Known Johnson

June 6, 2007

Best Buyer beware

Filed under: General — Tom @ 12:18 pm

I’m so glad to see this. Best Buy is finally be taken to task for deceptive pricing tactics that have allowed them to price things one way on their website but considerably higher in their stores. I realize why they’re doing this – they’re trying to encourage people to buy from their online store. But why wouldn’t they just say “online special” or something like that if they really just wanted people to buy online? No, what they really want you to do is shop online at home, see a cheap price, go to the store with that cheap price in mind so that once you get to the store and see a higher price, you buy it any way because you’re already there. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen this – I price-check CDs and verify their availability before going to Best Buy and have gotten there more than a few times only to find that the in-store price is $3-$5 more than the online price. And I’ve walked away, taking my business to other stores, even if the price isn’t significantly different. It’s not the money that matters in this case – it’s just the principle. But I realize that many people won’t do that and so get screwed. In the cases where Best Buy has one of their usual exclusives, like a bonus disc with extra songs, well, what are you to do? I’ve occasionally purchased online and gone down to the store to pick things up, but come on, that’s so annoying. So I’m thrilled to see Best Buy being called out for this disgusting, deceptive practice. It’s about damned time.



  1. HERE HERE! True story — one of the last disputes before permanently ending my relationship with Best Buy: The first Arctic Monkey CD was advertised on the web for $9.99. Price tag said $12.99. A lot of Best Buy’s sale items don’t have special stickers so I wasn’t unnerved by the discrepancy – their sales fliers say things like “markdown taken at register,” etc.

    I went to the register and of course it rang up higher. I should have walked, but I didn’t. I paid it. I got all the way out to my car before I walked back inside, went to customer service, stood in the line, argued, and got my $3. It was the principle more than the $3. They’re bastards to do business with and I no longer do.

    Comment by Josh — June 6, 2007 @ 3:03 pm | Reply

  2. I have done that a million times, Josh. And you know they count on people not noticing until they’re in their car, on their way home, and then they go, “Hey, wait a minute . . . ” and just give up because it’s too much of a hassle. I always go back because even a dollar is worth it – like you say, it’s the principle. They sure don’t make it easy to get to the customer service desk, do they? There’s always The Line to contend with. I’m usually fuming mad by then . . .

    There used to be a couple of cashiers at one Best Buy I used to go to a lot that let me price match things right at the register because they recognized me, but most of the time it was someone who didn’t know me and didn’t care at all about customer service. This is one of many reasons why I do most of my buying via Amazon now, unfortunately. I just have to watch for special deals before Amazon ships so that I don’t miss out on something locally that Amazon can’t match. It’s really annoying, but it’s part of the game, I suppose.

    Comment by Tom — June 11, 2007 @ 11:43 pm | Reply

  3. I’ve now, in fact, just signed up for a free trial of Amazon Prime. I had tried using Circuit City as my workaround for major label titles, but for the second week in a row they were unable to even get that right. I’m through with in-store in Huntsville. I spent an entire lunch break trying to get a CD because of these dopes. I’m through. Amazon is about to get the exclusive for the next year. I’m going to try Prime and if I like it, I’m theirs.

    Comment by Josh — June 14, 2007 @ 8:55 am | Reply

  4. You are going to LOVE this. Just you wait – getting that UPS delivery every week is awesome. My new releases arrive nearly every Wednesday, sometimes Thursday. $80 seems pricey at first, but after my 3 month trial last year, I was hooked, too. I figured it would seem absurd but I couldn’t fathom having to go back to The Chase every Tuesday – hitting BB and CC trying to get the new releases they may or may not have in stock, almost always at a higher price than Amazon even with Prime membership figured in. It just made sense – two discs a week and it paid itself off in a pretty short time, by my math.

    Comment by Tom — June 14, 2007 @ 11:43 pm | Reply

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