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Circuit City Returns Under Systemax

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the part-two-the-revenge dept.

Businesses 134

animeking503 was one of several readers to send word that after closing its doors earlier this year, CircuitCity.com is alive and kicking once again. Systemax Inc., the company that owns TigerDirect and CompUSA, purchased the Circuit City e-commerce brand name last month, and has now re-launched the website with promises of lower prices and better service. The Consumerist points out that the new site's return policies leave something to be desired.

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really (5, Insightful)

asdfndsagse (1528701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075039)

Why shops at retail stores for electronics anymore?

Re:really (4, Insightful)

LoverOfJoy (820058) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075097)

Shipping costs, shipping time and return policies. Not to mention the value in being able to see the quality and try out the product before you buy it.

Don't get me wrong. I buy most of my electronics online. I can usually find much better deals there than in brick and mortar stores. That said, there are some times when I am very glad to have a physical store to go to.

Re:really (-1, Troll)

KneelBeforeZod (1527235) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075363)

That said, there are some times when I am very glad to have a physical store to go to.

To buy blank DVDs and burn more pirated stuff. Oops, did I say that?

Re:really (1)

pimpimpim (811140) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075413)

Actually all those reasons are the reason that I buy at amazon and others. I once had a logitech headset that broke because of flimsy build quality. Within the year I went back to the store, but they wouldn't accept it. The only time I will buy something at a brick & mortar store will be if I need it on exactly that day and precise specifications don't count so much, for example empty cds.

Re:really (1)

centuren (106470) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078571)

Actually all those reasons are the reason that I buy at amazon and others. I once had a logitech headset that broke because of flimsy build quality. Within the year I went back to the store, but they wouldn't accept it. The only time I will buy something at a brick & mortar store will be if I need it on exactly that day and precise specifications don't count so much, for example empty cds.

In defence of Circuit City, they provided the best return policy and customer service of all the brick & mortar stores I've experienced.

Re:really (2, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075467)

Shipping costs: Well maybe but last I checked because I forgot to include a 15m Ethernet cable the online price covered it + shipping for less.
Shipping time: Yes, definately when you need it today but that's rare. I've done it for odd stuff like the missing cable and so on but...
Retrun policies: Around here, no better (Norway). And I very rarely buy stuff I want to refund, YMMV.
Seeing and trying: Yes, for some products Reviews, benchmarks, press quality preview pictures go a long way though and there's always window shopping.

Ok, so the last one is pretty much a cheap shot against the store, but it depends in what order I'm doing it. If I've reviewed the prices up front but I'm uncertain and I go to the store and it's not excessively much more, they'll get a sale. But if it's the other way around that I get interested in the store, I always go home and check online once before making any large purchase. Why? Because brick and mortar stores sometimes have prices that are complete rip-offs. If you look at the top 10 online stores the prices are usually within a few percent because it's so easy to compare. Retail stores sometimes have 50-100% markup on some items, and there's no way I'm paying 200$ for a 100$ online item. In fact, I think they'd get more sales if I got myself a decent browsing phone so I could check out prices while in store.

Re:really (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075501)

Not to mention the value in being able to see the quality and try out the product before you buy it.

With all of the consumer review and testing websites, such as CNet and TomsHardware (for PCs), available these days is that even necessary anymore? The types of equipment and testing that these companies do is well beyond the sort of rigor and precision sought by most consumers (who aren't going to spend days tweaking configurations to find out that one video card has only 2 fps more than another one costing $100 less). There is only so much personal time to be put into researching a purchase and unless it is a really big ticket item, like a house or a car, most people don't spend weeks and months figuring out what they want to buy.

Re:really (2, Insightful)

AhtirTano (638534) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075797)

Depends on what you are buying. Sometimes the design of a product feels more comfortable to you than anther. And preferences like this can vary from person to person. For example, I hate the button layout and display on Nikon DSLRs. I have a good friend who loves them. No review in the world can possibly sort this out-you have to hold the object in your hand to come to a decision.

Re:really (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076059)

Office Depot appreciates your patronage.

Re:really (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076077)

"Shipping costs, shipping time and return policies. Not to mention the value in being able to see the quality and try out the product before you buy it."

Shipping is cheaper for me than gas and time to visit the store, and I evaluate quality by visiting appropriate forums. I let the early adopters take the risks then I buy accordingly because I cannot duplicate user experience by a short tryout in a store.

Re:really (1)

winwar (114053) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076269)

"Shipping is cheaper for me than gas and time to visit the store, and I evaluate quality by visiting appropriate forums."

Really? Ever price the shipping for a large TV, especially if you have to return it or get warranty work?

The best electronics/ products can still be damaged or fail. While many products are well packaged, I still wouldn't trust most delivery services.

Now for smaller/cheaper items....

Re:really (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077285)

You can't necessarily "see" the quality of a product before you buy it. You can see the aesthetic attributes of it (the outer shell), not the types of components inside it.

You can see if it looks flimsy. But if it doesn't look flimsy, it could still be of very poor quality.

It's nice to have online reviews from other users of the product and detailed specs you can't get in a store to make a real determination about quality.

Re:really (1)

pod (1103) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078141)

Online reviews are nice, but they often fall short, and so much of what we see as product quality is subjective (ie, aesthetic). For a simple example, I would never buy a mouse that I could not try beforehand. The size, shape and weight must feel "right" and be comfortable TO ME, there must be the "right" amount of buttons in the "right" locations and requiring the "right" amount of pressure, the scroll wheel must not be mooshy and must have clearly defined stops and must feel "right". No review will tell me this.

Anything you interact with is subjective, and different people have different preferences, place different emphasis on certain aspects, and are often willing to overlook what to you may be glaring and fatal flaws.

Re:really (2, Informative)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077029)

You forgot "heavy stuff" and "breakable stuff".

If it's heavy, it's expensive to ship. Monitors (especially back in the CRT days), automotive parts (I know, off topic), and anything the exact right model are important on is best left to an in person deal if possible.

(when you're a Linux user and you buy by the chip - the exact right model revisions is important sometimes)

Re:really (2, Informative)

MikeURL (890801) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075665)

Well, I'm sitting here right now with a giant brick that says "Brother MFC-465CN". Newegg won't RMA it even though Brother tech support agrees that it is a giant brick. Newegg wants me to buy a full set of ink cartridges (about $50 BTW) and try that first before they will RMA.

This is never an issue for an item like a motherboard which Newegg will RMA without much hassle if it is clear you know what you're doing. I feel pretty confident that if I had bought this printer brick at my local Staples and then returned it saying "it doesn't work" that they'd just refund my money. But since it is a heavy inkjet printer Newegg doesn't want to touch it.

On a semi-related note I think it sucks that Brother sells a printer with a separate black cartridge that will STILL use up the color even if all you print in is greyscale. It also does a massive "cleaning cycle" every couple of weeks just in case you aren't using enough ink. This reminds me to leave a scathing review...

Re:really (1)

tomz16 (992375) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075921)

I think all brother inkjets do this now. I agree that it's a HUGE waste of ink if you don't print color regularly. On the flip side, I've never had a clogged head with this printer. hmmm....

Re:really (3, Informative)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077499)

This is similar to the reason newer printers have chips on the cartridge, and the printer rejects cartridges that can't be digitally identified as being the same manufacturer,

And why in many cases cartridges have "timebombs", i.e. after X pages, the printer will declare the cartridge empty and refuse to use (even if there's still lots of ink in it)

More revenue for the printer manufacturer who got you the printer for cheap so they could sell lots of ridiculously overpriced ink.

Re:really (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28077697)

I am well aware of the razor blade economics model. However, in this case the self-cleaning does seem to have a tangible benefit (apart from emptying your wallet). Every other inkjet I've used has developed clogged heads after a short while, especially if you didn't print very often. The two brother inkjets I have had in recent years don't suffer from this problem, presumably because of their obsessive self-clean cycles.

It certainly wastes ink, and that thought does bother me every time I hear it start cleaning. On the other hand, the print quality is always top notch on the first shot, so I'm not convinced that this cleaning thing is just a blatant money grab on the part of brother.

I just get the $2/each knockoff cartridges online, and try not to lose any sleep over wasted ink.

P.S. As an aside, their (brother's) linux driver support is excellent. I have two multifunction inkjets, a monochrome laser, and color laser from them. They have a linux driver section where you can just grab the PPD!

Re:really (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077615)

On a semi-related note I think it sucks that Brother sells a printer with a separate black cartridge that will STILL use up the color even if all you print in is greyscale. It also does a massive "cleaning cycle" every couple of weeks just in case you aren't using enough ink.

If you print that little color, you should get yourself a laser printer instead. That's what I did -- I got myself a B&W Brother HL-2070N, and don't really miss color at all (most of my printing is either text or throw-away stuff like Google Maps directions anyway). And even color lasers are pretty cheap now.

are you paying attention? (2, Informative)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075779)

Why shops at retail stores for electronics anymore?

There are no locations for the new circuit city. All their retail stores are still closed. The new circuitcity.com is online-only.

Re: No, really... (4, Interesting)

symbolic (11752) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075899)

I had an experience not too long ago that had me asking the same question. I first went to the website of a well-known bookseller to check the price on a particular item. They had a list price and an online price. Quite naturally, the online price was cheaper, but I was willing to fork over the list price because I still thought it was reasonable. I walk into the store to find that the shelf price was 60% over list. When I inquired as to why this was, I got the usual smattering of excuses, and an assertion that they would not be able to match the list price on their own website. After some discussion, I placed the item back on the shelf and left. A day later, I purchased the same item from an online retailer at a price that was 30% less than their list price.

So yeah, brick-and-mortars can whine about the fact that they have to charge sales tax, and that this gives online retailers an advantage, but please...when you pull this kind of crap with customers, EXPECT to lose business.

Re:really (1)

mspohr (589790) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076193)

Why shops at retail stores...?

I don't think 'why' shops at retail stores anymore which is 'why' they are re-launching the WEBSITE.

I know you are not supposed to read the story but you could at least read the summary...

They are going to re-launch the WEBSITE. The WEBSITE is not a retail store, it is a WEBSITE.

Re:really (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077673)

How do people try, touch, see, smell, etc. items in person before buying them? Or nee to have them right away!

What is wrong here? (0)

eyepeepackets (33477) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075045)

I have a bad feeling about this: Smells like Same-pig-different-lipstick effect -- and it smells bad.

Re:What is wrong here? (1)

akboss (823334) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075435)

Actually TigerDirect has TigerDirect, TigerDirect for business, Infotel,CompUSA,CompUSA for business,and now circuit city. Each one sends the exact same ads, lists the same stuff but Infotel assigns you a agent that works with you. All Tiger has done is to buy up old names that people knew and then use those names to sell the same products under.

Re:What is wrong here? (1)

JWyner (653364) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075613)

This is the key point -- it is fairly standard for a company to own a variety of brands in order to make the customer feel more comfortable, or offer a slightly different version of their core service.

Re:What is wrong here? (1)

Polloxer (1532817) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075957)

Yep, it looks pretty similar to Tiger Direct. It's got that annoyingly long list of every single category/subcategory on the left. (A normal site uses the main category titles, which you can hover over to view subcategories, which circuitcity.com even has, but for some reason duplicates the feature in a worse way). And it lists every single price as "Only $x", even if they're not on sale. Are they trying to trick me with that? It's part of what gives me a bad feeling about tigerdirect/circuitcity.com.

Re:What is wrong here? (2, Funny)

SEWilco (27983) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077249)

I have a bad feeling about this: Smells like Same-pig-different-lipstick effect -- and it smells bad.

Oh? Which part of "System ax" gives you unease?

Wow, yet another site (1)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075051)

Yet another website that I won't change my buying habits for. Newegg FTW!

Re:Wow, yet another site (1)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075081)

To paraphrase stewie griffin: "Now Tigerdirect can be somewhere else when the nerds don't order."

HOORAYA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28075071)

I like the city of circuits there are hot babes there who like to get wild and wacky, you can be sure of that wink wink yo.

Re:HOORAYA (1)

Q-Hack! (37846) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076267)

You are on the wrong forum... this is nerds, not playas

Re:HOORAYA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076375)

Yo dawg dont be a hata, just because I am all awesome like and super awesome and indeed extremely awesome like and such, et cetera, it meas that you are a monkey ass eater but thats cool, yo.

Re:HOORAYA (1)

delysid-x (18948) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076689)

There's no reason you can't be both.

Re:HOORAYA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28077957)

Yo, word brotha, yor face is all ugly and dumb an shit but thas cool, yo, dawg, jus sayin.

Then again it's not really Circuit City (4, Interesting)

Jesterace (914041) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075087)

Just like the original article it does state that it's not Circuit City it's Systemax. I've personally never dealt with Circuit City as I'm in Canada. the only thing close I guess was "The Source by Curcuit City" which basically was Radio Shack prior to that. Not being able to return unused printer cartridges doesn't surprise me much considering even Walmart won't take them back either. The other major brands HP, Compaq that kind of surprises me because you couldn't just take that fancy laptop back to HP or Compaq and get a refund.

Re:Then again it's not really Circuit City (1)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075151)

I've personally never dealt with Circuit City as I'm in Canada. the only thing close I guess was "The Source by Curcuit City" which basically was Radio Shack prior to that.

Even money says they still want your full name, address and phone number just for buying an overpriced pack of D-cell batteries.

Re:Then again it's not really Circuit City (1)

conlaw (983784) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075827)

The other major brands HP, Compaq that kind of surprises me because you couldn't just take that fancy laptop back to HP or Compaq and get a refund.

The Consumerist is just taking advantage of Systemax's poor wording of a policy that NewEgg also has. HP, for instance, might provide that all warranty issues with their products must sent by the original purchaser to the HP technical folks. In that case, it would waste time and money if you sent it to Systemax, they sent it back to you and you then sent it to HP. Plus, in all that shipping, the package might get broken or the warranty may have run out.

Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (5, Insightful)

lsommerer (89441) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075131)

Really? The Tiger Direct people are going to improve someone's customer service? I stopped buying from them nearly a decade ago. Are they any easier to work with now?

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (1)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075203)

Depends. I've been ordering from them for a good while and haven't had a problem... Then again, I haven't had to return anything (I've heard there can be problems there). I think a lot of customer satisfaction has to do with luck. Sometimes, even at the best places, you get a bad egg or a service person having a bad day.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (5, Informative)

ion.simon.c (1183967) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075455)

Sometimes, even at the best places, you get a bad egg...

Speaking of eggs, newegg.com is the best online store that I've had the pleasure of doing business with. :)

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (2, Insightful)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075509)

Thanks for the recommendation. I might try them next time I shop online.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076437)

I would suggest that you do shop with them. Typically their prices are competitive, if not better, than most other merchants. Even if it is more expensive (very rare), most of the time they provide 3 day UPS shipping and get orders shipped out FAST. Also their customer service is one of the best.

If you consider all factors, they are easily the best retailer. One you know, you Newegg.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076497)

if you are canadian try ncix

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (1)

Guido von Guido (548827) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076555)

There's also newegg.ca. It's a little odd since they charge you a "handling" fee that covers GST/PST.

Now, I haven't lived in Canada all that long, so I haven't tried NCIX yet. I probably will in the near future, for comparison.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076145)

Yes! I've bought components to build 2 computers, one set through tigerdirect.com and one through newegg.com, and guess what? To keep it short:

tigerdirect: nightmares and literal phone arguments with customer service, coffee spots on the p4 chip, packaging was minimal (big box with EVERYTHING tossed in, everything and no packing foam/protection), and dead-on-arrivals's.

newegg: literally nothing to be said because everything worked how it should and it was pleasant. Clean website, easy ordering, and customer service is polite and easy to deal with.

So, yes, buy NewEgg and skip the TigerDirect+CompUSA+CircuitCity "service" bullshit.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28077431)

I used to buy there until they told me that I cannot buy anymore because my credit card was not US based. That was after several things I bought without problems.
So it worked for a time, but I was so pissed off with their new policy, that I decided not to buy there anymore even though I have now an US based cerdit card.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (2, Informative)

Eugene (6671) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078359)

mwave.com is also pretty good for online shopping.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (1)

joyfeather (1167073) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075291)

I bought several items from them recently, and on one item ordered the wrong thing (my fault). They accepted the return and shipped the right part with no problems, no hassle.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28075635)

replacements are rarely a problem as I understand it it's if there has to be any sort of refund or "store credit" that the problem comes in.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (1)

iVasto (829426) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075773)

No, their customer service is still just as bad. Also, their website doesn't take orders all the time. I ordered a gift for christmas (Logitech Harmony remote) and it never got billed to my credit card. By the time I realized this, the price went up 20 dollars and their customer support wouldn't give me the old price. Newegg for life.

Re:Tiget Direct == Better Customer Service? (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077331)

I expect they will improve over the old Circuitcity.com.

Not because TigerDirect has improved, but because Circuit City's customer service was so much worse.

Visited the site (3, Interesting)

revlayle (964221) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075143)

I mean the prices are pretty good and the site is full of useful content and info about the products. However, it's not Newegg, millions of product reviews are already there, competitive prices already and pretty decent customer services. The new CircuitCity.com is ultimately "meh" to me. I mean if you HATE Newegg, this might be an OK alternative... i guess.... MEH

Re:Visited the site (2, Informative)

ScottCooperDotNet (929575) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075405)

Re:Visited the site (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28075471)

That just dug up memories of the horrid IBM MWave modem/soundcard...

Re:Visited the site (1)

PhrstBrn (751463) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076793)

Somebody told me about MWave 2 years ago when I built my last computer.

I paid $1200 for my new rig (nice big monitor, new speaker system, the works) and it would have been $200 more if I bought the same exact parts from Newegg (everything was cheaper across the board).

It was a bit slower than Newegg - I was used to ordering stuff UPS ground and getting it the next day/2 days from newegg (I think it took about a week for the stuff to finally arrive from MWave).

I haven't made any large purchases since, so I've been using mostly Newegg (it's worth paying slightly more at Newegg when I get get my stuff in a day or two), but I'd probably check out MWave again if I had to make another large purchase.

I haven't tried MWave's return policy, OTOH, I've used Neweggs return policy on many occasions and I haven't had many complaints.

The only complaint: I once had to RMA 2 dead hard drives (I bought 9, 1 died within a day, the other one was damaged during shipping), and they refunded the drives instead of sending me new ones. I called, and they said they were "out of stock". I looked on the website, and the ordering page for that drive model said otherwise. I told this to the CSR, whom told me something to the effect "the website hasn't updated yet, but we don't have any in stock". I ignored her, ordered the 2 "out of stock" replacement drives after hanging up the phone. UPS delivered them to me the next morning.

Re:Visited the site (1)

PingPongBoy (303994) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075497)

A new business needs to bring a lot into the competition in order to get respect. And that's the way the world is, since many businesses have had a chance to mature. So new businesses take a lot of risk, and if you suspect Systemax to be just testing the waters, what they show may be just a shell with little willingness to back up their policies in the face of difficulties. However, customers should look for deals, and maybe there is a winner here. These days, we need to see risk takers make some gains, even against mature competitors.

I look for honesty, price, reliability, knowledge, willingness, etc. That's what I look for in service. A lot of sellers come across as total assholes who wish they had better jobs. If anything can keep Systemax alive, it's attitude.

opt out (5, Informative)

renegade600 (204461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075145)

Were you a customer of circuit city? Did you give your email address at the store? or Did you have an online account with them? If you do not want your personal data be transferred to systemax you need to opt out by June 9

See the following for the opt out page

http://mail.circuitcity.com/p/Circuit_City_Backup/cc_web_optout [circuitcity.com]

see the following for more information about opting out

http://www.circuitcity.com/sectors/opt-outv2.asp [circuitcity.com]

Re:opt out (1)

Megatog615 (1019306) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075425)

I don't understand why we wouldn't be able to opt out at any point(after June 9).

Re:opt out (1)

renegade600 (204461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075705)

it has to do with your personal data. Once they have your personal data (name, address, purchase history, return history and other info), normally it becomes a permanent part of their database. After the deadline, the only thing you can opt out of is their email list.

Re:opt out (1)

zenyu (248067) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075935)

You sir have never attempted to opt out of TigerDirect direct marketing.

Think of them as the Typhoid Mary of spammers, they go around spreading your info to all comers but have a sophisticated system of phone call marry go rounds for thwarting all efforts to remove yourself from their claws. I had to move twice and not leave forwarding addresses with the post office before I got them off my tail.

Re:opt out (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077345)

Once you hand over a customer's information to another company, there's no way to "undo" that. The new owners of circuitcity.com have your information at that point.

Re:opt out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076377)

If you do not want your personal data be transferred to systemax you need to opt out by June 9

That should be illegal. They either should take over the complete customer relation, including all warranty claimes etc, or nothing at all.

Re:opt out (1)

Bill Dimm (463823) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077225)

I made an online purchase from Circuit City a couple of years ago, so I went to the link you provided and entered my email address to opt-out. It then told me the second step was to click a link that would be emailed to me immediately. I never got that email (it's been a few hours now, and I did check the spam dump). Disturbing. Anybody else have this happen?

Re:opt out (1)

gorbachev (512743) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078369)

They already spammed me, so what's the point?

I'm setting up an email filter rule that returns all that stuff back to as many Systemax employees as I can possibly find.

what's the point? (3, Informative)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075197)

So, the new site is basically Tigerdirect underneath with the usual Circuit City logo on the main page? I bet when you order, the stuff comes out of the same warehouse as Tigerdirect. So, why not just order from Tigerdirect? These guys did the exact same thing with compusa.com [compusa.com] . If they were going to do something new and different with the brand, then I'd say go for it, but this is hardly creative at all. They've basically just put Circuit City on an eternal life support machine,...

Re:what's the point? (1)

kimmp (1519597) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075263)

Add something to your cart on any of the three sites. When you get to the upselling page change "tigerdirect", "compusa", or "circuitcity" to one of the others. It's like magic!

Re:what's the point? (1)

kimmp (1519597) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075275)

I mean change the URL, sorry.

Re:what's the point? (2, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075309)

Well, Best Buy bought out Futureshop here in Canada. They had plans of opening up Best Buy's, and closing down Futureshop. What they found out, is that after they opened the Best Buy stores, they made just as much money with Best Buy as they did with the Futureshops, and didn't Lost any Business at the existing Futureshop stores. They also realized that a lot of people, probably a majority of people aren't even aware they are owned by the same company. So many customers will make remarks about bad customer service and say they will go to the other store, while the employees snicker at them. I'ms sure that This is basically the same thing. Most people will have no idea they are the same store, and they will think they have a real choice about where to shop.

Re:what's the point? (1)

one_in_a_milli0n (1085449) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075659)

FutureShock ond WorstBuy do have slightly different selection of products and sometimes different prices and special offers. But yes, service is equally bad, i.e. non-existent.

Re:what's the point? (1)

pod (1103) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078185)

Yeah, when this first happened I think I recall some future shops getting rebranded, but that mysteriously stopped, and now you can find both future shops and best buys. This mystified me, until some time later I realized almost no one knew they're the same company. People don't get deals at one place or get bad service, they go next door to the other one to make their purchase on basically the same terms.

Re:what's the point? (1)

renegade600 (204461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075759)

it's called marketing and has to do with name recognition. Most general users recognizes and will purchase from circuit city but not tigerdirect or compusa. Some users will purchase from tigerdirect but they will stay far away from compusa.

What the customer don't know actually increase overall sales for systemax.

Re:what's the point? (1)

richmaine (128733) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076937)

Yep. I have long had a personal policy to never do business with Tiger Direct. It's such a long-standing policy that I've forgotten the details. Perhaps it is just my mind blocking out old unpleasant experiences. I recall establishing the policy, which is all I really need to remember. And now that I know, I know to extend that policy to Circuit City.

in other news (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28075207)

Chrysler is selling rights to the AMC Pacer and Gremlin brands, while a private equity firm is negotiating with Hollywood studios to produce "Ishtar, the Remake".

monopoly (0, Troll)

kkandnathan (1560885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075211)

More and more companies have been merged, must care monopoly! http://www.nowgoal.com/17.shtml [nowgoal.com]

Consumer laws (4, Interesting)

AnalPerfume (1356177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075281)

No corporate policy trumps consumer law, it's the other way round. Do any consumer protection laws in the US guarantee something more that these cretins are trying to push? I used to work in a store where we were told to use "company policy is set in stone" as an excuse for getting the customer to accept something less than the law guaranteed them to.

Having said that, companies don't lobby politicians into NOT modifying the law pushing the company / consumer balance further in their favor. Judging by many laws / regulations etc you'd think they were written BY corporations and handed to the government to act on.

Re:Consumer laws (1)

asdfndsagse (1528701) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075367)

exactly, the only way to not permit returns of defective product is to prominently state AS IS when the user buys it. And not just buried in a 'return policy' document. The product must have an AS IS sticker, or there must be a large plaque next to the goods that lets the user know.

Re:Consumer laws (2, Insightful)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075567)

Judging by many laws / regulations etc you'd think they were written BY corporations and handed to the government to act on.

In fact, this is not far from the truth here in the United States. Does anyone actually believe that Congressmen, Senators, and their staffs actually sit down and write out 3,000+ page bills to submit to committee? Many, if not most, of the bills that come before Congress are actually written by professional lobbyists employed by firms located in and around the Washington DC area on behalf of their corporate clients. Even if the bill is written by the Congress, the budget for example, the lobby firms still submit amendments for their Congresmen and Senators to slip into the package.

Re:Consumer laws (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078065)

Does anyone actually believe that Congressmen, Senators, and their staffs actually sit down and write out 3,000+ page bills to submit to committee?

Yes, I think their staffs do exactly this.

Re:Consumer laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076245)

you'd think they were written BY corporations and handed to the government

because they were. They just happened to have a nice big check attached to them when they gave it to the congress-critters ;)

Re:Consumer laws (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078573)

I used to work in a store where we were told to use "company policy is set in stone" as an excuse for getting the customer to accept something less than the law guaranteed them to.

Whenever someone is telling you something you don't like, or flat out don't believe, ask to get that IN WRITING. It's amazing how quickly soulless fast-talkers do a complete 180 when faced with the necessity of providing hard-proof of their behavior.

Editor Opinion Filter (1, Offtopic)

RiotXIX (230569) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075315)

As our way of thanking you for your positive contributions to Slashdot, you are eligible to disable advertising.

How much Karma do I need to switch off offensive and bias story tags?

Re:Editor Opinion Filter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076313)

you can disable tags in your preferences

Translation of return policy (4, Funny)

sjames (1099) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075407)

Products in need of return for physical defects may not be returned. Products that we ship incomplete may not be returned. Products whose brand name is recognizable may not be returned.

Honestly their return policy could be greatly abbreviated as follows: "All your base are belong to us"

Re:Translation of return policy (1)

AnalPerfume (1356177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075529)

They could save all the reading and replace the entire page with a "HAHA!! Suckers, what return policy? Gotcha!!" or a "this page is not supported in your browser" message set to show for EVERY browser.

Brothers in Suckitude (1)

Rick Zeman (15628) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075459)

Well, since Tiger Direct sucks, and CompUSA sucked, can we expect CircuitCity.com to be any different?

Nope.

I do like the consumerist's comparison to NewEgg (for those who RTFA). Who should get our business? (Hint: the word begins with New and ends with Egg.)

Some tradenames should die (1)

grolaw (670747) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075537)

CircuitCity is presently the top of my list of organizations to boycott. Sam Rami has a good idea - drag them to hell.

The concise summary (2, Funny)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075591)

A chain that was called "Circuit City"
Lost all of the cash in its kitty;
    So they gave it some whacks
    With a big System Ax
And now it will be Circut Shitty.

One a tiny positive note (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28075717)

At least they will have just one price for a particular item now. I worked at CC and quit shortly before they declared bankruptcy, and I felt like an idiot every time I had to explain to a customer that we couldn't match the price on our own frickin website.

Re:One a tiny positive note (1)

renegade600 (204461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076137)

I was able to get online prices at the local circuit city store without any arguments. After they looked it up, they gave it to me every time.

Stand by your guns (3, Insightful)

AnalPerfume (1356177) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075761)

Usually when I have paid cash for something and told my refund will be in the form of store credit, I ask them to point out where I paid in store credit on the receipt, and where in the statute books it states I can't be refunded in the currency I paid in.

Stay polite but firm, refuse point blank to accept less and keep moving up the command chain when the next chump sent to deal with you repeats the same as the last chump. Make sure you use a loud but calm voice to ensure that other customers hear you. Mind you, I enjoy twisting a sales person inside out with logic until they run out of excuses and agree to what the law states I'm entitled to just to get me out the door. Remember, the longer you tie these people up dealing with you, the more time they lose trying to sell stuff to other customers.

Of course this only works with a real brick and mortar store.

Re:Stand by your guns (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28076081)

Can you name some brick-and-mortar stores that try to pay refunds in store credit with a cash-paid-within-30-days receipt? A month is more than fair for trial with full cash refund. I've worked for several retail stores and never met with a "try to force them to accept store credit" policy.

Re:Stand by your guns (3, Informative)

Electrawn (321224) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076259)

Or ALWAYS pay with a credit card (not a debit card). One call to the bank, and it becomes the store's problem to prove you are wrong. Also, it costs them $25 to $50 from Visa to deal with a dispute.

Re:Stand by your guns (3, Informative)

evilviper (135110) | more than 5 years ago | (#28078523)

One call to the bank, and it becomes the store's problem to prove you are wrong. Also, it costs them $25 to $50 from Visa to deal with a dispute.

Have you actually tried this on more than one occasion, or are you just parroting something you've heard somewhere?

After returning a clearly defective product that I had spent over an hour testing (specifically, a cable from the bastards at cableclub.com, found via pricewatch), I was told the received product was NOT DEFECTIVE, and I would be given a store credit for the price of the product, minus shipping & handling... in short, less than I paid to ship the item back, and less than it would cost to buy (including shipping) ANYTHING from them again. I tried repeatedly to explain that there's no way they could be correct, and pointed out a handful of factual errors in the info they provided, and still got a steadfast refusal to even return the "defective" item.

I contacted the bank that issued my MasterCard, and explained the situation. They told me that there's no way to prove the product was, in fact, defective, and that because they have a stated policy which allows them to do this, my challenge would be declined, and suggested I just stop shopping there. It took me 5 more minutes to convince the rep I still wanted to challenge the charge, and get him to fill out the paperwork. Of course, the refund never showed up on my card, and the paperwork for me to fill out never arrived.

That's the gist of my experience with CC companies. Their "fraud" protection applies only to a very narrowly defined scenario of fraud, and you'll still probably have to take them to court...

Re:Stand by your guns (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28077317)

Some stores have a policy stating all returns are in the form of store credit. In which case you agreed to that policy by buying their product.

Some stores don't accept returns at all.

Some stores refund cash as a mailed check. Such is the case with Best Buy and cash purchases over $250.

Why would you want the Circuit City brand name? (5, Insightful)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 5 years ago | (#28075763)

To me, the Circuit City brand represents high prices and bad service. I don't understand why anyone would want the Circuit City name. It's tainted.

Re:Why would you want the Circuit City brand name? (1)

brentonboy (1067468) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076027)

To me, the Circuit City brand represents high prices and bad service. I don't understand why anyone would want the Circuit City name. It's tainted.

Because it's better than the Tiger Direct brand name. For example, Dell just sued Tiger Direct for selling used and refurbished Dell laptops as "Brand New."

Re:Why would you want the Circuit City brand name? (2, Interesting)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077389)

Because there is a lot of recognition for the brand name.

Even if 25% of the past customers are unhappy with Circuit City and will never buy again due to 'poor service' or poor experience in the past, there are still those 75% of the population (a significant number) who would still buy from Circuity City, or give them a second chance...

That 75% (of past circuit city customers) is a significant portion of the population.

Probably a much larger population than Tiger Direct's customer base.

Who gives a shit? (1)

pecosdave (536896) | more than 5 years ago | (#28076995)

I can still "buy from Montgomery Ward" [wards.com] - it's not like I'm actually able to buy from Montgomery Ward anymore. Snatching up a name is nothing more than that, I don't care what they name it, Circuit City is gone.

In other news (1)

Deadstick (535032) | more than 5 years ago | (#28077785)

...sales of wooden stakes and garlic have spiked.

rj

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