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Best Buy Launches Home-Energy Centers, Adds More Connected Store Remodels


Best Buy has formally entered the
home-energy management business, and continues to
remodel additional flagship locations with its new connected
store format.

Still in its early stages, the energy effort includes instore
departments within three flagship locations and an
online “learning center” at

, which provide
technology products, solutions and services to help consumers
evaluate, control and reduce their energy consumption
and costs.

Both the micro site and the physical departments, located
within Best Buy stores in Chicago, Houston, and
San Carlos, Calif., provide such services as self-assessment
tools, home-energy surveys and audits, and product

“Through several small-scale experiments over the
past two years, from home-energy audits to installation
of home charging stations for electric vehicles, we
have learned there is real consumer interest in options
to cut energy costs and use in their lives, particularly in
the home,” said Neil McPhail, Best Buy’s senior VP, new
business customer solutions group. “Our role is to help
consumers make the most of the technology in their lives,
and the Home Energy concept is our latest experiment
that will demonstrate the knowledge and expertise of our
employees, and how our brands and our channels can
help consumers understand how to own, use, and maintain
energy efficient technologies.”

The three in-store concept departments feature demonstration
vignettes for a hands-on experience with
home-energy management, home control and home
assurance technologies. A “consultation bar” with dedicated
Blue Shirt sales associates and Geek Squad tech
staff can guide customers through questions about products,
solutions and featured services, including energy
assessments, home-energy surveys and audits, product
installation, and local energy incentives and rebates from
partner utilities Constellation Energy in Chicago, Reliant
in Houston, and Pacific Gas and Energy in San Carlos.

Online, the Home Energy Learning Center on

was designed to deliver “a content-rich experience”
about home-energy management solutions and services,
including product demonstration videos, an energy selfassessment
tool, self-guided product and solution selection
tools, an Energy Star rebate finder, and links to online
support from dedicated support staff.

Meanwhile, Best Buy continues to convert more flagship
big-box locations to its new “connected store” format,
which provides hands-on demonstrations of connected
devices and technologies.

The latest round of remodels debuted earlier this
month in the Dallas market, where the retailer marked
the occasion with Dallas Cowboy ticket giveaways, visits
from members of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, an
ESPN “experience” booth, and free tech workshops.

The stores, located, in Parklane, Hurst, Grapevine,
Frisco and Plano, also feature new Pacific Kitchen and
Home appliance departments, which are similarly rolling
out to select locations across the country. Borrowing
from the Magnolia A/V store-within-a-store concept, the
majap shops are based on Best Buy’s California-based
Pacific Sales home-improvement chain, and feature an
expanded assortment of entry-level to luxury products.