Best Buy Accused Of Paying Bonuses To Managers Who Don't Price Match

In a new class action ruling (pdf) for a Best Buy price matching lawsuit, HDGuru has uncovered some unpleasant allegations against the company, including:

  • Best Buy provided financial bonuses based, in part, on denying proper price match requests.
  • Best Buy denied more than 100 proper price match requests per store per week.

They even circulated internal documents instructing employees how to reject price matches—see below for the partial text of one of them.

Here’s part of an internal document from Best Buy’s Competitive Strategies Unit which instructed Best Buy employees about their real “price match” policy:

“Price Matches

It looms on the wall, on a 9 foot sign. Our Price Match policy. There it is plain as day in English (Y en espanol para los de usted que puede leerio.) However, just because it is our policy, do we abide by it? Does it really help the customer?

What is the first thing we do when a customer comes in to our humble box brandishing a competitor’s ad asking for a price match? We attempt to build a case against the price match. (Trust me, I’ve done it too). Let’s walk through the “Refused Price Match Greatest Hits:”

Not same model? Not in stock at the competitor? Do we have free widget with purchase? Is it from a warehouse club (they have membership fees, you know)? Limited Quantities? That competitor is across town? We’ve got financing! Is it an internet price? It’s below cost!”

As points out, the public price matching policy as recently as this weekend read, “We’ll meet or beat their lowest price. If you see a lower advertised price, we’ll match it on the spot.”

As for the lawsuit, it’s for New York state residents only. Here’s more info on it:

The HD Guru contacted Michael Braunstein, the attorney representing the plaintiff in the class action lawsuit. Mr. Braunstein invites readers who believe they have been “murfed” (refused the price match in compliance with BBs written policy) or have inquiries regarding the class action, to contact him by email or phone. The class action lawsuit applies to NY State residents only. However, Mr. Braunstein stated in the phone interview that he would like to hear from anyone who has been rejected for a price match by Best Buy, regardless of the state in which they reside. His contact information is Michael L. Braunstein, Kantowitz, Goldhamer and Graifman, P.C. (845) 356-2570; email

“Best Buy Bombshell!” []

(Photo: insanehank)