By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Best Buy has introduced a series of in-store and online initiatives to improve the holiday shopping experience for customers.
The enhancements were based in part on a company-sponsored survey that revealed which factors consumers consider very or somewhat important when holiday shopping.
Recognizing those needs, Best Buy has implemented the following improvements:
New customer assistants: The retailer has reassigned approximately 30 percent of its sales floor labor to a new cross-trained customer assistant position. Based on test scenarios, Best Buy found this new position would allow for deeper personal interaction with customers during peak times, a critical component to creating the best holiday experience.
Extended return policy: Best Buy overhauled its return policy for the season by extending the deadline on all returns to Jan. 31. The change was designed to "alleviate some of the stress, confusion and ultimately the frustration associated with post-holiday returns," the company said.
Enhanced phone support: Operators now undergo a month of intensive training to consult on purchases, call up inventory, place items on hold and perform sales transactions.
Shortened transaction times: The retailer says it has reduced average checkout time by 20 percent by reconfiguring the software in its cash registers and through increased training of sales staff.
Suggested accessories: To help customers give "complete gift solutions," Best Buy created an in-store shopping tool that helps identify appropriate accessories for the main gift item, such as a memory card or for a case for a digital camera.
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