Digital UK, the body coordinating the nation's digital switchover, has announced a new package of measures with retailers aimed at improving advice given to consumers buying TV receivers. The move follows research conducted for Digital UK by GfK using mystery shoppers earlier this summer: 56% of stores in its assessment were unable to explain what would happen to videocassette recorders (VCRs) at switchover, and just 27% of stores ran a postcode check on customers' TV reception options.
Digital UK said that while 69% of stores were using the 'digital tick' logo, only 32% knew it identified receivers designed to work before, during and after switchover. More encouragingly, Digital UK said the study showed that stores had improved since the last survey in September 2006, with 66% of GfK's assessors saying they would recommend the retailer they visited, up from 48% last time, while 71% of staff were said to be confident in advising on switchover and DTV, up from 64%.
GfK found that independent retailers performed best, with 84% of their staff offering confident advice, compared to 33% in unassisted stores such as supermarkets.
The new package of measures includes:
Digital UK CEO Ford Ennals said: "With just weeks remaining until the first analogue TV signals are turned off [in Whitehaven], retailers have an indispensable role to play in helping people get ready. But the quality of in-store advice must improve if switchover is to be a success. Our range of new initiatives, running in partnership with the retail trade, is designed to further improve the level of switchover knowledge and understanding among staff."
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