PCR's Mystery Shopper visits Coventry looking for a graphics card

Mystery Shopper August Part One


Upon entering the store, I could see it was very quiet; only a handful of customers were present. I walked through neatly presented aisles, which clearly stated the latest deals available to prospective buyers. The only negative point was the look of the store carpet, which was dull, grey and looked like one too many customers had passed its way.

After I found the computer section, my first observation was that it was not manned by staff and, despite it being quiet, my presence there did not give any of the in-store team the impetus to try and engage with me to ascertain if I needed any assistance. After waiting for about 11 minutes, I decided to go and seek out a member of staff.

Eventually, I found a lady who assisted me. I informed her that I was looking for a graphics card and she stated that she didn’t believe that Currys sold them.

This was a disappointing visit, as with Currys covering all product genres, I would naturally have expected there to be some upgrade products available to support the PCs that were sold within the store.

The member of staff at the store was very helpful and polite, although was unable to provide any graphics cards for purchase.

PC World

Situated in the same Retail Park, this was a large PC World store. I walked though the entrance and could clearly see what offers they had available. There was a strong emphasis on printer and TV packages.

I looked around for graphics cards for about 10 to 15 minutes. During this time no staff approached me or offered support. As a consequence, I made my way over to the Tech Desk to ask for help.

Someone eventually came out to see me and asked how he could help. I told him that I was looking for a graphics card that would be capable of streaming Blu-ray to a HDTV. I advised him that I currently have a PCI-Express card, at which point he told me that it did not matter what I have. Consequently, his initial tone came across as condescending.

We walked over to large selection of graphics cards on display and he recommended two cards to me: Sapphire Radeon HD4560 – 1GB DDR2 priced at £67.99 and the Sapphire Radeon HD4650 – 512MB DDR2 priced at £69.98.

He told me that I was better off buying a 1GB as it was cheaper. When prompted and questioned about DDR2, he told me that it is the way the memory is formatted. He also told me that you could use the graphics card to play games and watch Blu-ray discs on.

After overcoming the initial blip with this member of staff, I found him very helpful and when we got into the flow of conversation he genuinely had a good understanding of the products and my requirements. Therefore, I would definitely recommend PC World to get advice. The only downside was the length of time I had to wait around for someone to engage with me.

Excellent service once we had passed the initial hiccup.


This store was right next to Currys and was slightly busier. One of the customers in the store was engaged with a member of staff.

Sadly, I wasn’t greeted or acknowledged by any of the remaining store staff, despite there being several of them standing in the store foyer area. It did not make me feel like a particularly valued customer.

I walked around the computer section and noted that everything was very neatly displayed. The end-cap offers were clear and stated a range of money saving opportunities to entice customers.

As I looked around the store, I could see a gentleman looking at the satellite navigation display clearly looking for some help. However, the rear of the store was neglected by the store staff that had congregated at the front.

After 15 minutes of waiting, I took it upon myself to approach a member of staff, who immediately told me that they do not sell graphics cards, but could recommend a nearby store called Eclipse.

Again, as with some others, this was a disappointing visit, but it was nice to get a recommendation.

The store staff were very helpful once prompted, but again this was a national retailer that did not sell any graphics cards.

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