Best Buy renews online price-matching policy

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Best Buy Co. will be the latest big-box retailer to permanently match online prices starting March 3, Reuters reports. The new year-round policy, designed to fend off retail rivals and combat showrooming, renews a program put in place during the holiday shopping season.

"Best Buy will price match all local retail competitors and 19 major online competitors in all product categories and on nearly all in-stock products, whenever asked by a customer," according to a news release.

"As part of our turnaround and transformation efforts, we've recommitted to improving the customer experience. And we know one of the key elements to the customer experience, of course, is being price-competitive," Matt Furman, a Best Buy spokesman, told Minnesota Public Radio. "With that in mind, we decided to end showrooming for our customers and ensure them that they come in to our store and see a product they want, they'll get it at the lowest price."

However, Bloomberg says the Richfield-based consumer electronics retailer will lower its return policy to 15 days from 30 days.

In September, Best Buy CEO Hubert Joly said "showrooming was one of the greatest falsehoods about our company."

A recent survey of 6,200 consumers found the threat of showrooming may not be as bad as once thought.

Last month, Minneapolis-based Target Corp. extended a similar policy to match online prices of select retail rivals.

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