Options for DVD/ video game retailers

By Dan Berthiaume  |  Posted 2008-02-05 Print this article Print

So what options does the poor DVD/video game retailer have in the face of burgeoning download technology? One is to expand their e-commerce capabilities, as Blockbuster has done with Blockbuster Total Access, and then gradually shift their business model along with the market's shift to all-online digital retailing.

The other major option is to expand their in-store product offering. Music retailers, who have been dealing with slumping sales in the face of exploding home digital downloads for several years, are already taking this approach.

For example, if you walk into a store location of Newbury Comics, a music chain with a large presence in New England, you could easily think you had accidentally wandered into Hot Topic or Spencer Gifts. While CDs (and DVDs and video games) still take up the most floor space, Newbury Comics also sells a dizzying variety of clothing, memorabilia, and novelty items such as bobblehead dolls and plastic Tiki torches. As CDs and their ilk increasingly become digitized, Newbury Comics has a shot at repositioning itself as a youth lifestyle retailer more in the vein of Urban Outfitters.

And a final note to the technologists. In a press release, Primera boasts that its burned discs offer "virtually the same reliability, compatibility and security as mass-produced titles." That may satisfy Joe Average, but do you really think a die-hard "Star Wars" fanboy or "Grand Theft Auto" junkie will accept something of "virtually" the same quality as what is currently available as a mass-produced item? These are the type of people you must convert to truly succeed in your digitization efforts, so put a little more R&D into your content creation and delivery capabilities. You'll be glad you did.

Dan Berthiaume covers the retail industry for eWEEK. For more stories, check out eWEEK's Retail site.



Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel