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Friday, July 29, 2011

My Letter To Best Buy

Hi, thanks for replying to me via Twitter. I'm @wisejohnp and today I lobbed a whiny note about Best Buy's poor customer service.

I just moved to South Florida from New York, where my friends and I were in practically unanimous agreement that despite Best Buy's many and convenient locations, great selection of products and frequent sales, the customer service has long been its Achilles heel.

Anyway, I've been in West Palm Beach for about six weeks and have been pricing HD TVs for my first such purchase. Yes, I'm a grown man still with an old, bulky, heavy tube TV!

Then hhgregg opened up in South Florida and offered these get-out-of-town prices. I went there to purchase my big fancy TV (can't wait for the Super Bowl!) because their grand opening prices were unbeatable. But I'm not just about the money. I'm glad to bring my business back to Best Buy for future purchases, but now I'm not so sure after this latest customer-service nightmare.

Last night, I spent about 30-40 minutes either on hold or talking to folks overseas who spend more of their time prefacing their statements with repetitive and unnecessary pleasantries than they do making actual statements. I know they're happy to help me, but they don't need to tell me that after I tell them my middle initial or my zip code. In all, I spoke to three people before it was determined that the department I needed to speak to was closed for the night.

So I called back while at work today and again was routed and re-routed and placed on hold before I learned the answer to my question was ... NO! Probably another 20-30 minutes wasted today.

Here was my simple issue that should not have taken a total of one hour to have been addressed: I recently received a 10 percent off coupon in the mail simply because it's my birthday this month. It's tomorrow, in fact. I was looking around my home for it last night because I was planning to hit a Best Buy this weekend to purchase a receiver to go with my newly purchased TV. I don't remember what the expiration date on the coupon was, but since my birthday is tomorrow (July 30), I figured it's probably approaching. I can't find the dang thing and I figured with all that's technologically available, surely the fine folks in Minnesota can email me a new coupon and just cancel out the code on the previously mailed coupon. Or maybe use the same code, I don't know. Or, God forbid, just TRUST this customer who's going to such great lengths to save such a small amount of money and just re-issue a coupon -- maybe one larger than 10 percent at this point, cough cough -- for his trouble and renewed loyalty.

To add insult to injury, as I was hanging up with the last customer service rep -- or is it customer-care agent or customer-satisfaction specialist or positive-experience technician? -- told me that I can text "SAVE" to 332211 and I'll get a reply with that day's coupon, which I thought was cool. Until, of course, I got a reply -- a prompt one, I'll admit -- telling me that my Reward Zone mobile coupons have expired. What a tease.

Anyway, like I said, I'm more than comfortable returning to Best Buy. I actually love being in your stores. Oh, the possibilities. But now that there's an hhgregg in town, I have to say it's just as fun going over there as well.

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At 7:30 PM EDT, Anonymous trane said...

now that circuit city closed, we're not left with a whole lot of choice. BB is so big, they can sell at reduced rates, but I have to tell you, I agree with your assessment of their staff. Here in NYC they are downright lazy and standoffish. they don't have to rely on word of mouth or great customer service because where else you gonna go? Now, B&H...that's customer service.

At 10:48 PM EDT, Blogger Big Primpin' said...

Yeah, I don't think hhgregg is in NYC, but you're familiar with it in Ohio, right? And could you imagine an economy where every business was run like B&H?


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