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GameStop to Close Hundreds of Retail Stores in Coming Months

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GameStop closed storefront

Could this be the end of video game stores?

GameStop, the world’s largest video game retailer, is beginning to close some of its over 5,700 retail locations in what it’s referring to as a “first wave” of closures. As mentioned in a recent conference call, the company is expecting to close a “much larger” group of stores in the next year or two.

While the first round of closures will happen quickly, the second wave of closures will occur after a more in-depth consideration of each store’s individual region and performance. GameStop CFO, Jim Bell, had this to say:

“We are on track to close between 180 and 200 under-performing stores globally by the end of this fiscal year. We are applying a more definitive, analytic approach, including profit levels and sales transferability, that we expect will yield a much larger tranche of closures over the coming 12 to 24 months.”


GameStop store interior

While it’s too soon to tell how many stores will ultimately be closed, it’s clear that GameStop can no longer sustain such a large number of retail locations at a time when more consumers are purchasing games in digital formats.

The planned store closures are GameStop’s latest attempt to resuscitate itself. The retailer has already endured two waves of layoffs under a cost-saving initiative known as “GameStop Reboot.” This effort has also included steps to reduce the cost of salaries, taxes, advertising, and other non-production expenses.

While select retail stores may be closing, the company’s website just got a makeover, providing customers with a digital shopping experience that is easier and faster to use.


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Join The Discussion

Comments 19

  1. Ivan

    Once GS stopped allowing customers to play new games in their stores, that was the end. That’s the only reason my son liked to go there. Otherwise you can buy games cheaper online.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for commenting, Ivan. Our GameStop in the mall still offers that.

    • Sabrina

      A lot of the demo units are brought/set up by Microsoft/Nintendo/Sony reps. So the games available are the ones brought with the unit. The removal/update/delivery of those units are also dependent upon the company that dropped it off.

      If the manager has keys (this may have changed in the past 2 years of when I last worked there), they can sometimes get approval to put a brand new launched game in there. They have to get approval from corporate to do this to make sure it doesn’t violate the contract GameStop has with the game company in question.

      Game prices are also dictated by the game company themselves. They don’t make up the price themselves. Gamestop only makes around a $3-$5 profit on new games, their main profit is on used games & accessories (which is why the price of used vs. new is so close – I don’t agree with it personally, I think a brand new launched game should at least be $20-$25 cheaper for being used, possibly not having the original case, and not having the promo codes that originally came with it.)

  2. Pjane

    I have Bad customer experience at GameStop. I have had bad customer experience online speaking with customer service. They are weird about their own gift cards. Strange reasons for redeeming certain amounts. Because of the bad experiences I decided that they should go out of business and they do not get my business. That was three years ago. I have been waiting for this day. Time to celebrate. 🧚🏼‍♂️

    Yes it sounds mean but having good customer service just makes people feel good about you. Having bad customer service makes people feel bad.

    • R2

      😮

      • tahaji

        hehehe

  3. Beck

    Oh no! This is my son’s favorite store! He really appreciates that the store employees talk to him about the games & his favorite characters – they really engage him.

    • Laura

      This is my oldest son’s favorite store too! He’s a regular at our local Game Stop and the employees all know him by name lol. He’s not going to be happy with this news!

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      It’s my son’s favorite store too. He will be SO bummed to hear about this. 😢

  4. Brooke

    Sad to hear. We like game stop bc you can trade in old games and get a credit towards new ones. Great money saver.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Yes! We have saved tons shopping at Gamestop too. Thanks for sharing with us, Brooke.

  5. meeksy

    They are over priced anyway.

  6. Carrie

    Really sad news. Lots of retail stores going belly up this year. Hope the laid off workers get jobs right away!

  7. M

    I knew it was coming with the increasing popularity of the game downloading.

  8. Heather

    Very sad to hear this. I love our GameStop. The greet me by name and always have my preorders ready! They even hold pops for me that they know I’ll want for my son.

  9. lnk0813

    Figured this would happen sooner rather than later… went in the other day and left empty handed. The 3 USED games i was looking at were all cheaper NEW at Best Buy.

  10. Sabrina

    As a former GameStop employee (worked there for 6 years), I just want to point out that they aren’t going out of business.
    Nearly all of the locations they’re closing are mall locations. Various reasons like rent contracts ending, traffic declining in malls (leading to decreased sales profit), the fact that malls have rules that makes it difficult for them to host midnight launches, rent getting higher, etc. led to the decision.
    They’re actually planning on opening more stores, as well as more ThinkGeek stores, in outside locations. I was on the phone call meeting when our district leader went over it all 2 years ago.
    Also, if an employee isn’t giving you great customer service, there’s a survey at the bottom of the receipt. You may not think it matters, but the person that rings you out has a specialized employee number tied to that receipt, and they will get a phone call from their district manager if they get a bad score. Each survey is tracked, and employees can see their scores (but not who made them, that’s kept anonymous. They only see the score and the comment tied to it.)
    There’s an option on there you can select if you want the District Manager to personally call you to hear about your experience. They HAVE to call you.
    Many store managers have a lot of stuff going on in the back that they have to set up/move/stock/take inventory/etc. They trust their employees to follow the customer service expectations on their own. While not every manager is a golden example, usually you can ask to speak to them then and there and let them know if an employee is falling short of expectations.
    (Also, the customer service line is always bad. I myself have been on hold for nearly an hour trying to fix a problem with a customer’s reward account. Best times to call are in the morning around 10am….but you may still get put on hold for a while.)

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks a TON for the helpful feedback, Sabrina! We sure appreciate it!

  11. Jamie

    My son works for GameStop and he was told that they are just closing the under performing stores. Mainly mall stores as the person above commented. He was also told they are teaming up with another brand and are expanding in the long run. I think the company is working through the changes and growing pains of digital downloading. It’s my understanding they will also be working on providing a better website and online shopping experience. Don’t quote me on any of this but I don’t think they will going away soon.

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