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(STLToday)   Radio Shack's comeback effort in doubt. Radio Shack customers were upset when they got the news on their pagers   (stltoday.com) divider line 114
    More: Obvious  
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4933 clicks; posted to Business » on 12 Aug 2014 at 11:14 PM (32 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-08-13 12:42:36 PM  

EngineerAU: Radio Shack long ago put their employees in adversarial positions with their customers. It started when they demanded your telephone number to buy anything, even a single battery. And while the stores have long operated on commission, it was only in the last ten or fifteen years that they went bat shait crazy with it which lead to customer harassment. That started around the time they got into the extended warranty game. Going into Radio Shack became an experience not all that unlike walking down a dark alleyway filled with hobos while carrying a case of Night Train. Is it any surprise that people only go to Radio Shack as a last resort?


Ha, last year, my 7 year old Sansa Clip bit the dust, and I wanted another one, didn't want to wait on shipping. Radio Shack had it for $30, cool. The guy ringing me out recommends the 2 year warranty for -get this- $25! I politely declined, and didn't laugh in his face. I understand they have to offer this stuff, and they get a little extra, so that's ok.

He then spent the next 3 minutes trying to convince me what a great idea this was! I was sorta entertained for the first minute, but it got irritating quick. I finally said, "Dude, quit wasting your time, we both know that's a stupid deal."

"No, it really isn't, because..." I left the store.
 
2014-08-13 01:11:48 PM  

People_are_Idiots: enry: Mudboy: People_are_Idiots: Fark like a Barsoomian: They need to go back to their roots: being the place for all the little cheap things you need for hardware hacking.

I agree, it's tough to find a local place that carries parts for electronics I plan to build. Lately RadioShack is like CompUSA in the 90's... The "Sorry, we don't carry that anymore" store.

Every time I go in, it is less Radio and more Crap Shack.  Can't even get DIY kits to get people interested in learning more electronics. They forgot who their customers were and deserve to go out of business

They carry some good Arduino gear now.  It's overpriced but if you need something now and don't want to wait for the slow boat from China, it's a good alternative.

Hint the word: Overpriced. If you need wire, any wire will do.

/don't buy name brands
//The More You Know


Wire I have.  Toggle switches?  Specific resistor?  Potentiometer?  Diode?  Relay?  If I'm building something now I'm not going to wait two weeks to get it from dx or pay more for shipping than the item costs if I get it domestically.  I'll go to Radio Shack and pay the premium to get it now.

/or drive to You Do It, but that's at least an hour trip.  Radio Shack is a mile away.
 
2014-08-13 01:24:28 PM  

enry: khyberkitsune: enry: If I were CEO....

I'd close half the stores.  The other half turn into maker spaces.  Bring in a bunch of 3d printers, load up on beaglebone/arduino/raspberry pi gear.

But I'm not CEO.  The one they had was so bad he's now co-CEO at Market Basket.

I can see why you're not CEO. You don't even understand RadioShack at it's core.

RS has always been an electronic COMPONENT reseller.

And you expect them to save the day with cellular contracts and 3-D printing (which unless they have sintering-capable printers they're SOL.)

Go back to your crap business admin class and let the real business owners talk.

So you completely missed the rest of my statement and what that implies. Good jorb!


No, I caught the entirety of your statement, you have no implication beyond what I addressed. If you do, you place yourself firmly BELOW the Market Basket guy.

Think harder.
 
2014-08-13 01:32:23 PM  
suitupscene.com
 
2014-08-13 01:39:36 PM  

khyberkitsune: enry: khyberkitsune: enry: If I were CEO....

I'd close half the stores.  The other half turn into maker spaces.  Bring in a bunch of 3d printers, load up on beaglebone/arduino/raspberry pi gear.

But I'm not CEO.  The one they had was so bad he's now co-CEO at Market Basket.

I can see why you're not CEO. You don't even understand RadioShack at it's core.

RS has always been an electronic COMPONENT reseller.

And you expect them to save the day with cellular contracts and 3-D printing (which unless they have sintering-capable printers they're SOL.)

Go back to your crap business admin class and let the real business owners talk.

So you completely missed the rest of my statement and what that implies. Good jorb!

No, I caught the entirety of your statement, you have no implication beyond what I addressed. If you do, you place yourself firmly BELOW the Market Basket guy.

Think harder.


No, you didn't catch what I said or meant.  If you only want to focus on the 3D printing part (which I'd consider a loss leader to get people back in) and cell phone contracts (WTF did that come from?) then so be it.  Selling components alone is a losing proposition, because parts in quantity can be had for cheaper online.  There's no way that Radio Shack can compete with the likes of DX or digikey and be able to have enough of a profit to keep stores open.  They need to change their model but keep the strengths they have/had.  The obvious direction for that is making people want to build their own items and have a place they can do that.  There are maker spaces around, but RS has the floor space in a lot of convenient places to take advantage of that.  They may not have the profits that they had before, but they'd still be around and be able to use that to stay with the maker community as their needs change.
 
2014-08-13 01:47:39 PM  
They just need to bring back the "Shackwave" off-brand Transformer with the trigger penis.

www.tfw2005.com
 
2014-08-13 02:51:53 PM  

slorge: They gave these away for free...software tracked your internet use.  Hardware Hacked by geeks.  Legal battles...etc.
[img.fark.net image 602x400]

/not a dilder


Ahhh...who could forget Belo Corp's attempt to jump on the Internet bandwagon.
 
2014-08-13 03:00:49 PM  

enry: If I were CEO....

I'd close half the stores.  The other half turn into maker spaces.  Bring in a bunch of 3d printers, load up on beaglebone/arduino/raspberry pi gear.

But I'm not CEO.  The one they had was so bad he's now co-CEO at Market Basket.


Yep, pretty much-ish.

I went to Radio Shack the other day for a DPST pushbutton switch for a guitar pedal.
... They don't farking carry them at all.
/fail
They do, however, have two drawers full of different colored 120v relays!  That's farking useful!
/mega-fail

The employee was very helpful trying to sell me a new cell phone though!
 
2014-08-13 03:10:50 PM  
That's what (eventually) happens when you go against Bianca, biatches!
 
2014-08-13 03:52:58 PM  
I didn't think they were called Radio Shack any more. In a super business-savvy-like move didn't they re-brand themselves as "The Shack" a while ago? lol

What they need to do is go back to what made them great in the past. Use highly skilled engineers to design quality shiat that can be built cheaply and to their specifications in China (or wherever). Nowadays all they do is sell the same rebranded or otherwise poorly designed shiat that you can get off eBay for half the price... and cell phones... ya, good business plan morons
 
2014-08-13 04:02:29 PM  
For me, the reason I don't consider shopping there is from back when they wanted my full bio to buy something with cash. It was way too annoying to get them to just take my money. It sounds like they don't do that anymore, but I'd guess I'm not the only one who wrote them off because of it.

It's not that I want to hold a grudge forever, but I never did have a huge need for what they sell.

They've got questions. I've got options.
 
2014-08-13 04:36:45 PM  
late to the party, former radio shack employee 2000-2002.

i needed a job desperately, walked into a "radio shack.com" store and was hired that day.  the "radioshack.com" name was odd.  basically we were a test store; one of three in the country.  it was ten times the size of a regular radio shack.  why it was called .com, i will never know.  but we had a much larger parts department than most and sold to corporate buyers as well.  as sales people, we were not on commission like most radio shack employees.  we also didn't ring people up; we had cashiers.

i was the first female sales person in the store.  like someone else mentioned, we had the manuals for training.  i completed two a week instead of one because i knew i had no idea what i was talking about.  i got a LOT of crap about being a woman.  some people refused to talk to me.  the best feeling was one they would ask a male in the store the same question they asked me, and the male wouldn't know and would have to come to me for the answer while the customer looked down sheepishly.  i may not be an electronics expert, i but i worked lighting and sound in high school and studied our products well.

i worked in a/v.  we could see the mark-up on some of the cables.  fiber optic cables that sold for $30 were bought for pennies.  the big thing for us was to push satellite sales.  i still managed to always be number 1 or 2 in sales without pushing them, so they didn't give me too hard a time about it.  i don't mind up-selling to a certain point.  "oh, i see you're buying a cable to hook up your camcorder to the TV, do you need any camcorder tapes while you are here?".  but i wasn't going to ask someone coming in for an eighth inch mini to buy a freaking satellite subscription.

even though we didn't ring up sales, our computer keyboards had the keyboards that scanned credit cards.  i found out the guy with the lowest sales in the store (like $50 a day) would pull up an MS word document, scan the credit cards into the keyboard, and pull customer information.  classy.

i was lucky to work with a lot of older vets who were knowledgeable.  my favorite was a world war 2 vet who was just working part-time to stay busy.  he didn't take any lip from anyone and would always say his name was the CEO "len roberts" when some pissed off customer asked his name.  he also stood up for me when men would be giant douchebags and either scream that i am a biatch because someone told them we had an on-site repair center and we didn't or hit on me inappropriately.

we had a lot of the old tandy products on clearance for years.  random equipment.  i worked in kind of a ghetto area and the big seller at christmas were the low-rider RC cars that had hydrolics.  our back store room was a mess and you had to climb the racks to pull down inventory.  i'm amazed no one was injured. we had a weird policy where people could return ANYTHING under $50 so long as it didn't escalate above store level.  you could come in with tires and we would give you $45 if it meant you didn't call our district manager.

the one thing i liked about radio shack was that when i worked there, the benefit to shopping there was you got more hands-on help and conversation than you would at fry's.  one guy couldn't understand how to hook up his VCR, so i hooked up all the cables for him and labeled each one so he knew where they went.  it was also fun to research the massive catalog of mail-order goodies for people.  and help kids with science projects.  i once helped a kid get just the amount of solar power panels he needed based on our limited inventory of weird amounts of power.

i worked there during 9/11.  we had this new schmarmy store manager that was practically giddy at all the business for antennas we got.  immediately he had us pulling out stacks of antennas as many of the local businesses had TVs and VCRs for training videos, but no antennas.  he also used to do weird shiat like drop things on the ground and see if anyone picked it up (thankfully i was usually the only one to pick the item up).  he was also shorter than the gondolas and would hide and listen to your conversations.

i learned a lot about people working their.  i would never work a retail sales job like that again unless i absolutely had to.

/csb
 
2014-08-13 06:11:00 PM  

chairmenmeow47: i needed a job desperately, walked into a "radio shack.com" store and was hired that day.  the "radioshack.com" name was odd.  basically we were a test store; one of three in the country.


The radioshack.com store in Atlanta was pretty nice. I happened to see it passing by one day and stopped in out of curiosity. It's too bad it got killed off. I wonder if that was because of the dot com bust rather than a poor business model. As a bonus, there was a huge international grocery store next door that I still shop at. If it hasn't been for the radioshack.com store, I would have never noticed. Now if I need cactus leaves, chicken hearts, freshly fried pork rinds, or Coca-Cola from Ghana, I know where to go.
 
2014-08-14 01:00:12 AM  

saintstryfe: Well it worked out that his insurance covered it, so no one paid directly, and he insisted on me coming in once a week for several months to learn about the computers, which was my introduction to what became my passion and favorite hobby.

That guy got the old codger to calm down just long enough that a solution could present itself, and not bankrupt my poor family. It was a very big, very meaningful gesture which I always have carried with me, and always lead me to have a really good opinion of the store despite its flaws.


That's a really cool story.  I think we probably (hopefully) all have a handful of adults that we fondly remember for paying attention to us when we were kids, and it's always fun to reminisce about them and think what we might have missed out on if it weren't for their intervention.
 
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