Have you noticed some stores are almost empty.

I go into Best Buy now and see very few people. There was a time when Best Buy would have many customers in their stores. Now there are very few.

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@johnb974 wrote:

I go into Best Buy now and see very few people. There was a time when Best Buy would have many customers in their stores. Now there are very few.

And the blue shirts will still ignore you no matter how hard you trying get their attention.
@johnb974 wrote:

I go into Best Buy now and see very few people. There was a time when Best Buy would have many customers in their stores. Now there are very few.

Best Buy was suffering traffic before the pandemic. Much of the market had been lost to online sales. Even more so today.
I'm a great believer in reusing, repurposing or just plain using stuff others find outdated.

To that end, I often stop in at resale shops, Salvation Army stores and Goodwill stores. At these businesses, I am apt to find electronics still in very good, working condition.
In my home, we have 7 large flat screen TVs (one even in the barn workshop). Of which, only one was purchased at full price (at ALDI, of all places!). The others were purchased from one of the aforementioned resale type of shops or were being disposed of. None cost more than $44! Sure, some might be missing their remote (easily purchased on Amazon) and some might be a little scratched, but they all work just fine. All are connected to an internet streaming device as well as an air antenna. The antenna by the way is the old type that was used in the days of analog - works fine for digital broadcasts.
I've seen other electronics like stereos, VHS, CD and DVD players donated and for sale for anywhere between $5 to $15. Nearby are the VHS tapes, CDs and DVDs, all for about $1 or $2 dollars each.
I've purchased digital cameras, once, well over $100+ for as low as $3 (with a memory chip inside)!
There might even be printers and routers and other computer accessories for next nothing. A few years ago, I found an HP 400 series professional office printer with paper and the ink cartridge still in it at a Salvation Army store for $24. The cartridge was almost full and it worked great.
As for computers, for me, I am partial to Dell laptops. In the past few years, I've purchase 3 refurbished Dells running WIN 7, 10 and now 11 on them. I use the latest MS Office on them. All purchased online.
I mention the above since the last time I was in any of the Best Buys or other competing electronics stores, those are the items I see for sale.
I won't even go into clothing like name brand clothing and shoes donated or discarded before their use is over.

So, yeah, in my opinion, online sales and a saturated market with hardly any innovation to spur interest and purchasing has probably hurt the likes of Best Buy's sales and customer attendance.
And yet, the last time I tried to engage an employee about home security systems for a shop, they didn't want to be bothered. I kept imploring him with questions and got nowhere. I'm not sure how helpful that report was and it's why I don't accept anymore.

I think Best Buy's only purpose now is to see the product in person, then go home and order it online.
I've been continuously changing my shopping habits over the course of the pandemic. Some of the shelves in major chain stores are so empty in my area, it is absolutely creepy. The days of buying everything on my grocery list at one store are apparently over.
Other than random items for shops, I haven't bought clothes or accessories in a retail shop since before the pandemic.

Last week I needed some new shorts to replace a couple of pairs that have developed holes. I've visited every thrift shop in my (upscale) neighborhood. Goodwill no longer has dressing rooms, and I'm tired of returning things that don't fit. The Vincent dePaul store had a miserable selection. I moved up the chain, stopping into two resale shops. Their selection was good, but not appropriate for a middle-aged woman body. Eventually I ended up at the mall, where I found a pair at JC Penney of all places.
@French Farmer wrote:

I'm a great believer in reusing, repurposing or just plain using stuff others find outdated.

I won't even go into clothing like name brand clothing and shoes donated or discarded before their use is over.

.

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
I'll tell you what stores are surprisingly busy -- Dollar General. I've been merchandising them for the past couple years, and it wasn't at all unusual for the parking lots to be empty except for employee vehicles.

The last two months, I've been lucky to find a parking space!

Top quality store brand toilet tissue (comparable to a $12 package of Charmin), $4.50.

(And nicely enough, they put on their packaging "compare to Charmin" and "compare to Great Northern Quilted", so you can still choose the one closest to your preferred expensive brand. )

Six double-rolls paper towels ("compare to Bounty" ) $5, as opposed to the same size package of Bounty for -- catch this, $18 at Walmart.

Box of Kleenex-quality store branded tissues, $0.89 instead of $2.89 for the same size elsewhere.

Large (super size large) Dawn dishwashing liquid $3.25; $5.49 elsewhere.

Three pairs of Hanes sweatpants (or maybe Fruit of the Loom, some name brand -- I'd have to take them off to look at the tag, and I'm waaay too lazy to do that! ) at $3 each. Heck, that's less than used ones at the thrift store!

So, yep, Dollar General is benefiting.
I do all of my Best Buy shopping online. It's safer that way.

"There's so much trouble in this world; surrounded by miracles" - Citizen Cope
Our Goodwills has a VIP program you sign up for that gives points towards future purchases when you register and give your phone number at the register. On the Saturday of a three day weekend all donated items are half off for VIP members and on Monday the 50% off extends to the general public.

My son moved here to a house with a spectacularly useful kitchen. He brought with him the set of cheap Teflon pans i sent him off to college with 30 years ago. We have delighted in putting together a kitchen of amazing quality pots and pans, utensils, storage wares, small appliances and bakeware on the 50% off days. His/our walk through of the store on a 50% off day starts in the kitchen wares, moves to the furniture, makes a tour of the hanging art on the walls, visits kitchen textiles and lamps and ends in books (especially cookbooks) and music. Then it breaks up with the guys doing electronics, puzzles and clothing while I do whatnots, purses and clothing.
My daughter has gotten a treasure trove of fabulous items on Buy Nothing which is a Facebook group. She has also used it to give items away. There does not seem to be a lot of competition where she lives. The best thing she got is a Nespresso machine that works wonderfully. My local group seems to have mostly kid and baby things with 50 people vying for anything good
As the name implies everything is free to a good home.
Freecycle is another site where people give away things they no longer need. I've got pots and pans, a brand new Hitachi cordless drill/driver, a chest freezer and other things.

I've also given away stuff I no longer use or have a use for.
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