"I think they'll close thousands of stores this year“- In several interviews, GameStop employees report on the extreme conditions under which they currently have to work. Is the era of video game stores in the era of digital shops over?

The pop culture magazine polygon has conducted several interviews with GameStop employees who almost all paint the same bleak picture: Income too low. too few customers and a increasing pressure from management to employees is exercised. In some US branches, the sale of used cell phones is now a priority – games are increasingly being purchased digitally.

The trend can also be observed here in Germany: GameStop is increasingly devoted to the sale of merchandise, and in late 2019 attempts were made to attract more customers through new sales strategies. Well-known business analyst and insider Michael Patcher predicted that the company would end soon. Reason: digital shops, because of which nobody visits retailers anymore.

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GameStop employees report extreme pressure

"We notice one dramatic decline in pedestrian traffic unlike last year at this time, ”explains an assistant manager interviewed by Polygon, With fewer customers and less revenue, it is not surprising that GameStop tries to switch to other strategies. However, this also includes keeping employees and branch managers under pressure, downright approach customers aggressively and persuade them to buy or sell.

"I would rather not ask every customer what type of cell phone they have, which provider he pays and how much storage space the device has, only to then offer him a possible sales price – while they are actually only in the shop to buy a game, ”reveals a Polygon employee. Managers, meanwhile, have to prove to their superiors that they have made at least 50 such price offers a week, with five successful cell phone sales.

"If we don’t achieve these corporate goals, we are written off", One manager continues to report, with another pointing out in the interviews that every employee can be replaced," We still get ten applications every day. "

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It remains to be seen whether those new sales strategies actually work. Not only the Employees doubt it, also commentators in Resetera video game forum report that they avoid GameStop stores for exactly this reason: "I'm not shy about sellers or anything, but offers three or four times during a transaction to get is tiring. I remember once I wanted to buy Jedi: Fall Order and was asked if I had pre-ordered Animal Crossing and I was like that… ??? ”