Best Buy Launches Membership Service That Looks to Rival Amazon Prime

By Thomas Price Thursday, April 8, 2021

With retail companies increasingly moving toward online and digital sales, many of the largest retailers have been shifting their business focus to offer membership services. Best Buy is the latest company to launch a shipping-based membership, taking cues from Walmart, as both business experiments look to directly compete with Amazon Prime. The newest membership service from the company will have many features that are standard among Walmart Plus and Amazon Prime. However, this time, the tech retail business will look to differentiate itself through several unique services attached to its membership.

A Best Buy storefront.

What Best Buy Beta Offers

Best Buy Beta will offer similar features to both Walmart Plus and Amazon Prime. However, the hallmark of the new business venture, much like that of the other two membership services, will be free shipping on all online orders. The company will also extend its return policy to 60 days, offer exclusive pricing on select items for all members, and provide a 10% discount on all subscription services bought through Best Buy. The 10% discount on subscription services notably does not apply to Amazon Prime.

While these basic services may be enough to place the company in direct competition with Amazon and Walmart, Best Buy has gone above this standard to set itself apart. The company is making its mark through the use of its widespread network of customer service and tech support experts, the Geek Squad.

All members will have access to Geek Squad tech support on all electronics they own, whether the items were purchased at Best Buy or not. On top of this, all company purchases will now come with free in-home installation and two-year warranty protection. This even extends to offering AppleCare on all Apple products purchased through the business.

Best Buy Beta Pricing and Rollout

While in direct comparison, Best Buy Beta may be equitable or even superior in some ways to both Walmart Plus and Amazon Prime. The business, however, does fall short, or rather high, when it comes to price. Walmart Plus is offered to members for just $98 a year, with Amazon Prime coming in only slightly higher at $119 a year. Best Buy Beta will well surpass both of those price points to land at a hefty $200 a year. This price point could serve as a major detractor to many prospective customers who already have one or both of the other two membership services.

Currently, Best Buy Beta is slowly rolling out across the United States (US), with the membership service launching in 60 different business locations by the end of the month. The membership service will then be rolled out across the US to a nationwide customer base.

Best Buy stock had a slightly down day yesterday, though the effects of the latest announcement will be felt today with the news coming out late last night after the market closed. The business has seen incredible success since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, with share prices now sitting at near-record highs.

About the Author

Headshot of Thomas Price

Tom Price is a writer focusing on entertainment and sports features. He has a degree from NYU in English with a minor in Creative Writing. He has been previously published for Washington Square News, Dignitas, CBR, and Numbers on the Boards.

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