Sears doesn’t want Nat’s business. They don’t want my business. They don’t want anyone’s business. They may continue to exist as a commercial entity, but that’s because they’re one of two things: an advanced anti-capitalist prank, or a massive real estate holding company that continues running stores out of a sense of nostalgia while they wait for the market to pick back up. But they don’t want to actually sell anyone anything, as Nat learned when he tried to order a camera that only appeared to be in stock. Anywhere.
My recent experience shopping from Sears has been shown me why they have been struggling. Their customer service is lacking and they have no real-time inventory tracking.
I purchased a DSLR camera on 5/6/2012 from Sears.com. I requested in-store pickup since it showed it was available at my local Sears. I completed the transaction and received an email immediately stating to wait for confirmation email that item is ready to be picked up. About 15 minutes later, I received an email that the item is no longer available for pickup and has been canceled. I reordered from Sears.com and this time requested the item to be shipped. I received an email confirming the purchase with an expected delivery date of 5/16/2012.
I noticed on 5/9/2012 that my credit card had been charged but I did not receive any type of shipping confirmation from Sears. I did not receive the camera so I called customer service on 5/15 for shipping information. I was informed that the order was in process but that she would have someone contact me with the details. I received an email the next day that stated they have confirmed the expected delivery date as 5/17. You know what I received on 5/17? That’s right. Nothing.
I contacted customer service again but no one was able to give me any additional information other than the order is in process. They said it would take 7 business days to research. They must have to walk up and down each aisle of the warehouse to locate it.
I then contacted Sears Social Media customer service with my issue and was informed a case manager (CM) would be assigned to help me get this resolved. A CM called me on 5/18 stating that he would be assisting me and would be “escalating” the request. He called me back a few hours later and stated that he had not heard from the warehouse manager but would call me on 5/21 with an update. I am not sure why they could not just place another order. I guess they just carry one of every item.
Anyway, I received no update on 5/21 and wrote a follow up email to the CM on 5/22. I did not receive a response so I called him on 5/23. He told me that Sears.com is still researching and if they can not find it by the 5/25, they will cancel my order and refund my credit card. I called the CM on 5/25 and asked him if he had any updates. He told me he has not received any type of reply and does not know if it shipped or was canceled. It will probably take another three weeks to cancel the order.
He then asks me if I want to cancel and reorder or cancel the order entirely. Normally I would be fine with with just purchasing it elsewhere. However, I bought it on sale at the time and there was also a cash back promotion on my credit card, both which are no longer available. The credit card bill just showed up too and is due soon for an item I never received. In addition, I sold my other DSLR camera thinking one was being shipped to me; this caused me to miss various events with a camera. Not to mention all the wasted time spent with their various customer service departments (Sears Blue Ribbon, Sears Social Media Customer Service, SearsCares, etc.). The CM has assured me that he will make things right but based on what has happened so far, I highly doubt it.
There is so much red tape there that I am not surprised they are not doing well. This experience has reaffirmed why I have not shopped at Sears often and will likely avoid shopping there in the future.