Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Why can’t you just say you are sorry…

I had a lot of interest in my recent encounter with Best Buy and wanted to post an update. I received an email from an employee named xxxx who basically said tough, it wasn't our fault, and you should be lucky you made a scene or you wouldn't have gotten anything (at least that is what I read in between the lines of their response). It appears that Best Buy only considers "defects" to include hardware or specific parts; any software issues are not their problem. Of course, they don't define this anywhere that a consumer could learn of before making a purchase.

It's a crock. They know it, they just won't admit it. If they want to confine their return policy to hardware issues then they should say so instead of using a generic term like "defect," as far as I'm concerned a software or operating system error is a defect if it occurs during the return period. If they want try to say it isn't, then they need to point to somewhere in their return policy that says so. If anyone else has a similar issue - be sure to fight for your rights or these people will walk all over you.

Here is the actual email, let me know what you think.

Thank you for emailing Best Buy about your recent computer purchase and subsequent exchange. I'm xxxx with Consumer Relations.
As you are aware, Best Buy assesses a 15% restocking fee for the return of an opened notebook computer unless defective. Once the seal has been broken on the packaging of the item, we are no longer able to sell it as new and must re-sell it at a discount, often below cost. It is my understanding that our Geek Squad's initial review of the unit was unable to find a material defect with any hardware components of the unit, and you were unable to provide any indication of what specific parts were defective. Still, I was pleased to read that upon further review of the matter Kevin authorized the replacement of your computer without a restocking fee for customer service reasons.

Thanks for sharing your comments with Best Buy. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any future questions or concerns.

Consumer Relations

PS - is the restocking fee line complete bull or what? When I worked in retail to pay for college we never restocked returns, even on computers. We boxed them up and shipped them back to the vendor who would eventually re-sell them. The store was just re-credited by the vendor for their purchase. I doubt Best Buy actually re-sells this junk; of course, they could have a different SOP (my previous employer would never sell shoddy computers to customers, maybe Best Buy doesn't have such compunctions?).

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