• CNBC reports that "Best Buy is adding merchandise that might surprise shoppers who typically think of its stores and website as a place to buy smartphones, laptops and TVs.
The company said Friday it has begun to carry about 100 skin-care devices, including a facial steamer and at-home tool for microdermabrasion, at nearly 300 stores and on its website.
"Best Buy is making a broader push into categories such as fitness and furniture as it looks to propel growth beyond the Covid pandemic. The company benefited from early pandemic trends, as people sought computer monitors for home offices, kitchen appliances for more at-home cooking and theater systems or giant TVs to pass the time."
The story notes that "there are already signs of softening electronics sales, as consumers direct dollars toward vacations and social events. Major appliance maker Whirlpool missed on estimates and saw sales drop 8.3% in North America in the most recent quarter versus the year-ago period, the sharpest decline since the pandemic began. Microsoft, which produces Xbox video game consoles, gave a negative outlook for the coming quarter with projected declines in the gaming category.
"The NPD Group, a market researcher, projected that revenue from consumer electronics in the U.S. will fall by 5% in 2022, 4% in 2023 and 1% in 2024 — but said total sales will remain higher than pre-pandemic levels. The declines follow a record-setting year for the industry in the U.S. with consumer tech sales hitting almost $127 billion, a 9% jump over the elevated sales in 2020, NPD Group said."