Bazaar Disappointment

Recent Shelves and Recent BooksCommercial regret is a common fixture of WalMart. But you expect that. Their suppliers are the lowest bidders. And next year, they’ll charge less or WalMart will not continue doing business with them. After a while, these suppliers end up paying WalMart not to sell their products! Or at least that’s how it worked for my uncle’s company.

And I guess I shouldn’t expect any difference from Target. Except for a slightly more stylish demographic.

I’m just getting tired of feeling used.

I ordered 4 sets of bookshelves from Target. They were having a sale. Not only were prices reduced, but for most furniture there was free shipping. Except for my choice. $20 apiece. Which brought the shelves to $55 each, which was their pre-sale price. But if you look at it that way, it magically turns into free shipping, but without a sale.

Unlike WalMart, Target doesn’t let you order stuff over the Innernet, avoid shipping charges,  and pick it up at a store. This was an Intertube-only purchase.

When the 4 sets of shelves arrived, one set was broken into pieces. The Target website made it clear: they don’t replace damaged goods. You have to return it for refund, and order another in a separate transaction. And the original shipping cost is not refunded. But you can avoid the cost of shipping it back by taking the damaged item to your local Target store. So I did.

When I ordered the replacement shelves, they were no longer on sale. If you add in the shipping on the original broken shelves, I paid about $95 for my 4th set of shelves. The first 3 were $55 each (shipping included).

The replacement shelves arrived today. I’m afraid to unbox them. If these are broken and I order another set, the price goes up to $115. That’s just too much, even if it does mean I no longer have a matching set of folding, stacking shelves.

I think that Target has missed an opportunity here to have a happy customer. And they are set up to do this by default. It’s like they don’t realize how self-righteous and vengeful people can get when they start feeling a little bit ripped-off.

Which reminds me of the local appliance store charging me $18 for a thermal fuse for my dryer, that you can buy online for $3. I was expecting them to charge me maybe $7.  They must have really got ripped off by the shipping charges!!!

I’m not even going to mention buying that $28 loose-leaf Bible, only to find that there’s an extra $25 charge for the 5-ring binder that will fit it.


UDATED 2011-04-18

Unpacked the new shelves. Yup, they’re broken. The screws in some hinges split a big hunk of wood off. But since I can’t afford to send these back and try another set, I glued them. Then I noticed another crack that someone had put some wood putty in, and didn’t do too good a job with it.

So my advice is: don’t ever order anything from unless it has free shipping, or it’s just not likely that it’s going to be broken in transit. Small plastic items should be safe.

About Lyle Verbilion

I'm just wanderin' around lookin' at things. Wow.
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