So, Circuit City is toast. And the public doesn't seem to care. I typed in Circuit City in search.twitter.com and most comments are negative, reminding others of the layoffs of 3,400 'overpaid employees' (just followed by the golden parachute of its outgoing CFO), asking for the future of their extended warranties and overall complaining about Circuit City as a brand with sub-standard service:
"No one ever waited on me when I went to Circuit City. I'd just walk around and leave."
"Why are they even still around? I have a pretty long list of useless retail stores. They're on it."
"The sales people seemed to eager."
"Dear Circuit City, I never loved you. You never made me happy. Now I'm leaving you by the side of the road (at a strip mall)."
Just like many other electronic retailers, Circuit City was a company that never considered service as part of their core offerings. The advent of the Internet made these stores almost obsolete, maybe with the exception of big ticket items like flat screens and dishwashers. Laying off the majority of their overpaid (meaning: most qualified) employees dramatically increased this severe lack of professional service and focused the company on car dealer like sales techniques.
When you reduce your competitive advantage to 5% off and other direct sales approaches, you reduce your business to a flea market. A flea market filled with deals and no-name vendors that have no storefronts, no fancy advertising, just Google on their side.
I feel bad for all the employees and vendors owed money by Circuit City (HP and Samsung are owed more than $100 million each.) The layoff of 3,400 seasoned employees should have given you an indication of things to come. Cutting to the bone might have been a good thing in the 80's when companies had huge bureaucracies. We've been living in lean times for a while and cutting the juiciest parts out is a sure sign of a company in distress and close to failure.