HRO open new store in Plano Texas

Status
Not open for further replies.

KF5YDR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
176
Dang. I love everything about Houston but the ham culture. DFW has so much more going on.
 

AK9R

Lead Wiki Manager
Super Moderator
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
6,816
Location
Central Indiana
I'm a bit stunned. In this day of Internet sales driving our retail economy, I can't imagine a company in a niche market opening another brick and mortar store. There must be more margin in amateur radio sales than we've been lead to believe. I wish HRO well and envy the hams who now have a real ham store to go visit.
 

prcguy

Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2006
Messages
10,993
Location
So Cal - Richardson, TX - Tewksbury, MA
I didn't know Texas Towers was in Plano and I show them about .37mi from the new HRO. Now it doesn't sound like good business sense if they are banking on walk in sales with competition just around the corner. In my opinion amateur radio sales is a very niche market and I don't think there is an especially large amount of customers in the area to support two walk in stores.
prcguy

Wonder what Texas Towers store thinks about this, just around the corner??
 

KF5YDR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
176
Fry's is a joke for any ham gear more complex than a PL259. I remember them having a whole aisle of ham rigs when I was a kid.
 

MTS2000des

5B2_BEE00 Czar
Joined
Jul 12, 2008
Messages
3,643
Location
Cobb County, GA Stadium Crime Zone
I'm a bit stunned. In this day of Internet sales driving our retail economy, I can't imagine a company in a niche market opening another brick and mortar store. There must be more margin in amateur radio sales than we've been lead to believe. I wish HRO well and envy the hams who now have a real ham store to go visit.
Not really surprising, if you think about it, retailing is evolving into the "Service Merchandise Showroom" model. Ham gear especially is something that you want to "try before you buy".

So they lease a small storefront and showcase their most popular (and profitable) products. They keep a small inventory on hand. You order there and they ship to your house after you've "showroomed" it there. They generally will match any online competitor's advertised price within a few dollars.

The advantage to buying this way? Hassle free returns, service and support.

This is the retail model of the future.

None the less, it is a GOOD THING that they are expanding and opening more storefronts. Compared to AES, who has downsized since the 1990s.
 

rapidcharger

Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2012
Messages
2,382
Location
The land of broken calculators.
Not really surprising, if you think about it, retailing is evolving into the "Service Merchandise Showroom" model. Ham gear especially is something that you want to "try before you buy".

So they lease a small storefront and showcase their most popular (and profitable) products. They keep a small inventory on hand. You order there and they ship to your house after you've "showroomed" it there. They generally will match any online competitor's advertised price within a few dollars.

The advantage to buying this way? Hassle free returns, service and support.

This is the retail model of the future.

None the less, it is a GOOD THING that they are expanding and opening more storefronts. Compared to AES, who has downsized since the 1990s.


In addition to that, even Amazon has discovered that warehouses in key locations can not only speed up transit time for items that are shipped out but also get shipping costs down. I wouldn't be too surprised, given the centrally located place that Dallas is, that that particular location is more than just a showroom but a substantial distribution hub also. Now with all their locations (not just Plano), they're just a 1-2 day ship to anywhere in the country. And not just to customers but to their stores as well.

Seeing as how the shipping duopoly in this country is becoming more expensive and reliability has sort of plateaued with the whole humans and their bad attitudes problem, any way to eliminate shipping carriers is going to put you at a great advantage.
 
Last edited:

AK9R

Lead Wiki Manager
Super Moderator
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
6,816
Location
Central Indiana
Not really surprising, if you think about it, retailing is evolving into the "Service Merchandise Showroom" model.
I always liked Service Merchandise and bought many electronics products there. Was sorry to see them go.

So they lease a small storefront and showcase their most popular (and profitable) products. They keep a small inventory on hand.
This quote from their press release seems to partially counter your statement:

Ham Radio Outlet, the worlds largest Amateur Radio product and accessories retailer, announced a new retail Super Store in Plano, TX. This new store will include a multi-thousand foot retail floor plan, which will stock and have on display a vast selection of amateur radio products and accessories.
The press release also talks about a large demonstration area and being able to offer 1-day shipping to TX, LA, OK, AR. That sounds to me like they are planning to carry a full inventory at this new TX store.
 
Last edited:

KF5YDR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
176
Not really surprising, if you think about it, retailing is evolving into the "Service Merchandise Showroom" model.
Been saying this for years. Have a showroom where people can see and touch and play with the products before they buy, then drop-ship them at Internet prices to the customer's door. Keep your highest-selling items in stock in the back, like the Apple Store, and offer free shipping on anything you don't have in the store. With the right logistics and customer presentation, you could compete head-to-head with Amazon Prime.
 

N5TWB

Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2003
Messages
1,032
Location
Sand Springs OK
D/FW has needed a competing store for a long time. The catchment area (N. Central TX and S. OK) will win big from this.
There's plenty of us Okies farther north that get to the Metroplex fairly often that will appreciate this, too. This store location is right on my route in from the Tulsa area. The fellow over at Main Trading in Paris has been doing a bang-up job of hustling to get customers, especially through hamfests. HRO will have to stay sharp to draw market share.
 

SCPD

QRT
Joined
Feb 24, 2001
Messages
0
Location
Virginia
I'm a bit stunned. In this day of Internet sales driving our retail economy, I can't imagine a company in a niche market opening another brick and mortar store. There must be more margin in amateur radio sales than we've been lead to believe. I wish HRO well and envy the hams who now have a real ham store to go visit.
We have a store up here (Radio City) tailored to hams. They are a bit more expensive than on-line stores but I support them anyway. Having a friendly face to help you find stuff, answer questions and give advice is so worth it. I need to buy around $100 in accessories but it would be around $85.00 online. For the minor difference I am still buying local to support them. The other thing is no waiting for shipping, get it today.
 

Cressida81

Member
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Messages
158
Location
Rowlett, TX
Wonder what Texas Towers store thinks about this, just around the corner??
I might be new to the hobby but on the day I took my test I asked the club members about Texas Towers and several of them got a look on their face like someone just brought up an awkward subject... One person said "sure... If you can't wait to get it delivered from anywhere else I guess they're ok." The only local reviews on them give them poor customer service remarks... So hopefully HRO will bring some good competition for everyone to bring their A game.
 

scrotumola

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2001
Messages
330
Location
So. Texas
On the other had, San Antonio lost its longtime Ham Store in May 2012. Shortly after, an new venture began by a retiree to bring a store back to the Alamo City. Unfortunately, this gentleman passed away before it could amount to anything significant.

Just up the road in Austin, the global home of Flex Radio Systems, Austin Radio Supply has announced its closing, leaving Houston and Dallas as the closest retail outlet for Amateur Radio equipment.

Just like other niche markets--like cycling-- local shops are a place to pick up occasional accessories, obtain tune ups or repairs, check out the latest 'toys' visit with manufacture reps, or eyeball or tryout something the consumer might be eyeing on an online vendor's website.

To add insult to injury, smaller niche shops don't have the buying power of the behemoths like AES, HRO, R&L, Gigaparts, etc. whose wholesale purchase prices are still below independant providers. Buying local also means local sales tax applies. Often online retailers will pony up shipping to further sweeten their deal.

Its too late for San Antonio and Austin... and vicariously South Texas with amateurs who routinely traveled here to get their amateur gear. To avoid this happening around your neck of the woods (to paraphrase cyclists) SYLBS-- Support Your Local Bike Shop; SYLHS --Support Your Local Amateur Radio Store.
 

popnokick

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 21, 2004
Messages
2,177
Location
Northeast PA
Locating near Fry's (or other potential competitor) may be part of the HRO site assessment / biz plan. Exactly the same situation in Sunnyvale, CA where there is a Fry's nearby to HRO. Don't know about you all, but I always go to Fry's when traveling....esp. when there is an HRO next door (which is a mandatory visit regardless).
 

rapidcharger

Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2012
Messages
2,382
Location
The land of broken calculators.
I'm not really sure what Fry's has to do with it. They are in consumer electronics and appliances not ham radio supplies. More than likely it's a result of city planning and zoning which places the commercial properties in one general area and residential in another area and industrial in another area. Our city non-planners in GA could learn a thing or two from Plano.

But then again it's been 10 years since I've gone shopping in Frys. Maybe they stopped stealing credit cards and started selling ham supplies?
I tried to buy a dishwasher in Frys and when I went to check out the cashier took my ID and my credit card and went into a back office and locked the door. And when 10 minutes or so went by and she didn't come out I started asking other employees to kindly get my property back, they said the door was locked and went away. When I brought this to the attention of the manager, he shrugged and blew me off. I knocked on the door and did not get any response. So at this point I assumed that my identity was in the process of being stolen.
I was standing there all by myself in the middle of the entrance and erupted into a very loud, very upset, "bad customer", started dialing the police and at the top of my lungs let the whole store knew I was doing so and then magically my cashier resurfaced. I took my property back. Made it clear to her that if there was any fraud to turn up, I would know who to come looking for and then I left without the dishwasher. Never to return again.

That's not the kind of shopping experience HRO wants to associate with.

And as for HRO not having the same type of customers looking for free shipping and no tax, remember they are not local to everyone. For the same reasons GA customers by from Modded Rigs R Us in a neighboring state, the people in that state buy from HRO in GA.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top