The Weekly Gripe

Debenhams Direct online shopping disaster

This is my experience of shopping through the website of this major uk (high street and online) department store.  I feel that I have been treated badly so please consider this review and do a little research before parting with your hard earned cash.

I ordered a dress from Debenhams Direct and the money flew out of my Visa account in seconds.  I was promised a 4 to 5 day delivery so after day 6 with no sign of the goods I started chasing.  As there was no contact number, I decided I'd email them.

11 days later I am still e-mailing them and I get various responses.  These range from 'thank you for your e-mail which we will respond to in 4 days', to 'the courier company has lost your dress', 'the courier company reported your dress damaged', 'we have no idea where your dress is', 'we have ordered you a replacement', 'your dress is in transit', 'we are an internet service so we cannot call you', 'thank you for your e-mail we will respond in 4 days'.

Debenhams Direct Online Shopping - Buying a dress! The best one was 4 days ago when they supplied a telephone number that guess what... did not work!  Eventually started e-mailing them a couple of times a day in bold text, asking for a refund as I had to find an alternative dress.  I printed all the e-mails out and sent them to Debenhams Managing Director (1 Welbeck Street, London) suggesting they reimburse me my hourly rate for the time I have wasted on this order including finding another dress.

Telephoned their head office on 0207 408 4444 by going through directory enquiries.  They ignored my question whether Debenhams Direct is outsourced to people who cannot speak English and therefore are incapable of making a phone call in the interests of customer service.  After some fairly blunt talk on my part, they contacted Debenhams Direct and organised a refund (18 days after placing the order) and only because I was not about to take no for an answer.

How stressful?  My experience with Debenhams Direct, it is the worst online shopping service I have encountered.  Not once did they think to contact me and tell me there was a delay.  They seem to think it is OK to leave a customer dangling with no information for 17 days plus... just madness.  Don't they have processes in place to deal with lost/damaged goods and contacting their customers?  It's not rocket science!


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Jim

What a despicable company Debenhams Plus is... I purchased a washing machine over the phone for my daughter's engagement present. Payment was taken out of my account immediately... after failing three delivery dates & umpteen phone calls later I was sent an email stating that the advertised item was a discontinued line!!! Strange., as it's still being advertised on the Debenhams site, not only that, but the same model is for sale in other stores but at a higher price? Apparently I can have a refund... but every department I'm switched to is the wrong one!!! Don't shop with this cowboy outfit... EVER!!!!
6th Nov 14 08:11

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Darren

What a dire excuse for service. So let me tell how this company operates. After being a Debenhams customer for over 15 years and spending nearly £12,000 on our wedding alone we decided to order some appliances. This is for a new house we get the keys for soon. We saw a great deal on a Hotpoint washing machine. We ring up but our Gold card won't be accepted over the phone. Ok after one hour of ring what seemed like everyone we were told to go into store and buy a gift card and purchase it that way. Ok off we go into london to buy said gift card. Order the item to be told we are customer ten of ten machines we will see our item on Friday. Great - sadly the matching dishwasher is not available so we order that from Argos is seconds. Alarm bells should have gone off. Two days later a phone call - sorry that machine is discontinued you will need to order something else? Then an hour later no its not its delayed. So after another hour we select the higher spec model as by now Argos have delivered our dishwasher. Congrats Argos!!. So its £20 dearer - we are told pay or cancel "your choice" after another 20mins they say no we go halves - we pay another £10 and told this one is the one its in stock will be there on the 14th(2 wks). Two days later guess what?! No it's also delayed (the recommended one that was in stock "ready to go". So now we find out that Hotpoint is a (and I quote) disaster and just the mention if there name at Debenhams Plus brings chaos to there colleagues. Note: stop advertising them at cheap prices then!?. So I ask the colleague what can be done, I have a matching Dishwasher in my garage delivered as promised and no washing machine. They assure me a call back within hours, nothing. They promise a customer service manager will call me, nothing. I have tried calling them, nothing. I even said well refund my card so I can take my business elsewhere as a gift card is now useless given you can't supply the products you promise or even recommend. You guessed it - nothing. So as I sit here I have no machine, no contact, no refund, no hope of getting my order. This company used to be market leading in service and quality. Debenhams disassociate themselves with Debenhams Plus and refuse to even offer advice of who to contact. Totally shocking. Avoid at all costs regardless of price or promises - there are companies out there regarded as entry level retailers who are a country mile ahead of this business. Debenhams join a long list of dinosaurs in the retail sector like BHS, C&A etc. absolutely shocking - avoid, avoid and avoid.
1st Aug 14 09:08

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Mrs R

I ordered 2 bikini tops online 4 days before going away. I PAID THE £4.99 FOR NEXT DAY DELIVERY - did not arrive even though their 'order status' said it had been dispatched. Rang customer services who said I would definitely get it the following day - NO SHOW! I had to travel up to their London branch and had to make do with another size. Have come back from my holiday and still no delivery 12 DAYS LATER!! Rang customer services AGAIN who do not know what has happened with the order. I have demanded a full refund including the NEXT DAY DELIVERY CHARGE AND MY TUBE FARE. WILL NEVER USE DEBENHAMS ONLINE AGAIN!!
22nd Jul 14 01:07

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Unhappy ex customer

Purchased a Lorus wrist watch, from Debenhams online, for my Husband, to celebrate, our 20th Wedding Anniversary, sadly what should have been a special moment was completely ruined, because Debenhams sold me a watch that was not only broken, but had been previously owned with links removed, found previous owners guarantee in box, which shown it was purchased on 27.11.2013 in Llandudno. To add insult to injury, Debenhams were not the slightest bit interested in what I had to say, customer service was absolutely dreadful. They insulted me by offering a £10 gift voucher!!! Debenhams say it was a mix up in the warehouse! How do customer returns get mixed up with new stock? My experience with Debenhams has been shocking; I feel they have not given a satisfactory explanation, I feel that as a customer, they should be held accountable for deceiving customers into buying second hand goods, it would have been impossible to get this item mixed up with new stock, it was in used packaging, obviously from previous customer when returning the item.
9th Jul 14 05:07

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Apno92

I have just spent two hours trying to place an order on the Debenhams website - all to no avail. Their payment systems just don't work and it's absolutely infuriating. Expect they wonder why they're doing so badly - i for one (along with many others it would seem) won't be buying from them again - despite the fact I've just acquired a brand new storecard. It's going straight into the shredder.
19th Apr 14 12:04

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John

This may have been mentioned already, but for those who are thinking of still buying something from Debenhams Plus despite all the bad reviews, the "Plus" branch of Debenhams is run by Buy It Direct who own companies such as Laptopsdirect and whom also have an extremely notorious reputation for basically everything that has been said. Just plain avoid and spend a bit extra on a product from somewhere more reputable.
12th Apr 14 10:04

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Help help me wonga

I recently had a refund on my store card purchase that was a couple of days past the due date after my complaint to Santander. I was informed that there would be a charge if this happened again. I did phone Debenhams to complain but they refused to put me through to anyone. I have let the matter drop although I thought of complaining to the managing director. I have however now received a statement from Santander saying that I owe them 0.01 pence and another letter in the post to say that they are raising the interest on the outstanding debt. I have no idea what the new rate will be as I have no recollection of being advised of this in an earlier letter. I do not want to waste my money ringing them as there is no 0800 number and email appears impossible as I cannot fill out the required fields. This appears to me to be deliberate on the part of Santander to Make me waste money to clear this from my account. As I am very poor with my maths could anyone tell me at what point in the future I will have to sell my house to cover the accumulating interest at their standard rate purchases of 18.326% or cash transactions of 26.478 %
9th Dec 13 01:12

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irisheyes61

I ordered wallpaper on 27 nov ...one email telling me goods have been despatched...my first and last time shopping with Debenhams.....disgraceful way to run a business ....I need a job ...I am exemplary at organisation.
7th Dec 13 04:12

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Mrs B

I have just had a bad experience with Debenhams online which ended with me asking them to block my Debenhams card because I felt I had been all around their call centre with my life story to no avail I began to think I had tapped into another universe and had to pull out. I have since written to Debenhams complaining about my miserable shopping experience and they keep referring me back to Santander, the call centre. Can anyone out there tell me if Debenhams outsource their finance to Santander or to Santander own Debenhams? We should be told. Neither wants to help they just keep telling me to use the phone ... erm that would be the one that makes a profit then...
24th Aug 13 03:08

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TinaF

ordered a pair of trainers on 24/07/13, today after 2 emails they finally told me they had lost my order, im not happy with this service, i refuse to telephone about my query as its a premium rate but have to wait 3 days for an email reply, no proper apology and i have to wait 5 days for my money back! ,im not a happy bunny and am considering not using them again.
19th Aug 13 07:08

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Andy

I've sent my complaint to the CEO. Will update all on the response.
10th Jul 13 01:07

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Debenhams Fan #1

I had issues with an online order. Complained on the phone to Customer Services and wasn't resolved. Was told by them to email head.office@contactdebenhams.com and they've not resolved it. They told me to write to Customer Relations at 1 Wellbeck Street. I called there to find out how these teams all fit in and was told that the email address I have been given is for a team in Leeds, where the call centre is also based. The Customer Relations team in Wellbeck Street are different and are higher up than the other two and the only way to contact them is by post. Just thought that might help people if you're struggling with phone / email complaints. Will see if they can finally resolve my issues - not impressed so far!!
17th Apr 13 04:04

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