I needed to order new disposable contacts.
I realized I was on my last couple of pairs. I didn’t want to go to my previous eye care provider since their salespeople, what’s the eloquent word?, oh yeah SUCK! The past few times they have been pushy and do what they can to get you to commit to a purchase. They speak all sorts of double speak when you ask about prices which just leaves you confused and fed up. I’d like to think it was just me but my wife has experienced this as well. I wasn’t going to give them my money again!
That brings me to 1800CONTACTS.com.
I heard all of the commercials and saw the ads online as well as heard great things about them from friends. I had to at least look into them, right?
Right off the bat I saw two things that interested me: Free shipping on online orders over $50 and they price match against other sites and take off an additional 2%.
Now, I usually check out a price in a few locations but this gave me a real incentive! Lo and behold I found my contacts on another site for much less. I was now armed with a price to see if they would match it.
One option the 1800Contacts.com site gives you is to have one of their people call you. You enter your phone number on the site and they call back. I did it and immediately got a call with very little waiting. A real person with little wait? Another plus! Ends up this person was located in Utah.
So I tell the woman that I was interested in ordering contacts and I saw a lower price on another site. I waited a few moments while she looked it up. (She apologized for the wait too, which wasn’t much. Another plus). She found the price and told me they would match it and take off an additional 2%. We were now looking at a price for 8 boxes of contacts that was less than what 1800Contacts and my previous provider offered! I’m real close to sold.
Remember that free shipping on online orders over $50? So I’m on the phone, right? Not online. I mention the offer to the woman and she said that because they were price matching they could give me the free shipping too. Nice!
The next step was to give her the prescription information on my contacts box and give the location of my previous provider who have my eye prescription on file (in New York your prescription is good for a year). She looked up the location and told me they would contact them for verification. Once that was done my contacts would ship out.
I felt really good doing business with them at this point.
The salesperson I spoke with was very clear and polite and did everything she could to help me out. This was how customer service should be handled. She even informed me that if my prescription should change I could return any unused contact to exchange with a new prescription. Now I didn’t have to worry that I might get stuck with contacts if my eyes changed (my eye prescription has leveled out so I wasn’t too concerned about my prescription but I have had to change brands). Now other places will take back an unopened box. 1800Contacts will take back any unopened contacts! This could save some money if my prescription changed mid-box.
This was last night. Today I received an email saying they contacted my old eye-care provider and were told that my prescription expired so they had to put my order on hold.
Remember how bad I told you the old provider was? They just didn’t want to give up my business. I knew my prescription was still good so I called up 1800Contacts to see what could be done. The new person I spoke to looked at my account and explained the situation. She then asked if I would mind being put on hold while she called my old provider. “Sure,” I said. I could always hang up and call back if it took too long. A couple of minutes later the woman came back on and said that my old provider had made a “mistake” (the mistake was bad service to begin with) and my prescription was indeed still good! They were giving 1800Contacts a hard time but the salesperson would follow up and get the prescription. For the trouble, she was going to upgrade my shipping, which was already free, to next-day shipping! Now I’m getting my contacts faster!
This, my friends, is customer service done right!
Let’s recap the positives here:
- They price-matched and took off an additional 2%
- They gave me free standard shipping
- They were pleasant and helpful at all times
- They took care of obtaining my prescription for me
- When there was a problem they let me know about it then resolved it
- I was upgraded to next-day shipping for my trouble (which wasn’t really trouble at all)
- Both customer service salespeople spoke excellent English and I didn’t have to repeat myself once! I’m all for cost-cutting but some call centers outside of the US have people that are very hard to communicate with. It may be cheaper for the company that uses them but it makes for a frustrating customer experience!
There are always options these days. We don’t have to settle for bad customer service!
What companies do you know have great customer service?
photo by Baston