Best Buy is the latest entrant into the deal-a-day business. The Richfield-based electronics retailer launched its “Deal of the Day” offering on Monday with a discounted tablet computer. The site will feature a single consumer electronic per day, available for 24 hours or until the inventory sells out.
Tuesday’s deal is a refurbished 8GB iPod Touch for $149, shipped for free. Its list price is $229, an $80 savings.
The crowded daily deal space was once dominated by discounted dinners and yoga classes. But companies are experimenting with the medium, attempting to sell everything from credit repair to Lasik eye surgery through these sites. Some deals sell out quickly, like the delivered-to-your-door package of cereal and other goods offered by General Mills earlier this year. Then there are the flops, such as a recent Groupon that sold discount vouchers to a Michigan auto dealer.
Best Buy first offered daily deals over the holidays, but isn't the first to get into cheap daily deal on electronics business. Woot.com, Newegg.com and of course Amazon offer price breaks on certain electronics available for 24 hours or less.
The sluggish economy has been a challenge for the electronics retailer, which is branching out beyond its big box stores with everything from Best Buy mobile stores to Best Buy kiosks.
Management has said that online is a major focus this year, with plans to double Best Buy’s online presence in the next three to five years. As CEO Brian Dunn told analysts in March during the company’s earnings conference call: “We’re hearing that many customers want to use multiple channels” to shop.
I can’t think of any channel that has grown as quickly as the deal-a-day medium.
Best Buy daily deals aren’t available in stores. Consumers concerned about buying an electronic device sight unseen shouldn’t worry; Best Buy’s regular return policy applies to its daily deal offerings.