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Best Buy To Offer In-store Consultation Service For Tech Essential Needs

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Best Buy Co. said it will gradually reopen stores by offering customers an in-store consultation service for their tech essential needs, starting at about 200 U.S. stores in May.

The electronics retailer noted that following the closure of its stores due to the coronavirus pandemic, its shift to a curbside pickup model has been working well when customers buy many items.

However, purchases of large appliances or networking equipment are made easier with an in-person store visit and a conversation with an expert about the customer's technical needs.

Best Buy said that starting in May, customers will be able to schedule appointments with a dedicated sales associate for their in-store consultation service.

The company noted that as each customer's appointment will have a dedicated sales associate, only a limited number of customers will be present in the store at any one time to ensure adequate social distancing.

Customers can make appointments by phone, online, through the Best Buy app or via live chat. They will get confirmation of their appointment along with text and email remainders.

The customer and the dedicated employee will shop together, following social distancing and safety guidelines. For product demos, the employee will wipe the product, let the customer handle it and then again wipe it down. Employees will also clean surfaces as needed throughout the appointment.

After a customer decides to buy an item, they will be taken to the front registers, where social distancing guidelines will be followed and sneeze guards are in place. After making a purchase, the customer will be escorted out of the store by an employee.

Best Buy said that hand sanitizers and disinfectant wipes for shopping carts will be available, and its employees will wear face coverings and gloves.

In mid-April, Best Buy had said it would furlough about 51,000 hourly store employees in the U.S. These employees will retain their health benefits at no cost to them for a minimum of three months.

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