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


Anonymous said...

I tend to accept this as part of dealing with a discount, online-only store. In today's world you're not likely to get top-notch service at bottom-line prices.

You want great service? Buy from a local retailer with a good reputation, even though it costs more.

Anonymous said...

Not defending but when a company caters to the amount of people that this company caters to there is bound to be an issue or two.

This is the one thing that I disagree that the Internet has become, a place where people can vent their frustrations with companies they feel have wronged them.

We agree that the time of year the amount of transactions on the Internet soars. If one person does not get what they think is the deal, service or fulfillment they thought they were entitled too, they can start a blog and soil a companies name because they basically cheated their community out of the tax dollars they would have had to spend if they spent a few dollars more by purchasing the item locally.

Don't get me wrong because I do purchase though the Internet but when something goes wrong I don't start a blog and whine about it.

Buy local both Brick and Mortar and online!

Anonymous said...

I feel for you bud. I ordered from on the 10th and it sat as sent to wherehouse until the 14th. Then it was shipped. Well just today does the fedex tracking show it being picked up. It has a delivery date of the 21st. So here's hoping.

Sancho said...

i had the exact same problem, except i ordered TWO of the RCA home theater systems. im following your steps and they say ill get them before christmas, thanks for the advice and the corporate phone number!

Anonymous said...

See the reviews of at

I bought something from them once, never again. It took almost two months to actually get delivered.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely, I've aa same problem with you. But today, Fedex receive it. Let's trust one more time. Maybe there's something wrong with the warehouse!

Huy Le said...

I have a same problem with you. But to day when i see in the status of Fedex, they're shipping my order. I dont know what wil it be, but maybe I will trust at them once more time. But if I dont, I will do as possible because I'm a student. I dont have as much money for them to take.

Dreamfly said...

You are not alone. Your experience is very similar to mine. Their customer support is so bad that I had to look up their support number on other sites. Of course my emails never got answered. This is so different from where they will call you back IMMEDIATELY. Not able to keep the promise to deliver by the 24th of Dec is not acceptable. According to Fedex, mine will arrive on the 26th and I bought it on the 11th.
I won't buy from them again. Let the words out, BUY.COM is a bad place to buy.

Ariel said...

This company sucks big time. I also had bad experience with them, and wrote about it on my blog Keep on the good work, and Don't!

Aaron said...

I received my speakers in less than 2 weeks. Sorry to hear so many orders got jacked up.

Eolande said...

People should read this.

Ron said...

Any company can make mistakes and I'm sure some people have problems with almost any company. What makes so bad is that they don't even respond to problems.

They failed to honor their refund policy on a defective item I purchased from them. Making matters worse they have not responded to any of my emails (except for automated responses that they will get back to me) and their web site gives no phone numbers for customer service.

Out of curiosity I did some web searches on the company and have found lots of bad reviews and several other web sites like critical of them. Unlike what some of the comments say there is no need to avoid on line purchases. Many other web sellers do provide good service and are worth buying from. Hopefully sites like this will help spread the word that is one place which it is not safe to buy from.

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