Best Buy Won't Match J&R's "Wholesale" Prices

The Best Buy in Secaucus, NJ refused to match J&R’s price for a Bluetooth headset, claiming that J&R was not covered by Best Buy’s price match guarantee. Best Buy employees first called J&R—a large New York electronics retailer—a wholesaler. A manager later insisted that J&R was a Mom & Pop store and refused to match the lower price. When reader Steven attempted to cut through the absurdity by calling corporate, he was told that the price match is provided at each store’s discretion. Read his full story, inside.

Yesterday, March 3, I decided to buy a Bluetooth headset because they have recently banned handset use while driving in NJ. I read reviews online, and decided to go with a certain headset that both J&R Electronics in NYC carries, as well as Best Buy. After some quick research, I realized that J&R’s in-store price was $30 less than Best Buy’s in-store price. So I reviewed Best Buy’s price guarantee policy thoroughly, and I couldn’t see why there would be a problem matching the price. I called Best Buy corporate to double check with them, and the lady on the phone agreed with me.

So I headed over to the Secaucus, NJ store, picked up the BluAnt Z9 headset I wanted to buy, and the representative in the “Mobile Shop” that was helping me, asked me who I wanted to price match, and I told him J&R, he said, “Oh, yea, that’s fine, just head over to the customer service counter.” I go to the customer service counter; present the cashier with my proof of J&R’s in-store price, as well as the store’s phone number, in case they needed to call to verify stock, according to their policy. She walks away from me and talks on her walkie talkie and comes back and says that “the store manager says we can’t match that price.” I asked to see the manager. After a few minutes the manager comes, doesn’t even say hi, or how are you today, he just stands there and looks at me. I explain to him how I spoke to Best Buy corporate before coming, etc. He tells me that J&R is a wholesaler, and they can’t match their price. I asked to him explain how it’s a wholesale shop when a normal person can go buy a product there without a resellers ID or tax certificate. Then he told me, “I’ll have someone in the back call corporate for you, when they have an answer, they’ll beep my walkie talkie.”

I waited another 10 minutes and the original cashier comes to me and says “we can’t do it, corporate says it’s the stores discretion, and we’re not going to do it.” I told her I wanted to see a manager. A different lady comes to the counter, again very rude and no greeting, turns out that the first person that came to the counter as a manager figure, wasn’t even a manager. So now this one gives me a run around. She tries to tell me they’re a wholesaler only because they have “wholesale prices,” to which I answered, “So just because they’re prices are lower than yours, they’re wholesale prices?” She was beat, and she knew it. Turns out she doesn’t even know what the fine print is on their price guarantee program, so I had to read it back to her, and then I find out that she’s not even a store manager. So at this point I am pretty disgusted with the stores hospitality and service, and the lack of knowledge of the policy on the whole staff. I asked her to see a store manager or the store’s general manager. She told me that neither of them was here today and that they were off. I continue arguing with her, threaten to call the Checks & Balances Bureau of Hudson County, she panics, then 15 minutes later came an actual store manager, this was the first person I interacted with that greeted me. The manager before introduced us and she told me that “he had just come in,” forgetting that she told me he was off. He claimed that J&R electronics is a local competitor, but they are a “mom & pops store.” I didn’t do anything but burst out laughing. I mean what kind of retail educated manager can say J&R is a mom and pops store? They probably do at least ¾ of the online business that does, and they have only 1 retail store. They have a far superior customer service and retail structure to Best Buy. He then went on and scanned the product and told me that the best he could do is $79.99 vs. J&R’s $69.95. So asked him for his name and number, they lady’s name I spoke to before him, as well as the General and District Manager’s names and numbers. The gentleman refused to give me their names and contact info and told me that corporate does not allow them to give that info out. So I walked out, and I am now looking for Best Buy corporate emails, hoping you can help me with some contact info. I have attached Best Buy’s Price Guarantee Policy, as well as a screenshot of J&R & Best Buy’s page for the product.

The $30 price difference is not a big deal to me, believe me. It’s the way Best Buy treats it’s customers, and how thousands of customers a day get shafted by them.

Alternatively, Steven could have hopped in his car, spent four hours crossing the Lincoln tunnel, and bought the headset directly from J&R in Manhattan.

(Photo: hanapbuhay)


Edit Your Comment

  1. armydrummer says:

    This is where I just go to eBay and find the same product except cheaper. Seriously, the shipping charges and wait time are much more tolerable than any Best Buy moron.

  2. 92BuickLeSabre says:

    I think it’s finally time for someone to write a book, maybe a picture book, probably along the lines of Aesop’s Fables.

    Except the moral of every story will be: “Don’t shop at Best Buy.”

  3. homerjay says:

    “They have a far superior customer service and retail structure to Best Buy.”

    I think the question here is QUITE obvious.

  4. ClayS says:

    “Alternatively, Steven could have hopped in his car, spent four hours crossing the Lincoln tunnel, and bought the headset directly from J&R in Manhattan.”

    Steven could also pick up the phone, order the headset and have in in two days and save the sales tax to boot.

    So Best Buy isn’t all that great? Wow.

  5. dave.a says:

    If they have a clause that they can refuse at the store’s discretion, then they really don’t have to give you a reason why they wouldn’t price match, but they tried and were grasping for anything. I don’t have a copy of their in-store policy, but I would bet they do have that clause in there.

  6. Snarkysnake says:

    If you don’t buy that headset somewhere else, Then you let BB have an easy win in this case. Discipline them : Buy it somewhere else and call their bluff. If more people would do this, they would get with the program or their crushing cost structure would ensure their demise…

  7. DCGaymer says:

    Um,,,,why not just go to [] ?

  8. tombo says:

    Dumb. They lost a customer for good probably for 30 bucks. Bad customer service.

  9. gnubian says:

    When I bought my HP c5180 printer last year, there were 2 local stores that sold it. Compusa and Bestbuy. Compusa’s price was on par with directly ordering from HP, Bestbuy was about $20 more expensive.

    The closest Compusa that had it in stock was in Orem, UT .. about a 25 minute freeway drive up a hill and down the other side. Bestbuy had them in stock without me having to drive over the mountains, but refused to price match because the Compusa store wasn’t in the “local area” ..

    BB, needless to say, did not get my business and Compusa, in their inability to have the item available, also didn’t get my business.

    I ordered from HP directly, got a sales price on the printer + web discount + free shipping … even after local sales taxes were added, it came in at $20 less than the compusa price.

  10. Seth_Went_to_the_Bank says:

    BestBuy Store Price Guarantee

    Two more great reasons to buy with confidence at Best Buy.

    If you are about to make a purchase and discover a lower advertised price offered by a local retail competitor on the same available brand and model, let us know and we’ll match that price on the spot.

    Secaucus is 6 miles away from J&R (as the crow flies).

    Sounds local to me.

    Also sounds like BestBuy doesn’t stand behind their specific policy.

  11. dazzlezak says:

    For the umteenth time. Best Buy is only out to seperate a fool from his money.

    DON’T SHOP THERE! They Suck!

    Also, this puts them in the running (agin) for a #1 seed in the worst company competition.

    Spending my money at Amazon and Costco,


  12. dialing_wand says:

    With all these stories up on Consumerist lately, why do people even shop at _______ (insert Best Buy, Walmart, or other “throwing your money down a toilet will be less painful than shopping here” retailer)?

    If people stop shopping there, they will ask “why?”

  13. TechnoDestructo says:

    Why would you buy at Best Buy if you have J&R local to you? That’s the same company that runs, right?

    I mean…I can’t fathom how Best Buy could even EXIST in proximity to J&R.

  14. ninjastyle says:

    I had the same issue at the Secaucaus Best Buy concerning a price Match for Rock Band from J&R. It seems like they train all the employees on the floor with that line.

  15. bobert says:

    @tombo: “Dumb. They lost a customer for good probably for 30 bucks. Bad customer service.”

    Yep, but the manager helped boost his profitability bonus for the month by not cutting a price to keep a sale. What does he care if the chain loses all their customers? He’s got his now, and the BBY stockholders are left with nothing in a few years.

  16. kylere says:

    I think it is time for Consumerist to stop publishing Best Buy stories, no one possessing anything resembling the faintest of clues will shop there anymore, so basically we get a once a week AOL/Myspace user pushing their luck and whining about it.

  17. jarchie219 says:

    I received a BB gift card. When I go looking for something I need I’m appalled by the prices that BB charges compared to Frys or MicroCenter. Maybe I can sell the card on ebay for 80% of face value and come out a few bucks ahead.

  18. bohemian says:

    I would either look for the same deal yet with free shipping from J&R or try to get there when already in the area for something else. Or split the difference and get it for slightly less anywhere other than Best Buy.

    This is why I ignore most enticements like Best Buys price match, there are always strings or they have thousands of excuses to invalidate them after you try to use them. Sort of like the store coupons that you can’t use for anything brand name or anything on sale.

  19. ClayS says:

    To drive from Secaucus, NJ to J&R in NYC is not as quick as it would seem. With traffic, $7 tunnel tolls, parking, it is time consuming and costly. Not worth saving $30. I hate to defend Best Buy, but realistically, J&R could be considered non-local.

    The best solution is order online or by phone and avoid all the aggravation. Why even walk into BB? Save some gas and a lot of time.

  20. bobert says:

    @dialing_wand: “If people stop shopping there, they will ask ‘why?'”

    Who – top management? I’ll bet they’ll do what top management at CompUSA did, and top management Sears/KMart are doing – watch it all go down the drain and collect their golden parachutes.

    There was just a post on Consumerist the other day about Congress calling in a bunch of the guys who orchestrated the whole subprime mortgage situation. They were asked things like, “How is it people are losing their houses, and investors are losing their money, and you’re fat dumb and happy with bazillions of dollars out of the deal?” Hmmm…

    I’m a fan of the Steve Jobs CEO compensation plan: give him $1 a year and boatloads of stock options that vest in a few years. Then there’s some incentive to keep the business going and growing, and not just take the cash and run.

  21. FMFats says:

    The sign indicates they will match warehouse prices and references Costco and Sam’s. Unless things have changed since I moved from NYC many years ago, J&R is a retail store and does not require membership to shop there, as the warehouse joints do. I wouldn’t expect Best Buy to match J&R, Circuit City, Fry’s, Brandsmart or very many other electronics stores from what I see in that picture.

  22. freshyill says:

    @Seth_Went_to_the_Bank: Well they never said they weren’t local. First they said they were a wholesaler, and then they said they ere a mom and pop store, and won’t match their price.

  23. nequam says:

    @freshyill: It’s just your typical mom and pop wholesaler!

  24. grouse says:

    I don’t understand how anyone who reads this blog would ever shop at Best Buy. Ladies and gentlemen, it does not make sense!

  25. TheIdle says:

    I don’t know if I am breaking any rules for the site but…
    After a few seconds of poking around and I found this out for you. The name of the manager of Best Buy #474, Seacuacus, is Marcel Gomez.

  26. 92BuickLeSabre says:

    @nequam: very nice

  27. dodonnell says:

    @grouse: Because sometimes, sadly, they are all that’s around when you need something they carry *now*. Like, say, if your hard drive dies on you. I make a point of shopping online elsewhere when I can, but even Newegg can’t deliver in 20 minutes.

  28. SuperJdynamite says:

    @bobert: “I’m a fan of the Steve Jobs CEO compensation plan: give him $1 a year and boatloads of stock options that vest in a few years. Then there’s some incentive to keep the business going and growing, and not just take the cash and run.”

    Most CEOs get the money AND the stock options.

  29. @homerjay:

    Alternatively, Steven could have hopped in his car, spent four hours crossing the Lincoln tunnel, and bought the headset directly from J&R in Manhattan.

    ‘Nuff said.

  30. SuperJdynamite says:

    @grouse: “I don’t understand how anyone who reads this blog would ever shop at Best Buy. Ladies and gentlemen, it does not make sense!”

    Maybe they get confused because Consumerist pushes deals from Best Buy, a policy that has always made me ask “WTF”?

  31. homerjay says:

    @Papa Midnight: But the question was WHYYYYYY????

  32. rekky says:

    So, J&R is so wonderful? I went into their retail store last month looking to buy a Bluetooth headset. The price label on the display had it at $5 less than their web site price. When the person behind the counter wrote up the ticket for the item (yes, manually writing up a sales ticket!), they charged me the higher price. I asked, why am I not paying the price on the label? The answer, “that was last weeks’ sales price.” I was going to ask to speak to the manager, but for $5, I figured that it wouldn’t be worth my time.

  33. BuddyGuyMontag says:

    It seems that the Best Buys in Northern NJ have issues. I found out from a Deal site that Best Buy in Union was selling a HDTV for 350. I went up there, and found out that the RSS system listed 4 of the TVs in stock at that price. But nobody could seem to find them.

    No lie. They were missing 4 32″ TV’s.

    In other words, the CSRs were holding them back for themselves.

  34. Joedragon says:

    I one saw best buy match a tigerdirect price of $50 less on a PSU that some one was buying.

    any ways at $50 more best buy is not the best buy.

  35. wiz561 says:

    Well, glad you didn’t get it from there anyways. I was going to buy a GPS from them if they would price match circuit city. I even brought the print-out in proving the price.

    The cashier said “Sorry, we don’t match web store prices”. I said “Well, I’m going to circuit city then and get it there”, and walked out.

  36. marsneedsrabbits says:

    Stephen, please don’t shop at Best Buy.

    You can write to corporate, and they may give you the 30 dollars off, but it won’t make a difference for the next guy.

    Your better option would be to write them a letter telling them to stuff it and that you won’t shop there no matter what. Best Buy gets away with this because they occasionally fix their most blatant errors when people complain loudly, but for the most part, they simply do not care.

  37. BuddyGuyMontag says:

    I really don’t understand why BB wouldn’t match a Mom and Pop store. Isn’t that what the Best Buy business model is designed to put out of business?

    I’m also wondering how Price Match will work post-purchase.

  38. thesabre says:

    @tombo: “Dumb. They lost a customer for good probably for 30 bucks. Bad customer service.”

    Doubtful. As soon as Best Buy has a better deal on something, this person will go and shop there. Best Buy didn’t lose anything.

  39. Seth_Went_to_the_Bank says:


    OK… but isn’t a mom-and-pop store a “local retailer competitor?”

    FYI, I wouldn’t call J&R a mom-and-pop at all. It’s hard to know what to call J&R, though. It’s like a giant block long chain store… that only has one location. And is also known around the world. Walk into J&R and you’ll see Kevin Spacey buying a camcorder and Gary Sinise buying DVDs. Even people in Dubai know what J&R is.

    So it’s kind of weird for people in Secaucus to say J&R isn’t their competitor.

    Best Buy does say though in their price match that:

    What is considered a local retail competitor?

    A retail store located in the same market area as your local Best Buy store.

    So… that could mean anything.

  40. Buran says:

    @tombo: I’m fighting to pry a promised refund from a company that owes me only around $20. But I don’t feel like being out even that amount of money by a company that would rather I give up and leave, and is digging its heels in to the point of trying to get me to give up with paypal and the BBB. Too bad for them I paid with a credit card.

    I don’t understand why companies are so willing to lose you, and everyone else you tell about how badly you were treated, over $20. Or heck, someone posted on here just the other day about how they got “yes” to “you’re willing to lose me and my friends over $5?”


  41. Buran says:

    @thesabre: In other words, you think everyone who dares to be angry at mistreatment is a liar when they say they won’t go back? I *never* went back to Best Buy. And when I say I’m never shopping somewhere again, I don’t.

    If you’re so convinced that people are liars about this matter, then do YOU go back to places that rip you off and/or lie to you?

  42. subzi says:

    Why shop at Costco?

    For better customer service and return policy.

  43. warf0x0r says:

    Its important to remember that one of best buy’s corporate tools is to give each store a large amount of control over the way it does business. Its away to eliminate transparency so that they can maintain profit margins. Managers are alowed to decide weather or not to honor your Service Plans, if you buy them.

  44. Pupator says:

    When people do this, myself included, it’s usually because the store with the lower price doesn’t actually have it in stock and you couldn’t get it there anyway.

  45. warf0x0r says:

    @Pupator: One of the lines in most price matching policies, I cannot remember if BBY has it too, is that the other place has to have the item in stock.

  46. yikz says:

    Why not buy it from Best Buy at the price-match of $79.95, then order it from JR mail order at $69.95, and when the item arrives from JR, return the item to Best Buy and say you found it cheaper somewhere else.
    Best Buy can’t refuse you the right to return an item that you found cheaper elsewhere. Or just say that you’re unhappy with the product. Make sure you use a credit card. Do not use cash or an ATM card. If Best Buy refuses the return, dispute the charge with the credit card company.

    The whole reason companies came up with price matches was to prevent returns. Returns are a HUGE loss for retailers. Who is going to buy an open box blue tooth ear piece?

    I grew up in Minnesota, I used to shop regularly at Best Buy, but starting about 5 or more years ago, they made a point of maximizing profits and minimizing service. They lost me as a customer forever.

  47. dweebster says:

    It’s “Best” Buy. DUH!

    Why on God’s green earth would any sane person bother stepping into that store unless they wanted to be fucked over? Their track record is well documented in many, many forums across the web and the Consumerist is no exception.

    Entering “Best” Buy and attempting them to actually conform to the law or one of their alleged customer-friendly written policies is just fooling yourself. You WILL be screwed over if you give them a chance. You gave them a chance.

    Sad to say, but that price-match sign pictured above is just like a pedophile’s candy basket, it’s John Wayne Gacy’s “rope trick,” it’s Hitler’s offer to Chamberlain. It’s only bait to get you into their clutches. The fine print is there, and it will negate whatever print you can actually see.

    “Best” Buy is a bad operation. Attempt to deal with them as though they aren’t, and you have only yourself to blame.

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice… won’t get fooled again.

  48. dweebster says:

    @Papa Midnight: Most likely a much more pleasant experience than trying to get blood out of a turnip at “Best” Buy as he attempted.

  49. Pupator says:

    @warf0x0r – That was my point. I’m guessing this guy went to J&R, found out they didn’t have it, and then tried to get Best Buy to price match.

  50. Seth_Went_to_the_Bank says:

    @yikz: Yeah I’m not advocating any kind of purchasing strategy, just commenting on the BB policies…

    That’s interesting about PM and returns…

  51. Daniels says:

    Why would you buy at Best Buy if you have J&R local to you? That’s the same company that runs, right?

    There’s only one retail location (near City Hall in Manhattan) and it’s a pain in the balls to park anywhere remotely close.

    Between that and the toll to go over the bridge or tunnel… not to mention Manhattan traffic, I understand why someone would deal with the price matching awful.

    It’s more surprising that anyone who lives in Manhattan, Brooklyn, or STaten Island ever goes to a Best Buy.

  52. Daniels says:

    A better question would be: why would anyone who lives locally go to Best Buy instead of PC Richards to start with?

  53. Doctor Cathattan says:

    A lot of stores including Best Buy will charge restocking fees if you try to return a opened and functional product. I guess you could always try a chargeback if that should happen. But it seems to me to be a whole lot of trouble just to “stick it to the man”.

  54. parnote says:

    WHY DOES ANYONE SHOP AT BEST BUY ANY LONGER??? I gave up on them LONG, LONG ago! What’s even more puzzling, this guy KNEW that J&R sold it cheaper, and most likely could have gotten it for a similar (if not same) price on [], and with their incredibly low shipping costs, still came out ahead!

    I have had the good fortune to discover [] over 3 years ago. Their prices are outstanding, their customer service fantastic, and their shipping costs some of the most reasonable of any online merchant. These reasons have helped justify me spending my hard-earned dollars with this gem of a merchant. And they ship almost immediately, and I end up getting the items in a lot less time than I anticipate. Yes, THIS is the type of retailer that gets my business and my $$$.

    So … reasons to shop at J&R:

    * GREAT prices
    * EXCELLENT customer service
    * FAST shipping
    * EXTREMELY REASONABLE shipping costs
    * SUPERB selection

    And reasons to shop at Best Buy:

    Can it possibly be said any clearer???

    Just in case … reasons to NOT shop at Best Buy:

    * Over-inflated prices
    * Rude, surly sales associates
    * Lack of concern for customers
    * Failure to back up policies and products
    * Untrained, immature sales associates

    I’m sure this list could go on for miles and miles … add your own list of reasons to NOT shop at Best Buy.

  55. bravo369 says:

    if he’s in secaucus then he might as well just go to hoboken and take the PATH train to WTC. it’ll only cost him $1.50 each way.

  56. Paranoid2000 says:

    I’d have bought it anyway, (paying by credit card) then come back later and ask for the PM, after it’s opened. They can do the price match or give me a refund at that point. Of course, make sure it’s not an item that is subject to re-stock fees.

    I had a problem with a Good Guys store with a price match just over 5 years ago. They offered a 60-day PM, but only a 30-day return. I found a $150 lower price on a RPTV I had bought about 40 days earlier. Went in with an invoice from a local competing retailer for the same model TV. They wouldn’t match the price, giving me a different reason each time I asked. I called corporate, they gave the manager’s discretion line of BS also.

    I filed a dispute for the $150 difference plus tax with AMEX, sent them a copy of the lower priced invoice and Good Guys PM policy. They did a chargeback to Good Guys, and I got my permanent credit about a month later. Of course Good Guys got bought out by compusa sometime after that, then had all their locations closed.

  57. eco says:

    I used to work at Best Buy and this was usually a common case when customers wanted a price match from a large online competitor. I know that J&R also have stores as well, however on Best Buy’s POS stations, theres a list of stores for a Price Match. While the usual Circuit City and Staples are on the list, there are other national chain stores that are on the list as well. I know for a fact that some Best Buys around California will not price match to because the prices they have are LOWER than what best buy purchased them for. Thus, the rule is at the manager’s discretion. I find it easier to purchase camera related gear directly from B&H or the local professional camera stores.

    You can’t really blame them for refusing a price match that’ll lose ’em money, but at the same time that price match guarantee is a bit of hypocritical crap. I used to hate price matching competitors because of the extra paper work involved.

  58. sielo_X says:

    I’m sorry to hear about your situation with your local Best Buy. I have to disagree with most people here that think that Best Buy is out to screw you out of your money. What Tombo wrote was exactly right though. Those employees (not Best Buy) probably lost any future business that they might have received had they taken care of you. Managers and associates at my store routinely bend over backwards to earn a customer’s trust. The best way to call attention is to this problem is to call those people out. Go buy some candy or anything inexpensive and fill out the customer survey at the bottom of your receipt. These surveys are read by almost every employee that works for Best Buy. In fact, the score averages are a major factor in bonuses and pay raises. Remember to get down people’s names and job titles.

    As for your request on corporate emails, I will try my best to help you out. If you can, please post the address of the Best Buy you went to.

    FYI… A manager is always in a store.

  59. twinklebean912 says:

    I also used to work at Best Buy and I’ll never forget the time this lady came in and tried to price match batteries. Apparently K-Mart was having a sale but when she went to K-Mart they were out of the batteries and since she was going to Best Buy anyway she figured she’d just get them there since they would price match. She came through my line and she had purchased well over $1000 in merchandise. When I brought the manager over to enter the price match, he asked her why she just didn’t go to K-Mart to get them. She explained the situation, that they did not have them, and his response was well if they don’t have them in stock, I can’t sell them to you. The woman was furious saying that it makes no sense and that the policy is misleading. She asked how it matters if one K-Mart has the batteries because any of the other K-Marts in the area could have them on the shelf–in which case his argument would be faulty. He told her that only after she visits every other K-Mart and can undeniably prove that they have this battery in stock (nothing short of a receipt with today’s date), that he would honor this price (mind you she had the sales ad in her hand). Her very loud so other customers can hear her response was questioning him on whether he was willing to risk such a high volume sale by treating a customer so poorly instead of honoring a 50 cent reduction in price on something that is already marked up three times the price. He said her attitude (which was nothing but polite considering the circumstances) led him no choice but to refuse her request and that he would gladly keep his merchandise for another customer then sell one thing to her.
    She left without paying and mumbled that she would be contacting corporate. Unfortunately, Best Buy has this good on paper but not in practice policy that gives employees an exceptional amount of power. Basically if a manager makes a decision at store level, corporate will 99.99999% of the time back you up. I could go on for days about how Best Buy mistreated customers.

  60. ceriphim says:

    Seriously, Consumerist? Another Best Buy story? I dunno why the hell people even bother reading these anymore, let me summarize:

    Best Buy is a big corporation that will do what it wants when it wants. YOU DON’T MATTER. If you don’t like it, don’t shop there.

    There, that was barely three sentences.

  61. DJRanmaS says:

    Not for nothing… If I was a manger at a NJ Best Buy I wouldn’t price match it. Now if it was a NY store, that’s a different story. I’ve price matched J&R all the time because I work near their location and people always say that they’re lower, so I price match them.

    Overall, if the place you want to price match doesn’t have a store nearby, they won’t do it.

  62. cde says:

    @DJRanmaS: Define nearby. 5 miles? 10 miles?

    The Secaucus, NJ bestbuy is literally 5 miles away from J&R.

  63. sleze69 says:

    @kylere: I disagree. Only regulars to Consumerist really know the depth of Best Buy’s suckiness. The more BB links google points here, the better.

  64. Neurotic1 says:

    The best way to PM at BB is to buy the product first at their price, then turn around and PM. That way you get 110% of the difference instead of just a PM.

    I think BB sucks monkey balls too, but to say, “I’m never gonna shop a BB” or at ” x ” is just harming yourself in the longrun. I continue shop at BB or any other store I despise, but only for loss leaders or anything else I know they’re not making money on for my purchase; though in the big scheme of things, it doesn’t really matter. But what if all of here on Consumerist only bought items that gave them no profits, or even better a loss. Wouldn’t that being a leach on their profits be better than not shopping there at all?

    Anything else, I head over to Costco or buy online.

  65. coold8 says:

    One problem with going through lincoln and buying from J&R….$6 to go there, at least $10-$15 to park if you can get out in 30 minutes. This = doom /not worth

  66. heathenkitties says:

    For months now, I’ve heard about best buy’s crappy customer service–and this is the last straw—I REFUSE to spend my hard earned dollars on a company that doesn’t appreciate its “average customer”! My hard-earned money goes elsewhere!!!!

  67. sue_me says:

    Wow…..”Sorry, we can’t match the price.”
    Me: “Oh really? I think I’ll go to the other store then. Bye.”

  68. says:

    According to most best buy locations, even if it is tri-state area, Different state = different taxes = non-local.

    I’m not a huge fan of best buy, but, you people need to stop kidding yourselves that they are going out of business anytime soon, even in a “recession” their stock continues to rise and they are opening new stores all the time, its unhealthy to lie to yourself things like, oh they will be out of business in a year or two.

  69. wellfleet says:

    I used to work in appliances at BB and every once in a while, a customer would come in with a quote from Metro Home Builders. Now, Metro is an awesome showroom with luxury brands and they deal with lots of homebuilders. They have THREE different prices on their product: the retail cost, a “builder’s price”, and then the salesperson’s “special” price. Because they are jacking their customers on cabinetry and fixtures, which are pretty impossible to price match, they can afford to sell lower-line appliances cheaper. So, a customer comes in with a quote for an LG fridge at $799. Since I can look up actual cost, I see that it costs BB $849 to buy it from LG. Now, why on earth, as a businessperson, would I essentially give LG $50 to sell its product. Not only am I not making a red cent in profit, I’m actually selling at a loss. It makes zero financial sense. If all I did was price-match Metro, I would be fired for not running a profitable department.
    I want to earn a customer’s business, but also need to make intelligent business decisions. If you ran your own business, you would see the insanity. I’ll price-match something if I make as little as $1, hoping the revenue would offset the loss in margin, but I’m not selling something below cost because it would be more profitable for my company to never order the item.

    So, if this blue-tooth headset lost the company money with the price-match, I wouldn’t do it either. The manager of the store should have just said “look, you and I both know you’re not going to drive into NY and deal with that mess over $30, so let’s meet halfway and get you outta here.”

  70. glass says:

    This just in: Best Buy screws customer, millions shocked that customer was attempting to shop at Best Buy.

  71. HOP says:


  72. ianmac47 says:

    There is a good reason why anyone would shop at Best Buy rather than J&R. As bad as Best Buy is with customer service, J&R is worse.

  73. mgomega says:

    If I have learned anything from “The Consumerist”, it’s that I should never, never, never shop at Best Buy again. Seriously, what percentage of the articles on this site involve Best Buy? I would guess it’s at least 5%. Somebody find out.

    I know people who have worked at Best Buy, and THEY won’t shop there anymore since they restructured their stores.

  74. Pro-Pain says:

    One message you should get from reading this website is NEVER EVER shop @ Best Buy. You may get lucky once or twice but ultimately you will be sorry…very, very, sorry…

  75. Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg says:


    It seems that the Best Buys in Northern NJ have issues. I found out from a Deal site that Best Buy in Union

    Why am I not surprised? With the exception of a single small mom-n-pop shop in NYC, that Union store is the single worst retail store I have ever been in. It was that store that convinced not to shop in Best Buy anymore. I still go in to browse and comparison shop occasionally – it’s nice to be able to see the physical item before you buy it online – but they haven’t seen a dime of my money in more than two years.

  76. Justinh6 says:

    And people still insist on shopping at best buy.

    The place is swamped every time I drive by it.

    Everything that they have can be had for much cheaper from anywhere else.

  77. UpsetPanda says:

    *raises hand* I shop at Best Buy. But my BB isn’t bad at all…granted, I’ve never bought big box items there, but for little things like movies it isn’t terrible. They overcharge compared to a lot of other places but if I need a gift last minute, and I pick to give a movie, BB is the easiest place to get it from, especially since Target is not the best selection in terms of having a wide range of movies and a lot of them, and I won’t step foot into a Wal-Mart.

    I understand J&R sells it for more than BB but if it’s not a huge emergency, I’m pretty sure you can find it cheaper online anyway, with coupon codes and whatnot.

  78. Superborty says:

    My parents in law gave me a $100 Best Buy card. Nice of them but f’n impossible to find anything to buy. Worst prices imaginable at that store. I beg others not to give Best Buy gift cards or any others for that matter. Cash is king.

  79. rit says:

    Odd. The Best Buy in East Hanover, NJ has honored J&R prices for me a few times before. I bought a new AV receiver 4 or 5 months ago and saved about $125 (even though I work 2 blocks from J&R I didn’t want to haul a big box on the PATH) by getting them to price match.

    To be fair, the sales guys visibly cringed when I pulled out my blackberry browser w/ J&R’s page, and then insisted on having a manager pull up the same page on on a physical computer and ‘validating’ it.

    Also, just to clarify – mobile phone handset use while driving has been illegal in Jersey for about 2 years. They just switched it from a Secondary (e.g. we can ticket you if we pull you over for something else, but can’t pull you over for it) to a Primary offense (you can now be pulled over for handset use, outwith any other offenses).

  80. Mrs. Stephen Fry says:

    I got my BlueAnt on eBay for a lot less than J&R or Best Buy. If you can find reputable dealers on there, it is the way to go.

  81. Wynner3 says:

    I stopped going to best buy after they refused to sell me a copy of Rainbow Six vegas for the xbox 360 at the price it said on the shelf. It said $29.99 and had the name of the title with the system name too. The computer came up $59.99 and said that’s the only price they can go by. They tried to distract me while one of their employees pryed off the cheaper tag.

    You know, I worked at Fry’s and hated it after a while. I became a terrbile person. I realized retail or electronics stores mess with your mind. I’m much nicer now.

  82. Buran says:

    @wellfleet: Then they shouldn’t have the price-match policy. It’s not the customer’s fault the store isn’t negotiating better deals with its suppliers, now is it?

  83. MyCokesBiggerThanYours says:

    Why go to the trouble to make Best Buy change their price when you can just buy it at J&R? You people create problems for yourselves.

  84. sgodun says:

    Seriously, when are people going to just STOP TRYING TO DEAL WITH BEST BUY AND GO SOMEWHERE ELSE???

  85. OsoGrande says:

    Bestbuy has every right to not lose money on a transaction. It’s called bad long term business strategy. J&R is not what I would call a nationwide big box retail competitor. Web shopping corrects itself…you don’t like the price, on to the next web site. In general I avoid retail, as they offer no other value than providing me with what I want “today”, assuming it’s in stock. That is worth something to me, if I *have* to have it same day. No complaining if poor planning on your own part, results in paying more to have it now. It’s this way with most everything in life. The quicker you want it, the more it may cost.

  86. wellfleet says:

    @Buran: The price match policy is a *closing* tool. For example, customer looking at a washer and dryer set starts to walk and says “I’m going to go look around”, you can come back to him and say “well, we do price match, even after the sale.” Customer decides not to hoof around to four other stores and buys his appliances in peace. Usually, people who came to me with price matches wanted the lower price, say, Home Depot’s, but wanted to use our financing which was better and longer, and our free delivery and all that jazz.

    No, it’s not the customer’s fault that BB has a higher cost price, but BB is under no obligation to sell the customer *anything*. It’s not your right to shop in a store and it’s not the store’s obligation to sell you an item. If you ran your own business and had to make financial decisions for that business and, in turn, your own livelihood, you would understand. It’s business suicide to sell things below cost.

  87. vastrightwing says:

    Best lies? Tell me it isn’t true! Well have they ever lied about warranties? yes? Oh. Have lied about sales and offers? yes? Oh. Have they lied about prices listed on the Internet? yes? Oh. Guess Best Buys always lies. Not news. Tell me when Best Buy tells the truth?

  88. ak1nza says:

    Best Buy in New York used to price match to J&R. I price matched my 32″ Samsung LCD to J&R prices back in late 2006. I received 110% of the difference between the price J&R advertised – nearly $350!!

    Anyways, I tried to price match a LCD tv mount to J&R late 2007 and I got the same deal as the story above. The manager at the store in Midtown NY told me that they can’t price match to J&R because J&R sells mostly refurbished products and there’s no way Best Buy can reasonably tell they are price matching to a new product.

    Bunch of BS if you ask me. If BB really can’t remain competitive versus prices in other local retailers I think they should just call it quits before they become the next CompUSA…

    I no longer shop at BB, and recommend anyone in the the NY/NJ area just to go ahead and shop at J&R if you know the prices are cheaper off the bat.

  89. DJRanmaS says:

    @cde: I know it is. But that store is across the river and it doesn’t suprise me that they didn’t price match it. But here’s a thought, does it make sense to price match a store in NY, when you’re in NJ?

    @ianmac47: As I’ve said previously, we get a lot of their customers with the same problem.

    @vastrightwing: Yeah, they’re tryinf screw my best friend over with their warranty on her laptop. I decided it would be best to let my other friend take care of it since she works at a different BB. She claims it’s one of the best in the country. Well the proof is in the pudding right?

  90. emjsea says:

    But worth you whining about, apparently.

  91. zibby says:

    “The manager at the store in Midtown NY told me that they can’t price match to J&R because J&R sells mostly refurbished products and there’s no way Best Buy can reasonably tell they are price matching to a new product.”

    Complete nonsense. I hope the guy made that up on the spot – it would be sad if he put any thought into such a pathetic lie.

    Anyhow, my recommendation is that if you can shop at J and R, do shop at J and R. 15 Years I’ve never had a problem with any aspect of doing business with them.

  92. WhirlyBird says:

    @92BuickLeSabre: Isn’t that what Consumerist is?

  93. pibbsman0 says:

    “When reader Steven attempted to cut through the absurdity by calling corporate, he was told that the price match is provided at each store’s discretion.”

    Absolutely. If its something silly like a few bucks, typically the price match is no problem. But if it ends up being that Best Buy will lose money on the deal, we’ll let the customer walk.

  94. CharlieSeattle says:

    Here’s a question, why didn’t you just go to J&R? You obviously read consumerist, and already know how bad Worst Buy is. So why not just skip the damn hassle and just go to J&R? Seems like I’d rather give them my money than Worst Buy.

  95. ARPRINCE says:

    @CharlieSeattle: Going to J&R is a pain if you live in NJ. First you pay the toll (if driving), then parking is another problem. Then you pay a NY killer tax of I think 8%. I would have bought it online though but I the OP may have needed it already and can’t wait.

  96. humphrmi says:

    There is one reason and one reason only to offer price matching, and that is to promote your brand and get your customers to buy from you rather than your competitor.

    While it’s true that sometimes a price match policy means you have to take a loss on one sale, the whole point is that overall you come out ahead – customers that would have bought from your competitor will come to you because (A) you offer a better overall value proposition and (B) your price is equal to or lower than theirs.

    So selectively price matching dilutes the value of price matching. You might as well not bother offering it if you’re not going to offer it across the board. Nitpicking over a slight loss on one sale is counterproductive and doesn’t get more customers in your store. Leaving it to managers discretion is also a huge mistake because the managers only see their store’s sales, not the bigger picture.

    I don’t see the value of Best Buy’s price match program, and it doesn’t make me want to shop at Best Buy.

    That the is the worst statement that can be made about a retailer’s sales incentive. And in my case, it’s true.

  97. HeartBurnKid says:

    @wellfleet: So, what you’re saying is that it’s OK for a store to lie to your face, since you don’t have to buy from them.

    And people wonder why salesmen get no damn respect.

  98. j0elr0cks says:

    Ok everybody all the major retail electronics stores suck “THE BIG PAIR”, seriously they always have a problem with price match policies. On another note B.B. and C.C. employees don’t know lcd from plasma half of the time and don’t even get me started on CompUsa; I worked for two of the three and when talking to employees on some of the products available they would say I just read the price tag. B.B. would not give me a job as a sales person for their H.E. department because I had too much experience and they could not afford some one like me; too much experience? you can’t afford some one with real knowledge???

    Please just buy your electronics online and if you need them A.S.A.P. then read online and just go in and get out from the stores. BTW Walmart sucks when it comes to electronics, only thing worth buying theirs is probably memory media for cameras.

  99. wellfleet says:

    @HeartBurnKid: Absolutely never ok for a store to lie to your face, your back, or your earlobe. There is no question that everyone from the CSR to the managers behaved horribly, which is why I didn’t even bother with commenting on that. At my store, we price match all the time, even when it loses us hundreds in margin dollars. What concerns me is that we keep it apples to apples. Why would I price match a store that has a 72-hour return policy? Or no financing? Or no free delivery? I get plenty of respect from my customers because I’m honest about what we do and don’t do. As management, I HATE sending people out of Best Buy, but I have sent people to other stores where they could get a *similar* product for way less.
    The point is, you CAN get good service at BB. You also need to realize that as much as we value customers, well, I sure do, it’s not Best Buy Charities Unlimited. Best Buy is beholden to its shareholders and employees to *turn a profit*. If the company was bleeding money, it *would* go the way of CompUSA.

  100. HeartBurnKid says:

    @wellfleet: And where do Best Buy’s advertisements say, “We’ll match anybody’s advertised price — unless their financing is worse than ours, or their return policy is worse than ours, or they charge extra for delivery”? When do your sales reps say that when using the price match to close a sale?

    I understand your point of view, but the fact of the matter is, if you make promises, you better be prepared to put your money where your mouth is. If you can’t or won’t, don’t be surprised when people call you a liar and a hypocrite.

  101. wellfleet says:

    @HeartBurnKid: Oh, we’ll still price match. the customer just can’t double dip on offers. They can have the lower price or the free delivery, etc., not both.