Electronics retailer Dick Smith is copping heat from angry customers on Facebook this week over claims online orders have not been delivered for weeks and customer service representatives have hung up the phone on customers who’ve rang to complain.
However, it’s not unusual for all retailers to receive higher levels of complaints at this time of the year.
Dick Smith rolled out a supposedly “mammoth” sale earlier this month, after opting to write down the value of its inventories by 20% or $60 million.
Along with deep discounts on older stock in its bricks-and-mortar stores, Dick Smith also offered shoppers a 48-hour sale from its online store.
But complaints posted to the Dick Smith page this week indicate some shoppers are not impressed.
Since Monday close to 100 complaints have been posted to the Dick Smith Facebook page, concerning issues with online orders that have not arrived, incorrect orders being delivered to customers, orders being taken when the stock is not available and tales of shoppers being left on hold for hours or being hung up on when they have called Dick Smith’s customer support line.
In some cases, customers have said they ordered via the “click and collect” function on the Dick Smith website only to be later told that the stock they ordered and paid for was either not available at the specified store or not available at all.
The retailer has responded to complaints and several Facebook users have posted follow up comments to say their issues have been resolved.
A spokesperson for Dick Smith told SmartCompany the company is “committed to very high levels of customer service and we take all customer feedback very seriously”.
“Our Clearance Sale is one of the largest in Dick Smith’s history and the level of customer issues has been well within norms for a sale of this size,” the spokesperson says.
“We continue to work very hard to ensure Dick Smith customer experience is the best in consumer electronics retail.”
Brian Walker, retail expert and chief executive of the Retail Doctor Group, told SmartCompany he hopes Dick Smith – along with other retailers – have not tried to cut costs in recent weeks when it comes to customer service.
Customer service should be a retailer’s number one priority during this time of year, according to Walker.
“This is the period where the culmination of the year’s work has to be put into place,” Walker says.
“Christmas trading is generally 25 to 30% of a retailer’s business in most categories. Dick Smith has faced significant enquiries by the market due to the downgrading of its share value.
“Getting the basics and fundamentals right is critical. The brand cannot afford too many other bumps on its journey.”
*This article was updated at 12.47pm on December 18 to include a statement from Dick Smith.