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Archive for the ‘retail’ Category

In the past couple weeks, much has been written about electronics retail giant Best Buy. I can only recall a handful of stories that generated the kind of attention and social media reaction Forbes writer Larry Downes has gotten with his post about Best Buy going out of business…gradually. But when you hypothesize that one of our country’s great business success stories is about to crumble, you might expect a little attention.

Buttons have been pushed. Nerves touched. Wires crossed.

In the end, retail shopping is about consumer experience. Let’s face it, the world’s largest consumer electronics retailer is never going to make every transaction a pleasant “win” for both the consumer and the company. It just can’t happen. That said, Best Buy must strive to be better than its previous best. The company must hire savvy store managers, train its floor sales people thoroughly, streamline its checkout process, and take every possible step to curry favor with consumers. All that while it expands its Internet business to compete with the likes of Amazon and other mega online retailers. No small feat.

For all the comments (mostly negative toward BBY) that Downes’s blog post has received there are, no doubt, millions of happy Best Buy customers who don’t make time to vocalize their public support of the company.

I’ll take the time.

In 2011, I purchased a 42-inch Insignia television from Best Buy. The sales rep was extremely helpful. The checkout and pickup process effortless. I was asked once, and only once, about my need for HDMI cables and an extended warranty plan. I declined both offers, paid for the product. End of story.  Did I mention the sales rep was extremely helpful. He was no more than 20 years old, but knew his shit when it came to TV technology. And when his store didn’t have the size that I wanted, he found it at another location convenient to me.

And that’s how customer loyalty is won.

Granted, Best Buy has hiccupped its way through the holiday season. But rather than estimating that the doors of this company will be shuttered and locked within 24 months, I’ll place my bets that the world’s largest electronics retailer will figure out its next growth step…and nail it.

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On Target

Target corporation is based right here in Minneapolis, and yet conversations with friends, family and co-workers often go something like this…

“I love my new neighborhood’s Super Target!”

“Oh really, you have a Super Target? Mine is just a Target Greatland.”

“I wish we had a Super Target in my town. All we have is a Wal-Mart and it’s not so nice.”

“Well, my Super Target has it all. I could easily spend $200 there every time I walk through the door.”

“So what’s the difference between a regular Target, a Greatland and a Super Target?”

The answer is quite simple. Super Target has it ALL. From deoderant to shoes to a full-line grocery store, to a full-service pharmacy, as well as Starbuck’s and Pizza Hut built into the store, Super Targets are designed as a one-stop shop for home needs. It will also include large seasonal floor space with elaborate displays at Halloween and Christmas. Here is a photo of the Super Target that is within walking distance of my home. My daughter works the Starbuck’s inside this location. It just opened on Oct. 9, along with four other new Super Targets in the Twin Cities metro area. That is 750,000 square-feet of new retail space people!

Super Taraget

A regular Target store is about half the size of a Super Target and carriers just basic department store items: clothes, office supplies, some electronics, etc. A Target Greatland is right in the middle in terms of size and inventory. Some grocery items are carried including milk, and the store also features a food counter.

Now you know the difference between the various Target options. And if that’s not enough, Wiki has a great page on Target including its stores and dominance in retail.

Happy shopping!

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