Monday, November 23, 2009

How Retailers Can Ruin their Future Income for a Lifetime

I am so mad at the moment. I teach my children independence, I teach my children how to do things without an adult standing over them. Things that many adults have difficulty with.

2 weeks ago (to the day) we purchased a game from a gaming store in Epping Plaza who is also a second hand dealer, who specialises in the PSP, Xbox type games.

Being trusting we purchased the game with scratch insurance. Me thinking that would stop any accidents and for the sake of a few dollars, worth it.

My son (12yo) decided that he didn’t like the game, as they stated ‘satisfaction guarantee” My son decided to return the game and try and find something else. I know for fact he may have played this game twice in the preceding two weeks. We haven’t been home between school and sporting commitments.

He went into the said store to swap, exchange or get a gift card refund. He was informed that he had had the game for 3 weeks. OMG – who is having a bad day?

He decides this is bigger than him and calls for his knight in white shining armour to save him and his birthday money. So mum rides into the picture.

We both walk into the store and are advised after checking calendars and fingers (yup, seriously) that this purchase was a 15 days!

Let’s do the sums – purchase made 30.10.09 17.46hrs – today is the 13.10.09 17.15hrs.

So that is NOT quite 14 days – it’s 13 days, 23.5hours to be precise.

Two staff members were adamant that it was 15 days – I asked to see to manager, only to be advised that he would be back in 10 minutes. I leave said store, find somewhere to sit and on the back of an envelope I broke the fortnight down into 24hour periods (for simpletons) .

I then re-entered the store and was advised that the manager had left!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was just about to turn my back, when he miraculously re-enters the premises. I show him the simpleton calculations and he advised me that it was 15 days, INCLUDING the day it was purchased AND the 14th day!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hello – the period in discussion is 14 days not 15. Friday to Friday to be precise, with ½ hour to spare. (to be technical)

After showing the manager the simpleton’s working – he agreed to refund the cost of the game BUT not the scratch insurance. Saying that the disc was scratched!!!!!!!!!!!

Ummmmmmmmm – hate to tell you – it was purchased second-hand, I suppose the previous owner scratched it. For me the ‘scratch insurance’ was if it didn’t work due to a scratch, but I must be too honest.

My son has lost 15% of his birthday money and is upset about what has occurred, even he knew that Friday to Friday is 14 days NOT 15.

He now tells me, that he will never go back to that store, I said to him what about the gift card refund. He advised me he would spend that money at another store, in another centre and never go back to that store AND he said he would tell his friends.

My son goes to a private school of some 1700 students very close to this shopping centre, in other words 1700 kids who don't drive and thus are a captive audience, so don’t blame me if turnover decreases, there are other gaming stores in the same centre.

And………….. if you are unable to work out that Friday to Friday is 14 days AND NOT 15 days then perhaps you shouldn’t be working in retail.

Now before you jump down my throat and call me rude and pushy. My children, may be opinionated, but they are honest and they will only argue a case, that is fair and square. If a business tries to pull the wool over their eyes, they will take it further.

As this mother taught these children these qualities, she taught them, don't tell lies, tell the truth, the retailer if they are honest will understand. If they are dis-honest, then you have no need for their goods or services in the future.

Remember bad news travels 10 times faster than good and in the world of cashed-up teenagers, who don't have a car to get to the next shopping centre, you really should look after your customers, or they will move to the other store in the same centre.

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