedback to improve its final design. Both approaches have their merits and could give Hornby's marketing team food for thought.
Maerklins website has several video clips of their products and does help the potential buyer decide if they want to buy a product or not. Maybe the British outline manufacturers could take up this idea too.
 
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