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The electronics retailer will use generative AI for customer support self-service and as a tool for customer service agents.

Best Buy is incorporating generative artificial intelligence (AI) into customer support, the retailer announced April 9. To do so, it is working with Google Cloud and Accenture to offer what the company calls “more personalized, best-in-class tech support experiences.”

Best Buy detailed the new strategy within days of reported layoffs that impacted its Geek Squad customer support operations.

Best Buy ranks No. 9 in the Top 1000. The database is Digital Commerce 360’s ranking of the largest North American online retailers. It falls under the Consumer Electronics category

How Best Buy will use AI 

The retailer will launch a generative AI assistant to handle customer inquiries on BestBuy.com, the Best Buy app, and through its phone support line. The assistant is scheduled to launch in late summer 2024. It will be able to help customers troubleshoot problems, change delivery scheduling and manage subscriptions and memberships, Best Buy said.

Best Buy also uses generative AI for customer service agents to make their roles easier. The technology gives agents real-time recommendations on how to respond to customer inquiries. It also summarizes conversations and uses data from calls to make better recommendations in the future, Best Buy said. The use of AI improves the accuracy of data collection and reduces average engagement time with agents by about 5%, CEO Corie Barry told investors in February.


Store employees will also get some AI help. Best Buy is working on a generative AI assistant that can provide easy access to company resources and product guides to help customers more efficiently, it said. 

Best Buy is also using AI to create more efficient delivery and installation schedules, according to Barry.

The retailer is further investing in developing its AI capacity with a new technology hub in Bangalore, India, Barry added. The location will give Best Buy “expanded, more economical access to talent and skills,” she said. It will open later in 2024.

Best Buy layoffs

In the same call, Barry noted plans for layoffs in 2024. She said Best Buy would focus on  “driving further efficiencies” in the Geek Squad repair division. Best Buy laid off some Geek Squad members in April, 404 Media reported. The retailer did not disclose how many workers were impacted. 


The layoffs are part of a mission to “balance field labor resources to make sure we are providing the optimal experience for customers where they want to shop; redirect corporate resources to make sure we have the necessary assets dedicated to areas like AI and other elements of our strategy; and right-size parts of the business where we expect to see lower volume than we envisioned a few years ago,” Barry said.

Best Buy Q4

Best Buy domestic revenue declined 0.9% to $13.41 billion in Q4 of its fiscal 2024 ended Feb. 3. That was driven in part by a 5.1% decline in domestic comparable sales. Home theater, appliances, mobile phones and tablets led the comparable sales decline, partially offset by sales growth in gaming.

Net earnings were $460 million for the quarter, compared with $495 million in the year-ago period. 


For the full 2024 fiscal year, domestic revenue declined 6.3% to $40.10 billion. Comparable domestic sales declined 7.1%. Operating income also decreased, to $1.47 billion from $1.63 billion in fiscal 2023.

Best Buy projected the same trends will continue in fiscal 2025. The retailer forecasted revenue to reach between $41.3 billion and $42.6 billion. It also said comparable sales will decline up to 3.0%, or at the highest stay flat.

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