The Home Depot #CustomerServiceFail – Part 1: To be continued…

I am so disappointed with The Home Depot and their customer service.  I am even more frustrated about their lack of willingness to make their customers happy!  I will continue to post their responses (or lack thereof) to let everyone know how the Home Depot treats their supposedly valued customers.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • The Home Depot does not match their website prices in their store for the exact same item BUT they will match competitors websites in the store! (How messed up is that!)
  • The Home Depot touts great customer experience and seamless store/ecommerce practices, yet fails to deliver
  • The Home Depot will not empower their customer service to correct problems, yet they allow their store managers to turn customers away by refusing to match online pricing
  • The Home Depot does not honor ALL American veterans (but they’d like you to think they do)

I hoped that the executives at The Home Depot would live up to their promise of their omnichannel retail strategy between online and offline purchases and their customer service levels written about in the following article:

Home Depot Took Omni-Channel Retailing Straight to the Bank in 2016

But alas, they have failed to epic proportions.

Within this ongoing conversation with The Home Depot customer service team, I simply want the same price in the store as on their website for the exact same item! It should be easy, right?! Their policy right on their website is to match competitor’s prices, and they state, “Nobody beats our prices!” – There should be an asterisk there “*except our own!” Even more bizarre, IF this item was in stock online, I could order it for the lower price and pick it up IN THE SAME STORE THAT REFUSED TO MATCH THE PRICE!  Is anyone else seeing any logic here that I am missing?!

(As you read the email string with customer service, it is important to note that I did gain clarity on their veteran policy.  Not all veterans are eligible for their 10% discount.) You are only eligible if you are:

  • active military or reserve
  • retired military (i.e. if you made the military your career)
  • a disabled veteran
  • You are not considered an eligible veteran if you served our country for a period of time with honorable discharge, even during war time, and left to pursue other careers.

That is fine.  It is their corporate policy. I now have clarity.  However, what bothers me is that The Home Depot uses the bait of a military discount in their marketing materials as a blanket for all veterans regardless of level of service, making it sound like they are some corporate advocate for all veterans that served their country.  I find it quite misleading, especially since even the employees have confusion over this policy as stated below:

From the Mailbag: Home Depot Discounts

So this may be the first post of many (hopefully not)  in an ongoing saga to just get what I deserve; I want the same price in the store as what is posted online for the exact same product. Simple.  Below is the first segment of email exchanges that started with The Home Depot Social Media Team (TeamSocial@HomeDepot) that read my original Tweets from @SAHDblogdotcom, followed by the responses from their customer service representative.


TO: TeamSocial@HomeDepot.com

Hello,

Below are the details for the problems I’ve have with your Raleigh, NC store #3634:

I was trying to buy a workbench/tool chest for my father-in-law for Father’s Day.  The one I wanted is online for $249.  It shows out of stock online but available in store (Internet#206842295) Husky 46”, 9-drawer workbench.  I called the store and they had two in stock, however they refused to honor the internet price and tried to charge me $298 (list price). I asked to speak with the manager – she would not get on the phone and only go through the employee.  The manager refused to match the price saying that Homedepot.com is a separate entity from The Home Depot retail stores.

I then brought my father-in-law to the store to look at it and at LEAST get his military discount since the store would not honor the online price.  He had a VALID Veteran Administration card, but apparently was a couple of years old and lacked a “ServiceLink” number below his name, so the clerk and (apparently) the head cashier/supervisor refused the 10% military discount – even though he uses that form of ID all of the time in Buffalo, NY.

The lack of consistency and pricing is extremely frustrating! 

Those were the two major issues at the store, making customer service issues a minor thing in comparison (like a bunch of employees standing around trying not to make eye contact so they don’t have to help you!)

If you would like to discuss this further, please feel free to call me:  919-xxx-xxxx

Thank you!

<<<Responses and replies from Home Depot Customer Service Team:>>>

On Jun 8, 2017, at 11:20 AM, ALEXIS  <customer_care@homedepot.com> wrote:

Hello,

Thank you so much for contacting the Home Depot. So sorry to hear that the store would not meet the online price of the husky draw workbench. However when it comes to the Home Depot store pricing, and our online pricing it would be the store management’s discretion on whether or not they will make a price adjustment. When it comes to the military discount this discount is available to active-duty, National Guard and reserve, retiree and disabled service members, and their dependents, such as children and spouse.? Cards acceptable are Common Access Card (CAC) •Verify Military affiliation on card

•Uniformed Services ID Card
•Veteran’s Identification Card (VIC). •Must state “Service Connected” for disabled veterans.?

I am sorry for any inconvenience that this may have caused you. We thank you so much, and have a great day.

Alexis B
The Home Depot – Customer Care
Resolution Expeditor – Social Media
Phone: 800-654-0688, ext. 77540
ref:_00D50JUFY._50050vaQNp:ref

Of Course I am not letting it go at that!  What kind of brush off tactic have they told her to use??!!

Hi Alexis,

So what I understand is that veterans who served our country, were honorably discharged, and risked their lives for our safety do not get a discount at The Home Depot unless they are disabled or retired from a full military career?

Also, I find it VERY unacceptable for a corporation to not accept online pricing in their store for the EXACT same item online.  Your explanations are not a resolution to the problem.  A resolution would be to match the price at the VERY least.  This does not make me happy as a customer, so I encourage you to do something to make this work for your customer’s satisfaction.

I look forward to your resolution.

Chuck

On Jun 8, 2017, at 2:11 PM, ALEXIS <customer_care@homedepot.com> wrote:

Hello,

Unfortunately these are policies that I am unable to override. It is managers discretion if they would be willing to price match any online price, and the military discount is a set policy. I am so sorry for the inconvenience. I will be sure to informed our leadership on how you feel about this situation. Thank you so much, and have a great day.

Alexis 
The Home Depot – Customer Care
Resolution Expeditor – Social Media
Phone: 800-654-0688, ext. 77540
ref:_00D50JUFY._50050vaQNp:ref

And again, the brush off.  Time to take it up a notch:

Alexis,
I understand the Military policy, however there is no reason to have a store manger override corporate customer service.  Please escalate this to your supervisor.  I look forward to a reply from someone who has the authority to take care of their customers.

Chuck

I will continue to post the responses and resolutions as they unfold!

 

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