When Circuit City decided to slash its most knowledgable staff, I predicted on AdPulp that they’d go out of business. And I was right.
Now, Best Buy may be headed down the same path:
Retailer Best Buy Co. Inc., which has 21 Denver-area stores, is demoting many senior sales associates at its stores, a move that will slash salaries for those workers by as much as 50 percent.
The retailer, based in Richfield, Minn., decided to make the move after determining staffing at its stores was “too heavy on the supervisor and manager side,” spokeswoman Sue Busch said.
Look, I don’t have a cure for Big Box malaise in this economy. Some people don’t need a place like Best Buy when they order from a place like Amazon or Newegg. But lots of people need knowledgeable sales staff when buying high-price electronics. Perhaps Best Buy thinks they can get away with this because one of their competitors already sank.
But trust me: You cannot build a brand by slashing customer service, demoralizing the sales staff or reducing front-line help. Period. If this continues, Best Buy will sink fast.