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Old 02-12-07, 10:59 PM   #1
sac02
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should I be p!ssed off?

I placed an order with an online retailer Friday morning/early afternoon. This afternoon I got an email stating that the order had shipped - but two of the six items I wanted were no longer available and had been removed from my order. The items that were cancelled were a BB tool and l/s jersey.

I don't NEED the jersey, but I do need the BB tool soon, and I'm pretty upset that they didn't call or email me asking if I wanted to substitute a different BB tool (there were several to choose from on their site). Now in addition to the extra wait time, I'm going to have to pay shipping charges for a $10 part, or buy one for $20-$25 from my LBS. (please, no "support your LBS" sermon)

I think this is pretty crappy customer service, and am considering calling them tomorrow to complain. Should I be this worked up over this situation?

Mac
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Old 02-12-07, 11:01 PM   #2
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thats the way it works unfortunately man, just the way it works. they are sending what they can when they can... even amazon does the same.

What tool do you need? Chances are good someone here knows just where to get it and your problem will be solved.
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Old 02-12-07, 11:02 PM   #3
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you should at least be able to wing free shipping if you're persistent enough
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Old 02-12-07, 11:10 PM   #4
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to answer the question

no you shouldnt

things happen

try to deal
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Old 02-12-07, 11:11 PM   #5
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probably not
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Old 02-12-07, 11:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by euphoria
you should at least be able to wing free shipping if you're persistent enough
I agree. No need to be rude about it, but keep on them. I don't think this kind of thing is "poor customer service", but not being willing to make it right is.

They should at least comp the shipping on the bb tool of your choice.
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Old 02-12-07, 11:20 PM   #7
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Doesn't seem too complicated - tell them you still need a bb tool and you'll get one from them if they offer you free shipping. Mention that in the future they should tell customers if an item's unavailable and offer an alternate. Don't be an ass about it and they'll probably work hard to get your the tool quickly/see that they messed up a bit.
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Old 02-12-07, 11:34 PM   #8
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How much is the shipping that you're bring screwedout of?


I know that sucks and all dude and I feel for ya, but you can't **** over like $10


---gotta put things in perspective----loosing $10 and having to go to an LBS to order a tools

vs

getting whacked by a car/having your bike stolen/finding out you are messengering for a coke dealer
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Old 02-12-07, 11:39 PM   #9
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It's not the tool I'm upset about, it's the lack of notification of the fact that they had run out of something I (obviously, by ordering it) wanted/needed. And I'm really not THAT upset - if I was really pissed I'd have been real juvenile and put the company name in the post to try and bad-mouth them.

I was in the food service business for about a decade, and was the general manager / part owner of a restaurant before I went back to school. Customer satisfaction is priority #1 in my book. IMO, there is no "average" customer service - there is only great, good, and poor. If we happened to be out of Italian sausage that day, and someone ordered a supreme pizza, we ask them if they would like to substitute a topping, we don't just send them a pizza missing the sausage.

Or, take a company known for its great service, like Tony at IRO. Just because a company is larger or smaller doesn't mean they should have different levels of customer service. Say you placed an order for multiple items from IRO and they were out of stock on one of them. three scenarios:
1) You get a call and are notified of the unavailabilty of the product. Tony offers to upgrade you to the next level product free of charge. Great customer service, over and above your expectations, you come to BF and sing IRO's praises
2) Same phone call, but you are offered a different product at its normal price, or the product you ordered when it comes off of backorder (shipped for free in a second shipment). Good customer service, you understand that's how business goes and walk away satisfied.
3) They ship your order, then notify you that you won't be getting one of the things you ordered, you're on your own. Poor customer service.

My expectations of what service should be don't change with company size, though in reality it often does.

Mac

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Old 02-12-07, 11:42 PM   #10
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itd be nice if things worked that way

and if these companies gave a ****
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Old 02-12-07, 11:48 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shapelike
Doesn't seem too complicated - tell them you still need a bb tool and you'll get one from them if they offer you free shipping. Mention that in the future they should tell customers if an item's unavailable and offer an alternate. Don't be an ass about it and they'll probably work hard to get your the tool quickly/see that they messed up a bit.
True, what's that old Mom-ism? You'll get more flys with honey than with vinegar.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadeux
itd be nice if things worked that way

and if these companies gave a ****
Also true, "customer service" employees at x-mart could care less about you or me, and their level of "customer service" shows it.

I'll probably call tomorrow and let them know I think they messed up, if they don't offer to fix it, then they don't get any more of my business. Fairly simple, nothing to get worked up over I guess.

Mac
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Old 02-12-07, 11:53 PM   #12
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I worked at Amazon for a few years and I'm still in the customer service biz. I can gurantee you that if this is a larger outfit a human being did not make that decision regarding your order. A computer did. That's not to say that it's good policy, but a larger outfit doesn't care about annoying people a little. As this thread demonstrates, some people will shrug it off. For those that don't they have some human beings who deal with it. Sure it's a hassle, but that's business these days. How do you think they're able to offer lower prices than your LBS? They have to cut corners somewhere.
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Old 02-12-07, 11:56 PM   #13
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good points, mm
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Old 02-12-07, 11:58 PM   #14
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That's a problem that you can experience when you deal with online retailers. Your local bike shop probably wouldn't have done that to you, but this website should work with you if you call them up and/or email them.

There are many online retailers that go above and beyond. Two of my favorites are Zappos (shoes and apparel) and Newegg (computers).
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Old 02-12-07, 11:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marqueemoon
As this thread demonstrates, some people will shrug it off.
in my own defense i was only suggesting that op not be pissed

it is amazing what you can get by just asking

and how we are trained not to
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Old 02-13-07, 05:28 AM   #16
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If this kind of stuff irks you, you're in for a long, disappointing life.
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Old 02-13-07, 06:08 AM   #17
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When you get bad customer service, it sucks a bit. So, when you get GOOD customer service, go back to that place, and tell all your friends. Let me reccommend Velo Orange on that score - the dude is awesome. It's true that a big company could set up their systems to be customer friendly, but most don't. Little guys KNOW that they need their customers to love them.
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Old 02-13-07, 08:38 AM   #18
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It's all a matter of balance.

The guy at your LBS would have been able to immediately tell you that he didn't have the tool in stock but, for a small deposit, he'll get it for you by next week. It'll probably cost a little more too but you won't have to pay shipping.

Internet buyers get lower prices, usually much better selection, and often faster service but lose the human touch. Internet sellers struggle to maintain their edge while minimizing the loss of the human element.

What probably happened is somebody picked your order at whatever time of day they do those things and immediately packed it for shipping that day. That's the lower price and faster service part. Then the packing and shipping document went to another department, at probably a different time of day, to email you what's missing from your order that's already on the way. To me, that's pretty darn good customer service.

It would be nice if the same person would do the whole thing, telephone you so that you could order a different tool, and ship everything together; but that's going to raise overhead and probably prices and extend shipping time.

I suspect that most internet buyers are willing to tolerate the occasional out-of-stock item in exchange for the low prices, better selection, and fast service.
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Old 02-13-07, 08:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
It'll probably cost a little more too but you won't have to pay shipping.
The shipping will be built into the cost of the item, won't it?
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Old 02-13-07, 09:50 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
What probably happened is somebody picked your order at whatever time of day they do those things and immediately packed it for shipping that day. That's the lower price and faster service part. Then the packing and shipping document went to another department, at probably a different time of day, to email you what's missing from your order that's already on the way. To me, that's pretty darn good customer service.
I disagree. Good service would be if the guy in the warehouse/packing/shipping dept. had put the order on "hold" when he discovered they were out of stock on an item. He makes a note of what parts they are out of, and then shoots the invoice electronically back the the customer service department, who call me and ask what I would prefer to do. Even if my order was delayed in shipping one day, I would rather have that choice of what to do with the OOS items, as opposed to recieving only half my order. That would be good customer service, and not a difficult process to incorperate into your shipping procedure.

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Old 02-13-07, 09:53 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobber
The shipping will be built into the cost of the item, won't it?
Aboslutely but that's the whole point. He, and some of the other posters, are objecting to paying the second shipping charge. I think they're overlooking the fact that they are getting a better overall pie just because it happens to have one small piece.
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Old 02-13-07, 09:59 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sac02
I disagree. Good service would be if the guy in the warehouse/packing/shipping dept. had put the order on "hold" when he discovered they were out of stock on an item. He makes a note of what parts they are out of, and then shoots the invoice electronically back the the customer service department, who call me and ask what I would prefer to do. Even if my order was delayed in shipping one day, I would rather have that choice of what to do with the OOS items, as opposed to recieving only half my order. That would be good customer service, and not a difficult process to incorperate into your shipping procedure.

Mac
I think that dobber's right about you. Check out the next paragraph of my post and the very first sentence. It's all a question of balance.
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Old 02-13-07, 10:05 AM   #23
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Don't sweat the small stuff. My guess is you'll end up with free shipping after one phone call. Let us know what happens.
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Old 02-13-07, 01:29 PM   #24
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I guess I'm kind of equating it to "common courtesy" from a retailer to their customer.

But I know the definition of common courtesy can vary drastically.

The first time I travelled to the North I was surprised by some of the little cultural differences. People not holding the door for me or saying "thank you" when I held it open for them kind of bothered me at first. It took me a bit to realize that they weren't being rude; that just wasn't a part of the "Northern" culture like it is in the "South".

I know I'm using sweeping generalities saying "North" vs "South"; I'm not trying to upset anyone, please no flame wars

Mac
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Old 02-13-07, 01:45 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sac02
The first time I travelled to the North I was surprised by some of the little cultural differences. People not holding the door for me or saying "thank you" when I held it open for them kind of bothered me at first. It took me a bit to realize that they weren't being rude; that just wasn't a part of the "Northern" culture like it is in the "South".
I agree. I think there are cultural differences too.

I moved from the Chicago area to St Louis in 1979. After I'd lived here for around a year I traveled back to Chicago to run in "America's Marathon". The two things that struck me about that trip were how rude everybody in Chicago acted and how quickly I reverted to being just as rude as they were.

Don't be too quick to ascribe it to northern climates until you've visited Iowa, Minnesota, or Wisconsin. Lots of nice people in those states.
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