Customer Service Isn’t a Priority

| October 19, 2010 at 11:30 am
Customer Service Isn’t a Priority

That’s actually a troubling trend. Good customer service should be a top priority, but many companies treat it like an afterthought.

Last week, I talked about the unpleasant shopping experience I had on the Papaya Clothing website.

I haven’t been impressed with their customer service in the past, but their customer service this time is really unhelpful.

Customer Service at Papaya: He Said, She Said

I asked why my order didn’t go through, then updated the question to say that using a different credit card worked:

I tried placing an order on Papaya. It’s for 7 items, $77.93, with free shipping. I’m paying with an American Express card.

Every time I tried to place the order, I got an error telling me the transaction has been declined. I tried doing it in Firefox and Internet Explorer and encountered the same problem in both browsers.

I’d really like to place this order before any of the items go out of stock.

Thank you for your help.

I finally placed the order. It worked when I used a different credit card.

For some reason, your system returned Error 2:2 transaction denied when I tried to pay with an American Express card.

One, that needs to be fixed. Two, when it denied my order because of the American Express card, the website should have told me that was the reason my order didn’t go through or it should have asked me for a different credit card. Not being told what the problem was is unacceptable. The Papaya clothing website’s shopping cart and checkout system is not user friendly.

Papaya answered:

Thank you for contacting Papaya Clothing. Our records indicate that your first transaction was declined. The charge you see on your statement is a PENDING charge. Please allow up to 7 business days for the pending charge to drop. Once it drops, the funds will be released back into your account.

Thank you for shopping with Papaya Clothing.

Customer Service at Papaya: The Negative

I don’t want this to read like a rant. I want this post to show companies how not to deal with customers. I’m going to list, matter-of-factly, what went wrong here.

Their response doesn’t

  • answer any of the customer’s questions.
  • tell the customer why the credit card didn’t work.
    • Is it a problem on the store’s part?
    • Is there something wrong with the credit card?
  • explain how to avoid this problem in the future.
  • address the fact that there were about ten declined transactions.
  • say that they will work to fix the problems the customer encountered.
  • apologize for the customer’s frustrating experience with the store.

Customer Service at Papaya: The Positive

I do appreciate that they preempted a future question about the PENDING charge, but their response makes it sound like that’s what I asked about and it’s not. I haven’t seen my credit card statement yet, so I don’t know if that PENDING charge is actually there or not.

I also appreciate that they responded to my question the same day I asked it. Unfortunately, since their response doesn’t answer my question, it really doesn’t do me any good.

The Bottom Line

A fast response does not replace a quality response. It’s better to take a little bit longer to supply the user with a truly helpful answer.

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