How NOT to Fix Your Shipping Mistake

Like most companies we use our business credit cards quite a bit. In turn, we get quite a few rewards points which result in all sorts of gift certificates. A little over a month ago we got a $40 gift certificate to No one else really wanted it, and there was a DVD for $39.99 that I did want, so my partners were nice enough to let me use it. I placed the order and when it arrived it was the wrong DVD.

Freeze it right here. In this situation, here’s what we would do: have the customer ship us the item back, immediately re-ship the correct item, apologize profusely, and throw something extra in for free/give them a credit towards a future purchase. If they need the order by a certain date (say to do a detail) we will work with them to overnight them their order…on occasion we even let them keep the wrong order and expedite the correct order. It’s our mistake, and we go above and beyond to make it right with the customer. It’s what any person or business should do: apologize and make amends.

So what did NFLShop do when I called? They told me to ship the item back, but that they only accept returns (not exchanges). They said they would refund my credit card and I could place the order again. Only one problem – I paid via gift certificate. Couldn’t they just ship me the correct DVD once they got my return? Nope – they had to re-issue me a new gift certificate which took about six weeks. A few days ago I got my new gift certificate. Yesterday I placed my order again, and I should finally get my DVD almost 2 months after the initial order.

Hey NFLShop – great job turning a simple exchange into a complex process. Even more kudos for making no effort whatsoever to correct your mistake.

Why do some companies have such a hard time with simple business policies that should seemingly be so intuitive?

2 comments on How NOT to Fix Your Shipping Mistake

  1. Kendall says:

    I ordered a GPS system from Tiger Direct; they shipped it via UPS. UPS lost the GPS system. (It made it onto a truck and was “out for delivery” for nearly a week.) I asked Tiger Direct to send out a new unit; they refused to ship a new unit until UPS reimbursed THEM.

    Although it wasn’t Tiger Direct’s mistake, they should have shipped a new unit as soon as UPS confirmed it was missing in action It took almost 3 weeks to get the product I’d ordered, and I hesitate to order from them again.

  2. Adam McFarland says:

    Kendall – once again, not a great way to handle the situation. As a retailer, it definitely sucks to have a shipping company lose a package on you (it happens to us), but you have to bite the bullet and get another package out to the customer ASAP. Retailers like us also have the option to insure all of their packages (we do up to $100 I believe) for an additional fee if they want to protect against these situations.

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