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Was I Too Harsh With Best Buy?

20 September 2008 9 Comments

Ok, in my last post, i told you all that BANS had bought me a new laptop!  What i didn't tell you was how the buying part went down!  I thought i'd throw this out there and get YOUR response.  Was i too arrogant?  Was i mean?  You be the judge and tell me, and you won't hurt my feelings!

Ok, i have worked on computers in one way or another since high school, which means a LONG TIME!  HA!  Twenty plus years!  Not to sound braggedy but i have learned quite a bit about computers over the years.  At least i think i have until i talk to someone like my nephew hahaha.....  But anyway,  having built them, worked on them, took classes on them etc etc.. i can do "most" things related to computers.  And if i don't know the answer, then i have friends, family and google that will help me out!

Well, at work i am always giving suggestions on this, that and the other.  Somebody is always wanting to know what to buy, when to buy, how to buy.  And i do enjoy it, i learn a lot and can usually find the best deals for people and let them know what they do and don't need.  So when a friend was looking for a laptop for his church, i set up an alert at one of the places i watch for deals and when the deal came that i thought would suite him, i let him know.   And, they bought it.

Now, backing up a bit...   i bought my 1st computer in 1991 i think it was.  I still have the receipt somewhere.  I know what i'm about to say won't mean anything to some of you, but to some you will get a kick out of it.  My first computer was a 286/16 with 1 MEG, NOT GIG, of ram hahaha.  It has a 40 MEG hard drive, not GIG hahaha.  It came with a dot matrix printer and that's it.  $1,200.00 bucks!  I look back at my old receipts sometimes, and in the past i have paid almost as much for hard drives and video cards as i did for this new laptop!  Man have times have changed in the world of electronics!

Ok, so since the purchase of my first computer back in the early 90's, i have built or upgraded everything on my own.  I never did purchase another "complete" computer since that first purchase.  And, over the years, i have either recommended or purchased many laptops for others, but never owned one myself.  Well, my websites have been doing better than expected, so i thought, what the heck, i work hard, i would LOVE to have a laptop of my very own and get away from the desktop and get an upgrade at the same time.  So after recommending that laptop for the guy at work, i knew it was a great deal and i thought i'd jump on it for myself.  Yeah there are always better deals, but this one had everything i needed and will hopefully serve my purpose well for years to come!

Now, the day came that i made the decision to make the purchase.  Best Buy had the laptop in stock and i'm about 45 minutes away from the nearest Best Buy.  So, me being Mr. Impatient, i didn't want to buy online and have it shipped to work, although i would have gotten it in about 3 days, i felt like i had to have it NOW!  So off to Best Buy i go!  I had called ahead of time to make sure they were in stock so i was ready to walk in, point it out, pay and get back to Mayberry!  Yeah right!!!!

It had been a while since i had set foot in Best Buy's doors, and now i remember why it had been a while.  Now, i realize those folks have a job to do, but good grief, it gets a little ridiculous sometimes.  I was in "kind of" a bit of hurry and needed to get back to town, so i wanted to get in and out.  Here's how the purchase went down.....

I walked in the store, walked straight to the laptops, walked around the displays until i saw the one i was looking for.  At about the time i found it, an ASSociate walked up and asked could he help me.  I said, YEP, and pointed at the one i wanted and said, get me that one right there.  He kinda made a funny look and said, well let me check stock, i said, you have them, i just called and you have plenty.  So he proceeded to walk off and i THOUGHT he was going to get my laptop.  The next thing that happened, totally got under my skin.

Now like i said, i realize these folks have a job, and maybe i felt like i didn't need any advice that day or whatever, but here's what happened.  As i was standing there waiting for him to bring me the laptop i had ask for, about 2 minutes passed.  I'm leaned up against a table directly across from the laptop i had pointed out with my arms crossed just waiting.  Well, there's a little display table to my left with a different brand of computer on it and it came with a software package or something.  So help me, the guy came came back with another employee and they both walked to that display table with the other laptops for sale, which was about 2 foot from me.  Here is the conversation between the two employees and i quote:

1st guy "Wow, is he gonna by that laptop when he could get this deal? This one has a much faster processor and comes with a bigger hard drive"

2nd guy "Gosh, you are right, i don't know why he would want that DELL when he could get this deal, it DOES have a better processor"

1st guy "And it comes with this essential software package that the one he's looking at doesn't have"

2nd guy "You're right, it is a much better deal"

Now i'm standing there, thinking to myself, surely, these to knuckleheads don't think i'm this stupid.  They are carrying on this conversation 2 feet from me, knowing i can hear it and i guess they think i'm going to go OH MAN, WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING BUYING A DELL?  I SHOULD GET THIS WONDERFUL DEAL YOU ARE POINTING OUT SUBLIMINALLY TO ME!  NOT!!!!!!!!!   I just stand there in amazement with my arms crossed and still staring straight ahead.  So the other guy walks off and the original guy i had asked to get me the laptop i pointed out, was still standing there holding the OTHER box they were trying to push, just looking at it.  Finally i looked over at him and he said, sir, wouldn't you like to get this one instead?  I said, bud, i'm in a hurry, then i pointed at the DELL i had ALREADY told him i wanted and said, can you just go get me that one so i can get outta here?  He put the other one down and walked off, never said a word.

So finally after about another 5 minutes, he comes walking up with my laptop.  I kinda reached out for it and he kinda turned away and was like, i have to take this up there for you.  I'm thinking, oooo k, are you afraid i'm gonna make a mad dash to the door and try and get past that 450 pound guard?  Oh well, we start to walk off and low and behold, instead of heading to the checkout, he heads toward the software section and proceeds to ask me what software i'll be needing today.  Ok, at this point i'm really starting to get a little ticked and i said, bud, i got it ALL covered, i don't need anything but what you have in that box.  So we finally turned towards the checkout and started walking up the isle.  THEN, he kinda stopped and said, you should take advantage of our Black Tie Geek Squad plans blah blah blah, we can remove virus's, spyware and before he could say another word, i turned and looked at him and i said listen...  i've worked on computers for 20 years, if i can't fix it, i sure as heck don't need teh Geek Squad!!!!!!   I am ready to check out!

I don't think he liked my tone of voice or my attitude, so he sat it down on the counter and walked off.  JERK!  haha  Then to beat all, the lady checking me out started to ask me the same crap he had started, about service plans, warranty's and i just said, "he's already tried, i'm ready to check out now".

Now i don't know if Best Buy just hates they are having to sell Dell products, or if they are just trying to push certain deals they have a lot of stock on or what. I know that when Dell started having financial problems, Walmart and Best Buy saved their butts by selling Dell products. I DO know that Best Buy departments have certain quota's they have to meet as far as extended service plans, etc etc. But when i walk in to a store, and know what i want and tell them what i want and i'm ready to go, i DO NOT want to be hammered by every sales pitch in the book! I can only imagine what they push on people who don't know a lot about computers, tv's cameras, etc etc...

I realize i could have shopped online and not even visited the store, so i know i put myself in that situation. But being Mr. i gotta have it now, i went to the store.

Sooooo, do you all think i was too harsh? Should i have just been Mr. Nice Guy and been more polite? I honestly could have been a LOT worse but i held back hahaha!

Have you had any experiences like that at Best Buy or any other store?

Anyways, Dude i've got a Dell, finally got me a laptop of my very own! Now i can sit in here with my sweetie and work and not have to be in 2 separate rooms!

So, talk to me, tell me if i was a butt or if i over reacted. What ya think?

And thanks again BANS for the new laptop!

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9 Comments »

  • Bethie said:

    They deserved it. My supervisor had a similar experience there and has vowed not to go back (at least to the WS store). Way to stand up and let them know that there are people out there that know more than they do about computers.

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  • Jake (author) said:

    Well, i didn’t even talk about what happened to my friend at work when he went. The Best Buy ASSociate told him, that he wouldn’t buy a Dell, that they wouldn’t last and basically told him he would never own one. He told him he need to get the HP. Which was of course 80 bucks more….. Anyway, glad to hear i’m not the only one that has dealt with that crap down there. I’m on the verge of writing them an email, asking them why they are selling Dell products since they are turning their customers away from them and bad mouthing the Dell products they are selling. Wonder what kind of response i would get? HA!

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  • Bethie said:

    i’m sure you’d get a better response from Dell if you let them know that one of their retailers are bad-mouthing their product.

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  • Donna said:

    I told Misty last night that I dindn’t think you were too harsh with Best Buy. I can’t stand going into a store and a sales person talking down to you and trying to sell you a better product (supposedly better for their pockets, I would say) or trying to sell you some bogus extended warrenty. I think that a majority of the people have researched and have some sort of idea as to what they want when they come into a store and they don’t need some minimum wage earner who probably doesn’t have a clue trying to sell them something they don’t want.
    (Love the ASSociate snip, sometimes so true!!)

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  • Jake (author) said:

    yeah really.. well.. i usually just let things roll off my back haha.. but for some reason it really got under my skin.. i think if i can get a few moments to sit and write it out, i’m gonna take Beth’s suggestion and email Dell and let them know how our local BB is downing their product! I might as well stir up a stink hahaha

    Some times warranty’s are good, like if you’re buying one for your “daughter” and you know she’s probably gonna “tear” it up! (Ash) :P But most of the time, the factory warranty is good enough for most electronics (IN MY OPINION)

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  • Mark - The Niche Store Builder said:

    Wow – Talk about pressure!! Believe it or not, there was probably a manager sitting in the background keeping score! I know… I used to! LOL

    Since I used to manage a Gateway Computer store – I am going to represent the defendants here for just one second. :-)

    I used to get phone calls from Customers complaining that the PC didnt have this program or that optical drive on it, and they didnt know how to do this or that. My reply was always… (After apologizing of course) Did your sales associate mention it to you in the store? Well… yes, they told me it didn’t come with MS Office, but I didnt think it meant I didnt get Word or Excel! Office is only for business right?

    Its one of those double-edged swords from a sales perspective. If you offer it and they dont need it, thats one thing… but when they DONT offer it, people get mad when they find out it was not included.

    Ultimately, we had a checklist we went over with every customer, to the point that I made them get the customer to sign a waiver of warranty extensions. “I agree that I do not want the extended warranty, and acknoledge my warranty expires after 12 months of the date of purchase”. Out of warranty repairs accounted for 16% of our store operating cost before the form went into action. I actually had a Pastor come in and chew me out at one time because his 2 year old PC lost a hard drive, after his 1 year warranty ran out. I am like you though and hate the sales process just as much… the only 1 thing I buy with anything though… usually a warranty extension.

    From a managers point – we hammered the sales staff to help the customer as much as possible, and yes, sell them as much as possible, so they had everything they needed on the first visit.

    We also had what they called “Secret Shoppers”. They were people the corporate office would send in to see if the troops were following company policies. Often, there were 4-5 company incentives going on at any given time (Ex: Geek squad, Training classes, Software, Warranty, Financing) and if the sales people got a shopper and did not mention it to the buyer, they only had 3 chances to get it right before they were dismissed!! LOL

    I know its a crappy thing the way they hardball you… but in their defense, they were just doing their job!

    BTW – I am the SAME WAY when I go in! Give me stuff and let me go already!! LOL I think thats why I buy online 99% of the time! BTW – Congrats ont he Dell!! They make great stuff!

    Mark

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  • Jake (author) said:

    Well Hello Mark, honor to have you drop by!

    Well it’s always good to hear the “other side” of the story ha!

    I think a lot of my problem with our local BB is that I use to spend quite a bit of time in there back when I was building more computers back in the day… I always dreaded going because I knew what I was in for. BUT, i can definitely see your point as I also know how the sales market world works (to some degree) Maybe I was just feeling cocky haha.

    I do still wonder what kind of kick backs they are getting from Dell compared to the other brands. It just seemed really odd that 2 of us had the same experience within a few days… not just trying to push software, but a completely different product!

    I can understand the warranty too, although I normally don’t get them, I can see where they are needed!

    Online IS the way to go! IMO :)

    Thanks for the comment! Ya’ll be sure to let us know if you ever come to any of the Yadkin Valley wine festivals!

    [Reply]

  • Mark - The Niche Store Builder said:

    Hi Jake –

    Believe me… HP pays WELL to have them push their brand!! HP was actually the first PC company to sell through best buy and other retail channels, so now that Gateway and Dell are taking that route… HP is getting hit in the sales dept.

    I am sure the SA’s (ASSociates) are getting a $10 spiff or something like that for every HP they sell, or talk a buyer into buying! LOL

    I used to hold contests to drive higher margin products.. we had 4 triggers: Software, Training, Warranty and Financing. If a SA got all 4 on one sale… they got a $25 bonus per sale!!

    I have not bought in a BB store in a long time for this very reason man… I buy from a Hadji shop locally when I need parts in a hurry, otherwise… its eBay for me!!

    Kim and i got matching Dell lpatops last year, new, in the box on ebay, for $300 each. They were still in the orignal shipping boxes and shrink wrapped… probably stolen!! lol

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  • Jake (author) said:

    haha, that’s pretty funny! Yeah if i had a little patience i would have had it shipped.. but MR impatient made the decision that i wanted it, so i HAD to have it that day, so a 45 minute drive to winston and dealing with those folks, when i could have just waited a couple of days and had it on my door step!

    Live and learn!

    Well i figured there was something behind all of it.. They tell you they don’t work off commission and I guess they are telling the truth.. but the do get incentives! ha

    [Reply]

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