Ballmer: Microsoft Stores exist to "sell, sell, sell" (and also help)

The annual Microsoft shareholders meeting in Redmond, Washington earlier today included a Q&A session at the end where an unnamed stockholder wanted to know more about Microsoft's purpose in opening retail store locations. The man, who said he had worked with the Eddie Bauer clothing retail chain, asked the assembled company executives.

My question is why is there a lack of transparency? What is the purpose of these stores? Because if it is just simply for marketing, Microsoft is a tech company, it's not a retail company.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said in response that the stores were there flat out to sell products that can make Microsoft money. That means Windows PCs, Windows Phones, Xbox 360 consoles and games and more. He added that he visited seven of the company's retail stores last week. Ballmer said, "With 31 stores, we are driving ahead vigorously and we are there to sell, sell, sell! Help, help, help! And through help, sell more!"

Ballmer said that Microsoft Store employees will help people even if they bring in a device they didn't buy in a Microsoft Store. He stated:

We have a bunch of people bringing in non-PCs that we didn't buy in our stores. Great, we will fix them, because we have people with great experience with Windows. People bring in non-Windows devices and we say great, we will help you fix them. But remember, we are right here, the next time the Windows device will be a greater solution for you. So it's not real complicated. It's about selling. We make a good profit on every device we sell.

Source: Microsoft shareholder meeting website | Image via Microsoft

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23 Comments

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Hello,

Before Apple opened their own stores they did not have a direct presence in retail, either, did they?

Regards,

Aryeh Goretsky

I just love investors... they complain stock isn't moving for MS, then they ask why they are making stores to sell products? *scratches head*

neufuse said,
I just love investors... they complain stock isn't moving for MS, then they ask why they are making stores to sell products? *scratches head*

well the issue is if the stores are making a profit or not..

neufuse said,
I just love investors... they complain stock isn't moving for MS, then they ask why they are making stores to sell products? *scratches head*

Also, investors are multiple people with multiple views and multiple prerogatives. Some will love it, some will hate it, some will sit in the middle etc.

thealexweb said,
Risky move having wireless mouses bet they all disappear XD

Could have embedded security tags

rippleman said,
Pretty sure all stores are made with the intention to sell

Most people know, this guy didn't. Which is probably why he has 'worked' for a retail chain instead of working there now. He probably went 'OMFG, I GET IT NOW'.

not so sure about this. maybe this guy really knows something. it's pathetic that one of the microsoft stores at one of the largest malls in the world sold ZERO Surface on the busiest shopping day of the year (ie. BF) (at the time observed).

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/20...-surface-tablet-apple-ipad/

Ronnet said,

Most people know, this guy didn't. Which is probably why he has 'worked' for a retail chain instead of working there now. He probably went 'OMFG, I GET IT NOW'.

asianrox said,
not so sure about this. maybe this guy really knows something. it's pathetic that one of the microsoft stores at one of the largest malls in the world sold ZERO Surface on the busiest shopping day of the year (ie. BF) (at the time observed).

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/20...-surface-tablet-apple-ipad/

Considering the Surface is a new product that most people are unfamiliar with. And that for many iPad is what they call every tablet. I think the Surface can be considered if it sells 1/25th of the iPad. Since only 11 iPads were sold in the same time frame I don't think it is a good measurement.

Ay any rate, the purpose of these store is indeed to 'sell, sell, sell' but that doesnt mean they'll succeed. Microsoft is the underdog, they brought this upon themselves and it will take years to crawl out of this position. Many more days without a single Surface sold will be in store.

Ronnet said,

Most people know, this guy didn't. Which is probably why he has 'worked' for a retail chain instead of working there now. He probably went 'OMFG, I GET IT NOW'.

ROFL, made my day.

asianrox said,
not so sure about this. maybe this guy really knows something. it's pathetic that one of the microsoft stores at one of the largest malls in the world sold ZERO Surface on the busiest shopping day of the year (ie. BF) (at the time observed).

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/20...-surface-tablet-apple-ipad/


I see you're referencing a 'study' that was laughable by almost any standard anyone would ever have for a study. I don't even have to spin it: just read the details. Here's my summary:

A full team spent half the day paying constant attention to an Apple store. ONE person* spent just TWO HOURS paying attention to the Microsoft store, and they refuse to disclose the time of day the observation took place.

Not a study, and to pass judgment based on it shows a remarkable lack of scientific integrity.

*Maybe. They don't know. It might have been one person, it might have been some segment of the team. They actually. Don't. Know. The very people who did the study didn't even record who was doing the watching.

Joshie said,

I see you're referencing a 'study' that was laughable by almost any standard anyone would ever have for a study. I don't even have to spin it: just read the details. Here's my summary:

A full team spent half the day paying constant attention to an Apple store. ONE person* spent just TWO HOURS paying attention to the Microsoft store, and they refuse to disclose the time of day the observation took place.

Not a study, and to pass judgment based on it shows a remarkable lack of scientific integrity.

*Maybe. They don't know. It might have been one person, it might have been some segment of the team. They actually. Don't. Know. The very people who did the study didn't even record who was doing the watching.

You display all the qualities that are despised on these here forums, now be gone with you and your logic stuff!