The following chat came about when I noticed a UPS sticker on my front door, saying a signature was needed to receive my Zappos packages. Not just a signature, but a signature in front of the delivery person, who, was there earlier and could not drop off my items because of a random case-by-case policy, as you'll read when I inquired:
Customer Chat (Zappos)
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Thank you for chatting it up with Zappos today, my name is Jordan R and I’m happy to assist you.
Jordan R: Hi Scott, I can take a look.
Jordan R: Do you have an order number I could reference?
Scott: Thank you
Jordan R: Thanks for the order number. I apologize for the inconvenience. PayPal requires us to have a signature requirement on large orders as a means of verification.
Scott: Why was I not notified of that policy?
Jordan R: There is no set dollar amount, it is done on a case by case basis. I'm very sorry about that. If a credit card was used it would not have been a problem.
Scott: I would not have ordered from Zappos had I known that was the policy. How would I have known to use a credit card to avoid this?
Scott: And a case by case basis is also unacceptable. I was expecting to have these items today.
Scott: Additionally, I don't even have the option to sign the UPS form authorizing delivery without signature. It says a signature in front of the driver is required. Totally not acceptable.
Jordan R: I apologize for the inconvenience. PayPal has very strict rules that we have to follow. UPS should reattempt delivery tomorrow, or I can have the package returned to us and we can issue a refund for the order.
Scott: I am not home during the day.
Scott: If I had known of such a ridiculous policy, I would a) not have ordered from you or b) at the very least, ordered less just to receive delivery without a signature.
Scott: I don't care if the rules are strict as long as they are indicated to me.
Scott: And that they are not arbitrary. A case-by-case basis does not even sound legal.
Jordan R: There are many factors taken into consideration. I'm very sorry about that.
Scott: Your company has required a signature. How would you like me to sign for this while I am at work?
Scott: At the very least, you could have chosen the option that allows me to authorize them to drop it off. But it requires a signature in front of the driver. How is this practical? How is this meeting my expectation as a customer?
Jordan R: I understand it may be hard to be home during the day to sign for the package. I can definitely have the order returned to us if you would like so UPS does not keep trying to get a signature.
Scott: Additionally, as soon as your company knows this is what I'm going to have to go through, why not send a notice to me, so I am not fooled into thinking I would have it on time, which I am now not getting.
Scott: This is absolutely ridiculous. So I get no clothes, and if I would like my clothes, I have to stay home from work all day and hope I'm here when the UPS guy is here? These are clothes - not a flat-screen TV.
Jordan R: We do send an email with the tracking info, which depicts that a signature is required. However, there is no separate email regarding the requirement. I'm very sorry.
Scott: Absolutely unacceptable. So if I cancel the order and then re-order in several shipments, there's no signature required? Not to mention the fact that it's not even a lot of money. Your can-do-no-wrong service team needs to make this right.
Jordan R: If you place a smaller order or use a credit card the would not be a signature requirement. However, both UPS and PayPal have a say in the matter as well.
Scott: Smaller order meaning financially? It is a small order.
Scott: And if UPS and PayPal have a say - that's your company
Scott: company's problem in setting expectations.
Scott: This is ludicrous. How would i even get this delivery if I wanted it? I don't see how.
Jordan R: Unfortunately, Zappos and PayPal don't consider that a small order. I'm very sorry.
Scott: Your team needs to make this right. Cancelling the order is not making this right. It's getting you off the hook.
Scott: Oh, so Zappos does have a say?
Jordan R: The policy was set inconjuction with us and PayPal.
Scott: And, I thought it was a case-by-case basis? Which would mean you arbitrarily decide who gets inconvenienced.
Scott: Yes, you and Paypal. So YOU could have come up with a better way.
Jordan R: It is not arbitrary, as I said there are multiple factors taken into consideration.
Scott: For example, allowing me to sign the UPS form and allow the driver to then drop it off on his next route.
Scott: And what are those factors Jordan? And, again, why don't you set the expectation with a user?
Scott: How can you remedy this Jordan? I need a solution. Not poor defense of what happened.
Jordan R: Unfortunately, since this is a PayPal order we have very limited options. We are not allowed to change the shipping address for PayPal orders so I can't change the address to where you may be during the day. The only change I can make to the current shipping is to have the package returned to us.
Jordan R: I'm very sorry, I'm not trying to let anyone off the hook.
Scott: This is an excellent example of when puppets, pizza parties and Halloween parades may seem "cool", but aren't real customer service.
Jordan R: If a credit card was used I could have changed the address and have it shipped to any address you may be at.
Scott: Who can I speak to further about this situation? This response is unsatisfactory.
Scott: Jordan, stop referencing a credit card - because unless you tell a user upfront that information - it is useless.
Jordan R: You can either send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or you are more than welcome to contact us by phone at (800) 927-7671.
Scott: Customers use PayPal without knowing of ridiculous rules like that. They think they are just paying for something.
Jordan R: I understand, unfortunately they have very different restrictions than a traditional credit card.
Scott: This is such poor service that you need a bright red banner on the cover of your homepage stating this policy.
Scott: How do we cancel this order Jordan? I will cancel first and then follow up on the service issue. I will also be sure to announce this online, as it is unfair to consumers.
Jordan R: I will contact UPS and have the order turned around right now for you. Once we have received the package we will issue the credit back to the PayPal account that was used.
Scott: That seems unfair to me. Why should I have to wait to have my account credited?
Scott: This is because of your lack of notification. i should not have to wait to be credited.
Jordan R: We would not be able to issue an advanced refund for an amount that large. I'm very sorry about that.
Scott: Where do the customer rights come into play here? This is starting to feel like a Better Business Bureau topic.
Scott: You can't deliver the order even though I paid for it? And you can't refund it even though I paid for it? Are you understanding how ridiculous and unfair that sounds? I mean, do you see the concern here?
Jordan R: I definitely understand your frustration. Many people are unaware that using PayPal can cause additional restrictions.
Scott: You need to make an exception on one of these policies. Either deliver it without signature or refund this today.
Scott: Of course they are unaware. You don't mention it anywhere in the experience of buying from you online.
Scott: User clicks PayPal - notification pops up - "Please be aware this will require your signature on delivery. If this is problematic, you should pay with a credit card.
Scott: That's all you have to do to alleviate this and not outrage thousands of customers.
Jordan R: I was referring to restrictions involved with using PayPal in general. Many websites have different policies for PayPal since the vendor does not have access to the billing information.
Scott: Anyway, your choice - change the delivery signature on this package or refund this today.
Scott: Jordan, you're making ridiculous arguments on something that makes no sense. You should be helping me. You are defending something illogical.
Jordan R: As a one time courtesy we can issue the refund back. Please keep in mind that we would have to wait for the package to reach our warehouse.
Scott: I continue to wait for that "all star Zappos" service to kick in
Scott: WHAT? One time courtesy? What are you talking about?
Jordan R: I am not defending anyone. I am only trying to help you understand why this happened so future orders don't encounter the same issue.
Scott: How is that a courtesy?
Jordan R: We do not normally issue refunds without actually having the package.
Scott: Refunding this now maybe - but refunding it when it returns to you - how is that a courtesy?
Scott: OK Jordan - I need you to be clear, because you're not doing that now. WHEN would you refund this?
Jordan R: The refund will be issued today, that is the courtesy I was referring to. When you asked why it was a courtesy I explained that it is a courtesy because we normally have to wait to receive the items before a credit can be issued.
Scott: And yes, you were defending this poor system. You continue to argue. I will make sure this gets investigated.
Scott: Refund this now, Jordan.
Jordan R: As I said I will issue the refund.
Scott: As far as worrying about it happening in the future, I think we both know that won't happen.
Scott: That snotty attitude will get you fired. Especially if I call up Zappos. I have connections to the CEO, and I will use them.
Jordan R: I apologize, I was only trying to make sure that I was being clear.
Scott: There is a difference between clear and rude. You crossed that line a couple of times. I was certain when I contacted Zappos, someone would figure out a way to actually help me. This wasn't any help. What about the whole legend of the guy calling and wanting a pizza, and Zappos actually did it? I guess those days are gone.
Scott: The Zappos service thing has become a myth, it seems.
Scott: Anyway, yes, refund this now and let's move on so I can order from another business.
Jordan R: I'm sorry. I would definitely have had your ordered delivered if I could either lift the signature requirement or change the shipping address. However, we can't do either of those things with PayPal orders.
Scott: Yes, I'm pretty sure you said that. My guess is if someone higher up got involved, they could make sure I got my items without a signature. You and I know this is possible.
Scott: It's funny. If I'm spending so "much" one would think I'd get it when and how I want it. But if I spend very little, I get that. Sounds like a backwards way of working. Good luck with that policy - or at least not being upfront about it on your web site.
Jordan R: I actually spoke with a supervisor to see if there was any way we could get around those restrictions. I really do understand your frustration.
Scott: It's OK. I'm not frustrated now. I feel good knowing to avoid this company now. So, that's helpful.
Scott: Have you taken care of this refund?
Scott: And, where can I check to see it was taken care of?
Jordan R: I have already sent the refund to PayPal. I am not sure of their timetable for posting refund transactions. You may want to contact them to find out exactly when it will post into your account.
Scott: OK, thank you for an absolute mess of an experience. This will become very public, as I don't want others to go through the same thing. You and Zappos were given every opportunity to make this situation better. You chose not to do so.
Jordan R: I understand, and I apologize for the inconvenience.
Scott: Trust me when I tell you, people will begin changing their opinion of Zappos' service.