The last time I was in a Circuit City store, it seemed a little empty and cold compared to the Best Buy up the street that had all kinds of people bustling about. What I saw was no different than what many of you have probably seen at your local Circuit City stores which makes it clear that they’re struggling. To define struggling, Circuit City hasn’t seen a quarterly profit since the 2nd quarter of 2007, almost a full year ago. Things aren’t going so well for them, but they’re not ready to give up. Their strategy is to open “The City” stores which they hope will help improve their image and sales.
A recent article published by the Associated Press explains these news stores and their employees. They say, “dressed in jeans and black t-shirts and armed with touch-screen laptops, Generation Y employees at “The City” help customers choose the latest gadgets.” So it appears as though they want their employees to look sophisticated yet laid back at the same time. “The City” stores themselves are much smaller too. The AP says they feature “special fixtures and lighting, streamlined product selection and a new feel – as well as being about two-thirds as big as Circuit City’s traditional 30,000-plus square-foot stores.”
More than ever, new technology gadgets are a necessity and not a luxury. You’d think then that this would mean that electronic stores would be having no issues with sales, even with a sluggish economy. They’re not though. More people buy their electronics online where they can find reduced prices and more people find other ways like online downloads to get their media like music and movies. Circuit City hasn’t been the number one American consumer electronics chain since the 1990’s and they’re hoping the new concept stores will change this. With 50-60 “The City” stores opening during their fiscal 2009, expect to see these smaller but updated stores popping-up in a city near you.
Image Source: Gizmodo