Best Buy’s new retail store is only a fraction of the square footage of its other locations, but it could offer a better shopping experience.
Best buys The new digital retail store has a smaller selection of products and is only 5,000 square feet, but it may end up offering a better shopping experience than its larger retail stores. Online and in-store retailers have been looking to use technology to cut costs for years, with varying degrees of success. Best Buy first tried mobile and compact stores, but those were all shut down in 2018. More recently, Amazon Go Grocery is using extensive tracking technology to provide a cashier-less shopping experience. Instead of paying at checkout, users can simply walk out of the store to pay for their goods. Now, Best Buy is trying to make shopping in their stores more concise with a compact, digital-centric retail store.
Trying small retail stores isn’t the only thing the company is doing to benefit shoppers. Best Buy regularly bundles free subscriptions to online services with qualifying purchases in an effort to give shoppers more bang for their buck. More recently, Best Buy is giving away six months of Apple Music for free, with qualifying purchases priced as low as $7.99. This is a limited-time offer, but the company typically offers three months of select Apple subscriptions with qualifying purchase year-round. Best Buy needs to stand out from competitors like Amazon, Target, and Walmart — and uses bundles to do that. But now, a new store format offers a unique experience compared to other retailers.
Best Buy’s pilot store is in Monroe, North Carolina, in the growing Charlotte metropolitan area. The store is 5,000 square feet, much smaller than the average Best Buy location, and is focused on online shopping. While the online component is an important part of the store’s mission, online order pickup is not the only way to shop in-store. There is an in-person shopping experience, but the items available are limited compared to a full-size Best Buy store. No appliances will be carried in the compact store, but more common items like large televisions will be available. Anything not in stock locally can still be ordered and picked up at the Monroe store.
Compact shopping is the future
The success of Best Buy’s compact store depends on items being kept in stock on a regular basis. The business logic is sound – people probably don’t want to walk through a big box retail store to buy a cable, dongle or portable charger. One of the benefits of shopping at Best Buy is that there is a wide selection of niche technologies available that would otherwise have to be shipped to a buyer through an online order. However, this has its drawbacks – it can take too long to find the simple things, like a USB-C cable or wall adapter. If Monroe’s location can deliver these essentials quickly and easily, with self-checkout options available, it might just be a smash hit.
On the other hand, Monroe’s location will fail if it has trouble keeping common items in stock. Although there is not enough floor space to display all of the items available in a full-size Best Buy store, the business must keep in-stock items in storage to ensure that if a customer knows exactly what he needs, he can get it quickly. and easily. This issue will also be resolved with exterior order pickup lockers that do not require entering the store and are even accessible when the store is closed. Some Best Buy stores open late in the morning and close early in the evening, making it difficult for working people to pick up online orders. A compact best buy store with essentials and outdoor pick-up lockers could be the perfect way to adapt to the changing retail market.
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Source: Best Buy
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