Question For Best Buy, Circuit City And Other Electronics Salesmen

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,022
17
81
At a party last night, we were discussing the "bread & butter" merchandise sold at Radio Shack, which is their fifteen cent connectors and adapters being sold for a few bucks each. I then thought about the forty dollar printer cables sold by Best Buy, to uninformed consumers.

I remembered a topic by Evadman about the good reviews he received during his employment. I thought he worked at Best Buy, but it turned out to be Home Depot instead. I just wonder if he would have been as proud of selling at Best Buy. Selling people extended warranties is one thing. It might be to their benefit. That is arguable, but selling them forty dollar printer cables is not! That's something I could NEVER do! I'd be hard pressed to allow somebody to walk out of that department with such an item, even if they picked it up on their own! I suppose my employment at Best Buy or Circuit City would be pretty short lived, eh?

Well, my question to our resident salesmen is, are you "proud" of your ability to slough off this outrageously priced merchandise on customers? I know we've got a least one person here, who is proud of the fact that customers ask for him when visiting his Circuit City store. Would you treat these loyal customers so poorly? Would you consider this is a betrayal of their trust?
 

Aceman

Banned
Oct 9, 1999
3,159
0
0
I never had a problem with it. When it comes to a printer cable sale, you'll either get a customer that knows they can get it dirt cheap from Walmart or Radio Shack or customers that don't. You also sell it to the customer that wants it fully functional RIGHT NOW. If they don't pick up the cable with their purchase, they'll get home and not be able to use the printer RIGHT NOW. Thus, looking like an idiot to the rest of the family. Another factor in the sale is that a good salesman knows how much a person is going to spend. The "I just got approved for $2000 on the Best Buy CC" or "Dad just gave me $2000 to spend on a computer system" are perfect examples to sell the bare minimums on a computer and load up the accessories that are needed. Yes, those needed accessories are a huge mark up, but these people don't care and are needed.

If I didn't sell the marked up accessories I would be talked to about it. Those salesmen that a repetitive about not scoring on the accessories sales will be fired or moved to a different department. Those that do well at it will initially get a better raise (Although at Best Buy, the raises eventually stop for part timers.)
 

SoylentGreen

Diamond Member
Oct 17, 2002
4,698
1
0
I've never worked as an electronics salesman but why knock them for doing their job? Your argument is baseless Ornery.
 

tm37

Lifer
Jan 24, 2001
12,436
1
0
I had to buy a 20 keyboard @ Best Buy on Friday for work the CLERK in the Computer Dept talked up the merits of the $5 warrenty I said no thanks.

Then the cashier tried to sell me the keyboard warrenty THREE TIMES! Finally I looked at him and said. I need to use this keyboard for 5 minutes. If it fails I am bringing it right back.

I understand that these make money for the company but come on CompUSA offered to sell me a 7 dollar warrenty when I was buying 5 dollar netowrk cards. I bought 8 of them and they guy rerally pressed finally I asked him if he was stupid.

I don't know if pride is the right word but I would not press that hard. Sometimes it can be a good deal. (I got a 20 years warrenty on my fridge for 30 bones.) But most of the time they are pretty bunk. I don't think it is the employees RIGHT to inform the consumer that it's a bad idea to pay 25-50% of the price to get the replacement plan. However it would be nice if they didn't press it so much.
 

SirChadwick

Diamond Member
Jul 27, 2001
4,595
1
81
Originally posted by: Kiyup
I've never worked as an electronics salesman but why knock them for doing their job? Your argument is baseless Ornery.

I agree. Employees at these electronics stores are just paid to do what they are told. Think about it, at every job there is always going to be something you don't like to do. Well, if selling products at high prices disturbs you too much.... stay away from a retail job. This goes for many other jobs excluding just higher end electronic jobs. The way I look at is, if the person is uninformed then that is there problem. They obviously have the money to spend. Some people never learn and don't care to.
 

ElFenix

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Mar 20, 2000
102,414
8,356
126
i sold that same cable for $30. sold lots of them. one with darn near every printer. i didn't even press, just "that printer requires a cable to connect to the computer, i can include one for $30." if they said no they said no, but they rarely did that.
 

murphy55d

Lifer
Dec 26, 2000
11,542
5
81
what would you rather them do, ornery?

their job is to sell merchandise. dont like it? dont work retail.
 

poopaskoopa

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2000
4,836
1
81
Originally posted by: Ornery
At a party last night, we were discussing the "bread & butter" merchandise sold at Radio Shack, which is their fifteen cent connectors and adapters being sold for a few bucks each. I then thought about the forty dollar printer cables sold by Best Buy, to uninformed consumers.

I remembered a topic by Evadman about the good reviews he received during his employment. I thought he worked at Best Buy, but it turned out to be Home Depot instead. I just wonder if he would have been as proud of selling at Best Buy. Selling people extended warranties is one thing. It might be to their benefit. That is arguable, but selling them forty dollar printer cables is not! That's something I could NEVER do! I'd be hard pressed to allow somebody to walk out of that department with such an item, even if they picked it up on their own! I suppose my employment at Best Buy or Circuit City would be pretty short lived, eh?

Well, my question to our resident salesmen is, are you "proud" of your ability to slough off this outrageously priced merchandise on customers? I know we've got a least one person here, who is proud of the fact that customers ask for him when visiting his Circuit City store. Would you treat these loyal customers so poorly? Would you consider this is a betrayal of their trust?

When I worked for a video game store(we handled mostly used games), I was proud to sell games that were hard to move(i.e. unpopular). I find it hard to justify an employee doing his/her best to talk a customer out of sale for whatever reason. I, for one, worked for a small business. It wasn't mine, but I was pretty good friends with my boss, and I was very aware that if we didn't sell games, it impacted his financial life. So I don't know why a salesperson would/should talk anyone out of buying something from your store when your customer is willing to pay your price. Would my mindset be different if I worked for a much larger company? I doubt it. My mindset is not wrong, so it won't change. The said CC employee appears to be getting popular at the expense of CC. That might feel good, but if I were his supervisor, he probably won't stay there very long.

 

Kanalua

Diamond Member
Jun 14, 2001
4,860
2
0
I used to sale $3000 vaccums. I was damn proud of myself when I sold one. though, I must admit, whenever I was in the house of some really old lady who I couold probably sucker into buying one, just because she's old and lonely, I wouldn't pressure her or make her buy one. Always thought that I wouldn't want someone to sucker my grandma into buying something so ridiculous, so I wasn't going to do that either. I DIDN"T feel bad when some idiot family or something bought one, and while filling out the credit app, I would find out they're drowing in debt. What kind of idiot buy $30,000 of furniture, and 3 cars and a 5 bedroom home, and work stupid dead end jobs, and still buy a $3000 vaccum? Some people are idiots, let them deal with it. If they want to buy a $40 printer cable, hey, more money in the economy...
 

randomlinh

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,853
2
0
linh.wordpress.com
when i worked there, i didn't push it on them. i let them know full well that there was no cable in the box tho, and if they didn't have a cable, go for one. Altho, the "gold plated" stuff is just ridiculous... i never really like selling them that, or the service plans.. cause i knew best buy would never give a majority of the customers the "no hassle" the plans claim to have...
 

SyahM

Golden Member
Nov 6, 2001
1,788
0
0
IIRC, salesman receive commission on every extended warranty they sell.
Anyway .. are people still using printer cable? I thought all new printers can be connected via USB and USB cable is very cheap?
 

Chaotic42

Lifer
Jun 15, 2001
33,929
1,097
126
I worked at an extremely busy Office Depot in the business area of Indianapolis. I was *never* told to try and sell customers extra stuff. I was told *repeatedly* to be 100% honest with the customer. I got paid hourly, with no commission. They told me I should address the customer's needs correctly, quickly, and politely.

Office Depot (at least that one) was a very respectable, good, decent place to shop.
 

Stark

Diamond Member
Jun 16, 2000
7,735
0
0
Well, my question to our resident salesmen is, are you "proud" of your ability to slough off this outrageously priced merchandise on customers? I know we've got a least one person here, who is proud of the fact that customers ask for him when visiting his Circuit City store. Would you treat these loyal customers so poorly? Would you consider this is a betrayal of their trust?
If someone comes to you to help solve their problems (I need a cable for my printer) your job to them and the company is to help solve the problem (here is a cable that will fix your problem, sir). Your job is not to send them to costco where they may or may not have the item in stock for cheaper.

If someone buys a printer, the responsible thing is to point out they need a cable (even if it's over priced). Same with a surge protector and UPS... things I use in my house and think other people should use as well.

I don't buy accessories from retail stores because the prices are jacked up, but I realize that they are able to sell the at good prices that I do buy because they make a profit on the small stuff. They need to increase margin somehow!
 

geno

Lifer
Dec 26, 1999
25,074
4
0
They're salespeople, their job is to sell merchandise. It's not up to them to set the prices. Are they supposed to quit upon realizing the morality of the issue? "Jeeze, these people could be saving money, but they're too dumb to look for better prices. I refuse to be a part of this evil process any longer!" :p
 

faZZter

Golden Member
Feb 21, 2001
1,202
0
0
I know they are just doing their job selling stuff....and that's fine, but I have to admit it drives me crazy when I'm in a store (not working there) and some customer asks a question about computer hardware/software and some $7.50/hour salesman starts spewing out a bunch of misinformation and false statements about it.

I can hardly stand to listen to a lot of them. I have to admit after hearing some of their comments I had to talk to the potential customer myself to tell them the truth about what the salesman tried to lay on them. I would feel bad if I didn't warn them when I know they are getting scammed. :)


 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,022
17
81
Originally posted by: Kiyup
I've never worked as an electronics salesman but why knock them for doing their job? Your argument is baseless Ornery.
Hey, genius. What exactly was my argument, anyway? Same to you chadeades, I asked a damn question!

I still haven't heard from the CC salesman I had in mind. He said he was proud of his relationship with his customers. Those customers returned to him frequently because of this relationship. I'd like to know if you can burn them this bad, and still be proud of it? Will they even be repeat customers if they're treated this way?

BTW, there is no way in hell I could do this to people... NONE!
 

BillGates

Diamond Member
Nov 30, 2001
7,388
2
81
BY FAR the funniest and most insane thing at Best Buy that I have seen is a 7 foot Cat 5 cable. The crossover cable of the same exact length, with same exact RJ-45 jacks on the end sells for like 3 times more - but the damn things are identical except for the few wires that go into a different slot of the plug.

I feel sorry enough for the person who pays $7.99 for a 7 foot patch cable - but laugh my ass off at somebody who pays $21.99 for a 7 foot crossover cable made out of the exact same materials.


LINKS:

7 Foot Patch Cable - $7.99

7 Foot Crossover Cable - $21.99

(Note these are slightly different but in-store they come in identical packages, same pricing, same materials.

IDIOTS
 

Deeko

Lifer
Jun 16, 2000
30,215
11
81
10' Gold USB cable - cost to customer, $40. Cost to Circuit City - $3.

Its my job to sell it. While one of the things my customers respect me for is honesty, I'm not gonna usher them to another store that has them cheaper. If they ask, I will tell them yes, it is cheaper at [insert store]. But I won't go out of my way to tell them.
 

Dragnov

Diamond Member
Apr 24, 2001
6,878
0
0
Depends on how nice the customer is. ;) If they are a total jack@ss, then I could care less that they are getting ripped off. If the person is nice or is a fine girl then I'll tell them just go here, and you'll find it a lot cheaper. If I actually liked the job and the manager and felt appreciated then I probably wouldn't but I hated working at Best Buy. Quit after 6 months.
 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,022
17
81
Ah-hah, Deeko showed up!

"I won't go out of my way to tell them..."

...are you "proud" of your ability to slough off this outrageously priced merchandise on customers?

I'd like to know if you can burn them this bad, and still be proud of it?

Will they even be repeat customers if they're treated this way?
 

ScottyB

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2002
6,677
1
0
ScottyB's Rule #1 for shopping:

"Never shop at a store which has employees working on commission; they have most likely degenerated into blood-sucking scumbags."
 

BlamoHammer

Platinum Member
Sep 21, 2002
2,259
0
0
Originally posted by: Deeko
10' Gold USB cable - cost to customer, $40. Cost to Circuit City - $3.

Its my job to sell it. While one of the things my customers respect me for is honesty, I'm not gonna usher them to another store that has them cheaper. If they ask, I will tell them yes, it is cheaper at [insert store]. But I won't go out of my way to tell them.

If I remember correctly the point of business is to make money. I myself am a Computer Department Supervisor at Best Buy and I don't feel proud of the fact that I can sell people a cable that they could get for less someone else. It's part of my job to offer people the things they need or may want to have with their product they are buying. I'm more proud of the fact that 99% of the customers that I deal with walk out of my store with the products/information they need and are satisifed with the purchases they made.
 

bizmark

Banned
Feb 4, 2002
2,311
0
0
Originally posted by: BillGates
BY FAR the funniest and most insane thing at Best Buy that I have seen is a 7 foot Cat 5 cable. The crossover cable of the same exact length, with same exact RJ-45 jacks on the end sells for like 3 times more - but the damn things are identical except for the few wires that go into a different slot of the plug.

You know, I paid $15 for a crossover cable at Office Depot once. I knew that I was being ripped off, and that with a little patience and a little free info I could splice my own crossover cable out of the much cheaper normal Cat5. But I was in a hurry, damn it, and I needed a crossover right then, so I swallowed my pride and paid the damn $15. Oh well....

Ornery this kind of thing happens all the time. Not everyone is as smart as you or I. Not everyone hunts for the best deals on a car or a piece of computer equipment. Not everyone really cares enough for it to matter. "A fool and his money are soon parted." Could I feel right about myself, selling stuff like that to poor unsuspecting unsavvy customers? No, I couldn't, personally. However, every profitable business must do this to some extent, so it's really just a matter of exactly where you draw the line.

The great differentiator nowadays is information. You used CarFax to avoid making a bad purchase a few months ago. That's information that you had access to, that the seller didn't provide. Not everybody has access to that information; those that don't, will pay higher prices. Same with those buying printer cables. In the end, who wins? Those who skate through life, buying only what they are told they 'need' and usually paying top dollar for it? Or those who thorougly research every purchase, always getting the best deal but often wasting hours or days of their life to do so? (Actually, I know exactly who wins -- your friends and my friends, who don't know anything about what they're buying, but who take our well-researched advice.) I know what side you and I fall on at the moment, but the other side has its appeal as well. In the end, some compromise will be necessary, as one can't have perfect information about everything. JMO.
 

OS

Lifer
Oct 11, 1999
15,581
1
76
Originally posted by: ScottyB
ScottyB's Rule #1 for shopping:

"Never shop at a store which has employees working on commission; they have most likely degenerated into blood-sucking scumbags."

That's not necessarily true. I have a friend that works at CC and he makes good money off commission. I've asked him whether he pushes high ticket items or stuff that's overkill, and he says that he loses the commission when the customer returns the item. So it's also in his interest to make sure that the customer is happy with their purchase.

Of course, car salesmen are a different animal. :Q



 

OS

Lifer
Oct 11, 1999
15,581
1
76
Originally posted by: bizmark
Originally posted by: BillGates
BY FAR the funniest and most insane thing at Best Buy that I have seen is a 7 foot Cat 5 cable. The crossover cable of the same exact length, with same exact RJ-45 jacks on the end sells for like 3 times more - but the damn things are identical except for the few wires that go into a different slot of the plug.

You know, I paid $15 for a crossover cable at Office Depot once. I knew that I was being ripped off, and that with a little patience and a little free info I could splice my own crossover cable out of the much cheaper normal Cat5. But I was in a hurry, damn it, and I needed a crossover right then, so I swallowed my pride and paid the damn $15. Oh well....

Ornery this kind of thing happens all the time. Not everyone is as smart as you or I. Not everyone hunts for the best deals on a car or a piece of computer equipment. Not everyone really cares enough for it to matter. "A fool and his money are soon parted." Could I feel right about myself, selling stuff like that to poor unsuspecting unsavvy customers? No, I couldn't, personally. However, every profitable business must do this to some extent, so it's really just a matter of exactly where you draw the line.

The great differentiator nowadays is information. You used CarFax to avoid making a bad purchase a few months ago. That's information that you had access to, that the seller didn't provide. Not everybody has access to that information; those that don't, will pay higher prices. Same with those buying printer cables. In the end, who wins? Those who skate through life, buying only what they are told they 'need' and usually paying top dollar for it? Or those who thorougly research every purchase, always getting the best deal but often wasting hours or days of their life to do so? (Actually, I know exactly who wins -- your friends and my friends, who don't know anything about what they're buying, but who take our well-researched advice.) I know what side you and I fall on at the moment, but the other side has its appeal as well. In the end, some compromise will be necessary, as one can't have perfect information about everything. JMO.


Yeah there's some truth to that, sometimes I'll pay extra for an item I know is overpriced because I need it right away. On my busier quarters, I don't have time to find the best deal on an item I need so I just buy it where I can find it easily because my time becomes more important than driving around town trying to save five or ten dollars.

OTOH, that printer cable thing happened to me before. BB salesguy was pushing a 40 dollar printer cable. Yeah right. I walked to the neighboring OM and bought a printer cable for ten bux.

Look at it this way. The guys that pay the 40 bucks for a printer cable are subsidizing the printer that BB sells for barely above margin. If they sold all those accessories at a fair price, you'd be paying a lot more for all the bigger items in the store.