Why did Target’s expansion into Canada fail so quickly? The company is based in Minnesota, which is dangerously close to being Canada. Yet Target Canada failed spectacularly. Why? Sure, they expanded too quickly, and had supply chain problems: we all know the answer. Yet what did that look like on the ground? [More]
Walk into any Walmart and you’ll see shelves upon shelves stocked with a wide variety of products in every shape and size. But that will soon change, as the retail giant begins a transformation of sorts by decluttering its aisles of excess items. [More]
Sam wanted to take Toys ‘R’ Us up on its price matching policy. He wanted to perform the daring–and generally not allowed–maneuver of asking a store to match its own online-only price. Here’s the catch, though: the item that he wanted should have been available for in-store pickup, so he could order it online and pick it up in the store. The same exact item was sitting in the store inventory. [More]
Michael wanted to drop $600 on a pair of wardrobes from IKEA, and even called ahead before driving out to the store to make sure the items were there. When he arrived, though, he learned that “in stock” doesn’t actually mean “you can purchase it today,” because someone would have to get a new pallet of wardrobes down from an upper level of the warehouse. That wasn’t going to happen: a warehouse manager told Michael that they’d rather lose Michael’s business rather than risk the safety of employees. While this emphasis on worker safety is refreshing, Michael thinks it’s unfair. [More]
In the Super Target at St. Charles, IL, there is a forgotten container of sorbet that is damaged, missing a seal, and over a year past its expiration date. Keith says it’s been sitting there by itself in the freezer case for at least four months now. He and his wife say hi to it whenever they shop there. [More]
Erica and her fiance are tired of waiting for a lamp to arrive from Lamps Plus, especially now that it’s been three months and the company hasn’t kept any of its promises so far. She wants to know what to do next. [More]
Pay no attention to those ridiculously cheap TV sets and game systems—also called doorbusters—that retailers use to lure in hordes of holiday shoppers, notes CNN. They’re the equivalent of that little dangly thing anglerfish use to catch food.
Here’s some advice for you, the regular customer who doesn’t shoplift: never go into the back of a store with a security guard, store manager, rent-a-cop, etc. Never. Someone posted the following story in the Janesville, Wisconsin CraigsList over the weekend. Because the poster cooperated in good faith with the security personnel at her local Menards home store, she had to pay $150 to avoid having the police called on her.
My Linh’s Vonage modem stopped working, so she called to request a replacement under the terms of her service agreement. Vonage was happy to oblige. So happy, in fact, that they sent her 14 modems instead of one via UPS—but then couldn’t figure out how to get UPS to come pick them up again. Hey, they do VOIP, not logistics.
Cora just wanted to order eight pair of identical shoes from Steve Madden for her wedding. Unfortunately, she made the mistake of ordering those shoes directly from the company. Half of the shoes were on backorder. Upon receiving the shoes and discovering that they wouldn’t fit the respective bridesmaids they were ordered for, Cora learned that Steve Madden would charge a $7 restocking fee per pair.
An anonymous Office Depot employee sent us this internal reminder from HQ that addresses this week’s allegations that associates and managers lie about inventory depending on the customer. Now the next time you’re told by an Office Depot associate that the laptop you want is out of stock, you can say, “Are you absolutely sure? Because I know you had a Sales Practices Reminder on March 12th about lying to customers.” And if a manager tries to get all up in, uhm, your grill area, you can say, “Don’t you have some tasks to go check off in your Task Manager?”
AT&T’s one-iPhone-per-customer rule lasted only one day before the company went back to its three-per-customer policy. Apparently they found some more iPhones in the back. [Information Week]
Tom just sent us a follow-up to yesterday’s post, and it’s good news:Score another one for The Consumerist! This morning I contacted Sears’ Executive Customer Service Department. They attempted to contact the store manager on my behalf. I stress “attempted” because they were hung up on too.
Update: one day after being posted here, the issue has been resolved. Sears strikes again! They sold Tom a TV for $1,070 on Black Friday last November. “Of course, it wasn’t in stock but they assured me that they could order it,” he writes.
Matt bought a camera from TigerDirect. He monitored the status of the order online, and saw that it was marked “shipped” a few days after he placed the order, so he returned the other, more expensive, camera he’d bought at Best Buy. Unfortunately, the TigerDirect camera never arrived.
“Shoppers who pay the full price of about $249 for an out-of-stock Wii on December 20 and 21 at retailer GameStop Corp will get a certificate promising a Wii ‘sometime in January,'” sez Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aime. Only at GameStop, urg. [Reuters]