Monday, July 09, 2007
USA Today featured an article on July 8 that discussed how stores treat complaints, returns and other customer service issues. It's an interesting article because it illustrates some of hoops retailers force customers to jump through just to make a purchase. And we wonder why so many shoppers are cranky these days! Click on the link and read the entire article -- it also gives consumers tips on what to do if a store's policies are not customer friendly.
Tilting Customer Service Outcomes Your Way
By Jayne O'Donnell and Elaine HughesUSA Today . 07/08/07 4:00 AM PT
How stores treat customer complaints, returns and other service matters varies, and can depend a lot on how the customers handle themselves. While the National Retail Federation's Dan Butler says most retailers do everything they can to satisfy customers and typically assume the consumer is right, electronics manufacturers prefer to have products go back to them so they can better track problems with their products.
All Michelle Gluckow and her 13-year-old daughter wanted to do was buy a summer's worth of camp clothes in one night at a New Jersey Abercrombie & Fitch. After she suffered through long lines, blaring music and low lighting, Gluckow says, the cashier refused to sell her all 24 items, because of a policy that capped purchases at 20 to limit reselling. Gluckow, incredulous that she couldn't pay full price for all the clothes she wanted, refused to leave the store until she had all the layered outfits her daughter needed. Ultimately, she says, the manager grudgingly let her split the purchase between two credit cards.
Gluckow was luckier than Robert Martin, who says he couldn't get Sears to take back a faulty 7-month-old phone -- despite repeated calls and letters -- because accepting it back would violate store policy. Martin, a 30-year Sears credit card holder, says the decision shows why many businesses are losing loyal customers.
Complaints That Get Results
How stores treat customer complaints, returns and other service matters varies and can depend a lot on how the customers handle themselves, experts say. While the National Retail Federation’s Dan Butler says most retailers do everything they can to satisfy customers and typically assume the consumer is right, electronics manufacturers prefer to have products go back to them so they can better track problems with their products.
"Most policies are very, very liberal, but with electronics they are more stringent because it's so competitive and most of the retailers take a loss," says Butler. "The tradition in retailing is, as Marshall Field once said, 'Give the lady what she wants.'"
© 2007 USA Today. All rights reserved
Click here to read the rest of the article:
Wait! Here's one of those reasons customers are so cranky ...
Sprint ditches customers who complain too much
Yahoo News . Monday, Jul 9, 1:55 PM ET
Sprint Nextel Corp, which recently launched an advertising campaign to attract new customers, is disconnecting more than 1,000 subscribers for calling its customer service lines too often and making what the company called unreasonable requests.
The No. 3 U.S. wireless provider with 53 million customers said on Monday it started sending service termination letters on June 25. Sprint said the cancellations involved 1,000 to 1,200 customers who had called the company about 40,000 times a month in total.
"These customers were calling to a degree that we felt was excessive," said Sprint spokeswoman Roni Singleton, adding the company needed to cull its customer base to improve services. In some cases they were calling customer care hundreds of times a month for a period of six to 12 months on the same issues even after we felt those issues had been resolved," she said.
Read the entire article here: http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070709/us_nm/sprint_dc
How'd you like to be one of those lucky customers? Think Sprint dumped them via text message?