Why should I get off my couch? Certainly, it should not be to got into Circuit City. Tonight, after sufficient procrastination for my dad’s birthday present, I did my standard online shopping comparison: which relies on a good blog review of the product that I am searching, a froogle of the product, and a quality vs. price comparison. I found that the pricepointed product at Sam’s, was a terrible product–go figure. Instead I opted for a product with a good review that I have actually test-driven in the past. Circuit City listed the Garmin c330 for $299 and Best Buy $349. Since the two stores are a 3 wood apart I opted for the CC option.
I walked into the antiquated warehouse model store, and I found my way to GPS department while navigating around the crowded (with employees) firedog counter. The product sat on the display counter with the $349 price tag, Wha? I am in and out–all I need is the properly priced product, and I am sailing to my dad’s party (a little late of course). However, the price was wrong. Finally, a little wiry fellow with an agenda bigger than his ultra mini frame sufficiently defrayed assistance by pointing at the radio salesman-nicely played. Instead, I called the wife who was sitting in the car equipped w/ the power of the Internet. I told her to order the unit for the 24 minute pickup and I would go get it “BECAUSE FIVE EMPLOYEES ARE STANDING AT THE FIREDOG COUNTER BUT ONLY THE ONE RADIO GUY CAN HELP ME.” Funny thing, one of the firedog employees showed up. He agreed to price match the Internet price (“gee thanks”), but he wasn’t sure if they had the inventory. The computer said the had 3, but you know those pesky computers always lie (on $350 SKUs??). Instead he sent me to Best Buy.
Now, seriously, these stupid stores need to start asking the question, “Why should our customers get off their couch?” I can think of a few reasons. Apple store usually gives me one, but circuit city does not. Pay your worthless help a few more dollars an hour and provide an experience that is better than online shopping because the competition is getting steep-especially when I can have a product shipped in less than 12 hours. If I open such a store that makes you think, “geez, I am SO glad I went there,” would you shop at my store?