GameStop Says Its Expensive SNES Classic, Switch Bundles Are "More Convenient"
"We make it more convenient."
Both the Nintendo Switch and pre-orders for the SNES Classic Edition have been extremely hard to come by, selling out almost instantly everywhere. In response, we've seen GameStop and its subsidiary, ThinkGeek, offer bundles that package those systems with things you may or may not want. According to GameStop, it's about making the online shopping experience "more convenient."
GameStop's senior director of merchandising, Eric Bright, recently spoke about the controversial subject with Glixel. "We really try to do a great job of pairing up items with things customers like to buy," he said. "In the case of the Switch, we know the customer is going to want a way to charge the Joy-Con, so we often throw in a charging device. We know the Switch has limited memory and customers like to download games, so we'll add a memory stick. And then you need a game itself, because what good is a piece of hardware without a game to play with it? We make it more convenient."
As for ThinkGeek's SNES Classic bundles, he said they chose "retro items that would appeal to those buyers." When the $80 system showed up for pre-order on its website recently, it could only be purchased in bundles ranging from $140 to $330. These consisted of extras like a Tetris lamp, Zelda chess set, or Mega Man helmet.
Bright also argued that customers do have choices outside of these bundles. "Customers have the opportunity to come into our stores and choose the accessories that they would like to bundle with their hardware, or buy online the pre-determined bundles we have put together to help make the shopping experience more convenient," he said. "Customers also have the option of coming to into our GameStop stores to purchase non-bundled product."
That hasn't always proven to be the case, however; when we attempted to pre-order a SNES Classic in an LA store last week, bundles were the only choice. Critics would also take issue with the idea that the online bundles are convenient to begin with, given that they provide little choice in what you get. But for as much of an outcry as there has been from some consumers, it hasn't been enough to stop people from buying from GameStop anyway. The retailer frequently boasts about its impressive Switch attach rate (driven by those bundles), and ThinkGeek's expensive SNES packages quickly sold out.
GameStop has already said it will have SNES Classic Editions in stock on launch day, but as of yet, we don't know what kind of bundles they may or may not be included in.