Wal-Mart taking aim at Best Buy's electronics business

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#1

I just posted the article Wal-Mart taking aim at Best Buy’s electronics business.

Wal-Mart hopes to better compete with Best Buy and other specialty electronics store by re-organizing and offering more name brand products for consumers to choose from.

Read the full article here: [http://www.myce.com/news/wal-mart-taking-aim-at-best-buys-electronics-business-29703/](http://www.myce.com/news/wal-mart-taking-aim-at-best-buys-electronics-business-29703/)

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#2

Best Buy seems to be a prime target for a good lashing by Walley World. My visits to Best Buy leave me wondering if they have lost their way. Best Buy has never been known for customer service. They are God aweful about having adequate inventories of ad merchandise and their Geek Squad brings a totally new perspective to the concept of malpractice. Best Buy has always been great at providing “lip service” and not backing it up. Back when there was competition and BB was competitive folks were pretty forgiving of the Best Buy BS. Unfortunately as BB shut down other legitimate electronics retailers the prices became lest competitive, even gouging at times. Just this week I was in BB and found the same brand flash memory (PNY) to be 30 to 40 percent higher than Walmart. Walmart is the king of squeezing more dollars per square foot, supply chain efficiency and discount pricing. It is true that Walley World have never created a program that delivers technical knowledge and customer service at the same time. if they can develop a program to provide quality service in electronics they are going to do some damage. For now I don’t think any electronics store has much to worry about. Walmart just can’t deliver when an inquiring customer arrives at the store seeking knowledge on a variety of techie and electronic items. I find this disappointing because the gang over at Best Buy no longer seems to have that fire in the gut atmosphere that made Best Buy


#3

The problem is that when you go into Best Buy… unless there is a really good deal on something “On Sale” there is little to NO REASON to go there as the sticker shock is very apparent. This is where Walmart thinks they can ‘capitalize on’ but the problem is for the brands that Walmart currently carriers THEY THEMSELVES are to expensive on… much of this was pre-built in because of the run-up in seasonal gas prices. Nevertheless the consumer rightfully so pulls back their spending habits once the price per gallon goes north of $3 so, much of the overly taxed states in the NorthEast of the usa will be pulling back due to gas prices. They’ll happily let stock build up & stay on store shelves no matter how attractive until the end of the year when they MUST liquidate it even at a loss at the end of the year. The consumer is more willing to play this game of chicken this year due to the crappy black-friday deals they woke up to late November & December!

The top 5% of items excluded of course… because consumer sheep are consumer sheep. However, I’m not a sheep. BTW, target is trying to look like Walmart so if Walmart tries to go the best buy way… expect both Target & Walmart to take a BATH on gentrifying the electronics section of the big box store. IMO Etail will murder them anyway on cost+shipping+no sales tax!


#4

I can’t see Wal-Mart competition being a bad thing. Generally if best buy has something I want and I can’t find it somewhere else. I bookmark it, wait for it to go on sale, then go pick one up (Here in Canada, best buy seems to have a 4 or 5 week rotation, ie if you wait that long, whatever you were waiting to buy will go back on sale).

Wal-mart just tends to leave their prices low… don’t focus on the sales thing as much as everyday prices? Does anyone really pay full price at best buy? There method of rotating sales is pretty annoying.

Any competition to drive down prices would be appreciated. The first poster mentioned customer service. For me its the prices. I research on the internet before buying something. I don’t expect much out of min. wage employees, and I doubt anyone else should either? :slight_smile:


#5

I shop there when I want something local if their price is right and the folks who work at my BB are always asking if I need anything and trying to be helpful. They’ll price match their other competitors if you have the add and it’s in stock at the other place, they also match their online price but you also have to bring in a printout as the in store box doesn’t always show the online price.
They also occasionally have great prices on movies and have discoed products at blowout prices, which is store dependent, just like wally world.
I always hit the deal sites and shop at the best priced store, though I kinda hate shopping at walmart because I feel like I’m at a thriftstore sometimes. They do have a great return policy though and they do sell some electronics no one else carry’s at great prices so I end up there from time to time.


#6

YMMV from store to store, region to region… apparently the NY metro market isn’t exactly jumping all overitself to be competitive. B&M seem consigned to cede market share to etail which has historically chosen to close up shop rather than offer equal or lower prices than etail. In times past (alternative phrase to “back in the day”), the way to fight the mail-order catalogues was to order “MORE PRODUCT” to squeeze the competitors so that they had no significant price advantage-- however a couple of main issues conspire to make this strategy fall apart.

  1. consumer consumption has become very fickle with the sour economy so you can’t order lots of stuff in certain items with a guarantee that they will sell before a significant price change and b&m are risk averse these days
  2. sales tax in many states are moving into the cost of shipping quite comparatively so that if prices are equal than consumers would rather ship inter-state than pay their local state’s sales tax plus the cost of getting to the store (gas an’t cheap these days)
  3. many b&m stores have put into place price PREMIUMS/SURCHARGES based upon how high seasonal fuel prices go. they claim that they do this to offset higher delivery costs… however it’s common knowlege that even in these times etailers margin between b&m and etail expands widely during this season so they’re padding these differences to justify higher profit margins (empty excuse to get you to pay more).

If your best-buy and/or walmart is doing right by you… then good… for me, the local stores have much animosity with consumers these days. They’d rather lose the sale than shave profits for one or more customers. The customer isn’t gong to lose, they’ll get their price-- just have it shipped to their door. I don’t care if it’s MicroCenter, Best Buy, Staples, Walmart… I treat them the same. Bad Price=Shop elsewhere. In the past year I’ve also commented that stores have even had lower prices on their website that they would NOT honor in the store… and we’re talking about the same company! Hah!. Best Buy (usa) got in a bit of hot water over this in about 2 years ago.

How about this as an example… about 4-5 years ago big box etailers such as Walmart & Kmart… heck maybe even target had Sealed Lead Acid batteries (the kind used in alarm systems, ups backups & even the FIOS ONT terminals). So I made the rounds… I even went to Hope Depot and guess what? NONE OF THEM HAD IT! So, thoroughtly pissed I went home & ordered it online. It’ll be here in about a week.

In summary… the NY stores would rather close up shop & limit the price competitiveness and selection than serve the customer’s needs. Around here, I think “LOOKING” like one another is a ticket to disaster, IMO. The Best Buy here ain’t nothing too pretty… just a Mecca of high prices, IMO :a


#7

I say bring on the competition. It’s good for consumers and I would rather buy stuff at Walmart than Best Buy. I was disappointed when Future Shop sold itself to Best Buy in 2001. Thank God for Canada Computers. Otherwise we would have to go to The Source… shudder.


#8

Personally, I don’t see this happening. Wally’s would first have to find companies willing to play ball with them i.e. this price or no deal. I really doubt you would find row after row of high-end brands at cut throat prices. There may have been a time when you could find a Panasonic dvd recorder at Wal-Mart, but those days are long past. Best Buy is famous for having only a few good brands at a low price and most of the time the bottom end model. Price is what drives sales and both Walmart and B.B. have a lot to learn in that area. If they could just reach that magic $100.00 point for a dvd recorder or a Blu-Ray player and it be a good name brand, then they may have something. I have always wondered why Wally’s never thought about opening a ‘just electronics’ stores


#9

[QUOTE=Redking1;2518497]I have always wondered why Wally’s never thought about opening a ‘just electronics’ store.[/QUOTE]

That would be so awesome.


#10

When the article said that employees were "lazy and uninspired " I got confused for a second and thought that it was referring to Best Buy.
One of the differences that I always noted between the late, great Circuit City and Best Buy was that Circuit City employees would actually talk to you and you didn’t have tackle one of them as they rushed by in order to speak to them, like you did in Best Buy.
That was in my geographic area, anyway.