coresnfx 13:11 08 Apr 2006

I have just spent the last 3 days of my working life trying to sort out a total mess up with ebuyer. It nearly cost me a 5 grand contract and just to get a hold of a power supply, computer shell and network cable its cost over 18 hours of phone calls back and forth with ebuyer and city link. What i have found out is that ebuyer like any other company are good when things go well but when things go wrong with ebuyer is when you can see the cracks in their system.

Lets dispel a few myths. Ebuyer say on their site that products are coming from warehouses which suggests they are in control of their system however the warehouses have turned out to actually be completely different companies they are actually their suppliers! So if there is a problem with your product getting shipped out they have to communicate with a different company and so as to be able to answer more calls and hit targets the customer service operators fob you off with I can only see what you can see on your screen when you go into your account! So that they don't have to put you on hold and look deeper or call the supplier...

This also impacts on you getting your products all at one time on the same delivery. It is madness that these companies can't give you a ETA god it we can do it with airplanes from 1 side of the world to another why can't we do it with van's who have mobile phones and a call center to hand!!!

Anyway a lady at city link told me that 90% of the calls regarding ebuyer's deliveries are customers trying to find out why only part of their consignment has been delivered, ebuyer blame citylink but in actual fact what happened to me goes to prove the lady at citylink is right. The order i placed on Thursday lunch time was for a power supply, a computer shell and a network cable and i paid for priority next day delivery, i told the dood at ebuyer i need these items before the weekend and that it is an urgent situation. He confirmed to me that I would get the goods on Friday. How could he do that if he had no control over the situation, he was not seeing through that order... just passing it onto another company and low and behold... it all got really messed up.

On Friday i got told that i would be receiving the computer shell but that the power supply and cable would not arrive till Monday! i went ballistic - they had promised to get all the goods to me Friday and now i was being told NO repeatedly NO there is nothing we or you can do! I went on at the woman until she miraculously changed her tune and all of a sudden they were all being delivered to me, she said her manager had shown her how to go deeper into her computer... what the bloody hell was i being used for their training purposes... Anyway the citylink van arrived and what was on it NOT THE COMPUTER SHELL BUT THE POWERSUPPLY AND CABLE.

Back on the phone and i get told there has been a mess up and the supplier had sent the computer shell to Newcastle by mistake!!!! So after a morning of frustration it was not over i still didn’t have all the parts i need to fix my computer and i am back on the phone to now be told i have 3 options...
1/ cancel the order, pay for the item again and wait till Monday for it to be delivered.
2/ tomorrow morning go to city link in Kidderminster myself and pick up the box because if she gets it sent back from Newcastle it wont get there in time to get on the couriers van
Or 3/ cancel the order and get it somewhere else

  coresnfx 13:12 08 Apr 2006

AGAIN, TOTALLY GOBSMAKED AND THROWEN INTO A STATE OF ANGER. I was basically being told that there was no way for this company to rectify it’s mistakes and I was the one that would have to pay in some way for it.. There must be a law against this and there must be something out there with in the fair-trade acts.. I am about to find out.

It was incredible, at one stage, I just could not stop from laughing at them as I said are you telling me that between you, the supplier and the courier company there has been a muck up and I have to drive and pick up the goods from a courier company on your behalf, don’t courier companies work 24/7 delivering parcels and if you’ve stuffed up why can’t you get them or another courier company to pick it up and deliver it to me at your cost with a massive apology for wasting my time! But no you are telling me to go and collect it on your behalf… this is totally crazy… where do you get of on thinking you can do this?

I kept on at the girl on the end of the phone saying this is so not on and i would be writing reviews all over the internet about what they are doing so they better sort it out and low and behold for the 2nd time today another miracle she was going to do what needed to be done 2 hours before and that is, reallocate me with another computer shell and send it out to me with a Saturday delivery and they would re call the box in Newcastle and administer it... she said they don't and won't do it for anyone else (heard that twice in one day!) and muttered something about having to administer making sure I don’t get refunds and stuff.. which is so much work for their company – so what! if they didn’t make such stupid time wasting frustration making mistakes they wouldn't have to do it would they!

I made more that 18 phone calls to ebuyer yesterday and this is another thing to be aware of: they have 2 call centers, one is ebuyer staff and the other is yet another outsider, a contractor. You call 0845 146 1720 for customer services and the calls are split between two centers. If you are dealing with 1 person and need to get back to them you have to keep calling this number and take pot luck till you get the call center you want - THEY DO NOT HAVE A WAY OF TRANSFERRING YOU FROM ONE CENTER TO THE OTHER!!! Is this archaic or what?

I cannot believe I had to spend a whole working day fighting for my basic rights as a customer… What ever happened to fair trading? Has internet shopping completely disempowered the consumer? And is it there to feed the greed of business people making a fast buck without care or respect of the people who are inadvertently paying their wages and profits?

It would have been much less painful to drive 9 miles into Worcester to buy the 3 easy to get items on Thursday and not had to ruin my Friday and Saturday.. Ebuyer say on their site they 'At, our focus has always been on helping customers save time and money.' They say, 'It's the empowering, 24/7 self service approach that ensures we keep our customers satisfied, and our prices competitive.' and then they say, 'Our goal is to make each transaction as simple, efficient and effortless as possible.' WELL WHAT RUBBISH, THEY ARE NONE OF THESE THINGS - BEWARE!!

  dms05 13:45 08 Apr 2006

Understand your frustration. I once bought a w/s TFT TV from them and the product delivered did not have the same specification as the one on their web page. They did collect and refund but not the carriage. I later sorted that out to my advantage. However I formed the opinion they were very short of staff and this explained why they tried to duck the real issues - they didn't have the time.

I still buy from them but always tick the Super Saver delivery (ie 5-7 days) and product often arrives early.

In their favour I must commend them on product recalls. I bought an UPS from them and later they identified manufacturing problems that caused the UPS to overheat. They wrote to me, called me and didn't leave me alone until I made the potentially dangerous product available for return. I'm not sure many e-sellers would be so concerned.

  Forum Editor 14:16 08 Apr 2006

and it's pretty obvious that you're very angry. In fact, if you were as pushy and aggressive on the phone as you say you were I'm surprised you got anywhere at all with Ebuyer.

"Lets dispel a few myths"

Are you seriously saying that prior to this you actually thought that Ebuyer held all of the tens of thousands of items in stock in their own warehouse, just waiting for you to order them? Any company which did this would be out of business in a very short time.

Your naivety with regard to the logistics of picking a multiple item order and getting a courier to deliver it halfway across the country on a specified day is surprising - you obviously have little idea of the complexity of handling hundreds of thousands of such orders every week. That's precisely what companies like Ebuyer do, and most of the time they do it perfectly. I have been buying items from them for the past four years, both for myself and for clients. During that time I have placed 161 orders, all of which have been delivered inatct, and on time. Not once has there been a single problem. Maybe I've just been lucky, but I don't think so, I think that the vast majority of Ebuyers' orders are fulfilled in that way, but occasionally things go wrong.

It may be the courier's fault, it may be Ebuyers' error, or it may be the fault of Dave the picker at a warehouse in Solihull, it's anyone's guess, and you'll not get to the bottom of it by speaking to a lady at Citylink - your contract was with Ebuyer, and it is Ebuyer to whom you should be addressing your complaint.

You've had an unfortunate experience - it happens, and it happens with all suppliers. Ebuyer have an excellent reputation generally, and I think they would be the first to admit that their system isn't perfect. It's pretty good, however - if it wasn't I certainly wouldn't give them my business. I'm not quite sure what it is you're looking for here - as far as I can see there have been no contraventions of consumer legislation - but if it's sympathy, you have mine.

  LastChip 19:47 08 Apr 2006

If I were on the receiving end of a call like that, I would do as little as possible within the bounds of reason to help.

I, like our FE use e-buyer consistently and have had only a few minor problems, all of which have been amicably resolved.

If I were looking at a "5 grand contract", there is no way I would use any on-line supplier if the goods were time critical. For example, recently I had a rush job for a client which needed a spare part that I know I can buy for 99p. But this was time critical and PC World (just up the road) had the required part at £5.99p (that's not a typo!), but it was worth every penny to have the machine repaired on time and a happy client.

Horses for courses springs to mind.

  Totally-braindead 20:48 08 Apr 2006

You also have my sympathy, I won't repeat my tale of woe with Ebuyer, they made such a mess of things (it took 3 months to sort it out) that I no longer use them.

I have to point out, much the same as LastChip, you should have gone to the like of PC World if the item was so critical, I'm sorry things went so badly for you. But I would also like to point out as well that if you spoke to me in the manner that you said you did I'm afraid I'd hang up on you.

I don't like them and will not use them again, much the same as you perhaps.

  SG Atlantis® 21:00 08 Apr 2006

They made a mistake gave you simple solutions (end of your first part) and still it wasn't enough. You carried on issuing threats and "kept on" at them, I wouldn't be keen to help a customer that behaved that way. What's a couple of days, especially when you order online?

  spuds 13:17 09 Apr 2006

Like all similar companies in the same line as Ebuyer, they really on other service providers for most of the time. Expecting that a very urgent purchase is going to stop all other procedures, is thinking in terms of cloud cuckoo land. When a chain of events works well, then everything is great and fine, but any slight hiccup can course a whole disaster area.

Like others have stated, I too have used Ebuyer for many purchases without problems, in fact I can say that I am more than happy with the service they provide. I also purchase from other well known and some not so well known companies, and I would never deal on a basis that I must have the goods tomorrow 'without fail' or else attitude, as your post seems to imply.

  ened 13:45 09 Apr 2006

My advice would be :

If it is that urgent then pay the extra and go to PC World or other retailer where you can take it away.

  Forum Editor 14:26 09 Apr 2006

with online purchasing is that it does indeed tend to give us all the "must have it tomorrow" mentality. We live in an age when almost anything is avaliable almost instantly - at least if you can afford the price it is - and we tend to get edgy when told we have to wait. Even worse is being told that yes, we can have something the next day (or soon after) and then the promise isn't fulfilled.

The result is often the intense frustration that's being exhibited here, and to a degree I can sympathise.

Those of us who grew up before the internet spread its tentacles across the globe can remember mail order, and "allow up to 28 days for delivery"

Twenty eight days? Anyone who tried that on with an e-commerce operation like Ebuyer would be out of business in less than twenty eight days.

  dunderheid 10:06 11 Apr 2006

I have bought from ebuyer over several years, and never once have I had cause to complain about them.

In most instances I have received delivery within two/three days of ordering including weekends, and this with taking the cheapest delivery method on offer.

My only gripe would be that they could parcel up their more fragile items better.

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