Best Buy employees don’t like you. You are enlightened. You know how to game the Best Buy clearancing system.
Why don’t they like you? Because Best Buy employees have, for years, padded their wallets by buying up all the clearance items… not just in their own store, but in every store near them. After all, they knew the rules, they had the keys, they were in charge of the stores.
But, as I’ve been spreading the word, Best Buy employees have started to fight back. I, along with many others, have been flat out denied a price match… on several ridiculous grounds. So, I’ve learned how to fight back… and I’ll show you too.
Please read the article linked above if you haven’t already. This article is in reference to clearance price matching, not the typical competitor price matching…
Above and beyond all this: stay confident. What we’re doing is taking advantage of an inefficiency in Best Buy… the only reason an employee will deny you, is to discourage you from getting the good deal (so that they can get those deals for themselves).
The first steps are to prepare your clearance price matching so that things will go as smooth as possible.
1) Only price match one item at a time. Avoid buying large quantities of items on a single receipt… that’s a red flag. This may take longer, but you can still get more done. If you walk into the store price matching one item… you can usually walk out noting that you found something else while in the store at a cheaper price.
2) If you’ve already price matched an item once… remove the little stapled document that says you price matched something already. Multiple price matches on a single item is a flag to the employee that you’re doing something wrong.
3) Whenever possible, price match at the store you bought the item from initially. It’s a lot harder for them to make up a reason to deny the purchase if you’re at the store you bought from initially. Policy-wise however, they’re supposed to price match regardless of what location you’re at.
Now, if a store employee still wants to stonewall things, there are a few ways it can go.
First, the employee can just absolutely refuse to do anything for you. If that happens, avoid the store when possible for future price matches, and never price match when that employee is in the store. Yeah, this does mean taking note of individual employees and when they work.
Sometimes, the employee will deny you on the grounds that they “won’t price match clearance prices when you bought at another store”. This goes back to item number three above. If that happens, ask if you can do a return and then rebuy at this store. Usually, the employee will get cross-eyed (since you just caught them) and say that you can do this. When they do, remind them that they can always return and rebuy with just a receipt. They’ll get frustrated, but usually do it.
Keep in mind that the more you have to bicker with employees, the more they’ll stonewall you next time. Managers start to take notice, employees bring the managers in the loop, and pretty soon, you’re blackballed from these legitimate price matches. So, use this sparingly… check in RSS to see if another store has the price, and try there. If an employee looks like they’re just not going to budge, just bring the item back later for a return/rebuy.
Sometimes, it’s better to lose the battle, but win the war. So, don’t immediately just start fighting with store employees, remember, you’re aiming for the path of least resistance.
Now, if you do find yourself in a near-blackballed state, or if the managers have blackballed you… know your rights. For example, in the state of California, a store is required to honor the lowest advertised price (Best Buy has been ordered to put stickers at the retail counters to this effect). So, if they refuse to price match, tell them that you believe they are in violation of the law (by not honoring their own lowest price in the confines of their price match policy), and that you will be reporting them. That usually starts to let employees know that you know the law… which will often work as a chilling effect on denying you from then on.