Four Experiences Buying Online

I’ve had four online buying experiences over the past couple weeks. This doesn’t include about a dozen eBay transactions, all of which went very smoothly.

I bought some equipment from newegg.com and tigerdirect.com, and I bought a replacement door handle from carparts.com. In the Newegg transaction, what I bought came all the way from Hong Kong, in about four days. The stuff from Tiger Direct, it came from a warehouse in California, four days. The door handle, I think came from California also, six days.

From the time I selected the stuff I bought until the time I completed the sale, in all cases, was less than five minutes.

The fourth transaction was not nearly as good. I bought a new laptop for Raegan from Best Buy, using one of their trusted vendors, buy.com (which changed it’s name to or was bought by Rakuten). While the buying process was fast here as well, there were a couple glitches. The laptop was coming via FedEx.

The FedEx driver tried to deliver Thursday evening, but we weren’t home; they left a door tag. I tried to get FedEx to requeue, since we had missed them by less than 10 minutes, but FedEx couldn’t. I asked them to let me pick it up at their local office, but they said that Buy.com had disallowed that. They would only deliver the next day. We were home the next day at 1600, and waiting in the living room. I was checking fedex.com, and at 1750, suddenly the status showed an attempted delivery. No truck came near our house; no door tag. I got on with FedEx and got a human. This person told me that leaving a door tag was a courtesy, and not a requirement for the driver. I asked if stopping the truck, walking up to the door, and ringing or knocking was a requirement, and she said no.

WHAT THE HELL?

A delivery service is not required to walk up to the delivery location? Side note: I called FedEx and lodged a complaint, and sent a feedback message, but NO response. Pretty crappy service.

Also, FedEx would not redeliver on Saturday, they would not let me pick it up, they had no way to contact the driver. I personally think all of this was bullshit. They would let it be delivered for pickup to a FedEx Kinkos, and only at the nearest location in Edmond. I wasn’t going to take a chance that they would fail to try to deliver (three was the limit), so I had to drive all the way to downtown Edmond the next day.

We got home and excitedly opened the box. The computer wouldn’t power up. I thought the battery might be shot, so I plugged it in to let it charge a bit. The front light that indicated charging didn’t light up. I was not encouraged. A lot of troubleshooting followed, but the bottom line was the laptop was DOA.

Buy/Rakuten had no way to get in touch with a live person via telephone. I used an email form to report the issue as a defective product. Surprisingly, I had a response in about an hour. The person wanted to know the UPC and serial number. After getting them, I got a link to a site to print a UPS shipping tag. I reboxed the laptop, taped the sticker, and hauled it to UPS, dropped it off, and got a receipt.

I immediately send the tracking number to Buy/Rakuten with a request to ship my replacement NOW. I got an email saying that it would be received and inspected and a replacement sent after six or seven days. I shot an immediate demand to ship a replacement NOW. Silence. I send several other emails, once a day, and at day three, upped it to demand an instant refund.

To me it was easy. I’d already paid for junk. I sent it back, and they still had my money, and I had no laptop. They had the tracking number, and the weight matched. It was their fault. They should have shipped a replacement immediately.

After a week, I got a reply, saying that no laptops were in stock, and refund would be made in 1-2 days. I immediately got on buy.com and found that they did have the same laptops in stock. So Buy/Rakuten lied to me.

The only good news was that the refund showed the next day.

I sure would not deal with Buy/Rakuten.

FedEx also has a black eye in this with their fracked up delivery.

Four online transactions, three went smoothly, one was bad. I don’t have an issue with a computer showing up bad. I don’t really think that it was well packed, so was probably damaged by shipping. But I do have a problem with the company not being responsive, especially for what was 100% their mistake.

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