Then I walked out. So ya, no surprise here that online shopping killed the retail store. Retail stores only pretend to be about customer service. They always have cool themes but it does seem to be changing. The one is Roseville was cool with a giant train engine crashing out the front and inside had a elevated train track and train design. The Burbank store had a crashed ufo in front and the City of Industry store had a cool gear design out front. Sad you can find better deals online, it hard to compete these days. Sacramento was universe themed and Fountain Valley?
Has a spaceship. I went to Concord recently and I don't know what their theme was. It was so messy. Yeah I was in OSH yesterday. It was packed, but only because they are going out of business and everything is on sale. Especially for the local chains that have been around for a while. I shop online to find the best deals. Did nobody mention that none of us are kids anymore? Our ability to overlook annoyances and downsides has diminished, and the coolness factor of goofy themed stores is bound to wear off as we age. Those days are sadly over. Yes this. And as a adult transplant which there are a shit tone of we just think: What the hell?
I go to the Fremont Fry's probably once a week with my son. I know it likely won't be around when he's older so I try and make it a destination for him to get cool things like playdoh, legos, amiibos, etc. There are a some good folks there, and then there are some who don't acknowledge you until you pick up a high dollar item that they can get commission for. Most of the time, however, I just tell them I don't need help and show myself to the register.
Overall, they've been good to me.. If I can single out a couple folks, Scott and David in the car audio and installation department are seriously some of the most personable and friendly dudes I've worked with at any electronics retailer.
They've done work on my old Jetta a couple years ago and recently on my F, both times their service was top notch and the job they did on the installation was beyond standard. They treat the vehicles in service like they would treat their own cars and treat their customers even better. So long as that Fry's still stands, I'll always go there for my car audio needs. Believe it or not, the commission system actually fucks up the check out process too.
Y'know, I get a little excited going to Central Computers, it reminds me of what Fry's used to be like on a smaller scale. The Fremont location was my local one and when one of my friends got his drivers license we would drive down there and spend hours looking at things. I do remember the Tesla coil they had go off every now and then. The old Fremont location was on Mission and Warm Springs in the corner building with the black glass windows, it was a two story Frys and it was great.
It isn't just amazon vs retail. The technology has matured. LAN parties or online gaming in general doesn't involve a trip to frys so somebody can buy a network card. That's standard kit now. Software running on smartphones has replaced so many physical things we used to buy like alarm clocks, kitchen timers, GPS units, calculators, cameras, remote controls, walkmen etc.
And you don't drive to a store to purchase software in a box anymore. Damn you just reminded me about having to buy and insert a network card into my laptop. Totally forgot that was even a thing. My local Frys are Brokaw, Sunnyvale and Campbell. I wanted to build a new PC and visited Frys to purchase a case. They had some on display, but nothing in stock. The store was a ghost town. I remember it's hayday and it was awesome. The laptop sections was bustling with commission hungry salespeople. The cafeteria was a place to pick up something to nosh on. I actually took my soon to be wife after dinner to peruse the appliance aisles.
I used to enjoy the weekly Mercury news ad to see what was on super sale. I still try to go as often. Maybe they should consolidate these 3 stores into one, in an effort to stay alive. They have a lenient return policy and will price match Amazon so I always try to see if they carry the same thing. Sometimes you can't decide on something until you try it out so having it locally is better. Amazon is getting more strict about their return shipping these days.
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This is quite depressing. My dad and I would visit the san jose, Sunnyvale, and Campbell stores all the time as I was growing up. It was one of the greatest bonding experiences with my dad. We would go to Fry's and spend all day hanging out. Damn, bummer for Fry's too though. Last time I went there half the employees hardly spoke English and they bumrush you trying to help so they can get commission. Like I remember an employee straight up taking something out of my hands so he could go give me some thing that said he helped me.
Yes, I experienced the same thing at the Campbell location. Spent minutes browsing while employees chatted amongst themselves, then when I chose the item and started walking away they make sure I get the commission form. Tech has also reached saturation point, which could be another variable for why fewer people go to the stores.
Welcome to Reddit,
Fewer people upgrading their laptops and phones. Eyeballing best buy, wireless carriers, and tech hobby places, it seems this has affected everyone in this business. They went to the Apple, Microsoft and Google stores. I also think Amazon has been reaching saturation point too. See quite a bit of people disconnecting off the prime bandwagon.
This has been a thing for a few years now. An iPhone 2 is lightyears away from an iPhone 1, but an iPhone X is maybe a few doors down from an iPhone 9 [or whatever came right before, I don't care]. The differences or levels of improvements nowadays seem not as mighty humongous as they were previously. So my laptop from six years ago is just fine thank you, I can wait.
I have a Core ik system, and the series is out. I'm not finding myself a good reason to upgrade most of the PC until maybe years after the next console generation starts. The inside of my local Frys is practically post apocalyptic. It's like being in the airport from The Fifth Element. Your experience reminds me of mine except that I visited the Campbell and Palo Alto locations and I only visited as a kid as I lived in a different state but came by yearly to visit relatives.
Each store had their own theme and feel and the two I remember most were the Indiana Jones-like Campbell location and then wild west Palo Alto location. Either it wasn't as run-down then or I was just an easily impressed kid but visiting the locations now, the themes just feel out of place for an electronics store. And you're right, the lack of crowds feels There really isn't a good reason to visit unless you're in dire need of a part or Fry's is having some sale but even then, it rarely feels worth the trip instead of just making a few clicks and having it arrive at my doorstep. I was at the Sunnyvale Fry's on Friday with a coworker who was looking for some obscure bits.
In two different departments, the Fry's drone knew exactly what the item was and exactly where it was hanging. That would never happen in the old days. I guess with so few customers, the drones have more time to learn the store. Even with that, it was still really depressing since all the full height shelves have been swapped for half height shelves and there is tons of open floor space.
The half height shelves lets you see all the way across the store and see the complete lack of customers. If Fry's wants to survive, maybe they should learn something about customer service. Shopping there is a chore. Everything is a chore compared to clicking pictures on your phone at home with your dick in your hand. Shopping there is a chore because their sales staff is painful to work with. It's usually better to just not engage them. Amazon is a big part, but also Fry's hasn't adapted to change as well as other companies.
Best Buy is actually doing well in an age of online buying because of how they've adapted over the years. They've embraced BOPIS buy online, pick up in store , price matching, and they put emphasis on the customer experience and service. Good point. I hear about occasional sales at Fry's that sound interesting, but can't bring myself to make the trek to the store and then hope that they have the item in stock and the lines aren't too terrible when I get there. I'm sure Frys would be fun as a kid. As a transplant you're like wtf a store trying to be like an amusement park line for a ride makes no sense whatsoever.
The selection is poor even though it is huge and a lot of stuff is knock off. I'm not surprised that in such a tech center place this place is going under. I would go there to look if I needed something but I never found it there. Now I just don't even go. This isn't exclusive to Fry's - big box retail is slowly across the board. The only things that are likely going to continue in their present form is stuff that gets a pretty big benefit from you being there in person to purchase - clothes, perishable groceries, etc.
That being said, I regularly go to that Frys to pick up cables I need immediately, and I bought my home theater projector from them they had it in stock and it was same price as on amazon, so why not. I also fairly regularly buy console games from them as I prefer having physical discs. I'd rather not have Best Buy be the only brick and mortar electronics retailer left. Even some clothing stores are having trouble these days, I think the entire Gap brand probably won't last for much longer.
I actually bought a projector screen from Fry's a few years ago, it's a powered one but ended up costing the same as a manual one online after their promote code thing. I also have fond memories of hanging out at Frys as a kid. Loved to ogle all the new tech. Of course got caught eventually and banned for life. So, I probably set them on their doomed path, sorry guys.
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I think Fry's started dying with the rise of tablets and smartphones. This largely made the demand for custom built desktop PCs and large screen tvs decrease significantly, which I think were what made up of majority of Fry's customer base at its peak. Also along with the rise and era of streaming services where many people just watch things from their computers and laptops. Rise of Amazon and e-retailers are other obvious reasons of course. Used to love going there when I built PCs.
It was always pretty exciting to walk out of their with a processor a new motherboard. That's not new.
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It also took them forever to have a functional website Trying to return things at Fry's was always a nightmare too The whole thing is sad but not surprising. You must not build computers; they still have a lot of useful stuff and I know lots of fellow nerds who also run up there for supplies. I build computers.
Sometimes , there will be a good deal, and it won't be all open-box inventory left, but that's increasingly rare. I did manage to score a decently priced, unopened GeForce last year, but most days I just leave with a sense of sadness wondering why I keep going in. The one thing that I really like to check out in a person is the case, I like to see how well it's built or how the drive cage slides in They always price match Amazon, Best Buy, etc and most of the time they're so close on price that I don't even bother.
No URL shorteners. Filter Deals See outdated link flair? Hit the "report" button! Welcome to Reddit, the front page of the internet. The doors open at around four, which means we have to get there at AM to get everything ready. The closing crew the night before will set out the bulk f the sales items, and no, we have no idea what is on the ad until the night before if you're closing, otherwise you don't one until the day of.
Everything is controlled by home office; whether it's the ad, the prices, the items we have for sale, etc. And Black Friday is usually a one day ad, and the same for Saturday, etc. Typically the ads start Friday and go t the following Thursday. One year i went home during my lunch break and just stood in the bedroom doorway and stared at my bed. It felt like my bed was taunting me. That exhausted.
Plus you can't really enjoy Thanksgiving because you have to go to bed so early to get up and work your black Friday shift.
I've heard that if you call in sick on Black Friday you get fired, but I don't know how true that is. And everyone works Black Friday. It's becoming a fairly common trend that retailers are offering better or comparable "Black Saturday" deals go try and garner business from customers who went else where on Friday or from people such as retail associates who had to work during Friday sales. It also provides retailers with a chance to respond to or duplicate other stores offers which is win-win both business and consumer.
Expect the trend to grow nationwide. I used to work at the store in Plano, Texas. Could it perhaps be one of the Texas locations? PM me, just curious. Also that job sucks. No safety sweep bullshit, though. Hah, which store? I worked Fry's in Arlington, Tx, the one that used to be an Incredible Universe before it got turned into one of the 7th circles of hell. Which started as a modified grocery store in The Fry brothers turned one of their father's old grocery stores into an electronics store.
I'm not sure if that store still exists though. The original store is not there. They literally moved across the street into a bigger store. It used to be small and one of the best places for components, snacks and nudie mags. Now that everyone has figured out the Fry's rebate scam where you buy two items that have rebates, but both of them require mailing in an original receipt, so you are not going to get one of the rebates, what new rebate scam technology does Fry's have on the horizon to keep the scam money flowing?
I guess Fry's is going to have to come up with some new tricks if they want to steal more of your money. I bet they will. If it were so simple, we want people to buy stuff, and rebates are just a pitch, you would see the same scam everywhere. But you don't. You know what Fry's could do with distressed merchandise?
Discount it. Like everyone else. Without making you follow 57 rules to get the discount. You know why they have the 57 rules? To create the expectation that customers will get the discount, without actually giving it or giving it as infrequently as possible. That's a scam. No nice way to say it. Might be legal. Might be common. Still a scam. Know what else? The cash that eventually gets redeemed -- that's capital. That Fry's, in cooperation with the vendors, will withhold for months before they pay the debt.
Why does it take so long? So they can confuse their customers into loaning them money for zero interest. If Fry's are not scammers, how about this as a way to get rid of distressed merchandise: But this isn't about distressed merchandise. Fry's promotional merchandise is purchased for the purpose of promotions. Most often, it is a commodity--blank DVDs would be an example. Don't tell me the buyers just fucked up and thought people would want to buy Sony blank DVDs and now they are sitting in the warehouse and we have no choice but to advertise them with this complicated rebate trickery.
The promotions and the purchasing are planned months in advance because Fry's likes scams as a marketing strategy. I would prefer it if they chose some other strategy. The rebates are done through the manufacturer not Fry's. If you have a complaint about not getting a rebate, etc. Call the manufacturer, because we have no control over that. Is that what they told you to say? Rebates are not "done through manufacturers". They are dispersed by marketing and fulfillment contractors who are hired because Fry's hires them, or negotiates for their retainer. Fry's passes the direction and control test.
The excuse that this is a manufacturer strategy when the manufacturers employ it only at Fry's, and when Fry's does it with lots of manufacturers makes a loud thud when it hits the bullshit pile. Fry's cheats customers. Fuck dude give it a rest.. Have the cashier print a duplicate receipt then before you leave register.. To ask for a receipt, you must know in advance that an original is required, a fact that was probably not disclosed to you until you left the store.
Since you are unlikely to go back to the store and wait in line at the service counter for 45 minutes while your sale is voided and rung up again, you will not claim the refund. When this system is deliberately designed for the purpose of promising you a rebate but not giving you one, it is a scam. Fry's is a scammer. The vendor and retailer negotiate prices and promotions.
So how do rebates work then? It's really easy and again this is not unique to Fry's. All rebates everywhere work the exact same way. Vendor sponsored rebates work like this: Any money left over is yours to keep and any money you over that amount is paid out if your pocket. For that reason several rebate companies went out of business in the early 's. Customer complaints is why Best Buy and Wal-Mart no longer do rebates. I wonder if the reason that customers that complained to Walmart and Best Buy complained because they were scammed?
Yes, they did.
Just like Fry's does now. In offering a rebate, do you think Fry's creates the expectation in customers that they will get the money? Do you think half of them never see the money because of terms and conditions deliberately designed by Fry's and it's partners in scamming to reduce the probability that the customer won't get the money? For example, have to wait 8 weeks for your check?
IAMA Fry's Electronics employee, AMA : IAmA
If you relocate in that time, you won't get it, and people like you can say, "It's the customer's fault he or she did not type up a memo to the rebate company informing them of his or her change of address and carry the memo to the post office and stand in line to mail it. All of this information can be found on Google. Or you can go to a seminar at a merchandising trade show in which the scammer rebate companies will tell you the best scam practices.