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could've been

i am constantly being smitten by online stores. i'll be googling something in particular and the next thing you know, there's a store that i can't keep away from. then i browse their inventory until i either become totally sick of it or come to terms with the fact that i may never order anything from there. you can occasionally track this via my del.icio.us account. one day a store will be there, one day it'll be gone.

there's a toy store i discovered a while back when i was on the hunt for kitchen toys. it was really cute and charmingly set up, so i bookmarked it and would occasionally root around through all the cuteness.

well. i placed a gift order today and i very stupidly made an error in my billing address. (i won't go through the details because this could turn much rantier than i want it to be.) i realized it immediately and sent them an email pointing out my error and apologizing for it.

now... customer service can make you or break you (to use a cliche that i abhor but find embarrassingly useful) as a business. i removed this store from my del.icio.us bookmarks about half an hour ago, but i won't name it because it's still a nice little store. but really, this was just plain irritating.

when i received my confirmation notice after the order went through, i sent them an email, referencing the order number their system provided to me.

about half an hour later, i got an email from them, but it was just an acknowledgment of my order with a different order number. raising an eyebrow, i responded within five minutes, pointing out that i had just sent them an email -- cutting/pasting the text from my previous email -- and mentioning that i had listed a different order number.

an hour later i got an email to call them.

so i called. the girl was nice enough. very cheerfully she launched into her little spiel about the problem with the billing address. when she paused for a break, i pointed out that i had already sent them two emails and did they not receive them? she umm'd and uh'd a bit and admited that they hadn't checked their emails since this morning. but, that said, they had had the time to CALL a phone number i had listed (the phone number of the intended recipient -- yay, surprises). not that i have a problem with phone calls, but i had clearly contacted them before they contacted me. she saw the emails, recovered from her embarrassment and very cheerfully said that all was well and she'd make the corrections. at least she didn't play dumb and say she never got them, which i appreciated. however, there are so many online toy shops out there, so i probably won't frequent this one ever again.

now look, i understand that this is probably a small operation. it's not target or amazon. but when you have an online store, doesn't it make sense to check your email?



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