I know you all have had good and bad customer service experiences. So have we.
In years past – even a few years ago – we would call customer service, wait (forEVER) until we got ahold of a representative and then cross our fingers that we could get something worked out.
The Internet changes everything, doesn’t it?
At NewlyWoodwards, we’ve had several unusual experiences involving customer service and the Internet so I thought I should share them on the blog. Both are prime examples of how customer service SHOULD work. And, social media and the Internet make it happen.
The first example happened a few months ago. My cheap-o camera, which was six months into a one-year warranty from the manufacturer, broke. (I should note that this was actually a replacement from the last $100 camera – somehow I didn’t get the hint the first time.) The screen on the back stopped working and since there was no viewfinder, I was totally out of luck. I took it into Best Buy, with my receipt and paperwork, and was told that they wouldn’t replace it.
I was mad. So, I tweeted this.
Camera screen destroyed with no viewfinder. Will Best Buy will do anything for me since it’s only been 6 months? (Not holding my breath.)
10:16 AM Jul 12th from web
10:16 AM Jul 12th from web
Now, my disclaimer: I’m no Twitter all-star. I have something like 84 followers (and I’m fairly certain 80 of those are spammers). I do feed my Twitter updates into my Facebook, but I cannot imagine that many read it. I really didn’t even consider that I’d get a reaction. I guess I should have thought about that, but I didn’t. I was actually planning to go back to the store the next day and try again (good things come to those who
wait keep bugging the people until they break down and give me a new camera).
So, I was actually bemused when I received three replies from Best Buy folks… within an hour.
And, within 24 hours, my camera was replaced. Whoa!
Did you hear that?
Replaced. Coral with Best Buy found me on Twitter, tweeted me, called me, got my info, called the local store and got it replaced. No questions asked. Now, you may say – Kim, this should have happened from the get-go. And, it should have. But, I’m just thrilled that someone got it taken care of. That someone was listening.
Now, this was a $100 camera. It was junk. I was already considering getting a new camera, I just didn’t know what yet. So, I replaced my camera with another $100 model until I could decide.
And, when I did buy a new camera less than 2 months later – guess where I bought it?
You guessed it – Best Buy.
So, do you think that Twitter had something to do with it? You betcha. And, I can guarantee you that I spent more than $100.
This story is a little different, but it’s an online store so I thought I’d share. Ryan got me this sewing machine for my birthday in April. I didn’t even use it until last month and when I started using it, it kept having problems. I had to buy new bobbin cases (at $29.95 a pop) after an hour of sewing with it. I was annoyed.
When I had to go to the local sewing shop (twice), the tech told me that the machine was known to have some problems. So, I talked with Ryan about it and we decided to try to call Overstock and see what they would do. Honestly, we didn’t think they could do anything for us because it had been several months.
So, I contacted Overstock. I could have done it online but I called instead. I waited on the line for less than 30 seconds before getting a voice (which is a miracle in itself). Then, I was told that it was okay that it was after 30 days (which was stated on the receipt). My husband had bought the protection plan for $9.99. (YAY!) So, I sent in all the paperwork and the explanation of the problem. And, within a week, I received a refund.
(And on a related note, since the item was oversized, I didn’t even have to pay to send in the machine. I still have the sewing machine. What do I do with a half-working machine? I guess keep it as backup?)
Overstock is totally on my good list. And, while I decided to get the sewing machine locally so I can rely on the expertise of the locally-owned shop, I will definitely be shopping at Overstock.com again. (I’m actually on their right now…. browsing all the beauties in the home decor area.)
So, these are two of my recent customer service stories. Both of these are nothing extraordinary, I suppose. However, I think we are often quick to complain, so I also wanted to put my happy service stories out there.
I’m wondering if the economy has anything to do with the recent great service I’ve received? Because, let’s be honest, generally I’ve noticed that service really stinks (and I think that brick-and-mortar stores still have a ways to go). Do you think companies genuinely trying to keep their customers happy because sales are down?
What do you think? Do you have any good (or bad) customer service stories?