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How Best Buy Stole Christmas
TechCrunch/AOL ^ | Friday, December 23rd, 2011 | Matt Burns

Posted on 12/27/2011 10:24:34 AM PST by Hunton Peck

“I wouldn’t touch you with a thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole.”

There’s a bit of inherent risk when shopping online. You’re handing over your credit card to a retailer that promises to ship you something in return. Most of the time transactions are completed without issue and orders are fulfilled as promised. Sometimes things go awry, though. And sometimes Best Buy ruins Christmas.

Best Buy started reaching out to customers earlier this week — you know, mere days before Christmas — that the retailer was unable to fulfill orders placed as far back as November. Big Blue was sorry but they were canceling the affected orders. Happy holidays! Signed, your merry friends at Best Buy!

Consumers traded the safety of buying an object from a brick and mortar store for the convenience and often lower prices found online. As Best Buy proves here, buying items online is still a bit risky even in 2011. Consumers just do not know for a 100% fact that they will get their product. Sure, receipts are issued and shipping estimates are given, but there are just too many variables involved for complete trust. Shipping companies can also break the chain, too. You just never know if the FedEx man is going to chuck your LCD monitor over a gate.

Generally though, the bigger the retailer, the more safe the transaction feels. Amazon, Walmart, Newegg and, to a lesser extent now, Best Buy should be considered trusted retailers. These massive companies should be able to fulfill online orders with minimum exceptions. But issues do arise. Customers are sometimes left without their order, feeling used and abused.

Don’t worry about Best Buy, though. The retailer isn’t hurting its bottom line by canceling orders en mass. The Wall Street Journal quotes an analyst stating “It’s a hiccup for the company” and “It probably won’t make a big difference for Best Buy’s holiday sales.” Oh good. Because Best Buy’s earnings were the first things I thought of when this story broke. Screw the customers. They don’t matter anyway.

Apparently if those with canceled orders whine enough, Best Buy will issue them a gift card for the inconvenience. Of course those that suck it up and move on get nothing.

There’s no way of knowing how many of these canceled orders were to be holiday presents. Reportedly many of the canceled items were sold on Black Friday. But even without Christmas looming, Best Buy held these orders hostage for nearly a month. They violated the trust of their customers. The retailer essentially cast a wide net, collecting just as many orders as they could, likely knowing it would be unable to fulfill them all. It’s greedy, unacceptable and just plain wrong. Merry Christmas.

Oh, and just in case you need help, the CEO of Best Buy posted a tip to his Facebook page.

TOPICS: Business/Economy
KEYWORDS: bestbuy; christmas; gameonsanta; hohoho
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To: tcrlaf excess of their minimal logistics line.

If you have ever noticed - Best Buy is not in the business of selling electronics...their primary business if you pay close attention is selling insurance and warranties. They can sell all the insurance and warranties in world - but not hardware. The don’t have the scale of logistics that Walmart, Amazon, Target, etc., have.

I have never relied upon Best Buy as hardware or software source when providing IT support for my customers.


41 posted on 12/27/2011 11:16:45 AM PST by =8 mrrabbit 8=
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To: G Larry

Given how best buy pushes their “extended warrenties” I STRONGLY suspect this was intentional.

Snag the internet sales with a bait and BLOCK so people will not buy elsewhere then cancel the order so the sale is denied to the other online retailers. They if possible push best buy “gift” cards.

methinks something stinks in denmark.

42 posted on 12/27/2011 11:21:51 AM PST by longtermmemmory (VOTE! and
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To: gimme1ibertee

“How does h h gregg match up to these two?”

Never shopped there.

Circuit City had better class of employees and products.

43 posted on 12/27/2011 11:22:22 AM PST by Morgana (Rent this Space....Cheap)
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To: Hunton Peck


44 posted on 12/27/2011 11:22:25 AM PST by Cacique (quos Deus vult perdere, prius dementat ( Islamia Delenda Est ))
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To: DManA

Lol, that is goofy!!!

45 posted on 12/27/2011 11:25:24 AM PST by NoGrayZone (Stay involved..because stupid people are running America! - Herman Cain - Amen!!!)
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To: Yaelle
Serves them right fir dissing Santa. I hated those ads.

Yeah, me too. Too angry.

46 posted on 12/27/2011 11:26:07 AM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Obadiah

I buy nothing online that is critical. The idea that there is NO ONE to that gives a sh*t online is the primary reason. At least with a store there is someone to annoy until you get what you paid for or get your money back.

Online stores also believe they can keep your credit card information unsecured or charge to it anytime they feel like it. More than half of the companies I have ever given my credit card to online have been problems later.

EVERY company beleives any subscription can be automatically billed to your credit card for a new subscription. EVERY last one of them. I subscribed to several professional and hobby subscriptions and have checked not to automatically renew, yet, each and every one did so. I also canceled each and every one.

47 posted on 12/27/2011 11:26:56 AM PST by CodeToad (Islam needs to be banned in the US and treated as a criminal enterprise.)
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To: Morgana

hhgregg is overpriced. A store for the uneducated consumer.

48 posted on 12/27/2011 11:30:16 AM PST by longtermmemmory (VOTE! and
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To: gimme1ibertee
"How does h h gregg match up to these two..."

I don't know, but I can say this. Last Spring we bought a refrigerator from HH Gregg, and we were sold an HH Gregg warranty because they told us how difficult it would be to get service from the manufacturer should something break. As it would happen, the ice-maker broke a few months later, and when we called HH Gregg to take advantage of the speedy repair they promised us under their own warranty, they simply referred us to the manufacturer because it was still under their warranty. Sure enough, just as they had warned us, it was pretty much impossible to get service from the manufacturer, which left me wondering just what I had paid for.

49 posted on 12/27/2011 11:32:25 AM PST by PUGACHEV
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To: Hunton Peck; All

Our office was donating a giant tv. I called the Salvation Army. They said they were OVER RUN with tv’s....bigger and better ones (ours was “out of date”).

Next Christmas, go to the Salvation Army for your gift purchasing. At least your money, well spent, would go to a great cause.....the few who remain with Him.

50 posted on 12/27/2011 11:35:48 AM PST by NoGrayZone (Stay involved..because stupid people are running America! - Herman Cain - Amen!!!)
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I sincerely believe they are now making our everyday products to malfunction on purpose.

Remember how long a fridge, oven, washer and dryer would last? And actually work?

Today’s products are MEANT to break down....especially after the “warranty” expires.

51 posted on 12/27/2011 11:39:34 AM PST by NoGrayZone (Stay involved..because stupid people are running America! - Herman Cain - Amen!!!)
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To: G Larry

Yes, I am.

It seems like Christmas has been made to become Shopping Month and Annual Present Day.

Drives me absolutely mad!

52 posted on 12/27/2011 11:41:12 AM PST by chris37 (Heartless.)
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To: Hunton Peck

I have a BB gift card and have no real use for it.

53 posted on 12/27/2011 11:41:13 AM PST by razorback-bert (Some days it's not worth chewing through the straps.)
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To: longtermmemmory
“big blue” is always IBM.

Here is the real Big Blue:

54 posted on 12/27/2011 11:49:38 AM PST by capydick (''Life's's even tougher if you're stupid.'')
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To: Bloody Sam Roberts

Your response is the best one so far. Anyone who lets Best Buy ruin their holiday was probably going to have a miserable Christmas anyway.

55 posted on 12/27/2011 11:52:49 AM PST by CastleMan95
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To: Hunton Peck
I hated those "Game On" commercials.

This story goes to show that you don't mess with The Claus.

56 posted on 12/27/2011 12:14:53 PM PST by wbill
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To: wbill

Ya don’t tug on Superman’s cape;
ya don’t spit into the wind;
ya don’t pull the mask off the ol’ Lone Ranger;
and ya don’t elf around with Claus!

57 posted on 12/27/2011 12:20:23 PM PST by Hunton Peck (See my FR homepage for a list of businesses that support WI Gov. Scott Walker)
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To: Hunton Peck

58 posted on 12/27/2011 12:21:37 PM PST by dfwgator
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To: longtermmemmory

See post 27.

They never had any intention to fill all the orders, and waited to notify the low margin customers they wouldn’t get their stuff until december 22nd or so so (shockingly just after they could have guaranteed Christmas delivery).

This was done with forethought from the get go.

I am sorry, I am not buying for one minute you could not fill an order in 2011 for a WII placed on 11/25 by 12/25.. they are not in short supply, so it not a supply chain issue, we aren’t talking new hot limited supply products here folks, we are talking ubiquitous products folks can walk into any store and buy they were claiming they could not fill in a month.

This was without question done intentionally. Get as many orders in as possible, fill the large magin ones, but not the low margin ones, but don’t tell anyone until after the date where we know we are going to get orders for Christmas... then once that date has passed tell all the cheapskates too bad.

This wasn’t supply chain issues, this was pure unadulterated greed, and from that stand you have to admire the company, however, from a customer standpoint it just reinforces something I figured out long long ago from Best Buy, and that is, with rare exception do not shop there.

59 posted on 12/27/2011 12:31:32 PM PST by HamiltonJay
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You paid for their executives trip to Burmuda in the corporate jet, that’s what you paid for.

Extended warrantees are usually worthless, none of them are going to do jack if it is still under manufacturers warantee... for appliances/big ticket items. Some places do sell REPLACEMENT warantees, which generally are worthless as things don’t often break, but when they do, you simply bring it back to the store and take a new one right off the shelf.

Its a huge revenue stream for retailers, with rarely ever having to make a payout on them.

60 posted on 12/27/2011 12:34:39 PM PST by HamiltonJay
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