Saturday, December 15, 2007

My Problem with Buy.Com

I purchased an RCA RT2770 1000 Watt 5.1 Home Theatre System and it seems has "lost" my order. I placed it on December 9th, almost a week ago now, after the status was "Sent to Warehouse" for a few days I emailed them to inquire about an expected ship date. After doing so I got a response that basically said "Sorry but we don't know." Obviously, being the holiday season, shipping time is of the essence. I was pleasantly surprised to see that my order had been shipped (according to on the 12th with an expected delivery date of today, December 15th. After tracking the order online via the FedEx website with no updates to the status (it's remained at "Package data transmitted to FedEx"), I decided to give them a call. I spoke to a representative from FedEx who told me "Yeah, that just means they printed a label so you'll have to speak with the shipper of the package."

I called, was on hold for roughly 20 minutes and then was forced to deal with someone from one of the infamous outsourced call centers. We managed to traverse the language barrier and after being placed on hold multiple times, she told me I had the option of a refund or a replacement. Well there's a reason I ordered the item; it was cheaper here than anywhere else, so why would I want the refund? In hind-sight, I may have wanted to go with option 2 instead. She issued me a claim number saying that they'd "investigate the matter and have a decision within 3-5 business days" and should the claim be approved, the item would be "shipped according to the option chosen at the time of purchase." Now we have a problem. I need this item by Christmas, in fact, I was expecting this item based on the free budget shipping option no later than December 20th if not a bit in advance of that date. After explaining my qualms with this to her, I was told there was nothing she could do and that "once a customer places an order we can't make any revisions to that order."

So, I asked to speak with her supervisor. As expected, I received the usual run around response, "unfortunately at this time you cannot, he's busy. However, you can schedule a callback if you wish." How long would such a callback take? "1-2 business days" So, after placing an order on the 9th, an email to the customer service department to check up on the item,'s attempt at deceiving me about the item being shipped, my subsequent call to's customer service, and my "claim" for an item that they've apparently lost track of, I was told I'd have to wait "1-2 business days" to speak with a supervisor to hopefully expedite my shipping, and "3-5 business days" for my claim number. As soon as I got off the line with the customer service representative from, I filed a complaint with the BBB and after browsing some online forums (including it seems that quite a few people have had similar issues with during this time frame.

This is absolutely ridiculous, and by far the worst customer service I've received. Although is famous for its specials, and low prices, I don't think I'll be purchasing from them again and I'd advise you to do the same. Naturally, the website for is and the full contact information is:
85 Enterprise Suite 100
Aliso Viejo, California 92656

(949)-389-2000 / (800)-800-0800

Note: You can email me at

Edit: 1. I called corporate today and have been assured that "someone's looking into the matter," so hopefully I'll receive my order by Christmas, seriously needs to work on their customer service.

2. Thanks to the Consumerist for the increased traffic, I just want people to be aware of what's going on at and what's happened to me and quite a few other people recently, my problem is not an isolated incident.

3. I realize I haven't updated this to reflect what happened but I finally received my order a few days before Christmas. After calling corporate and speaking to someone and referencing this blog and the number of hits that it has been receiving, my claim was denied and I received a "real" tracking number (meaning they actually shipped something, not just generating a label). Although I did receive my order before Christmas, I probably won't be ordering anything from ever again because of the large steps I had to take and the various hoops I had to jump through in order to receive sub-par customer service, I mean let's face it, I've gotten better customer service eating at a fast food restaurant than dealing with Obviously this isn't isolated to just my order, I've spoken with a number of people who either have experienced or currently are experiencing any number of issues with Whether you choose to purchase from them or not is obviously your decision, but I do think you should be aware of what does and how they operate before placing an order with them.

- James Weathers