It all started off so well when I logged onto the Office website to idly peruse their shoes. Nothing caught my eye in store so I thought I'd give the website a whirl. I don't know whether I found them or they found me, either way I was suddenly faced with some utterly stunning Jeffrey Campbell wedges that just had to be mine. It was love at first sight; I'm pretty sure that the world went slow mo' while Usher/Donell Jones/Joe played in my head! I bought them then and there, checked the order confirmation email and thought me and the Jeffrey Campbells would live happily ever after. Hmm yeah, pity Office don't make the shoe buying process as simple as see, click, buy, enjoy.
|The shoes in question - Jeffrey Campbell Xanadu|
|Taken from the Ts & Cs page|
The first lesson of social media is listening to conversation around your brand and the second is to interact with your customers. Deleting comments and making customers feel like they are completely insignificant is not in the lesson plan. I used to help look after social media for one of the UK's biggest retailers and I would never, ever delete a comment. In fact, our customer service team were trained to resolve issues super quickly. You need to show that you respect your customers.
|I bet that this wallpost will be gone come 10am..|
In the meantime, I had emailed on Friday and Monday to see whether they had sourced the shoes from any stores yet. Like my Facebook wall comment, my emails were ignored. I rang up again today, a whole week after my order had been placed and the customer service lady I spoke to hit the final nail in the 'failures by Office' coffin. After a lot of kerfuffling, she told me that they couldn't source the shoes from store after all and my order had been cancelled...well er, no one told me that!
Out of frustration, I handed the phone to my colleague who looks after customer service at my current workplace. When she got off the phone, she was even more frustrated than I was. The lady she spoke to kept contradicting herself, one minute they had searched their stores, the next minute they were unable to source from store, the next minute they were only able to source from four stores (there are over 40 in London alone) and she didn't even know how many stores they had in the UK in total!! She did offer me a 10% discount as well as free P&P. Honestly, that's not nearly enough to make up for all the time wasted and horrendous experience. Oh and funnily enough, straight after my colleague hung up, they emailed to confirm the order had been cancelled. Um it's sort of too late I knew that already.
On reflection, I'm not actually sure what the biggest problem is here: the frankly crazy long-winded web ordering process, the shoddy customer service and lack of communication or being deleted and blocked by their social media people. All I know is that I'm never going to buy anything from their website ever again, it's just not worth the hassle. I doubt I'll even bother going into their stores. However, if you want to play a fun game*, post something negative on their Facebook page and see how long it takes before it's taken down. Extra points for getting blocked too.
* Disclaimer - I am not actively encouraging people to spam the Office Facebook page.