Food & Gourmet
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"Successful transactions in-store v. an overly "pretty" site backed by benumbing, ineffectual, feckless customer service... brass tacks, yadda yadda: Teavana is a great alt. to Adagio Teas--in regards to product quality, but really only if you can access their brick and mortar locales. Just one "first online order" FAIL with them makes Adagio's online processing infinitely better by comparison.Beginnings...A superb discount on an item is announced via the ML, I stumble upon it (others flock to it), check for it in person, at a store--negative, and check again online; it's listed as "in stock". Sweet. Mind you not just a generic "in stock", but "in stock" for the *specific* quantity I desire. They go to greater lengths than others to split hairs; but, s'okay. The appropriate amounts are selected--a Stupendous deal, all is tolerable with S&H, and then oh... no Paypal, but orders can be placed sans acct registration.Fine, do it, charge the card. But, a PASS on the reg: zero incentives is enticing how...? Also becoming an "affiliate" isn't a customer benefit, but a job for shills, thank you.Anyway, done; hooray for a successful transaction... or so I think. How could I not? The server sends me an email confirmation with clear details. The domain for orders is apparently different from those (subdomains) used for list emails, but both types are received without issue, so all should be fine.Or so I think.Lot of nothing for those tallied business days; "nothing" being nothing BUT more useless specials, updates, publicity dross and nothing regarding my order, shipping, et cetera. I just want. My. Order. BEFORE investigating--much less acknowledging--anything they deign to label "therapeutic" or "mysterious" or "dream"-worthy... christ.A full week passes, more blah, another week. A thought: they could be back-ordered, so what gives? Then, busy for awhile, forget for half a week. And then a wake-up call arrives in the form of a stupidly titled ad in the inbox--in a new month.The inquiry to Teavana's customer service results in this:"Uh... [tap tap tap] uh... well, it was canceled.""Oh? Why?""We're out of it, uh... it's discontinued.""But it was listed as 'in stock' when I ordered.""Yeah.""So...?""Well... uh, there's no more now."".........*so*, why wasn't I notified?""Uh... [tap tap] um... yes. You were: we sent a confirmation, a shipping notification, back-order notification, and then a cancellation notice.""Wha--when?""Uh... [dates]... [pregnant pause] [date]... yeah, so you should've known already.""...But I only received the confirmation email. Are the other three from different servers? And why would there be a *shipping notice* if the item is later back-ordered?""Well, uh.... [tap tap] did you check your um, spam folder?""Yes, I have my email filtered appropriately; it targets the address used to order from your site. My question is about the servers, do you know if they're from different servers?""Um... [tap tap] well... hrm... okay, see, we have mail from a different place for newsletter emails. And... for our orders and stuff, it has to say... "teavana.com".""Yes. I know that already. But I'm asking about the shipping, back-order, and cancellation emails. How can I get the confirmation email and then NOT receive any other important, order-related emails?""Uh... well sometimes, people don't filter their email right, and the order information gets sent to spam, or the trash, you know.""Can you see the address that I used?""Uh... [crickets segueing into silence]""Are you still there?""I uh... [tap tap] ...have to pull up the order, again.""Alright.""[long pause] What's your order number, again?""[order #(@%$*&?!)]""Okay... um... let's see... okay here it is. It says [email addy].""Yes. Do you see now *unique* it is? How it's *tailored* to your specific site?""Hrm... yeah?""I filter for that.""Okay... well, like I said, the order emails all have Teavana.com in them...""That's not my point--""...so they come from there."(OMFGKMWAFSB)To avoid additional grief in reliving this inanity, here are several established points:1) Customer service cannot change the email that you have for an order or the mailing list. You need to register first and then do it yourself. (Fair enough.)2) No interest in paypal; no reason given. But if you want to say something about it, feel free to post a comment in their blog, or whatever. (Warms the cockles watching them give a damn.)3) "In stock" doesn't mean an item is actually in stock. (So... hey, surprise! Lies! Unapologetically MORONIC.)4) Even if you get an "order shipped" email, they might renege it by saying that an item/order is back-ordered later. (But of course, I only have the word of that rep to rely on since I couldn't actually *read* any of those three missing emails.)In toto, you can suggest changes all you want to a rep--THIS rep, and there will be statements of the obvious and a dire lack of apologies for the BS, e.g., time-wasting-teeth-pulling session, lip service, false advertising, retarded behavior, technical errors et al. Apparently, they don't feel the need to improve customer relations to bolster sales... which goes to show you how much better Adagio Teas is--on so MANY fronts--even if their steepables aren't always on par with Teavana.They are overpriced, and are thus worthwhile--if you're even borderline thrifty--ONLY when they have extra special deals; the kind that incites hordes of rabid enthusiasts to snatch up every last oz of fragrant ____ in the name of... decadence? At this point, I can't tell you if the quality truly warrants that degree of crazy, but know that anything online (that's available in-store) SANS a discount is overpriced in a spectacularly stupid way. Affiliate my ass.If a discounted order is ever RECEIVED, this post will get an update. For now, the walk-in locations seem best."
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