Rumble In The Strip Mall: Best Buy Calls Out Walmart

Sure, Best Buy emerged victorious over Circuit City in the Battle of the Big-Box Electronics Stores, but they still have to compete with general discounters like Walmart. Which is why in a new ad campaign, Best Buy calls out Walmart specifically, attacking their employees’ presumed lack of product knowledge compared to Best Buy employees.

In the TV spot titled “True Stories,” a Best Buy associate relays a story about a customer who calls with some very specific questions about a TV. Turns out he’s calling from a Walmart. Her response: “You’re obviously calling us because we’re knowledgeable. We’ve got the price match guarantee, so why don’t you come on in?”

That, says Barry Judge, chief marketing officer, is a perfect illustration of Best Buy’s point of differentiation. As the electronics retailer joins the ranks of those trying to convince consumers its prices are in line with Walmart’s, highlighting the price match guarantee was deemed essential. Target has been fighting a similar battle for months, though it has yet to mention Walmart by name in any advertising.

This raises the inevitable question: what kind of person has the Best Buy TV department on speed dial?

Best Buy Challenges Walmart on Employee Smarts [Advertising Age]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Nighthawke says:

    Oh, this ought to be funny. You have Walmart on one side, their sales associates know little of anything about their stuff.

    On the other hand, you have BB and their “Well trained’ associates that are under the gun to sell, sell, sell.

    Now go figure.

    • Darascon says:

      @Nighthawke: Point of correction: “Upsell, upsell, upsell.” It’s not making the sale, but making the bigger sale, and the ammount of crap you can tack on to the purchase.

      • gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

        @Darascon: i have NEVER found an employee in walmart willing to acknowledge that i exist… usually too busy talking to their best friend Yolanda on the other side of the aisle (across the giant wall of stuff.)

        • Galactica says:

          @gStein: Agreed…you better know what the hell you’re looking for when you walk in.

          • Zclyh3 says:


            Yup. This is the ONLY way to shop at Worst Buy.

            1. Get in.
            2. Find what you’re looking for
            3. If you can’t it, ask
            4. Once you get your item walk straight to cashier
            5. Pay then GTFO.

            That’s it.

            • Ragman says:

              @Zclyh3: Modification:
              4. Once you get your item walk straight to cashier
              5. Open box to make sure you aren’t buying brick or tile instead of electronics.
              6. Pay then GTFO.

    • ncpeters says:

      @Nighthawke: It’s a good ad that should drive people into Best Buy, where they will realize all the Best Buy people want to do is sell additional cables, DVD/Blu-ray players, extended warranties, and $150 HDMI cables. I personally would rather just do my own research and buy online. I’ve been lied to multiple times by Best Buy associates and when I call them out they admit they were wrong.

    • Preyfar says:

      @Nighthawke: True story:
      Years ago, my mom and I were on a rush to pick up some things for a cookout, and needed a grill cover. Stopped by Walmart, went to the Home and Garden section, asked an employee who worked there “Where can we find grill covers?” The employee didn’t know, no big deal, so he took us over to the Home and Garden supervisor. The supervisor responded that Walmart did not sell grill covers, and that we should check out Home Depot.

      He asked us if there is anything else he can do to help us and walks off. Once he’s gone, we notice right behind where the supervisor had been standing? Grill covers. Right there. Yep.

      So yeah.

      It’s my firm belief that the average Walmart employee just doesn’t care/know enough about their sections and what they’re selling. Not that Walmart pays them enough to in the first place.

    • RanChan03 says:

      @Nighthawke: wouldn’t it they be the same as walmart employees only instead they lie and BS through their teeth to make it seem they know information about a product but in reality have the same knowledge as a walmart employee

    • Outrun1986 says:

      @Nighthawke: If you really HAVE to shop at BB I recommend the order online for store pickup option. It removes the upsell because the order is already placed and on your credit card. Do this if you are at all able to.

      BB is completely forgetting that they are competing with online stores, which have many more benefits over shopping at either WM or BB. Give me a reason to shop at BB over online stores and I will flock to your store. Oh wait there isn’t any reason to, that’s right!

  2. waltcoleman says:

    Anyone who has to rely on the sales associates of either Best Buy or Walmart is screwed

    • Nick Wright says:

      @waltcoleman: Definitely. Call the grandkids.

    • takes_so_little says:

      @waltcoleman: Point.

    • Easton21 says:

      @waltcoleman: Agreed. And good luck getting that price match guarantee, since basically everything at Wal-Mart is considered “on sale”.
      Also, in the commercial she asks where the person is. Does that strike anyone else as weird for a sales associate to do? What made her think the customer was at Wal-Mart? She must have been able to hear screaming babies and NASCAR blaring from the electronics department.

    • pb5000 says:

      @waltcoleman: Up until recently my father in law took the best buy guys advice at a higher level than mine. It got to the point where I stopped offering advice, since he’d usually ignore it and go with what ever the blue shirts told him. He’s finally started to realize that my stuff is lasting longer and a better value than his crap. But it took him a while.

      Now if I could just convince him that you don’t NEED the fancy cables from BB, order online!

    • RedwoodFlyer says:

      @waltcoleman: To be fair, some WalMart employees are rather well versed on electronics – For example, I was in a WM (either Port Orange or Ormond, I forget) and the sales person worked hard to convince a customer NOT to buy the gold plated bling bling AV cables!

  3. Saboth says:

    In my experience, the BB employees know about the same as the Walmart. “Oh yeah, this tv has it all man, top of the line, I tell ya, it is the best!” “Ummm this is a 720p tv, that is 2 years old, and you are selling it for 45% more than I could get it for on Amazon”. “Yeah, but once you jack up the price another 20% with one of our warranties, this baby will be gtg for 3 years!” “3 years? It is already 2 years outdated already!”

    • RecordStoreToughGuy_RidesTheWarpOfSpaceIntoTheWombOfNight says:

      @Saboth: But if you buy Monster Cables with it, it’ll be even awesomer!

    • takes_so_little says:

      @Saboth: Already?

    • kamel5547 says:

      @Saboth: Agreed. Every time I overhear their conversations with customers I cringe. Half the information is misleading… the other half is just plain wrong. Mainly it consists of doing whatever they can do to move the customer to a more expensive product than they need (or were looking at).

    • johnva says:

      @Saboth: lol, so true. One minor quibble: there’s nothing really wrong with 720p for smaller screens. Just understand what you’re getting.

      • Skankingmike says:

        @johnva: Most things are not even in 1080p so why buy a TV that displays it?

        Also you need to sit extremely close to a 1080p which most people do not thus waste even more money.

  4. Gokuhouse says:

    Just because BB employees have a tiny bit of training about their department doesn’t mean they are “knowledgeable” about it.

  5. grapedog says:

    I will say this for Best Buy, they do TRY to educate their people on what they are selling. They may not be experts on a particular product, but when I worked there they did a good job of trying to train the employees well enough to sell the product. At least that was MY experience on the computer side.

    (I did the PC repair for Best Buy before they became Geek Squad and altogether offered worse service for higher prices.)

  6. post_break says:

    This should be interesting. Sure, some best buy employees don’t know HDMI from DVI but some do. I would trust a best buy employee over a walmart worker any day. The lesser of two evils.

  7. takes_so_little says:

    Wow, two WCIA contenders duking it out. It’s like a corporate Jerry Springer show!

  8. Illusio26 says:

    “Best Buy calls out Walmart specifically, attacking their employees’ presumed lack of product knowledge compared to Best Buy employees.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHA, but seriously, that made me laugh.

  9. enginecraft says:

    I think we all agree we don’t shop Walmart for their employee knowledge.

  10. ElizabethD says:

    This is rich indeed. Pot… kettle…

  11. FDCPAGuy says:

    I think BBY is a little afraid of WalMart and their revamping of their electronic departments. I think we will actually see some positive changes from BBY in the following weeks (months?) which will be more pro-consumer. Now you all might dog on BBY because of the occasional poorly trained/informed employee but I still say they know more than the people at Walmart.

  12. Tambar says:

    Maybe not BB on speed dial, but rather used GOOG411 or the new Bing one and get put straight through. S’what I do!

  13. TheWraithL98 says:

    every time i see that commercial, i invision a guy in walmart who has been standing around in electronics for like 30 minutes without getting any help at all.

    so to be an ass he calls best buy to get help, probably talking loud enough for all the walmart employees in his viscinity who are ignoring him to hear, and winds up going over there.

    based on my personal experience, i don’t see the commercial as an attack on walmart’s lack of employee knowledge so much as it’s an attack on walmart’s lack of employees. Congratulations Walmart, you won the department store war. So now that the entire world shops there, how about hiring enough people to provide customer service to them all?

    • Outrun1986 says:

      @TheWraithL98: Strange because at the Walmart here there is always an employee in electronics. At least one employee, often times there are 2 or more. Its honestly one of the easiest places to get service in the electronics dept. I have been to other walmarts in my area and its the same thing always at least one employee and often times more than one in electronics. On the other hand Target and Kmart are severely lacking in electronics staff, there is almost never anyone there.

  14. majortom1029 says:

    Whats even funnier is when you walk into bestbuy and the employee tells you dont bother just go to newegg.

    I am serious this happened 2 weekends ago. I was just looking around the pc section of bestbuy and an actual best buy employee told me that.

    • johnva says:

      @majortom1029: Best Buy doesn’t seem very interested in actually selling much RAM and such, seeing as I’ve seen them selling $40 modules (if you got them online) for like $180. At least he gave you good advice.

      • Saboth says:


        Not to mention they sell 2 year old videocards for around $200 that you can get online for $99 all day long.

        • johnva says:

          @Saboth: Yeah, there are plenty of examples. The RAM thing was just the most egregious display that I could think of of Best Buy’s “sell inferior/obsolete product, jack the price up beyond all reason” strategy. Their entire business strategy for that sort of item must rely on there being a few idiots who don’t know the Internet exists yet or something (like I said, I can’t imagine they sell much at that price). How did that work out for Circuit City again?

          • mac-phisto says:

            @johnva: i’ll confess that i bought a video card there b/c i needed it ASAP. i know i paid at least 40% more than i would have paid elsewhere, but i needed the card.

            • johnva says:

              @mac-phisto: Well yeah, there are a few instances where you need something NOW and can’t wait for it to be shipped, even overnight. But I think those instances are probably very rare, especially outside instances that you don’t need anything fancy for like a video card that just failed on a work computer. I would just find a cheapo non-3D-accelerated card and then buy a better one online in that instance. And I would probably check somewhere other than Best Buy in order to get gouged a bit less. If you buy any sort of PC components there, you’re going to be paying 100% more or whatever than you would online.

          • RedwoodFlyer says:

            @johnva: I think that BB doesn’t really intend to sell any RAM by itself… it’s out on display, but the real purchasers are those who get work done at meek squad – since the price isn’t so upfront.

    • Michael Belisle says:

      @majortom1029: If management knew about it, the employee would be fired. That happened at my store a few years back, where an employee said something like that to a secret shopper. Oops.

      • johnva says:

        @Michael Belisle: So the employee should be fired for telling the truth that Best Buy isn’t going to have what they’re looking for?

        • Michael Belisle says:

          @johnva: What? No. majortom1029’s post is ambiguous about what the employee said, so I’m going to assume we interpreted it differently.

          The employee would be fired for telling someone that RAM cheaper on Newegg, or that you should buy computer parts on Newegg instead of bothering with Best Buy, or that Dell makes better and cheaper computers that the stuff Best Buy sells.

          If Best Buy doesn’t have the specific part the customer needs and the employee recommends Newegg, that’s different. It’d probably still get the employee in trouble if he didn’t suggest or try Best Buy Partsearch first.

          • johnva says:

            @Michael Belisle: Ahh, I was thinking of the latter interpretation.

            But still, it’s really foolish to buy PC parts from Best Buy. They are always obsolete and way overpriced, maybe because they can’t sell add-on Monster Cables for them.

    • Outrun1986 says:

      @majortom1029: When I worked at Kmart we used to tell people to go to a different store all the time if we didn’t have what they needed. Management didn’t care either.

      • CubeRat says:


        I remember going shopping with my dad when I was younger and he always appreciated it when an employee would refer him to another store if they did not have what he was looking for.
        I did that too when I worked in retail. If I knew we could not help the person I would try to get them to someone who could. I think people tend to remember those kinds of things in a good way.

      • Saxmoore says:

        @Outrun1986: How’s that working out for Kmart now? ;-)

  15. chris_l says:

    I didn’t know “this TV has a higher number than another” counts as a measurement of knowledge.

    How many Best Buy home theater employees even know what the NTSC color spectrum is? Oh, it’s only the most important aspect of picture quality that almost no one mentions, that’s all.

    • SteveZim1017 says:

      @chris_l: Except its slowly becoming less relevent as 100% NTSC is becoming more universal and new standards like xvYCC are being adopted by HDMI

  16. barb95 says:

    I never rely on the associates. I research online, find the best item, and go to the store with my purchase already selected.

    • DefineStatutory says:


      and that makes you…an intelligetn consumer. I use the wealth of knowledge available to me on the intertubes, and then pick it up locally if I can, because I like instant gratification rather than ordering it, as long as the price is close enough to justify it.

      There are exceptions, my biggest one being a local camera shop where the staff really knows their stuff to the point where I’ve stopped double checking their recommendations with online research, because they always seem to match up. Nice to see some businesses having well trained and informed staff.

    • halo969 says:

      @barb95: Same here, with the deviation being that I check out the product at the store to make sure I like it in person, then go back home and order it online to save money. :)

      Another good tip – go to the manufacturer’s website and download the owner’s manual for the product you’re interested in to make sure you’re fully aware of what it does and doesn’t do.

  17. Applekid ┬──┬ ノ( ゜-゜ノ) says:

    This is like me saying I know more about space shuttles than a small dog – and being proud of that.

  18. Joseph Gilbert says:

    I work at Walmart and know for a fact that I have more knowledge about electronics than every employee at the Best Buy across the street from the store I work at. I even proved that to my managers.

    I stock shelves in the grocery area…

    • mac-phisto says:

      @Joseph Gilbert: & that’s the absurdity that is walmart. if you have proven knowledge in a specific subject matter that could be beneficial to the company, any good manager would move you into customer service in that particular department.

  19. savdavid says:

    HAH!! Walmart employees around here are too understaffed and being called to man registers, clean the bathrooms, straighten stock, smoking outside to have time to answer questions. They are usually teenagers who don’t NEED the job, just some extra cash for clothes, beer, etc and don’t really care if they get fired or not. They don’t care about the consumers.

    • sponica says:

      @savdavid: although in their crappy defense, i have found that the front line staff’s attitude is only a representation of the attitude that’s been passed down from store management which has been passed down from regional, etc etc. fix it from the top, and it will get better. I mean you like your job more and have a better attitude when you’re noticed for your performance than when you’re not.

  20. TripleTheOrder_GitEmSteveDave says:

    Wallllll-Mart. Come out and playyyyyyy!

  21. HogwartsAlum says:

    “Which is why in a new ad campaign, Best Buy calls out Walmart specifically, attacking their employees’ presumed lack of product knowledge compared to Best Buy employees.”


    That made me laugh really hard.

  22. Cant_stop_the_rock says:

    I haven’t found either to be particularly knowledgeable, but the Walmart employees bug you less. That’s a double-edged sword though – it can be harder to find someone to help you if you actually need their help.

  23. Segador says:

    Maybe I’m just lucky, but the salespeople in the electronics section of my local WalMart are actually friendly and know about the products. And Bi-lingual to boot!

  24. DarkKnightShyamalan says:

    Best Buy making fun of Wal-Mart is like the kid who eats his boogers making fun of the kid who eats paste.

  25. LorneReams says:

    This is like a retard fight. No one wins and everyone just laughs.

  26. H3ion says:

    I don’t expect the Best Buy employees to be any more knowledgeable about electronics than I expect the McDonald’s employees to be expert on French haute cuisine. From experience, they don’t really know much about what they’re selling, although they do know just enough to try to sell accessories.

  27. jerichojay says:

    a note of caution on any item purchased at Walmart (or Sam’s Club):
    You can’t rely on model numbers when pricing items at Walmart or Sam’s.
    Wanting digital cameras for my family, I priced the model I wanted at several local stores. Walmart was $10 cheaper. I eventually bought 3 identical cameras from the camera factory refurb site. Two arrived with exact model specifications. One, however, was missing several key features. A call to the factory yielded this answer; “you got a walmart version of that model” I was told that to meet walmarts price point, the cameras made for them are made with cheaper specifications and fewer features” even though they had the exact same model number. The walmart $10 savings was for a camera that was worth considerable less.

    This incident was followed by another similar one. My office bought a fax / printer / copier. When set up, the office manager could not get some of the features to work. A call to the printer support desk elicited the following question; “Did you buy the printer at Sam’s club?” When told that this was not the case, the printer rep helped us determine that the features were simply not turned on in an obscure menu. In reply to the question “why was the purchace at Sam’s club relevent” the responce again was that to meet the walmart price points the manufacturer had removed those features for units sold at Sam’s Club. Yet the model numbers were the same.

    When i tell these examples to others, I get many people who respond with similar stories regarding computers, tv’s, clothing and even food stuffs.

  28. kyle4 says:

    I found some attitudes pretty insulting when I worked in the Wal-Mart electronics department. Then again, I wasn’t a normal employee. Most don’t read Giz every day and know who manufactures the hard drives in an iPod or the screens of an LCD. Even knowing that, like in 2007 suggesting customers buy Blu-ray instead of HD-DVD because “the latter will lose, I guarantee you.” Most people just didn’t believe me because I worked at WM. Must be some stereotype even though I was just an 18 year old guy saving up some money.

    • Coles_Law says:

      @kyle4: It’s nice to see a dedicated employee. Unfortunately, at any big box electronics section, you’re not the norm and customers are conditioned to assume the floor staff is clueless (with good cause, in most cases).

      • xcharliemx says:

        @Coles_Law: Well you gotta be smart about it too. You can’t expect 72 year old Ronald to know as much about iPods as 18 year old Kodey

  29. allstarecho says:

    What kind of person has the Best Buy TV department on speed dial? The kind of person that is a smart shopper. I have many store phone numbers saved in my cell phone for price comparison when I’m shopping. I’ve also used my cell phone’s web browser to get phone numbers of stores I needed to call while in another store.

  30. midwestkel says:

    Here is the actual commercial on Best Buy’s YouTube channel:

    • Philthadelphian says:


      Something tells me that if she had a job at Abercrombie & Fitch instead of Best Buy, she’d be working the stock room instead of the sales floor regardless of the authenticity of her limbs.

  31. woogychuck says:

    Man, the reverse used to happen to me all the time.

    I worked in the Sears electronics department for a year or so. A few times a week, we would spend an hour or so with a customer explaining every little detail about HDTV, LCD vs Plasma, etc. When they finally decided on a purchase, there was about an 80% chance there was none in stock. At which point, the customer would go to Best Buy across the street and buy the TV we just sold them.

    Our manager at Sears always said that if we were good salesmen, we would be able to convince the customer to wait 2 weeks for delivery.

  32. gggtur says:

    I like Wal-Mart workers better. They don’t know anything, nor do they pretend to!

  33. MrEvil says:

    I wouldn’t say that Best Buy has more knowledgable employees than Wal-Mart. They just have more Employees to sell you a TV.

  34. RStui says:

    I will stick to doing my own product research and go to the outlet with the best prices, be it Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon, or whatever.

    You can’t count on the vast majority of big box employees to know much about their job.

    Although I will say that, in my experience, if you ask a Walmart person about a product’s reliability, they are more willing than a Best Buy employee to admit it’s returned alot. Why? Walmart employees are there to maintain Walmart, not corner you and try to sell you a warranty.

  35. coren says:

    The only reason to go to Best Buy is if they have an item there that beats Newegg’s prices, or if the price difference is made up by having it now.

  36. ceilingFANBOY says:

    As someone who works at Wal-Mart, I can say that product knowledge at Wal-Mart is completely based on the store that you go to. The product training that Wal-Mart gives is sponsored by Consumer Electronics and whatever product is the subject of the training page. Going through the questions, it is obvious that each page is created to make whatever product is being reviewed seem like the best product ever. Any time that you find someone that does know what they are talking about it is because you have found someone who has knowledge that they bring in from outside of Wal-Mart. The vast majority of information that I give to customers is stuff that I learned outside of Wal-Mart and most of what the other people in electronics tell people is based off of what I have told them. Also, technically if a Wal-Mart associate does any product research at home, they can get fired for working off of the clock.
    That being said, the situation at Best Buy is similar. Any retail company’s training is going to be designed to sell products more than get the customer what they want. Walking around in a Best Buy, I literally heard an associate tell a customer that one TV was 4x better than another TV because its contrast ratio was 4x higher. Of course, the associate completely ignored the fact that contrast ratios between different manufacturers can’t be trusted because each manufacturer measures it differently and that there are other factors to picture quality. After the associate made the sale, he was much pushier about getting the customer to go with their financing and purchase extra merchandise than I ever am with a customer. That could also be because I understand that a lot of people that are shopping at Wal-Mart are doing so to save money. I’ll even let customers know that if they don’t mind waiting for their cables they can be found much cheaper online than in any retail store.

    As for their price match guarantee, Best Buy is definitely going to give you a hard time trying to get a price match from Wal-Mart because the product models are slightly different. Even if the products are the same model number, you’re going to have a hard time getting someone to price match on something if it is not in an ad, and if it is in an ad you will have trouble getting a match if the product is a special buy or on sale.

    My general rule is to use Best Buy as a place to look at TVs but buy them online if you are in the market for a high end TV. If you aren’t looking for a high end TV is the only time I would suggest going to Wal-Mart. Sure, Wal-Mart has started carrying better TVs than they used to, but the really high end TVs are still not carried.

  37. JaideepG2002 says:

    I’ve been repping @ Best Buy & Wal Mart for QWest the past 3 weeks. Best Buy employees have been saying that Wal Mart is currently their biggest competitor for electronics these days atleast in the Iowa area. Pretty sad.

    I must say Wal Mart employees were some what knowledgeable but not all the way there.

  38. Rachacha says:

    Funny, here in the DC area, Myer Emco (AV Specialty store) has been running very similar ads attacking BestBuy. Blue shirt person behind the counter is asked by the customer “What is the difference between HDMI and Component”, and the blue shirt wearing person stares back with this dumb look.

  39. MisterE says:

    The one common factor that Best Buy and Walmart fear is an educated customer who researches their items before they buy them. I think both stores rely on the casual browser who happen to stumble upon a marked down item using the “urgency” to buy it simply because it’s the last one.

    I swear my wife falls into this trap with clothes: “But, hon, it’s a GOOD DEAL, it’s on sale and it’s the last one!” Never mind the fact she has 3 closets full of shoes, clothes and other whatnot.

  40. Voltanis says:

    In my experience at Best Buy, a “knowledgeable” employee just means they know how to turn it on and off with the remote.

    Now when they can tell me the dimensions, DPI, inputs and contrast ratio of any T.V. I point at without cheating and looking at the tags, THEN they’re knowledgeable. Or maybe just have good recall.

  41. momma_andrea says:

    I don’t know which I prefer, the ability to make my purchase alone in peace at Wal-Mart or an annoying, pushy salesperson at BestBuy. Regardless of where you shop, you need to do your research on your own. Don’t rely on any salesperson to tell you what to buy.

    I was shopping for a Nintendo DSi last night as a matter of fact. Wal-Mart had it cheaper, but they didn’t have any on the shelf. I couldn’t find an associate to tell me if they had more. I left and went to BB. They had it there for a few dollars more, but the sales guy kept pressuring me into buying other pieces. He told me that I had to get a new stylus (not true) and that I needed a new case because the DSi is much bigger (yeah, like 1/2 an inch maybe). He then tried to sell me the Nintendo $50 Sandisk SD card. I asked where the other SD cards were and if there was anything special about this one. He tried to sell me some bull about how this is a special card. Whatever…I went over to the other cards and got one for $25 from Sandisk…the same one. He walked away mad.

    Anyway, I don’t think that either place is the best. For me, buying onlne from Newegg, meritline, zipzoomfly, and Amazon are the best option unless you need something in your hand immediately.

    • halo969 says:

      @momma_andrea: That’s what I’ve always hated about Best Buy – they try to pray on the uninformed. That and treat you like a thief when you try to leave after making a purchase (although Fry’s does the same thing).

  42. sanjsrik says:

    Ask Circuit City for help, buy from Walmart for the price.

    Either way, you’re asking a moron for help, and buying from a store that will eat your mom if she were on sale.

  43. sanjsrik says:

    Er, meant Best Buy, not Circuit City.

  44. DefineStatutory says:

    If this were the old west, Best buy calling walmart out at noon on Main street would have Walmart walking out with a gun, and no bullets. And Best buy showing up with a bolw of pudding.

  45. quagmire0 says:

    Best Buy is a terrible, terrible place. They are so horribly overpriced it makes me sick. I’ve had a $25 gift certificate since February and haven’t found a good opportunity to spend it. I just can’t do it knowing that I can probably find the product much cheaper elsewhere – and a gift card is still money that I’d be throwing away. So I find myself just waiting and waiting for a good deal to come around.

    • Dethzilla says:

      @quagmire0: You can sell that giftcard on Ebay for $20 and then use that to buy the item you want from Walmart. Yeah… that’s throwing money away too… more than the 3¬¢ price difference at Walmart. But pennies add up… so it’s all good.

  46. chocogray says:

    the pot calling the kettle black.

  47. cametall says:

    In reality what customers actually do is go to Walmart, get model numbers, go to BestBuy (or in my case they came to Circuit City), pick the salesman’s brain, then scurry on off to Walmart to buy the product.

  48. m2ky2fo says:


    enough said

  49. Dethzilla says:

    Sounds like a lot of haters around here… heaven forbid you buy the cables you need to get your TV to work. I mean… you could get them cheaper online but is the $3 saved worth the 1 week shipping time?

    The Caveate (sp?) is that Best Buy doesn’t stock a lot of the crap that Walmart sells as far as high end electronics. That Price match is worthless if the SKU’s are different.

    • Anonymous says:

      @Dethzilla: Not true at all on price of cables online. I can get perfectly good HDMI cables for $5 and under from MyCableMart which is based out of my home state. Typically I have the cables the next day as well. Shop well and you’ll save tons on what you need. Better to wait a day or two (or a little more) than to spend WAY too much on a Monster Cable.

  50. Justifan says:

    lol so dodgy, i’d trust the word of a walmart employee over a best buys any day.

  51. InsomniacZombie says:

    I just saw the commercial on TV. It’s pretty brilliant. While I’ve had mixed service at Best Buy, it’s pretty great to see them stick it to Wal-Mart.

    • halo969 says:

      @InsomniacZombie: I’d rather see anyone, I don’t care whom, stick it to Best Buy. I really wish it was them who had gone under instead of Circuit City. I hate BB with a passion.

      • johnva says:

        @halo969: I agree re: Circuit City vs. Best Buy. Best Buy was always more “slick”, but Circuit City was more usually more likely to actually have what I wanted to buy.

  52. Willmeister says:

    i actually laughed when i saw this commercial then i thought if geek squad applied to the ad

  53. gman863 says:

    I work at a major competitor of BB and WM (oneThe Consumerist enjoys calling out occasionally). As someone who has spent waaaayyy to much of his life in electronics retail, here are a few tips on sizing up if your salesperson either knows their stuff or is full of bullshit:

    * Do basic homework on the Internet first. When the salesperson approaches you, ask a basic question you already know the answer to (example: “I’m confused. What’s the difference between component inputs and HDMI?). If the salesperson can’t give a basic, correct answer or the words “Monster Cable” or “Extended Warranty” are part of the initial answer, run.

    * Good salespeople will ask you a few qualifying questions (“What are you replacing? What features are most important to you?” etc.) to help you find the right product. Keep an open mind: if you’re lucky enough to find a knowledgable expert, you may learn things the Internet didn’t tell you.

    * If the store has five in stock and four are “open box”, beware: It’s a red flag the item may be hard to use and/or may have reliability issues.

    * Although BB and WM employees are paid hourly, there are some of us who are still commission sales. If you like the service and the store, give the salesperson a chance to match (or at least come close to) Internet pricing. Buying locally avoids the chance UPS will dump your $700 item at the front door on a rainy day when you’re not home (yes, this has happened to me) and – if the item is initially defective or you don’t like it – being able to return it to the store means you won’t have to jump through hoops getting a return authorization and spending big bucks to ship the item back.

  54. David Small says:

    It’s probably the same person who would be limited to 100 frozen chimichangas!

  55. RedwoodFlyer says:

    @mac-phisto: Why would you need a video card that urgently? Amazon gives me overnight shipping for $3.99…. I can’t think of a single circumstance that would require needing a video card that quickly. Even heart transplants take a few hours to be flown in..

  56. theRIAA says:

    I went to my walmart today. I used to LOVE this walmart, then they went and rearranged EVERYthing, put in lower shelving that looks like crap, and TOOK OUT THE FABRICS SECTION! no more $2/yard fabric? no reason to go to walmart anymore.

    As for knowledge? I wouldn’t trust any store employee to give me advice, anywhere.

  57. ShadowFalls says:

    Bestbuy’s price match guarantee only applies to advertised prices. Walmart doesn’t put out advertisements all that often. I call out false advertising on the commercial there.

  58. Tedsallis says:

    Comment threads like this crack me up. Chances are if you are able to start your computer and get on the internet, you’re already too tech savvy to even matter. It’s the other 98 percent of people who can barely microwave a bag of popcorn without burning their house down that they are marketing to.

  59. MerlynNY says:

    Isn’t that a joke. Where I live I wouldn’t trust a Best Buy or Wallmart employee as far as I could trust them. I’ve heard some of the advice the BB “well trained” folks give and I walk away shaking my head sometimes when in the store.

  60. Anonymous says:

    BB claiming to be “smarter” then Walmart is like a 5th grader claiming to be smarter than a 1st grader. No one in their right mind goes to Walmart for their “technical knowledge”. It’s sad that BB is setting the bar that low to say “We’re smarter than Walmart”.

  61. norajeans says:

    HA! I knew a guy who not only had all the areas of Best Buy on his phone but also the numbers for Fry’s, Radio Shack…

  62. dren says:

    The biggest reason to go to Best Buy or Target instead of Walmart is to avoid the type of people who are in Walmart. Every time I go in Walmart I could swear a bus full of meth addicts is there on a field trip.

    Now lets see that commercial. “At Best Buy you don’t have to wade through the crowd of toothless meth heads, crying babies, and people whose clothes are falling apart because they can’t afford to shop in our store! Come to Best Buy!”

    Walmart has better prices on almost everything and has a wider selection of items in every department. Plus it’s open 24 hours. Best Buy has… less poor people, upsell, and occasionally, a knowledgeable employee.

    To be fair, Best Buy is the best place to buy video games and CDs if you’re going to buy new. The prices are about the same as Walmart, Best Buy typically has more stock, and you don’t risk buying the censored version of a CD by accident.

  63. Lagos says:

    I sold TVs at the Best Buy on North & Division in Chicago and didn’t know squat about them. When a customer asked me what the “best model” was I would just look at what we had in stock and sell them that. I wasn’t trying to rip people off, I just didn’t want to lose my job while working my way through college.

  64. LastError says:

    Wha? I thought Walmart electronics departments were still run by independant third-party companies. Forget who it was but they supposedly stocked the place and managed the inventory under license from Walmart.

    It was kind of a shop within a shop, except Walmart pretended it was theirs.

    Dunno if that’s still how things are run but I would not be surprised if it was still a third-party outfit.

  65. catnapped says:

    I actually managed to get a decent price on a TV today without being subjected to the wrath of the devil (hard upsell). May have helped that I ordered it online and did store pickup so as to avoid the sales drones.

  66. Bs Baldwin says:

    That is what they were trying to come across with? I thought it was that someone actually got a patient BB employee on the phone.

    Does anyone actually trust a BB employee after years of them trying to sell monster cables and extended warranties? I thought asking one when I was in a couple of months, then remembered it is pointless.