Praise where praise is due
If your memory goes back that far, you may recall that I discovered Not On The High Street dot com back in January.
I like their site. Not just because it allows me to buy things which wouldn't be available on my local high street, even assuming I could stagger that far (although I'm not denying that's a big plus), but also because they provide a considered, sensible and effective method by which owners of small businesses can have their products brought to the attention of large numbers of people without having to bankrupt themselves on marketing costs. And, if you give me the choice between a chain store and a small independent, I'll go for the independent every time. Both as a matter of principle, and also because sole props of small companies make it abundantly clear that they actually appreciate and value your business. And, hey, I like to be appreciated...
This may all sound fairly familiar, and suspicions may be beginning to make themselves felt that I have run out of things to write about. But no. At least, not yet. No, I've brought NOTHS.com up again because their customer service has just impressed me mightily.
Over a month ago, I placed an order through their site with a particular supplier. (I'm not going to identify the supplier in question because I don't think that would be fair.) I waited and waited, and the parcel didn't arrive.
So I looked back at my invoice, and it told me that NOTHS weren't responsible for delivery, and that I should raise any problems with the supplier. Fair enough, I thought. So I sent an email. Which was immediately bounced back to me with an error message telling me the intended recipient's inbox was full.
On a nothing ventured, nothing gained basis, I contacted NOTHS direct.
They phoned the supplier.
They established that the supplier was having computer problems.
They apologised for the inconvenience.
They said, the parcel will be with you tomorrow: is that ok? (That was yesterday. It was ok. My parcel arrived this morning.)
They were charming throughout. They did not make me feel like a nuisance.
I will be buying from them again. Probably quite soon.
Call me a cynical old bat if you like, but I no longer expect this standard of customer service. (I firmly believe customers should get this level of customer service, and I will take my money elsewhere if I don't get it, but that's a separate issue.) Service of this standard should be shouted about: it's no good being the first to complain about poor service if you're not also prepared to praise good service and to tell other people where they can get it.
So. This is me telling you that you should have no qualms at all about shopping with NOTHS.com. If things go wrong (and I bet they don't go wrong very often), they will sort it out for you. And you can't say fairer than that.