Tag Archives: idiot customer

I did a bad thing today

You know how they say the customer is always right? I forgot that this morning.

The customer from last week rang to express his discontent that we still hadn’t sent him the details he needed and that he didn’t see why he should pay to return the goods and that it was all our fault . . .

I apologised for whatever it was that we had got wrong this time, expressed my surprise that it wasn’t proceeding smoothly and ascertained what the problem was. It was the same as last week – he has cocked it up again and pressed the wrong buttons, bringing the whole refund process to a halt. This, it appears is all my fault.

At that point I snapped and said “No!”

I explained that I was sorry that he hadn’t received what he wanted and that he hadn’t had his refund but said I was unwilling to carry on being told it was my fault. I have sent him the things he ordered and I have sent him what he needed to obtain a refund. He, on the other hand, ordered the wrong things and has failed to press the right buttons to obtain the refund. It is costing us money to correct his mistake and enough is enough.

I have now sent him a stamped addressed envelope and look forward to seeing if he manages to work that without mishap.

Now I feel guilty, because I have told a customer he is wrong, but I just couldn’t take it any more. Even if it were my fault, there’s no need for the constant chorus of blame, but some people just like to blame somebody for their misfortune, and it’s never their fault, or the product of blind chance.

Customer Service and a Tale of Two Morons

I read a post yesterday, which referred to “customer service” as an oxymoron. Not at our shop – we always try to come achieve a satisfactory solution when there is a problem. With eBay being so skewed towards the customer it’s actually hard not to get to a satisfactory solution for the customer, even stupid or dishonest ones.

How about this for an example.

A customer ordered an item last week, then rang to complain that he had received an X when he had ordered a Z. I replied that I couldn’t understand what had happened, as he had definitely ordered an X according to our eBay screen. (No, we don’t sell capital letters, I’m just trying to protect the identity of an idiot). He added, “You always do this. I ordered  a P a Q and an X last time and you sent me three Xs. It’s all the fault of your system, it’s difficult to use and it’s not very clear.”

We agreed that we didn’t want him to have things he didn’t require, but that all the others were out of stock, so he would have to ring the next day to speak to the owner, who could make decisions on this that I couldn’t make.

Alarm bells were, to put it mildly, ringing.

I checked his last order. He had ordered Three Xs and that was what we had supplied.

So, according to me and eBay he had ordered four Xs and we had, quickly and accurately, supplied exactly that.

The problem is that he isn’t very good with technology, and he isn’t very good at listening. He has pressed the “buy” button four times and tried to order things that are no longer in stock (and are clearly marked as “out of stock”). He’s also clearly no good at listening, when I try to explain. And he doesn’t understand eBay – it’s a standard drop-down menu as used by everyone on eBay. It is not our system as he seems to think. Nobody else has ever had this problem.

Now, I’m happy to take things back, and we are going to help him out, but I do object to him claiming that it is our fault, and I do object to him costing us money when he is the one at fault.r fault, particularly when he could have told us there was a problem after the first lot.

What we are doing is paying for him to send them back and then giving him a refund. The cost to us will be about £7 in postage and £5 in time spent sorting the return out. Next time we sell the goods for £20, the eBay fees of £3 plus the £7 and the £5 all have to be taken from the £20. That leaves us £5 to pay for the stock, our premises and our wages. It is not, as we retail professionals say, a sustainable model.

So there you go, a tale of modern customer service. Not actually the story of an oxymoron, more the story of an actual moron.