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Buyer Beware: MicroCenter's Deceptive Advertising

Gonnosuke
  • 65 months ago

I'm sure many of you lucky enough to live within range of a MicroCenter have noticed their killer deals on CPU especially when bundled with a motherboard. It's not uncommon to see a Microcenter advertisement offering the 4790K w/ Mobo $100 cheaper than Amazon and Newegg. The caveat is always that you have to purchase in-store. Well, it turns out there's a caveat to the caveat, at least with the Tustin, California MicroCenter.

This is a warning to anyone else who may be thinking about shopping here: When you get to store they're going to tell you that the Tustin, CA location is the only store in the country that doesn't honor the nationally advertised prices and then they're going to attempt to sell you the CPU and/or motherboard for $20-$30 more than it's listed here at PCPartPicker and more than it's listed on their website. When you point to their price match policy and try to get them to price match their own website they're going to refuse. It's going to take you twice as long to do those things than it should because it looks like half of the staff called out or was never hired. That's the only reason I can think of for why there would be 18 people attempting to check out at 2 open registers.

In the future I'll check Yelp before driving 40 miles to take advantage of a great deal. Had I done that here it would have saved me time and money. There are dozens of others who've experienced the same thing at this location. I don't know what the legal definition of false advertising is but it certainly feels like Microcenter is engaging in deceptive and misleading advertising to me. Maybe this bit of legalese is their out, I don't know. If you do know, I'd love to have more info:

"The promotional price of Advertised Special Products shown on the Specials section may be higher or lower than the actual Micro Center Online® purchase price. Pricing and availability of Advertised Special Products may vary at each Micro Center® retail store, and may vary from each Micro Center® retail store to Micro Center Online®. Due to supply constraints, pricing and availability of Advertised Special Products shown on the Specials section of Micro Center Online® may change at any time."

TL;DR: Screw you Tustin, CA Microcenter (hopefully that's not too offensive!)

Comments

  • 65 months ago
  • 4 points

I walked in the door today with $800 in hand intending to pick-up a cooler, case fans and an SSD on top of the CPU/mobo. It's just bad business on their part and even though the "new" price for the CPU was still pretty damn good, I wasn't giving them a penny on principle at that point. Hopefully corporate will realize this is a foolish way to do business.

Thanks to everyone who responded. I'll update if I hear back from anyone at MC corporate.

  • 65 months ago
  • 1 point

i hope you get it fixed because i have never had a problem with the one in dallas texas. even got the show case cpu when i bought mine because they were out of stock

  • 64 months ago
  • 3 points

I didn't have any luck going through corporate. I eventually got so fed up with them that I said screw it and just ordered from Newegg, price be damned. Even if they had honored the deal, I was so put off by them I would have felt like crap giving them business. Plus, by ordering through Newegg I was able to help pcpartpicker.com out by using their link. It's a shame the site gives Microcenter so much site real estate when they don't get a dime out of the in-store purchases.

Thanks for all the supportive comments. You win some, lose some. I'm glad some of you were able to get the advertised deal.

[comment deleted]
  • 65 months ago
  • 2 points

you should e-mail corporate. even though each store is there own entity, they won't like there name associated with shady business.

[comment deleted]
  • 65 months ago
  • 2 points

I bought a 4790k from the DC microcenter. I called ahead and asked them if it was in stock/how many they had/how much/when the promotion ended. Ever since I read horror stories about people getting screwed not reading the fine print, I always check and double check. Fu@k asterisks. Good luck man.

  • 65 months ago
  • 2 points

This is a horror story. Don't settle for anything less than the CPU at the advertised price with a discount for all the trouble.

  • 65 months ago
  • 1 point

Hit 'em up on Facebook too, I see people on their page raising issues with their local stores and it at least appears that MicroCenter pays attention.

  • 65 months ago
  • 1 point

Im pretty sure what they did is wrong and should be held liable for that. I mean are they or are they not Microcenter? I'd take it up the chain of command for the store.

  • 64 months ago
  • 1 point

this is just wrong. I love the pricing at MicroCenter and it helps one is 15 minutes away. Write to corporate. From my experience with email to corporate, they responded quickly and fixed my issue.

What you stated is totally against the pricing principals at MicroCenter.

  • 64 months ago
  • 1 point

They honored the bundle deal when I went to them a couple weeks ago, but that really sucks man. I'm not defending them In fact I think all the workers there are jerks, but I couldn't turn down the deals. I guess I just got lucky.

  • 64 months ago
  • 1 point

Yeah that's BS. I have 2 Microcenters near me, both over 50 miles away, and one located in another state and 60 miles away and I have never had anything but great customer service and experience from all 3 of them. I'd definitely email corporate or call before I go down there to confirm pricing and availability and ask for their name and employee number if they have it.

Don't they have that 18 min pickup thing? You should still be able to pay for everything you want online and they will have it ready for you to pick up.

  • 64 months ago
  • 1 point

They conveniently list their CPUs as being "out of stock" on their website so you can't do that even though they have a dozen or more 4690K and 4790K's in-store when you arrive. Example: http://screencast.com/t/WMFU0H93

Shady as hell.

  • 64 months ago
  • 1 point

wow! I have NEVER seen or heard of something like that going on at any of the microcenters near me! I'm sorry!

[comment deleted]
  • 47 months ago
  • 1 point

This is interesting feedback, and I realize it was 18 months ago but it was top search result for me just now for "microcenter price match guarantee".

I am just about to order some stuff from MicroCenter albeit from a location near Philly, PA. My plan is to order via their website, though, and then pick up at the location. I figure they can't possibly pull a bait and switch if I order and pay through the website first, but I'll be on the lookout for any foul play for sure. I'll try to remember to reply back here with how it goes. Thanks for your write-up.

-tacos

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

I got a pretty good deal on those on those mobo/cpu deals almost half off the motherboard.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

My local Micro Center (In KS) doesn't do foul play and they honor their deals. If a price is mismatched, they will honor the lower price. Even though this was near 2 years ago, I still had a top result on Google.

  • 43 months ago
  • 1 point

They must've fixed this because I went in there to the Tustin store a couple of days ago. I had my build list that I put together here and most of my items were out of stock but they had better items for almost the same price. The CPU was $30 cheaper than the PCPartPicker sites and when combined with the mobo came out even cheaper.. the parts that were more expensive I managed To get price matched. Pretty satisfied..

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