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Sep 9, 2009
Sep 9, 2009
good merchandise, not-so customer-friendly
I've always loved LL Bean clothing and decided to bite the bullet and buy myself a new winter jacket and pair of boots, primarily for walking the dog in NE Ohio, but also for sledding - hence I also wanted a winter jacket for my son.
When I got the catalog, I thought, heck, why not upgrade my old (boys, discount store, paint-stained) sweatpants? I decided on almost $500 worth of stuff, but right next to my LL Bean catalog was a Lands End catalog, with an offer of FREE SHIPPING, no minimum order. Hm, I thought, I'm sure LL Bean would be willing to forego the $13 shipping charge, right?
I was sort of stunned when I called and the customer service rep said NO, sorry, we don't have that deal.
I've saved my cart with nearly $500 in merchandise, I explained. Is there ANY way to waive the shipping fee?
NO, she repeated. Sorry, she added as an afterthought.
OK, can you tell me if any of the stuff in my cart will be on sale in the next month or so?
She acquiesced to look up a couple of items, then said rather grumpily, look, nothing new this season is going to be on sale until January. (Not true, my jacket was already on sale, I pointed out gently.)
Twelve hours later I purchased the jackets and boots - but not the other "nice to have" items. Total sale? Less than half the original price. So for $13 shipping, LL Bean lost nearly $250 in sales today. And made me less of a "raving fan." ("Raving Fans" is a book about customer service...maybe someone at LL Bean should read it?)
I still love LL Bean quality, don't get me wrong. But this experience made me less brand-loyal, to say the least.