Monday, December 29, 2008

Poor Customer Service = Missed Sales at Christmas and Year End by Zales "The Diamond Store"

Dear Zales,

I am writing you to say I am upset with the complete lack of courtesy or customer service that I have received on my last two visits to your stores. I was treated as if I were an idiot and on top of that I was called a liar by your sales associates.

Over the past year I have made several purchases at the Zales in the WC Mall in my town. I purchased jewelry at this Zales for my mother, all three of my past mother-in-laws, all of my nieces, my sister, sister-in-law, my own children and on several occasions I have made impulse purchases for myself. In May alone I purchased my children’s birthday presents, my nieces birthday presents, graduation gifts and a few Mother’s Day gifts.

On August 15, 2008 I went to Zales to purchase a watch battery. When I returned to the store after a shopping excursion around the mall I decided on impulse to also purchase a ring. The young redheaded girl behind the counter (maybe 16 years old) was extremely helpful, very cheerful and in training. A heavy set woman with blonde hair was doing paper work near the back of the store. She stopped what she was doing to show the young trainee how to ring up the watch battery, the ring and print out my warranty.

In October one of the small stones surrounding the large stone of my impulse buy - fell out. I was in the GM Mall in my town and thought since I was shopping there that day I would drop off the ring to be repaired. The sales associates laughed at me! They said I did not buy this ring at their store and I was not in their system so I couldn’t possibly have purchased this ring at any Zales.

I was irritated by the treatment I received from the sales associates at the GM Mall but figured I would just take the ring back to the Zales I purchased the ring at the WC Mall the next day. I dropped the ring off without issue. Since I would be without my big ring for a week or more I decided at the last minute to purchase another ring to wear in the mean time. I enjoy new things.

On December 9th I received a post card stating that my ring was repaired and ready to be picked up. I called the store the morning of December 10th to make sure it was ready since I planned on stopping by during a lunch hour shopping trip to the mall. What should have been a 5 minute transaction turned into an hour long ordeal.

When I arrived at the store I gave the sales associate the post card I received in the mail and told her I was there to pick up my ring. I also gave her the ring I bought on the same day I dropped the other off since it required the main center stone to be tightened as it was actually jiggling and making a clicking noise when I moved my hand. She pulled out a small yellow envelope then asked how I wanted to pay for the repair for the first ring? I was surprised since I was told the warranty would cover the repair when I dropped it off. I explained to the blonde associate that the ring was covered under warranty. I was laughed at by your sales associate who also sarcastically told me “Not only did you Not purchase a warranty for this ring but you did Not purchase This Ring at This Store or any Zales. If you Had you would be in our system.”

I explained every detail of my purchase as mentioned above and showed her which case and shelf the ring was in when I purchased it. She still insisted that I did not purchase the ring from any Zales let alone the one I was standing in. I was getting extremely irritated at this point. She asked me for my home phone number, cell phone number, my past address, current address, how to spell my first name, how to spell my last name, was I Sure it was a Zales store and not some Other store in the mall. To which I said to her “Did you Just call me an Idiot? I know which case and shelf the ring was in when I purchased it and every detail of the transaction! Not only have you Not found this sales transaction you Only seem to have Two sales with my information” At this point other customers started to leave the store.

Since there was only 5 minutes left of my lunch hour I said “Fine, I will pay for the repair which is more than the cost of the warranty just so I can get out of here and get back to work. I Will return later With my paperwork and I will expect an Apology AND a Refund!” The sales associate Laughed at me and said “You could save yourself a little money later on if I actually purchased a warranty on the ring today.” I was so angry I couldn’t speak! I had already purchased the warranty and she was still insisting that I purchase it Again! The sales associate said “Fine when she took my credit card to process the purchase.” After ringing it up she gave me my ring. While I looked at my ring I noticed one of the stones on the side of the band was PINK not Clear!

It wasn’t even the stone that was to be replaced! I questioned this and the sales associate obviously had enough of me so she passed my ring to a younger associate and said “Walk this customer out of the store and keep hold of this ring while she looks through the loop in a different light.” This was My ring and I had already paid for the repair. Why on earth would she need someone from the store to hold on to My ring?

After stepping a two feet out of the store the young sales associate and I both saw there was some sort of red either in or under the stone that looked pink. The young sales associate showed the ring to the blonde associate who had been very rude to me the whole time and mentioned the red coloring. The blonde associate cupped her hand over the young associates ear and whispered something to her. Then the blonde associate said to me in a very irritated voice “Instead of repairing your Other ring we are going to give you a New ring exactly the same and write up your other ring as damaged merchandise. Our manager will be here on Thursday IF you want to pursue this matter further. That is all, no need to do anything else today.” She was so over me being there. She was trying to help another customer while I was talking to her but she shooed me away. I took the new ring and my repaired ring and left stomping mad.

After work I went home, took the original receipt and warranty out of my jewelry box and stomped my high heels through the mall over to the Zales store. As I entered the Zales store the blonde associate was still there and talking to a family. I walked up and said nothing, just stood there for maybe a few seconds. She turned around, smiled and with the fakest cheer said “Hi, how Are you?” I told her “I do Not appreciate being called a Liar, treated like and Idiot or asking to pay for a warranty I had already purchased.” The family she was talking to left the store immediately and she said while smirking “I never called you an idiot or a liar.” She started to walk away and blow me off when I pulled a very familiar looking black flyer in a clear envelope out of my purse. The associate didn’t even blink when she turned on the Charm routine. She never apologized but did credit my card in the same amount that was charge to me during my lunch hour for the repair.

While reviewing my original receipt and warranty she noticed the number or something that indicates who rung up the transaction. Apparently it was a trainee who had only been on the job for two or three days. She called her off her break and reprimanded her in front of me for ringing it up as a cash sale and explained that was the reason my name and information did not come up on their computers. I told the blonde sales associate that I already knew the person who assisted me in the purchase was in training and told the young girl it was Not her fault since the heavy set blonde (a different blonde) rung up the transaction as part of her training. Now I am thinking the rude blonde associate not only lacks customer service skills but also the skills to work as a team player nor would she be someone I would want as a co-worker. I am not saying this to have her fired but maybe she needs some training in the proper ways of business.

After hearing that the sale of this ring was rung up incorrectly and the fact that only Two of my sales actually showed up in the Zales Database at ONLY the store of purchase I asked about the many, many other sales transactions I had made during this year. What if my relatives dropped off something for repair or to resize a ring I purchased for them? I gave them the warranties but what if they had the same problem I did? It would seem like I gave them a fake warranty! That was unacceptable to me!

The blonde associate explained to me that no matter what the warranty number would be available on all purchased warranties and would come up on their database. I was confused since I did purchase a warranty on every piece of jewelry I purchase be it from Zales or another jeweler. How is it that my name, phone numbers, address and all other information is printed out on my warranties but it does not exist in your databases for the many, many purchases I have made this year?!

The blonde sales associate said that every warranty is stored in the database and to complete the database for all of my transactions I would need to bring in every sales receipt and every warranty I have purchased over the past year. Do you Know how Embarrassing that will be for me to ask nearly every member of my family to hand over their warranties because the jewelry store I purchased their many gifts from doesn’t have any record of the sale or warranty??? That makes me look extremely cheap, that I did not care where I purchased their gifts from or at the very least that the company I selected to purchase from might or might not have the information in the system when they Need a service from the warranty! That same company might or might not honnor the warranty or worse ask for money on top of the warranty!

Before I left the blonde sales associate said “If you are still thinking of telling the store manager about this whole thing don’t worry about it. I will fill him in on everything.” The way she said it I just knew she would only cover her own butt and not explain the whole ordeal.

When I returned to work from my lunch hour to pick up my repaired ring I was Very upset and told every co-worker about it! I told my family and my out of state and out of country friends about it! I was Very upset! I told them the next day what had happened that night when I returned with my paper work and how I never received an apology after showing Proof that I Did Purchase the ring from that very store AND the Warranty! I was still upset about it Today when another co-worker whom I only see from time to time mentioned how Customer Service has gone down hill. I explained my whole ordeal with your store to her. She was appalled and said she would have contacted corporate about the situation and that I was nicer than I should have been!

For those of my friends who were at ITS the first ring I dropped off was the big ring I wore at ITS. The second ring I dropped off for repair was the one I bought to wear at the Happy Hour on Black Friday.

I refused to purchase ANY of my Christmas gifts from Zales Jewelers as a result of this mess! I took my business to the other jewelers in the same mall who didn't have the attitude problem.


Butrfly Garden said...

Oh my gosh! I can't believe what horrible service you received!!

We bought both my engagement ring and Mike's band at Zales and haven't had any problems, but we've always gone back to the same store. We actually wanted to buy our rings at a chain store over our local jeweler because we wanted the warranty to transfer no matter where we went.

And honestly - I dont' know anyone who buys that much jewelry, hon! :) They have huge problems if they're not retaining customers like you!

Whiskeymarie said...

I hope you sent a letter to corporate- in these times, with people spending less- it would serve them well to not be jerks. I sent a letter when we had a ridiculous debacle with our new couch & they sent me a pretty big gift card as an apology. Send a letter!
That second blonde salesgirl that treated you like this deserves to be fired. Twice.

Raezin said...

That's absolutely appalling! I do hope you at least mentioned the whole ordeal to the store manager. Cheeky prudes do not belong behind jewelry counters!

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