Customer Service: Can't we just be friends?

January 10, 2018 3 min read

Customer Service: Can't we just be friends?

We need to admit something, and it's something we at bulkthreads.com are proud of and wear on our sleeves--we're human. 

That means we bleed when we get paper cuts, we cry when our favorite sports teams lose to our hated rivals, we overindulge on pizza far too often, we love a good deal on everything we could possibly buy, and we remember that time our old high-school sweetheart said, "Can't we just be friends?" as we responded "Of course not!"  

Our humanity means we're customers too, consumers of the world around us and clients, patrons, and guests of a million different companies selling a million different products. 

That is, like you, we shop.  A lot. And since we love convenience and unbeatable prices, we shop online. 

But here's the problem: sometimes our shopping experience doesn't work out as well as he hope.

Take, for example, an experience I had the other day, buying a watch from an online retailer.  It was a present to myself for being so brave in the face of yet another terrible season for my beloved NFL team (who will remain nameless), and it cost more than a value meal at my favorite taco joint ($4.99). 

It was a beautiful, Swiss-made, automatic, and gorgeous watch.  And the price was good.  

But after 2 weeks of regular wear, I started to notice something odd: the beautiful blue dial of my Swiss-made automatic was starting to change colors.  In fact, it looked like it was bleeding paint.  What was once a gorgeous monochrome now became a splotchy multichrome. 

I checked the watch's manual, its certificate of authenticity, and the manufacturer's website.  Nothing anywhere said anything about the watch changing colors in sunlight, about the watch being some fancy new age "mood" reader, or the dial being multicolored. 

The watch was supposed to be blue, it was blue, and it was advertised as blue. 

And then it became mostly black and only slightly blue.  

So I did what any paper-cut hating human would do and contacted the company who sold me the watch and asked to return it.  The company, in turn, asked me to send them a picture, which perfectly showed my dilemma. I was confident they would understand how odd the situation was.  I was certain they would "go the extra mile" like their website promises.  

But then they sent me a return email, which simply said this: "Dear sir/madam, unfortunately we have determined the watch is not defective.  Sincerely . . ." 

What? 

I queried again.

"Dear sir/madam" (were they sending me auto emails?), unfortunately, we think the watch is not defective."

I checked their website again.  I checked the manufacturer.  I proved / determined / reaffirmed that I was right--it's a blue, monochrome watch.  It's not supposed to bleed paint.  

I emailed one last time, expecting another "Dear sir/madam," but this time . . . nothing. A week has passed now and the company has disappeared.  The watch cannot be returned, and I'm stuck with an expensive, defective, once-beautiful watch that teases me.  Can't we just be friends? 

That's not customer service. 

At Bulk Threads we believe in customer service, and we know that even the highest-quality name brand company like Hanes or Bella Canvas (or Gildan, or Fruit of the Loom, or Anvil . . .) will let a lemon slip through.  We try not to send those lemons out, but if we fail, we'll make it right.  

Of course, as a company we need to make money, so if nothing's wrong with the wholesale t-shirt, the polo, the sweatshirt, or the fleece, and you've worn it for a week and now want your money back, we'll probably have to charge a restocking fee.  

But if the tee's defective, we'll take it back.  We'll make it right.  We won't send you an automated "Dear sir/madam" email and we won't ignore you.  

You're a human just like us.  And we can be friends.  And we can do it through customer service that treats humans like humans, no matter what. 

Happy shopping,

Zach, the bulkthreads.com founder with a splotchy watch


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