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Best Buy to expand Apple Mac pilot to 200 stores

post #1 of 30
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Best Buy Co. said Wednesday that it has agreed to expand a pilot program aimed at testing sales of Apple's Mac computer line to approximately 200 of its stores by the fall.

The largest U.S. consumer electronics retailer confirmed the move during a quarterly conference call in which it said fourth-quarter earnings rose 18.5 percent, helped by a combination of strong sales of big screen TVs, install services, and an extra week in the quarter.

Best Buy said net income for the quarter ended March 3rd rose to $763 million, or $1.55 per share, up from $644 million, or $1.29, during the previous year. It added that revenues also increased 21 percent to $12.9 billion, with same-store sales rising 5.9 percent.

The expansion of the Mac pilot to 200 stores will represent a fourfold increase in exposure for Apple at the electronics retailer, which until now had been testing sales of Apple's PC line at only about 50 locations nationwide.

Best Buy initiated the pilot last June at a handful of stores located on the west coast but indicated that it would rapidly expand the program to more of its 900+ shops if the concept proved successful. Over 45 additional locations were later added to the mix in October.

Investment bank Morgan Stanley has said that a full expansion of the pilot to all of Best Buy's stores could generate as much as $400 million in additional Mac sales for Apple each year.

The Cupertino-based Mac maker is also running a similar, albeit smaller, pilot at Circuit City retail outlets located on the east coast.
post #2 of 30
Is there any place I can see a list of which Best Buys will be getting Mac stores inside?
post #3 of 30
OH! ... please ... please ... Sarasota FL

Best Buy that is...
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post #4 of 30
Circuit City USED to sell macs. If I'm not mistaken, they stopped around the G3 iMac era... Granted that was 10 years ago... What are they so cautious about?

-Clive
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post #5 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clive At Five View Post

Circuit City USED to sell macs. If I'm not mistaken, they stopped around the G3 iMac era... Granted that was 10 years ago... What are they so cautious about?

-Clive

Didn't Circuit City they just fire all their experienced staff to save money? Or am I thinking of another chain?
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post #6 of 30
It doesn't matter how many stores you put them in. If they have mac hating moronic staff, scaring everyone away they stull won't sell. All bestbuy's seem to hate mac and tell people the most untrue bullshit about them. Litterally everytime I'm at one and in the computer section I've had to step in to argue with the employees and cut the bullshit out.

Stuff like "yeah the imac's nice but with a built in lcd, it'll burn out in a year and won't be covered by the warranty"
and
"if you wanna add more ram down the road you're gonna have to get the 3 thousand dollar g5(even though it's now mac pro) or you could just get a 700 dollar hp lol."

When I worked at bestbuy in the computer section a year and half ago (it might be 2 year now, not sure), I swear I'd have knife fights with my fellow employees over this shit.
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post #7 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

OH! ... please ... please ... Sarasota FL

Best Buy that is...

Funny, that is the one closest to me too.
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post #8 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecking View Post

It doesn't matter how many stores you put them in. If they have mac hating moronic staff, scaring everyone away they stull won't sell. All bestbuy's seem to hate mac and tell people the most untrue bullshit about them. Litterally everytime I'm at one and in the computer section I've had to step in to argue with the employees and cut the bullshit out.

Stuff like "yeah the imac's nice but with a built in lcd, it'll burn out in a year and won't be covered by the warranty"
and
"if you wanna add more ram down the road you're gonna have to get the 3 thousand dollar g5(even though it's now mac pro) or you could just get a 700 dollar hp lol."

When I worked at bestbuy in the computer section a year and half ago (it might be 2 year now, not sure), I swear I'd have knife fights with my fellow employees over this shit.

You should write to Apple about this! Also perhaps Apple should put their own trained people in these new centers. Sound like they need to. The Anti mac thing is usually simply pure ignorance or wanting to retain their power trip because they know a little something about Windoze the average Joe doesn't (or they think they do).
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post #9 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Funny, that is the one closest to me too.

Nice weather just now
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post #10 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecking View Post

It doesn't matter how many stores you put them in. If they have mac hating moronic staff, scaring everyone away they stull won't sell. All bestbuy's seem to hate mac and tell people the most untrue bullshit about them. Litterally everytime I'm at one and in the computer section I've had to step in to argue with the employees and cut the bullshit out.

Stuff like "yeah the imac's nice but with a built in lcd, it'll burn out in a year and won't be covered by the warranty"
and
"if you wanna add more ram down the road you're gonna have to get the 3 thousand dollar g5(even though it's now mac pro) or you could just get a 700 dollar hp lol."

When I worked at bestbuy in the computer section a year and half ago (it might be 2 year now, not sure), I swear I'd have knife fights with my fellow employees over this shit.

I've had similiar horror stories with Best Buys and Circuit City's staff. Most recently, about Apple-branded iPod accessories being placed away from the iPods while the 3rd-party accessories were readily available. Before that, it was unbelievable lies about how the Zune was better than the iPod. Even doing odd comparisons of capacity between the flash based, 8GB Nano for $250 and the 30GB Zune for $250. Do they get coached at being purposely obtuse.
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post #11 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

Nice weather just now

Yeah, but we need rain. Looking forward to the spring and summer showers.
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post #12 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Yeah, but we need rain. Looking forward to the spring and summer showers.

rain enough soon, don't forget the 9 hurricanes the Trib predicts
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post #13 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I've had similiar horror stories with Best Buys and Circuit City's staff. Most recently, about Apple-branded iPod accessories being placed away from the iPods while the 3rd-party accessories were readily available. Before that, it was unbelievable lies about how the Zune was better than the iPod. Even doing odd comparisons of capacity between the flash based, 8GB Nano for $250 and the 30GB Zune for $250. Do they get coached at being purposely obtuse.

I think you just figured out where the Trolls work
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post #14 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

rain enough soon, don't forget the 9 hurricanes the Trib predicts

How many did they predict last year?
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post #15 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

How many did they predict last year?

19 I think
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post #16 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

Didn't Circuit City they just fire all their experienced staff to save money? Or am I thinking of another chain?

yes, they decided that payment on a salary based system (like best buy) wasn't working for them and so fired their entire staff with the option of being rehired under a new commission based rate. they had to basically do it for bookeeping purposes, but technically, yes, they fired a whole bunch of people.
post #17 of 30
Surprisingly, the brand new Best Buy store in San Rafael, CA (in Marin County, which is most definitely Mac country) doesn't sell Macintosh computers. I got a blank stare from the salesman when I asked if the store planned to sell Macs in the future.

It's not that Marin County needs another Mac store. I'm just surprised that this store was included in Best Buy's pilot program.
post #18 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecking View Post

It doesn't matter how many stores you put them in. If they have mac hating moronic staff, scaring everyone away they stull won't sell. All bestbuy's seem to hate mac and tell people the most untrue bullshit about them. Litterally everytime I'm at one and in the computer section I've had to step in to argue with the employees and cut the bullshit out.

Really? I was recently at the Best Buy in Richmond Hill - the guys there really seemed to be very sympathetic to (and knowledgeable about) Macs. I was surprisingly impressed, considering all the hate from everyone in these forums. It seems like they're improving.

Besides, if you do live in the GTA, you know that there are THREE Apple stores nearby - you can avoid Best Buy if you really want to. There aren't too many other places with such bragging rights. I wouldn't be so quick to complain.
post #19 of 30
With CompUSA closing over half of their retail stores, it's not that surprising to see Apple trying to work something out with Best Buy yet again. The problem I have with Best Buy selling Macs dates back to when they started selling Bondi Blue iMacs. Everyone wanted to see the iMac for themselves but the employees there did nothing but try and convince customers to buy the 'much cheaper' HP, Compaq, or IBM tower with lines like, "This iMac doesn't even have a floppy drive!"

I read that the employees were making commission off of the computers that they sold and that selling iMacs wasn't making them any money. They also had issues selling the extended warranty with the Macs, I think Apple was trying to push AppleCare (or whatever warranty they were selling at the time). When I went into Best Buy, the display iMacs were always in a state of disrepair. The trackball would be missing from the mouse, there would be keys missing off of the keyboard, and typically the system would either be frozen due to force quits, unable to find the system startup folder and showing the ? on boot, or turned off completely because someone had pulled the power cord out.

Eventually, Best Buy stopped selling iMacs when they were introduced in different colors. Best Buy felt that stocking the same computer in different colors would 'confuse' their customers and create inventory problems. But there have been times where they have sold Macs on and off again, all with the same treatment by the sales staff.

Apple seems to have had more success with selling the iPod in stores like Circuit City, Wal Mart, and Best Buy, but I'm still not sure that Macs are going to sell well at any of those stores. If Apple does come to some kind of agreement with Best Buy, it would be in their best interest to develop a 'demo mode' that requires an employee code to quit out of. That way, they could limit the amount of 'damage' that someone could do to the system while also letting the machines try and sell themselves. It takes the sales pitch away from the employee.

Regardless, I still think that selling Macs in Best Buy is a bad idea based on past experiences, but maybe they'll be able to work something out this time.
post #20 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamezog View Post

Really? I was recently at the Best Buy in Richmond Hill - the guys there really seemed to be very sympathetic to (and knowledgeable about) Macs. I was surprisingly impressed, considering all the hate from everyone in these forums. It seems like they're improving.

Besides, if you do live in the GTA, you know that there are THREE Apple stores nearby - you can avoid Best Buy if you really want to. There aren't too many other places with such bragging rights. I wouldn't be so quick to complain.

Having 3 Apple Stores nearby may be the reason your Best Buy staff is knowledgeable about Macs.
  1. Apple only opens stores in areas where sales will be significant enough to warrant a brick and mortar store.
  2. The Apple Stores "hands on" experience has helped many a Windows user to understand why Apple's Mac has such a loyal fanbase.
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post #21 of 30
Anyone has visited at least one of those 50 stores?
Can someone talked about the knowledge of the employees and the experience at one of those 50?
post #22 of 30
Wasn't apple sending geniuses to the stores to train the employees on how to sell them?
post #23 of 30
I give this whole thing about six months at the very most. Best Buy and Apple just don't go together. They've tried several times already and have failed miserably each time. When you have el-cheapo hardware sitting next to well engineered, reliable, good looking hardware and the el-cheapo stuff is, well, cheaper, the good stuff doesn't sell. Period. End of story. Most people don't care about quality, service, excellence. Oh, they mouth the words that they do but then turn right around and buy the cheapest one they can find, even if there's only a one dollar difference.

They'll look at the Macs and then buy the E-machine because it's "the same thing" for $75 less.
post #24 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

I give this whole thing about six months at the very most. Best Buy and Apple just don't go together. They've tried several times already and have failed miserably each time.

That's an astute prediction (esp. since I agree).
post #25 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamezog View Post

Really? I was recently at the Best Buy in Richmond Hill - the guys there really seemed to be very sympathetic to (and knowledgeable about) Macs. I was surprisingly impressed, considering all the hate from everyone in these forums. It seems like they're improving.

Besides, if you do live in the GTA, you know that there are THREE Apple stores nearby - you can avoid Best Buy if you really want to. There aren't too many other places with such bragging rights. I wouldn't be so quick to complain.

It's good that the guys at your bestbuy are smart. My nearest one is the one at heartland town center in mississa and they don't know jack.

I used to work at the oakvile bestbuy and the guys I worked with were brutal.

I don't shop for apple stuff at all at bestbuy. I go there for other random stuff and for fun walk through the computer section and that's where I witness the madness.

My main go to apple store is sherway gardens but I'll go to the other ones if I'm in the area.
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post #26 of 30
With all of these complaints here, it's interesting that this is the second expansion of the "trial" they've undergone.

Remember that they said they would expand the trial IF it was sucessful. Even this article points this out.

Well, it seems that, so far at least, it IS successful.

Why hope that it will fail?

Who does that help other than Apple's competitors?
post #27 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

OH! ... please ... please ... Sarasota FL

Best Buy that is...

Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Funny, that is the one closest to me too.


You already have an Apple Specialist in Sarasota, who is most likey going to be a ton more knowledgable than bestbuy employees. It's Computer Advantage.

http://www.computeradv.com
post #28 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post


Why hope that it will fail?

I don't think anyone is 'hoping': rather, it sounds like 'expecting' (with no value judgment implied about whether it's good or bad for Apple).
post #29 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clive At Five View Post

Circuit City USED to sell macs. If I'm not mistaken, they stopped around the G3 iMac era... Granted that was 10 years ago... What are they so cautious about?

-Clive

That is correct, I use to work for Apple conducting Apple Demo Days at our local store. They stopped doing it because the CC staff would not sell Macs because they made more on the PC spiffs. They also let the Mac section run down with a bunch of Macs on display crashed or shut off. They would talk sooo nice to me when I was in front of them but then would steer a customer from the Macs every chance they got. It did more harm to Apple then good having them in CC. I'm sure this was the case in many stores.
post #30 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by icibaqu View Post

yes, they decided that payment on a salary based system (like best buy) wasn't working for them and so fired their entire staff with the option of being rehired under a new commission based rate. they had to basically do it for bookeeping purposes, but technically, yes, they fired a whole bunch of people.

Ive got a buddy that works for Firedog. He said they laid off (laid off) employees who were on commission, but would wind up making way to much money when their commission-based pay would result in an excessively large salary (he said some would have made $28/hr when most Firedog employees make, what, $12?this in Bay Area, California). So there is probably a somewhat more shady element to this.

Just like many of the employees targeted by BestBuy a year ago with the youre fired or part time staff reductions were the employees who brought home the larger paychecks.
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