Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Service With A Smile

As I have mentioned, I am way behind on Christmas preparations this year. What little gift shopping I have done has been via the Internet. I was able to take advantage of several online shopping sites that were offering free express shipping. Though these deals guarantee the delivery of the ordered items no later tha Demeber 24th, there is not any room for things to go wrong - lost items, tbe the wrong size or color, etc.

When I got home tonight, one of my purchases had arrived and was waiting for me in my desk chair. The box had the seller's name on it so I knew exactly what it was . . .or should be. I stared at the box thinking that it was awfully big for what I had ordered. Perhaps I should open it now just to make sure all is well. I ripped the tape from the shipping box and pulled the packing slip from atop the item. Relief. The packing slip listed exactly what I had intended to order. Since much of my shopping has taken place in the wee hours of the night, I was perfectly willing to admit that I may have clicked on the wrong thing. Not this time; the packing slip confirmed that I had indeed placed my order correctly. But still the question, why is the box so big?

Inquiring (and procrastinating) minds want to know. I lifted the BIG box from the shipping box and reluctantly pulled the lid off. Oh, this is so not what I ordered! What do I do . . .

I checked the website for return policies. The Help section outlined the entire process. It seemed easy enough. The return shipping label could be printed from the web page and the return would cost me nothing. Then I noticed a phone number on the packing slip. It was midnight; I doubt any one is answering the phone at this time of night, but I'll give it a try. The recorded message began. Several cheerful voices clearly stated my options for proceeding and they offered me the opportunity to hear the joke of the day. A comapny with a sense of humor, especially at this time of year, can't be too bad. Naturally, my problem was one of those that required me to stay on the line until the next available representative could take my call. Again, a cheerful voice spoke.

After I told him my situation, the cheerful voice on the other end of the phone apologized repeatedly and vowed to remedy the situation. He transferred me to another cheerful voice. After reading her a few numbers, she said that the item I originally ordered would be shipped tomorrow via overnight delivery and that they would send someone from UPS to pick up the item that I had received in error. I told her that I would be glad to take it to UPS myself. As long I would receive my original order before Christmas, I was perfectly happy. After we discussed all of the details concerning the shipment of my correct order and the picking up of the incorrect one, the cheerful voice said that they would like to credit my credit card for this order as a way to say that they were sorry. I told her that that was not at all necessary, but she insisted. So, now I am getting the item, by Friday, free. How often does a company treat you like that?

Interestingly, this particular company's advertising slogan is "Powered by service." We all know that much of the time, a company's slogan bears little resemblance to what they really deliver. Here is the exception. They are indeed powered by service . . .exceptional service.

I really have no intention of turning my blog into an advertising site. (I read several blogs that have sold out to consumerism. I am sorry for them.) However, I feel that the wonderful service I received deserves a big thank you. And I know that the best thank you gift that I can give to a business is to recommend them to others. So, if you are in the market for shoes or other accessories, visit I trust that you will not be disappointed.

Thanks to these great people, my Christmas spirit is improving.

(Sorry for the vaguenesses here. The person who will receive this gift reads this.)