7 Lies You'll Hear From Salesmen At Electronics Stores

Future Shop is a Canadian consumer electronics retail chain. Charlie used to work there, and has now passed along the 7 most common lies he heard salesmen use on unsuspecting customers. Whether you have a Future Shop in your area or not, you’ll find these lies familiar. (We ran into a lot of them back when The Wiz was still in NYC, in fact.)

1) “The Service Plan covers everything”
In fact, it doesn’t cover most things. Don’t believe any salesman who says it covers physical damage, spills, cosmetic damage, etc. Also, after you have you machine replaced (after 3 repairs), the Service Plan stops working. The salesman will act like the replacement is a benefit, really it’s so FS can wash their hands of your buggy hardware.

2) “I’m going to give you a discount”
More often than not my co-workers would lie about high priced items, claiming to take off hundreds of dollars on cables or warranties to trick uninformed shoppers. Always shop around and find out how much things are worth, and watch what the items scan in at instead of taking his word.

3) “This model is a Future Shop exclusive”
Danger Will Robinson. “Exclusives” are always a repackaged retail product, usually with a slight cosmetic change, but bumped up several hundred dollars. As my manager put it: “They move the speakers from the bottom to the sides, repaint it and we mark it up”. Salesmen make about triple commission on these models, so there’s strong incentive to push them.

4) “Setup will avoid hours of work”
This only applies to computers, but it’s good to know. Most salesmen try to push this on technophobes, saying that it’s a complicated procedure involving special tools. Really, they click through the Vista install, run regedit to stop some software and burn a backup disk. Oh, and it’s automated. Unless your time is worth about 30 dollars an hour do it yourself.

5) “You’re saving on x”
With some products there are legitimate discounts available for bundling, and managers have the authority to offer real discounts on unbundled product. However, avoid bundles like “Pay 350 dollars for setup and get free Office and Antivirus”. You end up saving about 20 dollars on Office and Antivirus, but you’re paying 80 dollars for useless setup still. If you’re going for a discount refuse to tack on anything you don’t want, and try to push the salesman. It’ll hurt his numbers to help you, but he won’t want to lose a big sale.

6) “You need Monster Cables/Setup/x to make this work well”
Anyone who reads Consumerist knows Monster Cables are a scam, so avoid them like the plague. They make the salesman about 25 dollars per cable, and leave you with very expensive copper. Similarly, some salesmen say computers won’t work well without setup, which less technically-inclined customers tend to believe.

7) “You have to buy x”
Legally, the store is obligated to sell you any available (nondisplay) product at the advertised price. Many stores “pre-setup” their laptops to avoid making customers wait for setup. Salesmen see this as an excuse to force the setup on you. Legally (at least in my store), if the customer didn’t want setup we had to give them the laptop at the sticker price, with setup. If the salesman is too pushy ask for a manager, who will know the rules a lot better.

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(Photo: Getty)

Comments

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  1. Jaysyn was banned for: http://consumerist.com/5032912/the-subprime-meltdown-will-be-nothing-compared-to-the-prime-meltdown#c7042646 says:

    Salesman: “Can I help you with anything?”

    Me: “No, go the hell away.”

  2. North of 49 says:

    I hate walking into Future Shop. Its as if I’m invisible and they don’t want my money. I had over 1K to spend on a tv last year and no one would talk to me. I waited half an hour and even went up to a friend I know who works there and no one wanted to sell to me.

    So they don’t get my business.

  3. voteccow says:

    I can’t stress this enough, Best Buy doesn’t work on commission, Please stop asking the sales associates, it gets quite irritating, Best Buy employees have never worked on commission.

  4. AD8BC says:

    Instead of buying the service plan, take the money you were going to spend on it and put it into an Internet high-yield (relatively speaking, of course) savings account. Do this every time you buy an item that offers the plan — just save the money.

    When something breaks or needs replacing, you will then most likely have the money to repair/replace it.

  5. Moosehawk says:

    Hmm, they should have some sort of tool where you can like, check prices and read up on stuff. Like, some form of a bunch of tubes connected together or something where people “inter”connect.

  6. I’m gonna go punch an electronics salesperson now…

  7. Moosehawk says:

    @voteccow: No, but Best Buy cashiers jobs rely on if they sell warranties or not.

  8. pandroid says:

    There is actually a major camera retailer that will cover liquid spills and physical damage to the camera (though not cosmetic damage), but that coverage is more significantly more expensive than the extended warranty anyone will sell you elsewhere. That’s the only exception to rule #1 I’ve ever seen though.

  9. B says:

    What about “Don’t worry, I’ve had a vasectomy?” Just me? Oh.

  10. voteccow says:

    @Moosehawk: No, it’s not that way, It’s part of their job to offer everything, warranties, magazines, etc. Anything that comes up on the POS, they need to offer, whether they go the extra mile to push it on you is all on them. I’ve worked at Best Buy for 3 years, it’s the managers, supervisors, and senior’s bonuses that depend on those things that are offered. They won’t fire someone for not offering something, but they may cut their hours short to “get the point across”

  11. 8abhive says:

    @voteccow: “I can’t stress this enough, Best Buy doesn’t work on commission, Please stop asking the sales associates, it gets quite irritating, Best Buy employees have never worked on commission.” If you keep asking we’ll rip you off or something.

    Oh wait.

    j/k

  12. clevershark says:

    If you’re ever in a Future Shop and looking for sales assistance, walk over to the laptops section. There the sales people seem to be in some sort of a perpetual huddle, waiting for a gullible first-time computer buyer like vultures honing in on wounded prey in the desert. They deliberately stand in front of the discounted items to force you to talk to them.

    You really shouldn’t go to FS unless you have a very good idea of exactly what you want to buy. And if you do you’re probably able to find a better price at an online shop.

  13. skwish says:

    This may make things seem a lot more clear after you read the following words

    “bestbuy OWNS Futureshop.”

    Even though one is a big blue box store and the other is a big Red box store ant the end of the day your money goes to the same pocket.

  14. Crymson_77 says:

    EVERYONE at Fry’s works on commission…except the asshats at the door…

    And btw…Futureshop is the worst excuse for an electronics store I have ever had the misfortune to enter. I feel bad for the Canadians based simply on the fact that they have to deal with this overpriced, undervalued, hodgepodge of an electronics store.

  15. Jthmeffy says:

    @Jaysyn: EXACTLY. I know what I am buying and everything about it LONG before I end up going to a store to purchase it (which is rare – NEWEGG FTW)

  16. voteccow says:

    @8abhive: Ha, good one

  17. Oracle989 says:

    @voteccow: Sure, they don’t have comissions, but the managers sure as hell notice who makes the sales when prmotion time rolls around.

  18. edrebber says:

    If the salesperson doesn’t sell enough warranties and accessories, they will be fired. Best Buy and Circuit City sales associates don’t work for commission. I have seen sales associates walk away from a customer when they find out the customer won’t buy a warranty or accessory with their purchase.

  19. voteccow says:

    @edrebber: False again, they don’t fire people, they just conveniently give that employee less hours

  20. Quellman says:

    If you have been victim of a ‘scam’ like this, tallk to a the salesperson some time later and rack up all sorts of things like a new purchaser. Proceed to check out, mysteriously forget your wallet, and leave. Tada. You have now been a jerk back.

  21. thalia says:

    When I bought my Nintendo DS, the salewoman asked if I wanted a warranty, claiming it covered all damage. I asked, “What about Accidental?” and she said especially Accidental. I bought it, drove home, read the details, and guess what? It specifically stated that it did NOT cover Accidental. It was in the first paragraph. In fact, it barely covered anything at all! I never buy additional store warranties now, and after thorough readthroughs I know now that I’m justified!

  22. brent_w says:

    @voteccow: So yes … their jobs rely on it.

    .
    Its really sad that you thought you were contradicting him yet confirmed his statement all in one comment.

  23. John_001 says:

    I’ve been reading Consumerist for a year but just now made an account to comment on this. I’ve been an employee for Best Buy for a total of 16 months. I’ve worked as a Rep1 (cashier) and am now a Customer Assistant (general sales in any department where assistance is needed.)

    Fact check: Best Buy owns Future Shop. Best Buy employees have not made commission since the late 80’s. Trust me, I’ve seen the orientation video twice. It’s painful.

    Charlie is pretty much right about everything, but those are true for every retail salesman. My bosses have NEVER encouraged me to lie and tell the customers the service plan covers anything. In my experience, I get pretty well acquainted with the customers. If I sell them a service plan, I tell them what they are getting, because if/when that product breaks, and they tell customer service “John said this would cover that, You M@%$^*#!!!”, then it’s my ass on the line. Those returns make the company lose revenue. Managers HATE that. Also, in regards to CLEVERSHARK saying the employees stand in front of discounted items to make you talk to them, that may be true or they might just be standing where because they are zoned there for the intention of reducing shrink (theft). We are also trained to contact customers within 10 feet or 30 seconds, whichever comes first. That also helps reduce shrink

    Besides, why the hell would I care that much about lying to the customer and risking my job if I DON’T make commission?? I just want to do my job right, do it well, and make sure I still get my paycheck on Friday. I hope I gave at least one person a little insight. Peace.

  24. FearlessUser says:

    @Jthmeffy: Same here. No one at any store is ever any help in helping my make a purchase. I know what I want before I even put my shoes on to head out the door, if I bother going to a store and not buying it online. The only time I bother talking to them is to find out if the empty shelf spot really means that they are out or not.

  25. Snowblind says:

    @AD8BC:

    Maybe. Maybe not. I bought a Sony Bravia and the service contract was about 10% for five years of coverage.

    At your theory even a hefty 10% return would take 20+ years to replace the item.

    To make sense the service contract would have to cost about $1500 dollars to break even in 5 years.

  26. scoosdad says:

    “Exclusive models” are another way that chains avoid having to price-match. Since the other stores technically don’t carry that unit with exactly the same model number, Future Shop doesn’t have to price-match it.

    This is pretty common in the retail/electronics industry. If the wholesale purchase commitment is great enough, a lot of the manufacturers will do this for a large customer– change something ever so slightly and re-brand it as a ‘new’ model just for that customer.

  27. scoosdad says:

    @scoosdad: or vice-versa, another store will be unable to low-ball FS’s price because technically it’s not the same model.

  28. AD8BC says:

    @Snowblind: I understand. I am talking in total.

    Most of your items will not break during the warranty period. So if you buy a stereo, computer, big screen, laptop, and a blender, and save the cost of the warranties combined, and one thing breaks, you could replace it.

    Sure, it’s a gamble. But in my experience, most things don’t break in a manner that they will be replaced. So you kind of just lump ‘em together.

  29. AD8BC says:

    @scoosdad: This was done alot in the packard bell days… they made specific model numbers for specific chains… even though it was technically the same hardware the stores wouldn’t match prices.

  30. voteccow says:

    @brent_w: I didn’t confirm what he said, I merely corrected him, he said it depends on whether they SELL them, when in actuality it’s whether or not they’re OFFERED

  31. leftistcoast says:

    For the record, Buck’s Super Stereo World is the place to go for all your stereo needs…

  32. warf0x0r says:

    @voteccow: Best Buy sales associates did work on commission. Richard Schultz did an interview with Bill Gates in MN at the University of St. Thomas. In it Mr. Schultz responded to a question by discussing how in 1989 they removed commission pay to employees as an effort to move control back to the consumers.
    Here’s a link to the MPR show:

    [minnesota.publicradio.org]

    The reason they claim to have done it was to give control back to the customers over what they buy. Which I guess leads us to believe that employees were selling high ticket items to get bigger commissions. The idea, imho, is rediculous because back then most computers cost around $3000 and there were much fewer buyers. However the amount of money they must have saved in wages/commission was probably substantial and my guess is that it helped them grow much faster than Circut City.

  33. warf0x0r says:

    @leftistcoast: Nice boogie nights reference!

    /bows to leftistcoast

  34. ClankBoomSteam says:

    My family members are so UN-tech-savvy that I barely try to protect them from themselves anymore (“Ooo! this computer has VISTA,” says mom. “You don’t want that,” says I. “But… VISTA!”, says mom), but I went ahead and tagged along on a trip to Fry’s to help them find a computer that would suit my brother’s needs. I made the mistake of believing the salesperson who confidently told me that the computer my brother was buying would need a WiFi card.

    My brother bought the computer and the card, we took them home, I cracked the computer open in order to install the card and discovered that it had no available PCI slots — it was impossible to install the “necessary” card. I fired up the computer and clicked on IE, at which point the computer instantly detected the wireless router and, apparently magically, accessed the internet. Thanks for the up-sell, Fry’s. Your crappy company can suck my nuts.

  35. voteccow says:

    @warf0x0r: You do have a point, my bad. Thanks for the correction :)

  36. balthisar says:

    When I “need it now” I like Circuit City. Their buy-online, pick-it-up system is fast and you don’t have to deal with salesmen and I’ve never been pitched with a warranty. I will not, however, “shop” in a Circuit City.

    Other stores that have in-store pickup are slow and stupid. Take Micro Center, for example. Place your order and wait for email confirmation. And wait. And wait.

  37. joeblevins says:

    When buying a laptop for my parents 2 years ago at Best Buy, the associate told me I should get a UPS. I said why not just a surge protector? He said, in case the power went out. He blushed when I reminded him that the Laptop has a battery.

  38. B1663R says:

    Good Futile shop story.

    My dad bought a laptop there a few years back. i inherited it. it was 2 years 10 months into teh warranty and it broke. i went to the store at they “fixed” it 3 times and couldn’t find the problem.

    went in again on the 4th time with the extended warranty and demanded a replacement computer. (the original cost was $2500.00) do you know what they did for a replacement?

    they gave me a heavily used floor model that was worth $1500.00 new.

    my dad swears by that store and the salesmen know him by name because they are guarenteed to hustle him out of bigtime coin. seems that only seniors that don’t know anything shop there.

    BTW bestbuy insisted i buy monster cables and refused to tell me where the cheap ones were. i had to ask 3 other asshats where the cheap cables were and they all gave me the old “i wouldn’t run my system with that speech)

    sometimes i just want to wear a shirt that says “i know more about gadgets than you do, just point me to it”

  39. erica.blog says:

    My favorites sales lie: “Sure, that will work with your system, no problem.” Whenever I hear that I know I have about a 75% chance of coming in for a return because my configuration or specs aren’t “right” — or worse, I will need additional hardware or drivers or something ridiculous.

    The odds go down to about 30% when I’m not in a big-box store. Still infuriatingly high.

  40. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    If I go into one of these (Sound Advice/BB/CC) to actually buy a big ticket item, I already know the specs and if it is in stock. So my desired response to the “Can I help you?” would be “I’d be surprised if you know anything about this product I don’t already know.” but that would be RUDE.

    And you can stop asking me if I want the $15 extended warranty on the $10 CD player right the fuck now, Sherlock.

    Thank the gods for OneCall, Amazon, and Crutchfield.

  41. jillian says:

    I worked at Future Shop ten years ago, back when I was the only girl in the computer department – and the only person with a clue about technology. Most of the other sales guys were the vacuum cleaner types, who were just good at memorizing lines about the products. I sold a lot of extended warranties, but we never said it covered accidents, and our manager would have killed us if we did. We also did setup for free at my store back them, and the techs installed any drivers for peripherals at that time. I guess the chain’s gotten a lot worse in the last ten years. It was a great college job though, because of the commission structure – a hell of a lot better than working someplace at minimum wage.

  42. iMike says:

    I have no idea why you’d buy a lappy in particular at a store. Just get a Mac or a Dell via mail order and you’ll be fine.

  43. gamblekat says:

    I bought a Playstation 1 from Future Shop about six months before the PS2 launched. (late, I know) The salesman tried to convince me to get the extended warranty since, should my PS1 ‘mysteriously’ cease working in a year or so, they would be forced to replace it with a PS2…

    Uh-huh.

  44. Blackneto says:

    the only attention I get when walking into an electronics store is that of the security teams.

  45. elislider says:

    @Blackneto: strange i get the same feeling. best buy is watching like big brother…
    i think the best buy near me rearranged their computer software because they thought i was stealing a game every time i went in (couple times a week since i worked nearby). truth was someone else was stealing stuff because i always found empty boxes and cut seals. but i digress…

  46. @balthisar: I second that. It addresses both of the two common problems I encounter in stores: finding things and getting rid of salespeople. And it includes a designated parking spot at my local Best Buy.

  47. @Blackneto: Maybe that’s because the security teams are required to greet customers? Might not be the kind of attention you’re hinting at.

  48. TechnoDestructo says:

    @Crymson_77:

    That’s probably why I had one asshole tell me that a bunch of stuff I wanted was out of stock to try and get me to buy the next model up.

    I asked at the checkout if they were in fact out of stock. No. Got what I went there for.

  49. mike says:

    @John_001: Salespeople like you are rare. I worked at CC and I was very much like you. I wanted to keep it honest. But the manager does pressure you to sell the “cheese” (warranty) because it’s a good profit margin for the company.

    Very little, if any, money is made on big ticket items (e.g. laptops, desktops, printers, TVs, etc.) It’s the add-ons that bring in the money (e.g. warranty, cables, ink, keyboard, speakers).

  50. chartrule says:

    at futureshop they even try to sell you an extended warranty on items you never even purchased there

  51. The best kind of salesman is one that leaves me the hell alone and lets me compare features and play with the display models and then brings it from the back room when I’ve made my selection.

    I’ve had a few like that, and guess what? More often than not, they get a sale. The ones that cling and annoy me with BS don’t (9 times out of 10, I’ve done my research, and know more about the product than they do).

    Worst experience: Tweeter, Etc. There was a whole pack of salesman with nothing to do, and I could feel them undressing my wallet with their eyes. Exit, stage right (and no sale!).

  52. rubberkeyhole says:

    you guys DO know that Future Shop is owned by Best Buy, right?

  53. shammer says:

    Okay, there are so many things wrong with the statements made above and many of them aren’t even mind blowing. Cables are sold to make profit, get over it. When a TV is sold at or under my retail cost to remain competitive, there has to be something that balances out the cost of business. Furthermore, despite the mass misconception of ALL salesman hustling and forcing our ways into your wallets, its simply not always the case. I do work for FS in Canada and I do earn a living selling products, however I do not push what I don’t believe in. As for the exaggerated commissions detailed for 25 $ a cable…I wish. To begin, an exclusive model is NOT a repack of any kind. The way the electronics market works is that there is so much competitive pricing that companies need to have exclusivities in order to offer something that the competitor does not. These exclusives are actual models that are negotiated with the manufacturers (such as Samsung or Lg) to be sold in our Canadian markets solely at FS. In terms of installs and setups, honestly if you can negotiate a price for one, its worth it. I’m probably one of the best salesman in my district when it comes to actually knowing the product and how to set them up and I’ve done a ton of setups. Without actual tools, experience or know-how, you may not take full advantage of your system. Extended warranties, take them or don’t take them, I really could care less, but if you saw the sheer amount of tv’s (even just store demo’s) that we send in repair on a weekly basis, you would understand why it IS recommended on LCD’s and plasmas because more often that not, a minor irreparable defect will merit you an exchange.

  54. benko29 says:

    @Crymson_77: not that i’m defending future shop at all, because i avoid that place too, but it’s exactly the same as best buy, so you don’t have to feel bad for us canadians.

  55. Benny Gesserit says:

    @North of 49: I had EXACTLY the same experience a few years ago. (If you walk in there to browse, they’re all over you.) I stood by the TV I’d chosen for a good 10 minutes while several of “the boys” had a chat.

    Finally, I took my VISA out of my wallet and started waving it in the air. They got the hint.

  56. Major-General says:

    @Moosehawk: Do tell. Can you elaborate on this sort of inter-connected “network”?

    @Crymson_77: Actually, Fry’s has a non-commission structure. Of course, you will almost never get a raise.

  57. nardo218 says:

    wtf is “setup”?

  58. wellfleet says:

    @shammer: thank you! just for fun, i like to look up the service plan replacements by SKU for our popular products… i swear we have 200 no-lemons on our best-selling washer in the last couple of years. i guess for those 200 customers, it was worth it to spend 130$ to get a $1200 machine replaced. and on laptops? anyone who doesn’t get a service contract on a laptop is crazy. i’ve never forced a PSP on anyone and could care less if you buy it or not, even though my bonus DOES depend on it. but boy will i feel sorry for you if 15 months later your compressor goes out and i can’t do anything for you. it’s why i have insurance on my car and home.

  59. BeastMasterJ says:

    A related story on number 7 (you have to buy X).

    When I bought my car, They offered to have my Windows Etched with the vin number of the car, which was supposed to deter theft or keep my windows from getting chopShopped, or something. Becase 1) I was cheap, 2) I didn’t live in a high crime neighborhood, and 3) I wasn’t at all convinced that numbers etched in my windows were a major deterrent, I declined.

    When they handed me the keys, I noticed the windows were etched anyway. I haddn’t paid for that feature, and I had chosen this particular car to by (last model of that year in that color) so bascially this cost was voluntary to pay, and I would have got that ‘feature’ anyway.

  60. Canoehead says:

    I do almost all my electronics shopping online here in the US, but when I go home to visit the folks I just cringe. First, everything in Canada (except Alberta) is subject to at least 13.5% sales tax. Second, internet retailing is still underdeveloped and often charges shipping as well as that high sales tax. Third, even though the US and CDn $$ are about par, a lot of prices reflect the days when the US$ was a lot higher. Fourth, there is a lot less diversity – Futureshop basically owns the market out west since the quasi-collapse of A&B Sound. Best Buy moved into Canada, opened a few stores and then bought Future Shop. Funny thing is, even though it is the same ownership, BB is significantly better than FS -compared to FS it is a treat (which shows you how bad FS is, especially the one nearest to my parents where all the management and most of the staff seems to belong to one certain ethnic group, which group apparently hates people like me).

  61. BrentNewland says:

    1) “The Service Plan covers everything”
    I wanted to prove you wrong (OD employee), but I went to our plan website ([www.officedepotservices.com]) and found out you’re right. So I would say that in most cases this is a matter of it not being explained clearly (A.K.A. at all), and the rest are those trying to get a good bonus.

    BTW, Office Depot employees do not get commission on any items we sell; we do get commission on services, however (like plans and in-home work, which gets sub-contracted to sites like Onforce.com). Commission is normally at 5%, with a bonus for associates who make over $10,000 worth of plan sales. Currently it stands at 10%, and it looks like they’ll keep that and drop the bonus commission. However, most associates don’t care about the comission, and only offer it to please the management (or if it really is important – such as an expensive printer).
    2) “I’m going to give you a discount”
    I have custoemrs come in all the time with “But (Best Buy/OfficeMax/Circuit City) said they would give me a discount on this!”. Well, I’m sory, but where I work we have one price only – the one on the price tag. If you want to pay less, go somewhere else. If you want to pay the price on the label, then I’ll be glad to help.
    4) “Setup will avoid hours of work”
    I would just like to point out that at my store I have seen a single in home installation order – and thar was for a 42″ LCD TV that was going on a wall. And the installation was free.
    5) “You’re saving on x”
    Again, don’t do special discounts (the only exception being 5% on the display of a discontinued item, 10% if it’s got noticeable wear and tear). However, there are always lots of deals and specials going on. We’ve had 10% off any office suite with the purchase of a desktop or laptop for a long time. We also have deals for bundled accessories:

    Camera: Buy at least two of the following: Camera Case, Memory Card, Photo Paper, (something else – probably cables)
    Printer: Buy at least two of the following: Paper, Ink/Toner, Cables, USB Hubs
    Desktop Computer: Buy at least two of the following: Surge Protectors, Software, Cables, (Something else I can’t recall)
    Laptop Computer: Buy at least two of the following: Bags, Surce Protectors, Software, Cables, (probably something else I can’t remember)

    These are going through either March 1st or 31st (probably the latter). They have to be activated with a special coupon code the cashier has. They should also be specific to my general area (other regions may not have this code). You can buy multiple items of the same categories, or one or more from at least two different categories (so if you buy enough ink and paper in one transaction, you could basically get a free printer). And the software discounts stack on top of Office – if you buy an office suite and another program (Quickbooks is popular) then you get an additional 10% off of office and 10% off the other software.
    7) “You have to buy x”
    Almost never tell customers this – almost. There are certain situations where they will need to actually buy something to use their product – printers no longer come with USB cables (except Lexmarks, and they’re rated at the bottom of every category), nor do they come with network cables. I ask the customer if they have them; if they don’t, then I do tell them they will need it.

  62. sheik_geek says:

    @shammer
    I’m the OP, I just wanted to clarify a few things:

    Setup means computer setup. Many people cannot setup a home theatre system, this may be a good value. However, the computer setup is generally not worthwhile. The $25 commission cable was an HDMI cable: at christmas with spiff it was worth about 25 dollars.

    Regarding PSP (warranty), on computers (even laptops) I don’t believe in it, same goes for home theater (with a few exceptions). Major home appliances are another matter, I’m not that knowledgeable about them, so I couldn’t say definitively. And defects in screens are covered by the manufacturer.

    The “special edition” bit was quoted from my manager (“we take a TV, have them put the speakers on the side and repaint it, change the sku and mark it up”), and reinforced when I saw a laptop which cost 1200 in black or 1400 in white without biometrics (and it wasn’t even an apple).

  63. RagingBoehner says:

    @Moosehawk: There’s nothing more satisfying than looking at the price on amazon/buy.com/ebay on a blackberry to verify any price claims.

  64. DraconWolfX says:

    Here’s what drives me nuts — when the salesperson says “Oh, this laptop/TV is $2000. You don’t want to be out $2000 when it breaks, do you?”

    I wouldn’t be out $2000. I’d be out a repair cost. When something breaks it almost never breaks to the point where you’d be out the whole cost of the item.

  65. SacraBos says:

    @Crymson_77: I’ve picked up items and had some asshat from the computer dept almost follow me around trying to get me to let him put it in the computer (so he can get his commission on something he didn’t help with). Of course, it’s to my benefit to walk back half-way across the store so he can scan the items and wait for a sheet of paper, in order to save me the time of having a cashier do the same exact thing. If they hassle me, sometimes I let them do it, then pocket the sheet of paper before I get to the cashier, so he gets credit for nothing for hassling me.

    Other than that, I love Fry’s.

  66. FullFlava says:

    @voteccow:
    I worked in a Best Buy computer department for a bit during a much more desperate time in my life, and they did straight up fire people over sales. If you didn’t force a battery backup on some ridiculously high percentage of sales, your job was toast. My manager would literally get red in the face and yell at customers that he “guaranteed” their computer would fry within 6 months if they didn’t have a battery backup.

    I saw him pull a machine out of a customer’s cart and put it back on the shelf, saying “I’m not selling you this without a backup because you’re going to destroy it without one” just to be overdramatic. It seemed to work surprisingly well for him, but then we’d get ridiculously high return rates.

    I know this guy was more than over the top, and those kinds of extremes aren’t the norm, but what company in their right mind would employ someone like that? The upper sales managers seemed to love him, but all he managed to do was foster contempt.

  67. kable2 says:

    snowblind,

    you are not seeing his point in regard to keeping your money.

    What he is saying is that if you kept all your money from buying worthless warranties, then paid for any failures that might happen outside the manufactures normal warranty period. You would be in money.

    You see most failures occur in the first week, so the extended warranties are a rip off.

    I had a guy at future shop try and get me to buy more ink and a monster usb cable for a cheap printer once. He actually said the monster cable would let the printer work better because the ‘electrons move faster’ in the monster cable and you shouldnt refill the ink. LoL

    /gave him a quick course in electronics right there in the store
    // he didnt know I was an electrical engineer

  68. Raziel66 says:

    I’m thankful that I DON’T follow the advise about not buying extended warranties. My tv recently crapped out on me but I was able to take it back to Best Buy, get credit for the original price, and get a much better (and bigger) tv in exchange. Overall I do not like Best Buy (used to work for them when they owned Suncoast) but they aren’t the devil everyone makes them out to be.

  69. richcreamerybutter says:

    How about #8: “Bose speakers are the highest quality.”

  70. Atlantys says:

    “The Service Plan covers everything”

    Biggest bullshit line evar!

    As I found out when my tv stopped working recently. :sadface:

  71. Ryan745 says:

    I love how this has come on the consumerist, especially that it has the words Futureshop in it. I have been working for Futureshop (FS) for over 5 years and sadly a lot of what is being said is true. The service plan push is all too true but thats fought on two fronts. As a sales person you have a huge incentive, a nice cash incentive, so yeah we will sell the hell out of it because it makes most of my pay cheque. On the other hand you have to avoid management barking down your neck because you didn’t get any warranty on the product so some sales people will tell you anything to get it. Yeah some sales people are slimey A$$ hats that will do anything to get the sale and trust me they don’t usually last long because the other sales guys in the department pick up on what he’s saying and start to cut him down, we don’t want to deal with the irate customer who comes in 2 years later when the original sales guy is nowhere to be found being told that he gets a free upgrade!

    It ultimately comes down to if you see value or not, some people have gotten brand new products after having theirs fail. One comment on here said he got some crappy $1500 replacement, FS does reserve the right to replace with anything but it has to be “feature for feature” so if you know your product has something unique, use it!!! No other model has that feature guess what? You get your money back, now go buy whatever you want! (You do not get the money back for the warranty however) And if you hate the warranties don’t buy them, just say no, usually about three times will have the guy stop asking you, at least thats what I do, you have to figure out the objection, sorry.

    Number 2, I’m giving you a discount, FS has nothing to do with this those sales people should be fired, if you catch one faking the price and then lowering to make it look like a discount, let management know this, they will be canned!

    As for FS exclusives, thats exactly what they are and as for higher commission, ha ha yeah right $799 laptop… guess what, $8 commission, wow 1% yeah I’m ripping you off…. like someone else said on here its because of the market there are exclusives. Yes there will be products that have a higher spiff so we will push those if we can, no more then a car sales person getting you to buy options on your car.

    As for the setup, well sorry unless you have a MAC you do apply to this. Windows Vista is garbage! We all know its true. The techs have timed some setups and it has taken 5+ hours to do some computers, wait for it to boot, wait for it download, wait for it to boot, wait for it to burn discs etc…. I think you get my point. Yes anybody can do it but do you really want to? For example $299 gets you Office Student + M$ One Care + everything setup including backup discs. Now the software alone will run you $179.99 + $59.99 so you can see your only paying $60 for setup ( I don’t want to hear about OEM bull, as in this scenario it doesn’t count) The other thing about setup is it does weed out Dead out of the box units, your not traveling back to the store to exchange it, I knows its a minor thing but hey its still an hours worth of traveling. Again you don’t want setup then don’t buy it!

    Oh the big discount question, I still love hearing if I buy two of these will you give me a discount. I’m sorry computers have very little markup, so no you don’t get a discount, if you want a discount stick to the bundles in the flyer, these are usually bundled and discounted.

    The monster cable “myth” well most of you probably have read the the ripoff story. Yes there are high markups and decent commissions but the $25 a cable is a laugh more like $5 a cable, stop assuming that these sales guys make a fortune off of items, a lot of the time we need to sell $10,000 a day to make a couple hundred dollars at the end of the day.

    I also read on here about sales people hovering around discounted products to talk to customers, ha ha yeah right, we hate dealing with people that ask for discounts so why in the hell would we hover around the garbage waiting for the flys to come?

    Ahh and the infamous you have to buy “x” scandle ( head over to redflagdeals.com, in the forums theres a lot to read ). Boxing day was a perfect example of this as district management which got their orders from there managers….. lets just say this went to the top, were instructed to push pre-setups, and the sales people were instructed not to sell the laptops that had pre-setups without charging the customer for it. Trust me a lot of sales people were and are still very pissed off about that as FS blamed its own workers on the incident, stating that no sales person should have forced a customer in to a pre-setup, and if you feel as if you got ripped off you can return the setup, which of course is a hit on the sales person. So to that I tell FS to kiss my A$$!! This was your screw up, own up to it!! Don’t blame your sales staff.

    Last but not least I read on here how Best Buy would never pressure you like a commission sales person would. Thats BS! They have numbers they need to hit, targets, percentages its all the same, whats sad is that the Best Buy employees don’t realize how badly their getting screwed, whats $14/ hour when at FS you can easily average $18+ without even trying. Oh and Best Buy employees do get commission, not directly but in a bonus structure so don’t go telling people that you feel better dealing with an “honest” Best Buy employee. I think you’ve been watching too much TV where the ads are tell you no commission, no pressure!

  72. argosreality says:

    Might I state that this doesn’t apply to ALL electronics stores? BestBuy might just suck in general overall (and having worked there, I agree with almost every comment I read about the company) and in many cases Circuit City isn’t much better however there are some companies out there with an overall soul.

    Staples, and a few other companies, DO offer service plans/warranties that cover drops, spills, fire, etc. However, they’re significantly more expensive. On a big ticket item it often can make sense just realize that its not the store you’re dealing with; its a separate warranty company.

    With discounts, no matter what store, if someone other than a manager tells you this its bull. They’re either not being truthful about a sales program, or marking items up to show a “discount.”

    PC setup. Not sure about Best Buy anymore but Staples does that for free. We’d charge for recovery disks but considering the amount of people who forget to do them in the first place and then bitch and whine at US for it – tough.

    Last three are valid though

  73. BrentNewland says:

    “You see most failures occur in the first week, so the extended warranties are a rip off.”
    On most items, you’re probably right. There are some items where the damage occurs in the future on nearly every type of a product (I see people weekly who are looking for replacement wheels, bases, or arms for chairs, or getting a new printer because [HP]the rollers stopped working [Brother]the ink heads clogged up and won’t print [Epson]stopped recognizing ink [Lexmark]any reason you could possibly think of)

  74. estrage says:

    I’ve had salesmen exercise their discretion to give me discounts and then write up the final bill without these discounts–until I called them on it.

    “We can throw in the the USB cable for free.”

    “If you want to have extra RAM installed, I’ll waive the labor charges”.

    Review the receipt before you leave the store.

    NOTE: This happened at retailer other than Future Shop.

  75. d3c0n says:

    I work at Office Depot like BRENTNEWLAND

    When selling any tech product (laptop, desktop, TV, camera.. etc) we are suppose to offer the PPP (Performance Protection Plan) and “Market Basket” items. For example on a printer sell the customer overpriced USB cable, paper, ink and the PPP. One thing I will say about the buying the PPP if your product breaks down and you purchased a PPP generally the managers will replace your product in store if you act like you didn’t understand you had to call a 1800 number for replacement. I have seen PPP’s work out for customers, but I would never buy one… OD has an accidental damage warranty (PPP) for laptops and digital cameras, but it’s usually almost 25% the cost of the product, but it will cover almost all damage.

    Employees make 10% commission on the PPP’s

    I have seen workers and managers lie about the PPP’s a lot saying that it will cover everything… it’s a pain to explain the real details of the warranty to a customer who does not want to spend a extra $250 on a $2000 laptop
    I generally just ask customers if they want a protection plan and if they say no I don’t mention it again. I work at a real busy store, so we are usually more worried about getting all of our new freight done so we don’t have to stay late all well being very understaffed for our location. At our store we try to talk to every customer because it OD policy and to prevent theft being located in a bad neighborhood.

  76. kellyy says:

    Okay…I work at Futureshop. I’m at customer service so I know pretty much all the policies. Now let me help you people because this CHARLIE has misguided you. Clearly, he must have been a salesperson because he fed you WRONG INFORMATION.

    1) Service Plan: Okay, I’m not gonna lie, it doesn’t cover physical damage. So I’m sorry but you cannot throw your 3 year old camera onto the floor, come into Futureshop and ask for a new one. Don’t waste my time with this argument. Sorry people maybe you disagree, but I think this feature in the service plan is fair.
    “After three repairs the service plan stops working” Actually Charlie, thanks for coming out, but no. After three major repairs Futureshop does not “wash their hands of your buggy hardware” in fact, Futureshop then replaces the product for you at no extra charge, ensuring customer satisfaction. The warranty on the old item then becomes void though so if you want to continue with the service plan you must repurchase it for the new one. Yeah, that’s some shady business FS is pullin…

    2) The special treatment discount: Now I’m not a salesperson so I can’t speak on this one from my own personal experience, but I have however, in my experience seen receipts with ridiculously good prices…aka they got a discount. Also, I have heard sales associates ask managers permission to give a customer (for NO reason) a discount, and the answer was yes. If a customer wants to buy something but says its too expensive, the salesperson may attempt to throw some stuff in for less. This works in favor of both the sales associate AND the customer. This people, is called a DISCOUNT for real.

    3) The Futureshop exclusives: I don’t have a lot to say on this one because I only know that if it has an FS exclusive sticker on it, it’s FS exclusive. Maybe we are trying to scam you, but for the most part, I don’t think so. The whole thing with price beating, it’s true that we don’t price beat an FS exclusive because the rules of the price beat are very clear, and one of those rules are that it must be the SAME item. This means EXACTLY THE SAME. And no, Futureshop does not just put FS exclusive stickers on something after moving around the parts and giving it a paint job. There are actual different features, they may not be big, and it may not be worth it, BUT it’s still exclusive, truthfully.

    4) Setups: There’s not much to say with this one. For some people, setups are definitely not worth it, but for a lot of people they are. For example, for the people writing, reading and/or commenting on this article I’m guessing computer operations aren’t too difficult for you, therefore when you’ve had a salesperson attempt to sell you setup to go with your new system, you think it’s pathetic because to you it’s simple. Also, it’s not like the technicians just stick a disc in the system then sit back and nap. There’s a process to it, believe it or not you haters.

    5) Savings on product x: This one I gotta be honest, I pretty much agree with Charlie. Actually I’m sure I could think of an argument, but I’m not gonna.

    6)Monster cables and their shady ways: These bad boys ARE overpriced, but when the sales person tells you they make a HUGE difference in the picture quality, they’re NOT lying. Also, they’re durable. Cheaper cables like Dynex fray much quicker and easier, leaving you with even worse quality. So essentially, it’s up to YOU as the customer to put a price on the quality these suckers provide. If monster is over your budget, then go with something else, but don’t hate the salesperson, or worse, the ENTIRE COMPANY, for trying to sell you something that has much better quality, even if it is pricey. Better things cost more money, that’s just reality.

    7) Again, this “x” item, and how FS is “scamming” you into buying it: This is questionable because you have to consider the actual advertisement, and we’re just speaking in general. But don’t worry, as an FS employee, I’ll tackle both situations, just so you can all sleep at night.
    Situation a: oops, our bad) If the product is INCORRECTLY advertised, in which case there is no indication that you have to pay for set up, then I can understand how someone can be upset. Argue this, and I’m sure the manager will see your point and give you the system for the price you imagined. I’ve seen customers get away with alot worse so I can’t see this being a problem.
    Situation b: you are a complainer) Think of setup as a product. It has a price tag on it, if you take it without paying, it is called THEFT. Look it up people.

  77. kokushibyou says:

    @B1663R: Awesome, I bet you sure show those retail employees your extensive and infinite knowledge since you know more than all of them since you read internet websites complaining about prices and everything else. Granted there are shady happenings in the world but this is capitalism at it’s finest. I know for a fact the Best Buy stores in my area have people who actually have an interest and intellect in the knowledge of electronics they also look to help the customer as opposed to just making the huge sales. Not everyone knows how to do things with computers or installing TVs. Oh and on the replacement of a $2500 computer with a $1500 one…that actually sounds quite generous considering a lot of 2 year old computers aren’t worth even $1500 by todays standards but I guess you knew that and wanted to bitch because you used the thing for 2 years and want the exact same amount of value for a new one. Nothing works that way and if you didn’t have the service plan you would be stuck paying for the parts or just a whole new unit for full retail price. So go ahead and cry some more while your hand gets held.

  78. Britt says:

    I was a dumb kid who knew nothing of HDTV when I went to Future Shop last spring to buy a new TV. I was told I’d need the Monster cable. I bought it. In the end? I didn’t. Even. Need it.

    Not to mention I was told I’d get the TV stand for free for spending so much money. Psh, it was on sale anyway, and that’s the price I got. WTF, FS.

  79. GrimlockX2 says:

    I used to work for FS for just over a year and I just had to add to this story. All of these things are true and it infuriated me to know it and I’m glad I left when I did. Let me add a few things to some of these:

    1) “The Service Plan covers everything”
    I never noticed this happening too much, however way too many times were the things that the warranty does not cover left out of the conversation. While they may not have said that it covers everything the impression is certainly given that it does. As some commenters have said; if you get to point where they should replace the item, fight it. They WILL try and give you the cheapest item (most often clearance garbage) they can find to replace it with.

    2) “I’m going to give you a discount”
    Some of the sales people did this, however I think the worst was when some of them would change the pricings on the terminal to make it appear as a discount. They would take some money off a “big” item to be purchased and just add the difference to an item that’s included later in the package or an accessory. The total would end up being the same but the appearance of a discount would show up to anyone who didn’t check. Always check your discounts! This was not common though and was frowned on by management but no one ever seemed to face repercussions because of it. *shrug*

    3) “This model is a Future Shop exclusive”
    As people have said; selling point and a way to get around the ‘lowest price guarantee’. If it’s not the EXACT same item it will not be price matched without a lot of fuss. Also, a lot of management throws around the term “grey market” which they seem to use when they don’t want to price matchan item they know will be bad for them. A good example of this is local retailers like computer stores that will sell the same exact hard drive (retail for retail, model for model) for much cheaper than them. They will fight to not price match these kinds of places because “they aren’t an authorized distributor” or “they only sell X of them and never know when they get more in so they are ‘grey market'”. Uh huh…

    4) “Setup will avoid hours of work”
    Yep, they also love the fact that all the OEM machines they sell come pre-loaded with tons of “badware” installed. Too bad these people don’t understand that they’re paying for all this added software already installed (plus trials) and then paying AGAIN to get it all removed. Some of the stores now are keeping images of completed machines and just open up the new “setup”, dump the saved image on it, make the recovery CDs, tweak the system (username, etc) and then call it a day with it. It takes about an hour at the most (most of which is the image copying over) and only 5 minutes of actual work involved.

    5) “You’re saving on x”
    Add it up before and after, there’s usually something fishy going on with these. I’ve seen them do the following: A Setup worth $150 which takes say 2 hours would cost $80 / hour (their hourly rate) times two, plus a $40 recovery CD (don’t ask) would sum up to $200 “without the setup but done normally” so the savings is for $50… That $50 amount then gets plastered around for sales people to use in their “You’re saving on $y on X” lines.

  80. kable2 says:

    Brentnewland,

    Yes printers will eventually die, but if someone kept the money for the extended warranty and refilled the ink say 1 or 2 times, they would have the money to buy a new printer.

    / Homer Simpson was trying to get dumb again on the show once and was shoving a crayon up into his brain. The check was when he said “extended warranty, how could I go wrong”. How true it is lol

  81. Blackneto says:

    @Michael Belisle:
    Yeah they are required to greet me when i’m walking down the isles.
    or shadow me when i’m browsing the cd’s.

    Fortunately i don’t go into that store any more. not for 3 years.

  82. RvLeshrac says:

    I have a bone to pick with #1.

    Hint: READ THE BLOODY SERVICE PLAN TERMS BEFORE YOU BUY IT.

    Some service plans *WILL* cover user-damage, some *WILL NOT* cover user-damage.

    Unless the salesperson is a moron, they’ll be *trying* to sell you the more-expensive covers-all plan.

    The problem is when the consumer hears “This plan will cover anything,” and then they pick the $50 “covers labor on defects only” plan instead of the $500 “covers anything” plan. Then they complain that the plan doesn’t cover everything, and blame the salesperson for the error, instead of their complete inability to read.

    Also of note, the expensive service plan *IS NOT* for manufacturer defects. You don’t buy the expensive service plan thinking “Oh, my HDD and optical drive are probably going to die just from carrying it around,” you buy the expensive service plan thinking “Oh, little Johnny is liable to throw a baseball through the screen of my new 42″ OLED TV.”

    Are service plans for everyone? No, certainly not. If you take good care of your purchases, you’re probably not going to use it. If, however, you have children who like to roughhouse… if you regularly use your laptop while sipping a latte at Starbucks… if you spend a large amount of time in aircraft on business… the service plan might be for you. Just make sure you pick the *right* service plan.

    It should also be noted that service plans don’t necessarily just cover repair work, they also cover “facilitation,” which is fancy-talk for “someone else ships the product out for you and does a workup on it when it comes back to make sure the manufacturer actually fixed it instead of just taping the loose solder back down.”

    Once again, the service plans aren’t for everyone. You should *read* the terms *carefully* before deciding to buy one, and don’t just take the salesperson’s word for it.

    Even Clark Howard can admit that some people will get a lot of use out of one.

  83. seventyniner says:

    having worked at FS myself, i watch their current employees defend them with raised eyebrows.

    the service plans have their moments, but the repair wait time can be excruciating, and it’s unnecessary on many items.

    my recollection is that accessories/add-ons (read:margin) were the most important thing for sales goals. i witnessed many a salesperson (myself included) ridiculed for missing said goals as well.

    also, i’m certain that there were indeed monster cables worth $25 to the salesperson, as i sold some of them. the cables, along with PSP were in the upper echelon as far as commission went–10%.

    mostly though, i don’t shop there now because all i remember is management wanting merch “out the door” at all costs. it creeped me out and seemed to border on pathological.

    oh, and the fact that most of what we sold was shit. that too.

  84. onehundredstars93 says:

    This is my first post on this website.

    I’ve read the articles here for quite some time in an effort to get a better foothold on what my day to day customers might be feeling or reading before they come into the store to shop.

    For reference, I’m a Home Theater Specialist for Best Buy.

    The stuff I read here, it’s extremely disheartening. Rather than reading information about protecting and informing yourself while shopping, I see a huge list of articles from people that are “bitter” about their experiences and want to completely dilute the thoughts of everyone else because they didn’t get exactly what they wanted when they came into the store. I want to point out a few things:

    - No matter what you hear, we’re not commissioned. I don’t care who told you what on what website, we are NOT paid for sales.

    - Every day, for nearly every hour, I AM hounded by my managers to produce.. but I’m not stupid, and neither are my co-workers, and we all understand that it’s essentially for their benefit, so we DON’T care. If there were ever an instance where I was threatened by a higher echelon manager based on the amount of sales I produced, I have no doubt in my mind that I’d be out of that store faster than a Blu-Ray that just hit the shelf. Being non-commission, we tolerate very little feedback about sales. Understand that.

    - For god sakes – WE ARE NOT OUT TO GET YOU. Okay? We aren’t. It is in OUR benefit that YOU leave the store happy, because that kind of repertoire is what our managers want to see from us. We’re told nearly EVERY DAY that the biggest key to our success as a company is to develop life-long customers. So don’t walk in thinking that I’ve got a stack of voodoo dolls with your name on it lying in the back. It’ll just keep you from being largely informed.

    - One thing I see a lot on this website are comments bout discounts in which they tell you to “force the issue” and “be demanding with the assistant.” hahahhahhahahahahhahh. No. Absolutely not. If you come in with a horrible attitude and start angrily making demands, you’ll be consider a detriment to the environment, and you’ll probably leave angrier than you arrived. Being an a-hole to us does nothing but make you look like a fool.

    - We’re not stupid. I promise you, we aren’t. Are there people within this multi-national company that probably shouldn’t be working in this type of environment? Most assuredly, there are… but didn’t Homer work in a Nuclear Power Plant? It happens. You decide who you talk to. If you don’t like the rep you’re talking to, tell them you want to browse, then contact another assistant. If none of them suffice, find another store or research on your own.. Just don’t make brash assumptions about an entire company based on one or two negative experiences.

    - Don’t rely on the things that you see online. Is it a beautiful thing to use when shopping for technology? Absolutely. I always tell my customers to research before they buy.. but what do you commonly research? Customer feedback. Consider how many HAPPY customers return to a page to submit positive feedback. While 90% of the customers may have absolutely loved the product, that 10% is going to be the most vocal group. It’s common knowledge that consumers rarely talk about their positive experiences in comparison to their negative ones.

    In summation.. I just hope that one day, there’s a point where people understand that we are NOT the enemy and that YOU and ONLY YOU are in charge of the knowledge that you receive and the product that you buy. A worker can spout for days about the deals that you can get and the products they want you to buy, but if you’re well-informed and studious, it won’t matter because it’s YOUR wallet. So consider us as extensions of knowledge.. A possible insight to deals within the store and things you might not have considered prior to purchased… and if you’re not interested in speaking with us, just be polite!

    Okay. I feel better now.

  85. onehundredstars93 says:

    Also, for further reference, discounting items in order to make a sale.. to include adding additional items at no cost, is called Inboarding, and is illegal.

  86. RvLeshrac says:

    @onehundredstars93:

    It is in no way illegal. Many companies do not allow it per agreement with the merchant, however. (Apple will not honor any AppleCare plan that is discounted by so much as a penny.)

  87. Dr Juice says:

    RvLeshrac: Unless you get a “legitimate” (offered by the company as a whole) discount on it such as an education discount (for college students and educators at all levels) or a corporate discount.

  88. Hqrsie says:

    As a Future Shop sales person who, in the four years I’ve worked there, tries very hard to be honest with customers who grace me with their business I can say this:

    Setup is often worth it for casual users. If you just want to use your computer without learning how to tune it up and make recoveries, we can get it to that point, however, you’re more than welcome to say no. It is optional. On that note, we’ve all seen the dismal condition (software-wise) that most manufactures ship new PCs. They are laden with “sponsored” advertisements and trial softwares that often won’t be removed with a simple “add/remove software” command. Casual users generally aren’t comfortable working in the registry. If you are an advanced user, explain it calmly to the sales associate and don’t be condescending. Contrary to popular belief many of us are well educated.

    The main reason I like selling setup on a computer is they have a much lower return rate. At my location aprox 50% of computers sold have some manner of setup done(yes, like everything else they track this). Of computers that get returned 95% have not been setup in store(note I’m saying 95% of RETURNS are not setup, NOT 95% of non-setup computers are returned). The frequent complaints on them are that they run slowly or simply don’t work properly. In a perfect world they would ship from the manufacture ready to use and running at peak performance. This not being the case it is beneficial to many casual users to have work done for them.

    Keep in mind that this is an optional service that is beneficial to many but not needed by everyone. A lot of customers come back frustrated after a friend/relative “warned” them about not paying for setup. Just like oil changes in your car, if you want to take the time/effort to do it yourself that’s fine, but please don’t force your DIY attitudes on those who just want to take home a working product and are willing to pay a few extra dollars to ensure that.

    As far as “premium” products like monster cables go, some are worth the extra, some are not. If you don’t think they are a simple “I’m fine with the quality of the standard product” will be a lot better received then the blatant hate and accusations we get. People who work retail are people too. Just like anywhere else many of us are douchebags, but most of the people I work with (and I hope to count myself among the latter) actually give a damn about the people we’re selling to and try to do our best.

  89. FutureShopSaleman says:

    The following is written by me, a Future Shop employee and is not endorsed by Future Shop in any way.
    First off WOW, there sure are a lot of salespeople for our competitors badmouthing Future Shop here. First look at the article and who it was written by “a former Future Shop employee”. I can only guess as to why he is a “former” employee. Future Shop is governed by consumer law and as such many of the claims made by people, if true would fall under Tort law and would be actionable. Beta TV’s are not available to the public and future Shop does not sell them. If your TV was used and not sold to you as an Open box then your case would be open and shut in a court of law.
    As for Monster Cables. Simply put they are superior cables to any cables out there. The amount of Data sent to your HDTV through a HDMI cable is enormous. A basic digital signal over HDMI cables is 2.23Gig a second, a lot of room for errors. Monster Cables are virtually interference free. Which means the signal received by your TV is identical to the one that was sent. Other cables are subject to noise, false information that translates to pixilization. Monster Cables are also Simplay certified which means they are certified to meet high quality standards. You will also see Simplay certification on a great deal of other High Definition consumer products. Cables that do not have Simplay certification generally mean that they do not meet quality standards. Simply put, other Cables are just are not up to snuff. But the customer is always right, so if you think that Monster is too expensive; buy another product. But there is a difference. Keep in mind too that there is not just one type of HDMI cable, there are many different standards. For example some cables, including some monster cables can not transmit TrueHD or DTSHD (uncompressed sound for the technically challenged). To state that all HDMI cables are the same only proves that you know very little about HD and maybe you shouldn’t be making comments like your some kind of expert! Do the research.
    To deal with the title of this article. I first have to say that yes you will find salespeople at Future Shop that lie, just as you will find that life is filled with liars. Some salespeople will lie out of greed and some out of ignorance. You will find this at any retailer. If a Future Shop employee lies to you simply report it to the store manager. Lying to customers is a huge no no at Future Shop and always results in disciplinary action. Future Shop strives for excellence, and in fact salespeople at FS are held to this business model. They are graded once a month on the “Circle of Excellence”. On most products sold at FS you have a thirty day return policy which means if for any reason you are unhappy you can bring the product back. Getting a return not only takes a salespersons commission but also results in reducing a salespersons rank on the “Circle of Excellence”. The Return policy is posted on a huge sign in front of Customer Service and is also available in print.
    Product service plans are sold because customers ask for them! By no stretch of the imagination does it cover everything. It is designed to compliment the manufactures warranty and in fact covers a great deal more than the manufactures warranty. A PSP brochure is given with every purchased product service plan. It is also available upon request. What is covered and what is not covered is detailed in it’s entirety with in this document. By the way service plans are refundable for thirty days. So if you find that the plan was misrepresented; then simply refund it within thirty days.
    Future Shop has several policies that make it Canada’s biggest and best electronics retailer. 100% customer satisfaction backed by a thirty day money back guarantee. Guaranteed lowest price: This continues for thirty days after the purchase of your product. If you find a lower price Future Shop will beat it by 110% of the difference. Simply bring in your proof and show it to any salesperson before purchase or customer service after purchase.
    I think that it’s suspect how Charlie doesn’t give you his full name. I think that he doesn’t because most of what he says is an outright lie. So in saying that, my name is Kurt and I work at Future Shop Anjou! I am paid commission and I have never been paid 25 bucks for selling a Monster Cable. But being paid commission guarantees that there are more salespeople on the floor to help you. My livelihood depends on a customer’s confidence in me and on my product knowledge. If I thought that lying to a customer would make me more money then I would quickly learn the error in that thought when the customer returns the product and complains to my manager! It’s just bad business.

  90. moozh84 says:

    @erica.blog:

    Not sure how you summed up “your system” in a short conversation. Most people barely know anything more than the brand of system they bought, and maybe the OS, and it’s difficult to determine critical factors like their motherboard/chipset. Even that information is useless if you consider factors which change each time you upgrade your system like, How many PCI and PCIe slots you have available, how many memory slots you have available, is your 2GB of memory a single 2GB stick, two 1GBs, or four 512MBs?

    In situations like that, sales people have to make decisions solely based on what you tell them and the less you tell them, the more they have to guesstimate. Take responsibility for knowing your own system, or have it serviced by a professional if you don’t know. And if you do know, then you shouldn’t have to ask the sales person.

  91. shockmind says:

    I worked at Futurshop for several years and I find this whole thing to be quite humorous. It seems as if this “employee” was quite disgruntled and adamant on bringing futureshop down with slanderous and otherwise false remarks.

    1.) Is true. I’ve heard sales men say that, but in the brochure they usually ALWAYS give you, it says exactly what it covers. Read it before you buy it.

    2.) Unfortunately that’s a case of a shopper not paying attention. Remember how much everything is on the tag, add it up. Question the sales men if it doesn’t add up properly.

    3.) Futureshop exclusive models aren’t as this person put it. They don’t just move the speakers and sell it higher. They generally look different and have better specs but are usually always around the same prices of everything else in that category. By saying we make 3x as much on it is complete bullshit to be honest. On average, we made between 10 – 25 bucks per laptop. Each week the commissions changed and it was never on the exclusives that we got paid more on.

    4.) Setup will generally avoid hours of work for someone who doesn’t know what they’re doing. At futureshop we had a lot of older couples and business people who either didn’t have the time to set their pc’s up or they simply didn’t know how. Just because YOU know everything doesn’t mean everyone else does.

    5.) Saving money on the office packages, yes. Providing normally you bought everything individually. As I said, the setup packages apply to those who NEED them. I’m sorry if you know how to setup pc’s, but not everyone does. Some people also simply prefer to have technicians set them up. If you don’t want it, tell them you don’t want it. And by saying “the salesmen won’t want to lose a big sale” if you’re not buying setup, it’s not a big sale. A computer with a monitor or printer is actually a terrible sale.

    6.) Monster cables have been tested to show a far clearer picture, brighter picture and a truer picture. They also improve audio quality. You don’t NEED them, but they do work and they are very good. Yes, they are marked up incredibly, but you won’t find them anywhere else significantly cheaper. Monster is the leading company in cables and you’ll find them anywhere and everyone wants to sell you them.

    7.) You have to buy setups… not true at all. In fact, futureshop was almost sued last year on boxing day as a direct result of this act. You don’t HAVE to buy a single thing you don’t want.

    I guess I’m just tired of one-sided rants on futureshop. Yes, they are SALESMEN people! Salesmen are always questionable if they are paid on commission. Car dealerships, electronics stores.. they all are after money. In the end, these guys are just trying to sell you things so they can pay their bills and feed themselves. If you walk in and purchase a pc with nothing else, no warranty, no setup, no cables, the guy makes like 10 – 15 bucks and will probably end up being fired a couple months later if all his customers did the same thing. It’s a business, every business has things like this.

    My advice to you is to shop at a commission place because they won’t rip you off, they know if you do get ripped off that you’ll return it. Find an honest sales men and go back to him/her all the time. The more often you go back, the more deals you’ll get. Salesmen appreciate come-back customers and feel obligated to give them a deal. But if you show up and they’ve never seen you before and you’re buying a pc and ask for 100 bucks off or something for no reason, well, they’re thinking, “go screw yourself.”

  92. Anonymous says:

    I work at Circuit City and I’m not on commission either, so it’s totally up to the customer if they want to buy a Protection Plan or Monster Cables. I don’t push either of them, I just show them what’s available and they can make their own decision.

    If more of my customers weren’t so goddam lazy and did some research before they came in to my store, they wouldn’t have to be so suspicious about everything I’m telling them.

    And when we ask if you need help finding anything, it’s because we have to. You can say you’re just browsing without being an asshole about it. That gets old.

  93. Anonymous says:

    Listen,

    A. No one at Best Buy works on commission.

    B. There are service plans that cover EVERYTHING. Advanced and Premium service plans on computers cover spills, drops and everything else.

    Get your facts straight.

  94. dan says:

    I worked as a salesman in an electronics store. We got a deal on several dozen refurbished(used) car cd decks. We used a hot air gun to take the REFURBISHED stickers off the boxes and sold them as new. I quit soon after, just got tired of feeling greasy.