Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Subscription Box Customer Service

Customer Service is one of those items that doesn't really matter...until you need it! Subscription Box customer service is sort of a beast unto itself in the fact that customer's can't really return items but, I'm sure the problems and issues are never ending. I myself have found myself contacting several companies regarding my current subscription boxes. Needless to say, some customer service departments are better than others!

So far I've only dealt with probably 50% of the customer service teams for all of the subscription boxes that we order. Here are a few notes in case customer service is a deal breaker for you. I should probably give a short description of what I consider to be customer service. First, how easy is to solve problems on my own? Second, how easy is to figure out who to contact? Third, how quickly does customer service respond? Fourth, how many times do I have to follow up and/or respond in order to get a resolution? Finally, what is my satisfaction with the resolution that was provided? I know that these are mostly basic questions with the exception of number one. Some folks consider any resolutions that they have to figure out for themselves to not be in the realm of customer service. However, I am of the belief that customer service for subscription boxes begin at the website FAQ and/or account page. I don't really want to have to contact anyone and complain if it's an issue I can fix myself. So, based on this criteria, I've come up with a list of good and not so good customer service teams.

Club W: Hands down the best customer service team I've dealt with in the subscription box world. I got a bottle of wine that I absolutely hated. I went to the Club W FAQ page and found out that if I let customer service know I wasn't pleased with a wine that they would "make it right". And they did! I sent one email and I got a response within hours that my account was going to be credited the cost of the bottle of wine I hated. Awesome! In fact, their website says that you have to return the bottle of wine but Club W didn't make me do that to ensure my satisfaction.

Glossybox: So-So customer service. While their website is pretty extensive the back customer service is so so. When I signed up for Glossybox I forgot my coupon code for the percentage off of my entire subscription. I contacted Glossybox within minutes of my sign up to rectify my mistake. They responded the next day. However, they were unable to credit the money back to my card. Instead, they sent me a free box. Awesome right! Not so much when I opened the box and there was a broken item inside. I contacted them again and never got a response. Hence the rating of so-so.

Boxycharm: Pretty good customer service. I received my very first box from Boxycharm and had an issue. There was a box that was supposed to have an eyeliner in it. However, the box was empty! I contacted customer service to fix the issue. They responded back to me the next day that they would check the weight of my box. Then I heard nothing more on the issue. I was just about to contact them again when my next box arrived from Boxycharm. Not only did I have my current beauty items in the new box but, they also included the eyeliner that was missing from my previous box. I wish they would have sent me a message to expect that but, I was definitely satisfied with the resolution!

Birchbox:Good customer service. I got a broken item in one of my boxes so I contacted customer service. Customer service responded within a few hours. I had to send them a picture to prove them item was broken (I'm sure they get complaints like all the time that aren't valid but, still found it annoying that I had send in a picture). Once they had received the picture it took customer service a few days to respond. Once I did have a response the agent let me know that they were replacing the item but they no longer had stock of the one I had. They were getting more but, it was currently backordered. As soon as more stock came in they would send out the new version. It took about 3-4 weeks to get the new item but, because I was aware of the issue I wasn't worried about the timeline.

Try The World: Awful customer service. I went to their website to figure out when I would receive my next box and to find information about my prior boxes. The premise of Try the World is that you get food boxes themed around a specific location. The boxes come with recipes and other information about that location. However, I lost my recipe card so I was hoping to find some info on the website. The website, while beautiful, is kind of a black hole. And when I went to my account information it shows that I did not have an active subscription. WHAT???? I just paid for a six month subscription in November. I have contacted customer service to resolve the issue. So far the only response I've gotten is that this is bigger issue than the general customer service can resolve and they're moving my request up the ladder. Other than that, I'm still waiting. Beyond that, I waited almost a month for my first box (and my two freebie boxes) to be delivered. When I contacted customer service about the issue it took them a week to respond and they wanted to know if I had received my boxes yet. By then I had so I feel like they got my email and put a rush on getting my boxes out to me rather than admit the mistake and have to offer some kind of resolution to issue.

Beauteque: Sub par customer service. Sooooo, this is my first experience with using CrateJoy as a middleman. I can't say that I'm super impressed so far. I signed up through CrateJoy but the owner of my account is Beauteque, the actual subscription box provider. However, when I go to my account information there's nothing in my Beauteque account. And Cratejoy doesn't even keep track of subscriptions from a subscriber's end. There's not even an option for finding my subscriptions. So far Beauteque has responded that I can expect my first box in February and directed me to their FAQ page on shipping and subscription boxes. But, they did not respond about my account information issue. I finally figured out that there are 2 parts to the Beauteque site (which isn't really clear and I think is a side effect of Crate Joy running the subscription side of their business). However, in Beauteque's response to me about my subscription they failed to mention this fact. ARRRRGGGGHHHH, sooooo frustrating! And I haven't even gotten my first box yet! This makes me pretty sad because I was really looking forward to this new box!

So, as you can see I've run a pretty wide gamut with subscription box customer service teams. I'd love to hear from you guys about your thoughts on the subscription box customer service teams you've dealt with! It might push me into ordering a new box!