Sunday, August 3, 2008

What AT&T can learn from K-Mart

I've taken enough blogspace already with this AT&T fiasco so I promise this is my last post unless something really interesting changes (like AT&T come back to me with their tail between their legs.) But this contrast was so strong, I just had to comment on it.

AT&T lost me as a customer because they refused to follow through with a promised $200 credit on a $2,040 contract ($85/mo times a two year commitment.) That's a 9.8% difference in total money received.

Today, I went shopping for some shop towels at K-Mart. They had bundles of two towels with a sign over them that said $2.99. I grabbed 3. When I got to the check out, the bundles rang up as $5.99 a piece. I went to customer service. The customer service person looked at the display, came back, rang out the difference and handed it to me. My wife asked "did they not enter the right price in the computer?" The customer service person replied, "No, I think the sign should have said '$2.99 and up' but it didn't." And that was the end of it. No one even suggested I might think about paying the proper price. It was their error and they ate it. The only reason they even mentioned that it should have been a different price was because my wife asked.

Now, your probably thinking that $9 or so is a lot less then $200. And it is, BUT retail runs on percentages and the percentages are what matter. And K-Mart took a nearly 50% loss on those towels because they made a mistake and they were willing to take the consequences of their mistake.

THAT creates customer loyalty. If AT&T had that attitude, I'd still be an AT&T customer.

On another note, I posted a note on the IPhone boards pointing to my blog about the AT&T experience hoping someone from Apple would read it and reconsider their partnership.

Well, after about 60 people clicked through and read my story someone from Apple DID read it... and deleted it. So much for thinking Apple might care how AT&T treats it customers.


quarkie said...

1.) I certainly hope this doesn't surprise you.

2.) K-Mart, in particular, is known for incorrect scanning of prices (always check your receipt!).

3.) The CTO shops at K-MART??? :)

4.) Glad someone got it right.

5.) No, I don't particularly like K-Mart or AT&T.

6.) I'd be curious to see what the sign says tomorrow...

Michael said...

I've ran into doctors (established practices, not fresh out of med school) shopping at is still money no matter how much you make.

CyberQat said...

precisely :)

These towels were for taking cat urine out of a carpet. Why spend more on them?

A good shopper knows the cost/value ratio of everywhere they shop and makes their decisions accordingly. :)

I don't shop at WalMart though because I have issues with some of their politics and do not want to support it with my dollars.