04-09-2012 04:03 PM
I recently visited the Best Buy Mobile store (an inside a mall store) in Santa Clarita, CA interested in upgrading my iPhone. I was greeted at the door and told the associate I'd like to buy a new iPhone for AT&T, but opted for a contract free phone. Immediately the associate responded by saying that "we prefer to sell them on contract through carriers, how about you try the Apple store?" I replied that I was a Premier Silver reward zone member and I'd like to earn reward points for the purchase. He responded that he understood the benefit so he'd check with someone else if they could sell the phone. He returned quickly and said that they could sell the phone off-contract, but would be $699 for the standard 16GB iPhone 4S. I told him that the Apple store right around the corner sells them for $649 and actually showed him the Apple website where you can order them directly that showed the same price. I asked if they would price match Apple. The associate responded, "No, we don't price match that sort of thing." I thanked him and said we'd go the Apple store. The Apple store made a $649 sale that day and I walked away with a new phone.
A couple things got me from that situation: 1) Best Buy employees were referring me to a competitor's store almost as soon as I walked through the door, 2) there was no courtesy for being a "loyal" premier silver reward zone member, 3) Best Buy did not price match over $50 so a $649 sale went to a competing store around the corner. Now I understand iPhones are special and that the profit margin on them is reduced for Best Buy and obviously contract phones are great since the carriers subsidize the cost. But is this really the Best Buy model for sales? Say the next time I come back to a Best Buy store, would I be prompted to go buy my iPad and iPods from Apple? If Best Buy is going to blatantly charge an additional $50 for a contract-free iPhone, why even sell them when the carriers & manufacturers sell the identical product at a cheaper price?
Is the lack of price matching only applicable to the Mobile sales for Best Buy? It seemed that the company was trying to expand its price matching policy including retroactive price match in the last emails I've received through Reward Zone. Thanks any feedback.
04-09-2012 08:13 PM
04-10-2012 12:41 PM
I'm sorry for the confusion over the Apple no-contract iPhone 4S issue that you had with your local store. As long as the phone meets the criteria for our price match policy seen here, you should have been able to receive the price match. The only reason I can see that the store wouldn't price match it is because you showed them the Apple.com website, and per policy, we don't match our competitors' websites.