My wife spent a good amount of time researching the deals on the Internet and the fliers in the newspaper before ordering a collapsible canopy for our trip to the beach this summer. She found the best deal on Sports Authority's website.
The canopy is the 10 x 10 E-Z Up Dome II Instant Shelter with Roller Bag to haul it. She ordered it on a Sunday the 13th. The website stated - "Guaranteed to be there on June 19th or it's free." Perfect, because we were leaving on the 19th.
She went to the website to track it that week and it showed that it was not going to be delivered until the Monday the 21st, past the guaranteed date. Suck 1. She immediately called customer service to complain. The representative said she didn't purchase it until the 15th, which is untrue, she purchased it on the 13th. She was able to prove this with the credit card information. Suck 2.
(Update) After speaking to a customer service MANAGER, she confirmed that we did indeed call on the 13th.
The customer service representative apologized and said that we would have to call back on Saturday to initiate a claim to get our money back. Suck 3. He then informed us that we would not be eligible to get our shipping charges refunded. Suck 4.
(Update) After speaking to a customer service MANAGER, she initiated the claim for us and we did not need to call ourselves. Additionally, our shipping charges were refunded.
However, we need to leave for the beach on Saturday, which will require us to call from the car on the Eastern Shore where there is spotty cellphone coverage with printed information about our purchase. Suck 5. (see previous update)
Now we have to drive around this week to different places and buy one in person (while toting the kids) and most likely pay a higher price. Suck 6.
(Update) We went to Dick's Sporting Goods in Columbia and purchased our own canopy for about $79 and it was actually really nice and of high quality.
Additionally, when looking up the information, I found 2 different locations on the website for the identical product with 2 different prices. One is for $112.49 (item #2780798). I'd link it, but the link will be stale soon. The other item is $97.49 (Item #2417313). I read the details and there is no difference. Suck 7.
(Update) Sports Authority discovered that they had the same item posted twice on the website with 2 different prices. The incorrect prices was being removed from the site.
So, it appears that the Sports Authority has a master plan for going out of business. This master plan consists of misinformed customer service, offers that are not honored (or extremely difficult to file a claim against), and inconstant website information.
Do you think they will get any more of my business? Probably not. Should they get your business? If you're smart you'll avoid the Sports Authority at all costs. However, let it be heard that if you complain and get up to the customer service manager, you may be able to get your issue resolved.