Wednesday, March 13, 2019

[DEAL ALERT] Best Buy to Open "Best Buy Outlet" in Kennesaw, Other Retailers Take Note

Electronics retailer Best Buy plans to open a second store in Kennesaw, but this one will be different than most of its stores.  Labeled a "Best Buy Outlet," the new Best Buy store will open near the mainline store, but will carry only open box, returned and clearance merchandise.  According to a Best Buy representative, shoppers can save up to 50 percent on outlet products, including clearance and open-box appliances, TVs, laptops, accessories and more. 
Inside the Best Buy Outlet in Raleigh, NC

The new Best Buy Outlet will open in place of the former hhgregg in Barrett Pavilion(2555 Cobb Place Lane), just off Ernest Barrett Parkway, not far from Town Center at Cobb. The store is slated to open this coming Friday, March 15 at 11 AM.  The Outlet will operate like Buckhead's The Dump, and will only be open on weekends.  The store's hours will be 11 AM until 7 PM, Friday though Sunday. 

The new Best Buy Outlet will be 30,000 square feet and will be located basically across the street from the 45,000 square foot full-line Best Buy in Barrett Place. 

Best Buy continues to use its brick & mortar stores and knowledgeable in store staff to fend off increased competition from the likes of Amazon and others.  

Best Buy currently operates eight standalone outlet stores throughout the country, including those in California (2), Illinois, Texas (2), Maryland, and North Carolina. Kennesaw will be the ninth, with a tenth coming soon to St. Louis, Missouri. 

Returns, both in person and online, are a nagging issue for retailers and Best Buy's brick & mortar solution for liquidating such inventory internally is a shrewd move. Liquidating via auctions and third parties often nets retailers like Best Buy only pennies on the dollar; this way Best Buy is able to recoup a greater percent of the original retail price by cutting out the middle man.  

In 2017, customers in the U.S. returned about $351 billion worth of items that they had purchased from brick-and-mortar retailers and online stores, according to estimates by the National Retail Federation.

A lot of that merchandise ended up at off-price retailers like Dirt Cheap, Bargain Hunt and other independent surplus liquidators.  

Nordstrom operates a pair of "Last Chance" stores where merchandise that may be returned, defective, worn, used, or otherwise unsaleable in traditional Nordstrom or Nordstrom Rack stores is liquidated.  There are two such stores open today, one in Phoenix, Arizona (where ToNeTo Atlanta has visited and found it hit or miss) and another in Lombard, Illinois, a suburb or Chicago. 

Urban Outfitters also operates a similar store, Final Cut, where the company liquidates merchandise from its Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, and at times, Free People, and BHLDN brands at significant discounts.  The Philadelphia-based retailer operates just two Final Cut stores, and one is in Georgia!  The two stores are in Augusta, (a mere 2.5 miles from Augusta National Golf Club) and in Englishtown, New Jersey.

Target merchandise is something we at ToNeTo Atlanta have often observed being sold often in Bargain Hunt.  Can you imagine a Target outlet?  

Will you check out the Best Buy Outlet in Kennesaw?  Where do you buy most of your electronics?  Have you noticed the improvements in training and knowledge at Best Buy?

Please share your thoughts below  


Anonymous said...

The $$$ number of returns is insane. Consumers demand cheap prices and expect free shipping. "Free" shipping is what is driving up prices on all these low quality goods. The cost of "free" shipping (and returns) is baked into this merchandise. It's no wonder there is a retail apocalypse!

Don't shop at Best Buy and have no plans to shop their outlet.

Unknown said...

A friend and I stopped by the new Best Buy Outlet on opening day. She had hopes of finding a pair of wireless phones for her home, I was hoping to find a good buy on a new computer monitor.

What we found was one very large (big box) room with every big appliance you could possibly want to install in your kitchen or laundry room and perhaps an HDTV from 22 inches to supersized for your man cave or she-shed.

No computer monitors. Phones? Nothing like what my friend was hoping to find.

But, if you crave a stainless steel refrigerator you've got plenty of choices. So many, it made me wonder if we were surrounded by a flood of duds that customers returned to the store. Seriously, there were refrigerators standing shoulder to shoulder, side by side backed up against about half of the wall space in the outlet 'box'.

In the middle of the room were a number of makeshift aisles formed by rows and rows of appliances all side by side by side by side. One row featured regular old washers and dryers as far as you could see into the horizon. The horizon ended just before the refrigerators along the back wall.

A parallel line of shiny new-looking front loaders had the next row.

Then, another row, another display appliances: Ovens, stoves and dishwashers were next. Then icemakers, trash compactors and special temperature controlled wine coolers / fridges / cellars.

In the end, these rows took up most of the floor space. With a super high ceiling and bright lights produce an impressive showcase for the outlet appliances on the floor.

Not so impressive; The area for HDTVs. The TVs are tucked off in a dark corner; The kind of place where you would run if a tornado interrupted your shopping trip. Seriously.

They offered a good number of HDTVs, perhaps 150 or so, but they are all in boxes leaning against the walls of the tornado shelter zone.

Personally, I'd never buy a TV without seeing how it looks and sounds when displaying a favorite TV show or movie, which seems impossible at the Outlet (all sales final, btw).

Around the corner we did find some TV accessories: Several mounts for large sized flat screen TVs were offered, but the prices sounded more 'outrageous' than 'outlet' oriented. One mount was priced at $160, another one even higher.

It was at that point I lost any hope of stumbling across anything I might want to buy, so we migrated to the main "Best Buy" store just around the corner. My friend found the phones she wanted (and at a great price). I'm still looking for a great deal on a monitor.

Was it worth the 40 minute drive in Friday rush hour traffic? Probably not. But, if I ever take on a kitchen remodel project, I'll likely revisit the Best Buy Outlet and hope to land a deal.


Anonymous said...

Last Fall my neighbors bought a refridgerator from Best Buy and immediately had problems with the ice maker leaking. Under warranty they got another from Best Buy and exact same problem. The third one seems to be be working well with no leaks. This is probably where both returned refrigerators ended up, hopefully repaired. Rick - thanks for the insightful commentary!

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