So, I do a lot of online shopping. I like the convenience of it, not having to deal with shopping malls, queues and crowds, and being able to try on things on in the comfort of my own home.
I’ve used Suberbalist.com many times over the past few years, not always without issues (there have been a few delivery/pickup/order-related issues before), but overall not a bad online shopping experience. Well that was until my most recent order…
I had been given two Superbalist gift vouchers for my birthday back in December (and before my rant continues – THANK YOU so much to my awesome friends and colleagues for those – you guys rock!) – the one was for R500 and the other R650. I was super excited to spend them and browsed the site quite a bit before placing my order early Jan. The order was quite a big one because I bought some items in two sizes as I wasn’t 100% of the size. I’ve had an ongoing issue with the sizing charts and guidelines provided on the site and therefore buying 2 sizes allows me to try them both on & then send back the one that doesn’t fit. Anyways, that said – here’s a breakdown of my order:
- Cart Total: R4160
- Discount: R390 (there were some items on sale)
- Order Total: R3770
- Used two gift vouchers totaling: R1150
- Then paid the remaining R2620 on my credit card
Upon delivery, I tried everything on, kept quite a bit of stuff, but also requested a return for items that totaled R1685.06. This means of my order total of R3770, I returned R1685.06 of stuff, but kept R2084.94 of stuff… an amount well over the R1150 I had in vouchers.
When they processed my return however, they decided to take R1150 of that R1685.06 and put it back in my wallet and only R535.06 was paid back into my credit card. This means that I now in essence have to spend those vouchers again & that they’re getting double the spend on the same set of vouchers. Clever for them, but not so awesome for me, because now I’m forced to spend that money with them and only them.
They do state that gift cards can’t be refunded for cash (I get that). If I had returned everything, refunding that R1150 into my wallet would have made complete sense, but in this instance I kept almost double the amount of the vouchers AND paid the remainder on my card which is my money – not theirs.
If they had come up with some counter logic where they said OK your return value was approx 50% of your original order value and therefore we have to pay 50% of the voucher value back into your wallet… I still would have been irritated, but at least it kinda makes more sense than saying oh well, just because you returned some stuff and that value happened to be bigger than the voucher value, we have to assume that you didn’t end up spending your vouchers at all. I’m sorry – but did they completely miss the part where I kept R2084.94 worth of stuff!? And that R2084.94 is waaaaaay more than R1150!?
I dunno, but to me it just feels like super shady business practice and that they’re now just keeping my money ransom. I really just want them to PAY BACK THE MONEY. I paid the difference on MY card. I spent well over the voucher amount & therefore I should get MY money back.
Superbalist now makes it onto my list of top 3 SA brands that I passionately hate. Vodacom & Mango Airlines still beat them every so slightly, but rest assured that Superbalist now stands firm in my number 3 spot.
What are your thoughts? Have you experienced something like this too? What did you do about it? Did you get your money back? I just feel a bit helpless at the moment as they’re refusing to see my side of the story and they’re sticking to their generic “this is just our policy” response. Trying to reason with them has simply fallen on deaf ears… I spoke to two agents, one refund specialist (or manager of sorts) & it was escalated to their finance department. Everyone gave me the same response.
Because of that, I guess this post is my way of saying: Hey, this is not OK! And hopefully it will create some awareness to prevent others from falling into the same black hole with Superbalist.com.
UPDATE as at 1 Feb
So, the respone from Superbalist ended up basically being a big fat sorry for you, you agreed to the T&Cs… The two sections of the T&Cs that they referred me to are as follows:
Wherever you have used a Voucher to purchase a product that you later return for a refund in accordance with this Policy, we cannot refund you in cash for that portion of the purchase price which you paid using the Voucher, but we will credit your account.
I honestly don’t see how this clause relates to my situation. Like I mentioned in my original post, had I returned everything I would never have expected cash back. If they then paid the full R1150 back into my wallet, it would have made complete sense. The key wording for me here is the “for that portion of the purchase price” part. How exactly do they determine that none of the stuff I kept was “for that portion of the purchase price”. Can they read minds? See into another dimension perhaps? The math to me is still very simple: R2084.94 is greater than R1150. I kept my deal of the bargain and kept way over the portion of the purchase that was made with my 2 vouchers.
Because you used your wallet funds to its fullest extent (Before you proceed to checkout out with your cart), the rule with refunds is that we will refund the first payment applied onto the order at the greater value and the difference to the secondary payment method.
What they neglect to point out here is that this is kinda forced upon you. You see, the first thing you’re asked at check out is whether you have any voucher codes. So in this way they’re actually ensuring that the first payment method will always be voucher(s) which they then convert into wallet funds. Credit card will always be your second payment method and therefore they always win.
So ja, Superbalist continues to wow for all the wrong reasons. Just because something’s in your T&Cs doesn’t make it right from a principle perspective. Would an awesome brand not at least try to see where there may be a flaw in their logic? It’s actually really unfortunate because their attitude has made it very clear (well to me at least) that they really don’t care about treating customer fairly at all.
Superbalist has now jumped to the number 1 spot on my SA brands I passionately hate list…