In the shops now! - the sneery retailer that's heading to the UK

5 February 2009

US electrical retail giants Best Buy are heading to the UK in later in the year and have got the likes of Currys and Comet in their sights. Back in their homeland, they’ve already seen off Circuit City and seem to be sarcastically revelling in the predicament of their former rivals if this in-store sign is anything to go by…

TOPICS:   Gadgets


  • Jamie
    I, for one, welcome our new consumer electronic overlords
  • Liddle m.
    hehe - well, I'm all for a bit of gentle sneering if they can force Currys, Comet and the rest to up their game. It's about time we had a high-street / retail park player that sells electrical goods at competitive prices. I haven't been in a Best Buy, but judging from their name and logo, I imagine they might be the electrical equivalent of Aldi and Lidl - smaller range, boxes on display, piled high and sold cheap. Is that their style?
  • Rob
    Thats all we need , the Jeremy Kyle of Electrical Retailers
  • Paul Nikkel EDITOR
    No they are super big box style. I think it's going to be good because Best Buy will be very aggressive in taking ground and know how to do it from their US experience (where consumers are generally pretty smart). However, Best Buy are not a knight in shining armour - they are just a sharper and more aggressive retailer.
  • Liddle m.
    Rob, I don't know who Jeremy Kyle is, but why the comparison?
  • Paul Nikkel EDITOR
    p.s. read here for an interesting play by Best Buy years ago in the US. You can see how online consumers and the merchant response to them is way ahead of the UK (in this case in a bad way but the savviness of the retailer to what is actually happening is what is notable). I think they've gone back on that strategy by now though. They are very well known for heavy rebates and that combined with price matching policy makes for ridiculously cheap prices when used in a clever way.
  • jsoap
    Not suprising that Circuit City went, you think customer service is bad here, the US equivalent stores are 10 times worse. I once asked a behind the counter assistant if the prices included state tax.."I'll get my supervisor" was the reply. Though the prices were rock bottom, and a good range of stock. Meanwhile the local Currys can't be bothered to price up half their stock, and when I once asked when they would have a particular washing machine in stock, "I don't know" was the reply as the assistant wondered off. But their prices are unrealistic, and a low range of stocked items.
  • Liddle m.
    Thanks Paul. Sounds good then. Btw, I don't need my retailers to be squeaky-clean, but in a Springsteenian sort of way I expect them to be honest with their employees. If they can do that and sell at competitive prices, I can probably let a few other things slide...
  • Paul Nikkel EDITOR
    I'm not sure how honest Best Buy are with employees... I suspect they are about the same as other big companies. The big difference I see is that Best Buy are very strong with pricing promotions and consumer special offers. If they bring that over here they are going to shake things up with the very conservative and weakly priced high street consumer electronics.
  • Liddle m.
    That boingboing piece is interesting. Those 'devil customers' sound a lot like your hard-core HUKD'ers, although I'd guess 20% of customer base is probably higher than the numbers here. Do we have any details of their plans for this market? Stores already opened or in the pipeline?
  • SJT
    Looking forwards to the dawn of the Best Buy era!
  • Dirk P.
    All hail best buy who are going to come over and sell us 42" plasmas for £20 and offer 50 year guarantees with everything they sell and if there are any problems in the 50 years they will give you a new one!!!
  • Currysbod
    The Boingboing article is 4+ years old ffs and their price match policy is now essentially non existant: Price Matching/Price Guarantee. "If you've made a purchase and discover a lower price offered on our Web site or at a Best Buy store on the same available brand and model, let us know and we'll match that price on the spot, tax included. Exclusions: The Price Guarantee does not apply to competitors' offers; third-party offers; online auction sites; shipping charges; clearance, Outlet Center and open-box items (when price matching with a Best Buy store); items for sale November 27th through 29th, 2008; special offers or promotions such as mail-in incentives, gift-with-purchase and financing offers; services such as installation; or typographical errors. Best Buy stores in Puerto Rico have their own price match policy." Certainly not as good as UK high street price matches Best Buy have recently been recruiting for senior management team
  • Paul Nikkel EDITOR
    That's not Best Buy - they are run separately and are different policies. There are a load of complaints about Best Buy price matching and how they try to get around honouring it but it definitely exists. Afaik it's still a match and beat by 10% if you can get it. Here's an example from Yahoo Answers as of a few hours ago: Re the article above the point was only to show the American retailers have a lot more experience and awareness than UK ones. In that article it's a bad thing but the point remains. We did an article on Best Buy recruitment and roll out here:
  • Joff
    If they won't price match, then go to the shop where it's cheapest. Easy. And on your way out, knock something off the shelf for good measure.
  • Rob
    @ Liddle ol' me Jeremy Kyle is the host of a tv program where he sneers at his "guests" (the types that find their boyfriend in bed with their dog) and then "attempts" to sort their problems out with a condescending attitude . And in explaining that joke it kills the joke (its almost as if Google never existed)
  • Rob
    Ive used Currys etc for the last 30years and the facts that havent been "100% of the truth" that they have told and Ive overheard being told would be disturbing if I didnt do my homework beforehand . If they wipe Currys out though I dont see them competively pricing then though , still thats what the net is for ...........and I dont even have to get off my arse to save moeny :)

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