Sam's Club (NYSE:WMT) is offering extended-service coverage for a wide array of consumer electronics under a newly expanded warranty program that includes a 24/7 tech support hotline, dubbed the Sam's Club Tech Experts program.
The new initiatives are designed to encourage shoppers to upgrade their electronic purchases more frequently and look to Sam's Club to provide tech guidance in the growing age of digital media. The program, available in Sam's Club locations and online, now provides protection and service plans for TVs, smartphones, tablets, media players, computers, printers, cameras, gaming consoles and headphones.
"The demands upon the consumer to research, understand and operate technology on a daily basis are greater than ever before," said Dawn von Bechmann, technology senior VP of the Walmart-owned wholesale club chain. "People need an expert in their court, a resource they can turn to to help them not only simplify but maximize the potential of technology."
For customers who purchase televisions, Sam's Club will provide delivery and setup, haul-away and recycling. Shoppers who purchase smartphones, tablets, televisions and computers will receive a guaranteed buyback feature that allows them to receive up to half the purchase price on a store gift card.
Sam's Club follows consumer electronics retailer RadioShack (NYSE: RSH) which earlier this year launched a similar initiative and marketing campaign, "It Can Be Done, When We Do It Together." The revamped marketing approach placed an emphasis on RadioShack's customer service abilities in the tech industry. The goal was to inform customers that they can get the help they need when they walk into any RadioShack store.
The Sam's Club Tech Experts Program and hotline will be operated by third-party call center Alorica, and the expanded warranty program is in partnership with SquareTrade, a seller of post-purchase consumer electronics protection plans.
-See this Sam's Club press release
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