Reader Len recently found out that it’s sort of impossible to order shampoo and a book from Amazon at the same time. They’ll just keep sending you a shampoo-covered book until they eventually give up and refund your money. Trouble is, Len didn’t want a refund. He wanted a shampoo-less book.
Just wanted to send along the story of my most recent experience with Amazon.com. I’ve usually been very happy ordering from them – fast shipping, competitive prices, and good customer service – it’s the reason I pay for an Amazon Prime membership. But this last episode has me scratching my head.
Last Wednesday I order two items from Amazon: a bottle of shampoo, and a book. I got the package on Friday, opened it up, and the shampoo had opened up during shipping. While I could’ve just rinsed off the bottle and used it, the book was also covered in the sticky stuff. OK. I get it. It happens. I call their customer service number, and the rep I spoke with was super apologetic and told me that they would overnight a new shipment to me right away, and he said that he “put a note in there” that they should pack it extra carefully so that this mess doesn’t happen again.
Cool. Kudos to Amazon. They could’ve blamed it on the shipping company, but instead they did the right thing. I was happy.
I forgot about it until Monday when I got home and the package was waiting for me. I opened it up, and whadya know, same old goopy mess. Open bottle, book covered in shampoo. Now I’m a little annoyed.
I called back, and this time I spoke with [redacted], who couldn’t have been sweeter and more apologetic. She told me that they’d re-send it in two separate packages so that it wouldn’t happen again, and that I wouldn’t even have to return this order, it was mine to keep.
Alright. They messed up twice, but they’re clearly taking steps to fix it. Game on.
Then, today, I got a follow-up e-mail from [redacted], who apparently forgot about our phone conversation. Here’s an excerpt:
“I’m sorry to hear the replacement book and Health and Beauty had the same problem as your first order. This usually doesn’t happen. Since it’s likely another replacement would arrive damaged, I won’t trouble you with another order.
Please return the book “[redacted]” We’ll pay for the return shipping costs.”
Um…what? Then, much to my surprise, I immediately got another e-mail that my money had been refunded. What the…? I didn’t ask for my money back, nor do I want it – I just wanted the products I ordered. I don’t get it. They’re not sending it to me because “it’s likely another replacement would arrive damaged?” Why not just send it in two packages, as originally promised?
I ended up buying some shampoo at the store today – which I probably should’ve done in the first place, but I was trying to avoid a trip to the store by ordering it online. Lesson learned.
Anyhow, I’m not “taking my business elsewhere” (other than for shampoo, I guess) or anything like that. Truth is, I’m still drawn to Amazon for the convenience and time-saving aspect of it. I’m willing to pay a bit more to get all my stuff in one place, delivered fast. Hopefully this kind of thing won’t happen again.
You know, Drugstore.com shrink-wraps their shampoo before they ship it. Just sayin’.