Like the other daily deal sites Spreets has offers which appeal to me, from time to time. Although I must admit to being more likely these days to mass delete the stream of daily offers than even read their headlines. When the customer service between Spreets and their vendors goes off the rails, that really chews into my remaining interest in these services. How far does responsibility for the customer experience extend for the coupon vendors?
- The offer - buy a tailor made shirt - $49!
- OK, I'm up for that, bought 2 vouchers, received them - valid from 22 August 2011.
- Jumped on to the A Tailor site at shirt-tailor.com.au and into the 3D Designer and spent time picking my combinations, and then some more time measuring myself for the custom fit.
- Went to check out, and the only voucher entry keeps repeating Invalid Voucher.
- Check, recheck the voucher, puzzled by the instructions "enter voucher number and unique code" since the website just has a single voucher number field.
- Eventually it's clear, after trying every combination, that nothing is going to work.
OK, how can I save all my work, all my colours, sleeve and pocket selections, and measurements, so that I can sort this problem out and come back?
AH? Nothing seems obvious. Have to go to the next step - checkout - no nothing there either unless I pay in full.
AHH! now going back everything is GONE! My whole shopping cart empty.
The contact page for the supplier has no telephone number. But they did respond to my form the next day - they say the website won't be ready until the 24th of August!
And, from Spreets:
Your request (#102752) has been deemed solved.
Yuan, Aug-23 14:03 (EST): Hi Walter, We understand your frustration as we expected the business to upload the codes immediately after the deal ended. However this was not the case, which caused customers to not being able to redeem their vouchers. Sorry for the inconvenience caused.
Looks like case closed. Nothing like "we will chase up A Tailor and ask them to ensure that the vouchers are accepted on their website as soon as possible", or "it seems as if A Tailor misunderstood the start date of the vouchers and we will chase that up..." etc etc. It's just thanks, goodbye!
So today everyone else wastes their time
Which means that today everyone going through the same painstaking process on the vendors website will find themselves having wasted their time, like me. Wow, that's a big investment in cheesing people off by A-Tailor.com.au
We messed you around but please fan us on Facebook!
And how did A-Tailor finish off their response to my form contact about not updating their website, with this:
Lastly please be sure to Like our facebook page as we will be offering new products in the future ALL tailor made: Jeans, suits, belts, ties, bags at fantastic offer prices, also will keep everyone updated on deal site promotions we will be running.
I DON'T think so! Well actually, it is one of those ironic cases where you have to Like to make a complaint on their wall.
User experience extends beyond the coupon site
I guess the coupon places run themselves like the cut price airlines - you're getting a cheap deal so like it or lump it. You would think that, despite the pressure on the sales team, that outfits like Spreets would require their vendors to meet certain customer experience standards. Otherwise everyone loses.
The coupon experience surely isn't just about buying the coupon, but also about redeeming it. Is that too radical a thought?
But it's apparent that Spreets don't have systems and processes in place to manage or audit anything other than the selling of the coupon. Or perhaps they do, but the processes clearly don't work.
I JUST WANT MY SHIRTS :)
Thank you Spreets, thank you A-Tailor, and let this be a learning experience for me before buying another Spreets voucher.
How would you describe the customer experience lifecyle for the coupon companies?
How would glitches be best handled between coupon vendor and service vendor - it's complicated?
Please comment below.
BREAKING NEWS: A Tailor responds on Facebook and blames Spreets:
To be honest with you we are shocked by the response from spreets as they sent the coupon codes to us just before close of business yesterday.
Our IT department is working feverishly to implement these codes on our system all day today!
The contract we have with spreets is that coupons will be ready from Wed 24th Aug, it was a typo on spreets behalf on their add that said coupons available from 22nd Aug. I am happy to forward emails to and from Spreets to your email address to show you exactly what has been said.
So just one question - even if Spreets has messed up why do you leave it to the day the offer closes before programming the coupon coding, let alone testing?