Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Rivals try to profit at Circuit City’s expense

December 9, 2008

ccityCircuit City’s competitors are trying to capitalize on the retailer’s store closures by wooing its customers.

Regional chain hhgregg is accepting Circuit City gift cards for purchases of electronics, appliances and mattresses at its stores. The Circuit City gift card value, when verified, will be good toward up to 20 percent of the hhgregg purchase price.

Hhgregg launched the promotion before the Thanksgiving Day holiday but said on Tuesday that it was being extended through Super Bowl Sunday weekend, which ends Feb. 1.

hhgregg2“We are continuing this promotion as a way to demonstrate hhgregg’s superior customer service and to assist those who may be impacted by other retailer’s store closures,” hhgregg marketing Vice President Jeff Pearson said in a statement.

Meanwhile, RadioShack has broadcast radio ads in Atlanta, a market where Circuit City is closing most stores, urging shoppers to come to its outlets to buy digital cameras, mobile phones and GPS systems.

“Times are tough so this holiday season, put your trust in a store that you know will be around,” the speaker on the RadioShack ad says.

Circuit City filed for bankruptcy protection last month and is hoping to emerge from Chapter 11 in the first half of 2009. The retailer is holding liquidation sales at 155 of its about 720 U.S. stores in big cities such as Phoenix and Atlanta.

A RadioShack spokeswoman declined to comment on the company’s radio ads. A Circuit City spokesman declined to comment on the actions by rivals.

(Photos\Circuit City, hhgregg)


Every company is having a hard time this year. I hope Circuit City survives. They have a great selection. They have way more than Radio Shack and I’ve never even seen an hhgregg before. Walmart just doesn’t have people that can help you and Best Buy seems really expensive.

Posted by Lynn Leitch | Report as abusive

I work for Circuit City and customers appreciate the professional and courteous atmosphere here versus Best Buy and others. We will survive and come out on top

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

personally i worked for best Buy in the past. the selection is much larger and the staff goes through a vast amount of training within their respected departments. currently i am a vendor and some major Companies are pulling out of circuit cities. unfortunately they played fair game for the economy and lost as a lot of companies have.

Posted by Colton | Report as abusive

i have circuit stocks ,i think its a great place to go and buy your things,i know when things pick up in the economy,things will be good for CC ,and that y am buying more of CC stock, you will wish you have CC stock when all this is over,radio shack sucks and walmart do not have all the selection and bestbuy is ok but the price for items is better at CC


I work for Circuit City, and I get customers all the time that appreciate the knowledge I have over almost everything in the store. Bestbuy focus on single department training, were we focus on the store as a hole. Not to mention the unwillingness of bestbuy to help customers with issues.

Posted by Jason | Report as abusive

Circuit City is going down-hill for numerous reasons, more so than are reported. The stock is relatively non existent, and the fact that people call it a good buy is interesting. Of course the prices in a different store are going to be different; that’s what “price matching” is for! Personally I think that Best Buy is the better choice for electronic needs, even if you sometimes have a bad experience in the store, everyone is human and we should act like it. Non-commision sales has a fore runner and that is Best Buy!

Posted by zero-kill | Report as abusive

Circuit City is not a commission sales team. Circuit City has started to give customer commitment cards to there guests. This tells me they are not backing down. One Price Promise is someting that Circuit City has and no other retail company has. This means that it is the same price online and in the store. Other retailers have different prices online and in the store that is not hones to their customers


I work for circuit city as well and as best as i can tell Best Buy doesnt really have a larger selection they just carry more in store. Also Circuit City is non-commission sales as well. The only reason best buy is beating out circuit city is advertising and the fact that there stocks are falling only proves this fact. I can’t count how many times my customers have come to us because of a “bad experience” with Best Buy. Also I hope radio shack comes through because they carry a good selecton of specialized cables and adapters.

Posted by David | Report as abusive

I have not been happy with Circuit City for years. Most of the times I have gone into their stores, Sales Associates have been loitering around and keeping conversation with other associates rather than trying to help customers. My most recent experience with Circuit City was just yesterday. We had originally purchased Rock Band 2 at Sam’s and needed to get another one because the one we bought was defected, and Sam’s did not have any more to exchange. The price at Circuit City is $189.99 and the price at Sam’s is $167.99, a $22 difference. We asked the manager at Circuit City if he would price match, and he not only said, “No” he also laughed at us for asking. Now, for a company that is staring bankruptcy in the face, having a manager let a customer walk out of his store over $22 instead of making a $167.99 sale was just dumb on his part. I even mentioned to him how Circuit City is facing a shut-down and he should really consider price matching for us because he can’t really afford to lose ANY sales. He said, “Our store here in Albuquerque isn’t going anywhere and I have no doubt I won’t sell these sames.” It’s nice to be confident, but not cocky. Mind you, there were 8 boxes of them there and not very many consumers in the store jumping in to make purchases.

We then walked next door to Best Buy where they had the same game for $189.99 and didn’t think twice about price matching. It was the most expeditious and friendly transaction one could have 2 days after Christmas. Now, THAT’S customer service and THAT’S why Best Buy isn’t hurting as bad as Circuit City. Personally, I wouldn’t miss the company if they were forced to shut down. It’s survival of the fittest right now, and if you’re that weak, you’re just not meant to make it.

Posted by Jenn | Report as abusive

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