I rarely use my blog as a rant venue, but I thought this would be a good story. A few weeks ago, I was shopping around for a sofa bed. Since Jennifer Convertibles is known for sofa beds, I thought that I would start there. This store is just off of Blossom Hill in San Jose, California. There were two couches that I was deciding upon – a $400 one (fashion over function) and $300 one (very cushy, but not so fashionable). I went ahead and decided on the more expensive one. I asked the sales person Regi whether the bed mattress was the one that came with the sofa bed and she answered yes. She even asked another store to confirm. This bed mattress was memory foam one whereas the cheaper sofa bed had a coil mattress. So the more expensive one had a nicer look and better bed mattress, let’s buy it! I paid for the sofa bed and proceeded to head on out of the store, but wait a minute, why is the total over $700 including sofa bed sheets, shipping, and tax. Oh, it’s because Regi charged us $100 more than the ticketed price on the sofa bed. How silly! Instead of fixing it right away, she completed the customer’s transaction after me which took another 15 minutes, then came back to me. Believe it or not, it took an hour for her to figure out how to credit my credit card. She even called other stores for assistance and no one knew how to do it. Finally, she figured it out then we were on our way out of the store. If Regi had treated me any differently besides nice, I would have thrown a fit b/c I do find it unacceptable to first overcharge, then to take an hour to fix her mistake. I didn’t say a thing though, just waited patiently.
One day before delivery, I received a call from Jennifer, the store manager, about scheduling the delivery. She first confirmed that I did not get the upholstery lifetime stain warranty ($99). I told her we never buy warranties and we’ll just buy a new sofa. By then, it’ll probably be outdated or we’ll want to give it away. She responded with a remark indicating that I was crazy. Umm, no, companies make a ton of money by selling warranties and they ask customers to jump through hoops to claim the warranty. I’d rather not go through all of that headache. In any case, delivery time was scheduled.
Now to the delivery day. The delivery guys came between their allotted time period. They put it in my office and I decided to check out the sofa bed functionality to make sure everything was working. Then to my surprise, the freaking bed mattress was the coil mattress like that of the cheaper sofa bed. I frantically called the store asking about what was going on. Jennifer, the store manager, answered the phone and said that this is the couch that we bought. We explained to her that Regi said that the sofa bed on the floor display would be exactly what we would receive and that Regi even confirmed with another store. Jennifer said that Regi was new and so forth. We said not our problem. Regi got on the phone and told us that there is a $200 charge for the memory foam mattresses, hmm, seems that she left that off when we were buying the sofa bed. Interesting how she is now telling us something totally different. We tried to return the couch but Jennifer, store manager, said that we would incur a 20-30% cancellation charge. I’m starting to think that I’ve been had. They first sell me a couch that was not what I expected and now I’m stuck with a cancellation fee if I want to return it. I told Jennifer I am not going to buy anything from your company again. She said thank you and hung up on me.
After that, I decided to post a Yelp review on the particular store and email the corporate office.
Morale of the story:
- – If your company makes a mistake, do what you can to fix it. Don’t cover it up. The customer is always right.
- – Make sure your prices are marked appropriately. If the product doesn’t include this or that, make sure that the customer knows upfront. Customers hate being deceived.
Update 1/5/2009, email from corporate:
I am very sorry to hear that. I went ahead and forwarded your email to the appropriate person and showroom responsible for the issue you are experiencing, and they should be contacting you within 24-48 hours. If you do not hear from them, please notify me. Thank you for contacting Jennifer Convertibles.
Update 1/7/2009, sent email to follow-up to corporate:
I have not received a phone call or email yet.
Update 1/11/2009, email from corporate:
I have forwarded this email to the general Manager in Northern California.
I’m sure he will contact you shortly, if he has not already done so.
Perhaps the previously sent email did not get through properly to him.
Update 1/14/2009, phone call from a manager from San Francisco:
Summary: He was quite nice and offered to resolve the mattress issue. He said that there was one on clearance that he would hold for us throughout the weekend. I thought that was fair of him. All and all, I just wished the JC management had treated me like this from the very beginning. It was a drawn out ordeal.