Now that Best Buy has mega-stored Circuit City to death, literally, the retailer has quickly become “Lord of the Flies”.
On Friday, Circuit City said it was liquidating all of its stores. Then, on Saturday, there was a big liquidation sale at many local Circuit City stores – up to 30 percent off. Most checkout lines were ridiculously long.
One store seemed to have been taken over lock, stock, and barrel by the liquidator.
It was close to pandemonium. Consumers were swarming everywhere: every one of them with at least a few breathless questions and scant employees to provide answers. Shoppers were basically grabbing up anything that wasn’t nailed down.
One male employee spent most of the time (about 15 minutes) pleading ignorance and searching for a manager who never materialized.
A female employee said no one knew it would happen–until it happened.
What was ironic is that just a few weeks before, an employee had boasted that this store would not close (in the wake of the limited nationwide store closings Circuit City had announced in November) and would be around for a long time.
In short, the sheer scale, selection, organization, and relative attention to display detail that one senses at Best Buy proved to be a huge disincentive for going back to Circuit City.
Ask your casual consumer, who is familiar with both stores, why Circuit City failed and the answer is often summed up in two words: Best Buy.
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