So, today my friend Bruce gave me a call and told me that Best Buy had a 42″ 1080p LCD HDTV on sale for $796.99. In fact, he had just come from our local Best Buy in Frisco, TX where they had 17 of them in stock. He said it looked pretty good, and recommended that I get one.
So, of course, I blew about 30 minutes looking at the Web site and eventually placed an order online for in-store pickup. Before doing so, you have to choose a local store and it checks availability. (Clearly I did this, and placed the order.)
Flash forward to this evening, when I finally get around to heading over to Best Buy to pick it up, and lo and behold – no TV!
I had taken my receipt with me to pick it up, but hadn’t checked my e-mails since I ordered. Luckily, thanks to Ian Clarke I had changed my personal e-mail over to G-mail and was able to check it from my Blackberry right in the store. It was at this point that I put all the pieces together…
After I checked stock and placed my order, BestBuy sent me three e-mails.
First they sent me an e-mail essentially saying “thanks for buying a new TV!”… and would you like some fries with that? The e-mail offers me:
- Wall Mounts
- BlueRay Discs
- PS3 / Xbox
- Home audio systems
You can’t blame them for offering the upsell, but after I saw this I figured I’d ignore anything else than came through.
Thank you for shopping at Best Buy. We have received your order, and it will be processed as soon as possible.
Then about 30 minutes later they sent another email essentially stating… Oops! Sorry, you’re SOL! We actually don’t have that item in stock. HOWEVER, feel free to give us a call and if you still want it we’ll ship one to your house. More specifically their language was:
If you still want this product, call us toll-free at 1-888-BEST BUY (1-888-237-8289) to check product availability at a different store or to have the item shipped via free standard shipping. Please contact us within 8 days to choose one of these options. For faster service, tell us the order number when you contact us.
Now, I’m a little upset because I’m learning all of this while I’m standing in the store waiting to pick up my $800+ purchase. But I figure, “Oh well… they’ll ship it to me.”
So I call the phone number they tell me to call and speak with a Best Buy representative who basically proceeds to tell me that they are out of stock in all the stores in my area (though this afternoon they were IN stock when I ordered), but the really good news is that they can’t ship it to me either!
Yeah, that’s right. The lady tells me that the system says that I don’t live “in the delivery area”. Of course, I’m 4.5 miles from the store, in the Dallas metroplex… but I guess that doesn’t matter.
So she cancels my order, because it can’t be fulfilled, and suggests that I try to reorder it from another department who can actually deliver it?!? And then I asked her who the heck that would be before she hangs up on me, and then she decides it is her.
So, she is going to bravely try to slip my order through the system, and she takes all of my information again, and then at the end of the process tells me that she’s sorry, but she can’t re-order the TV for me!
So, here I am. I wasted a couple of hours on this. Best Buy sold me a TV they didn’t have, then offered to deliver one to me, but apparently lied about that, and finally they cancelled my order with no plan to do anything about it. Worst of all, no one I spoke to seemed to give a shit.
I will never make another purchase from Best Buy online again, because you can’t be certain they aren’t lying to you about having the item in stock. At this point I feel like they just allowed all of this to happen so they could get me into the store, and maybe I’d go ahead and buy something else.