Today, Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) turned in the kind of results I love -- as a prospective stockholder. They were good, but not good enough, meaning that maybe the share price will get enough of a haircut for me to finally get a piece of this premium retailer.

While my colleague Stephen Simpson agrees that the company's doing an admirable job, he's a lot tougher sell than I am. While I'm still on the fence with the company, it recently began one program that sounded to me like it could have huge potential. It was summarized recently in The New York Times and TheWall Street Journal. The articles discuss pilot projects aimed at specific niche customers: Smaller stores of varying design, maybe something warm and nookish for soccer moms who feel overwhelmed by the usual blaring bass (Studio D), and something steel and slick (Escape) for the alpha tech nerds.

In other words, one size won't fit all.

It's about time that the big-bricks retailers relearned this lesson. After elbowing out most of the small mom 'n' pop competition through operational efficiencies and low prices, they seem to have forgotten that there were some advantages to doing things the old-fashioned way. Knowing your customers counts, especially if you want to have a meaningful advantage over your competitors in an era where cheap prices are just a mouse click away.

In this respect, it's ironic that many e-commerce companies have been able to provide more personalized service, though it's filtered through a stack of servers. Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) remains the only movie-rental choice for me because its rating logic actually works; it recommends movies I'm interested in seeing. I'm not as enamored of the junk that my personal Web store at (NASDAQ:AMZN) tries to foist on me, but I don't blame Amazon for trying. The personalized-picks function at eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) is rarely wrong.

Which gets me back to wondering whether Best Buy's boutiques couldn't really take off. I'll be honest -- though I love gawking at new gadgets, big-box prices are rarely enough to get me to go to the big-box store. If a Best Buy or a Circuit City (NYSE:CC) had a higher-end store, staffed by knowledgeable geeks who could actually answer my questions, I know I'd visit more often. And if I were guaranteed that no bored, over-eager, under-clever teenager were going to try to sign me up for something I don't want (extended warranty, credit card, whatever), I might just quit buying my gadgets online for good. If enough people came to feel the same way, today's cautious revenue guidance might be just the tip of the iceberg.

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Seth Jayson loves a good customer experience, online or off. At the time of publication, he had positions in no company here. View his stock holdings and Fool profile here. Fool rules are here.