The demo made the difference.
I have not been a fan of Best Buy’s in store experience for a number of years, but that feeling was partially offset on Christmas Eve and all thanks to an unnamed Blue Shirt working in the Bluetooth speaker aisle at the chain’s East Northport location.
I knew what I wanted when I entered the store and made a quick run to the middle of the store. I was looking to spend around $100 for a Bluetooth speaker for my family, well mainly me, for Christmas. All the speakers were supposedly set up for customers to demo, but none of the lower-priced models that I tried would work.
I was quite close to just grabbing one of those mute models because it was Christmas Eve and I was running out of shopping time. However, at this point I was distracted by a sales associate’s discussion with another customer a few feet away.
The customer was pointing to a model costing about $150 and asking if it was the best choice. The Blue Shirt confidently said he didn’t think so, but started to work with the in-store demo. He turned on the model in question, the Bose SoundLink mini. Both the customer and I were pretty blown away by the Bose system.
The other person quickly took the Bose box and walked off with the associate to pay. After a few minutes the sales associate returned and asked if he could help me. I told him I was impressed by the demo, but my innate cheapness had kept my feet planted near the entry-level models. The staffer tried to turn them on with no luck, then fiddled with some wires and managed to get the speaker to play. He then walked down the aisle and turned on the Bose speaker and came back saying nothing.
The evidence was in the air all around me and I could not argue the point. It made little sense to not spend all the money I had set aside for this gift and get the better sounding product.
The sales associate made $400 in sales for Best Buy in less than five minutes, but more importantly he proved the dire need to have a working in-store demo as his primary tool. Otherwise he would have been reduced to reading specs off the box and I would have most likely voted with my wallet and not my ears and bought the less expensive item.