Even consumer advocates like me get duped every once in a while. That is what happened when I recently dealt with the California after-market auto company called Andy’s Auto Sport.
We are taking a trip to Florida and wanted to put all our luggage on a secure rack for the 1,510 mile trip to Key Largo.
When checking the Internet I put in the make, model, and year of my car and found what I thought was the perfect product at a very reasonable price. The ad from Andy’s shows a photo of my car with the basket and the ad further states that it “fits on all vehicles.”
Wrong. The brackets that fit on the cross bars are 29 inches apart, which my car required spacing of 26 inches.
So one set of brackets fit and I had to use tie downs to attach the second set as shown in the photo below. The photo on the side shows how it is supposed to look.
I contacted Andy’s, expecting them to apologize since I placed the order over the phone and was very specific about what I wanted for what vehicle, but that isn’t what customer service or manager Jim Dell said. I was told that it was my fault for not reading all the fine print and that if I wanted to return it I would have to pay for the $50 shipping fee along with a 10 percent re-stocking fee. Great customer service.
A new management philosophy has apparently taken over the company and the folks are attempting to make amends.
Eric Ferguson, the president of Andy’s Auto Sport, contacted me recently and reimbursed me.
He promised to also contact all others who have been cheated and left comments on CtWatchdog.
This is his statement:
I know this response is very late for many of you, but better late than never.
Up until the recent past, the customer service given by Andy’s Auto Sport has not been consistently great and I’m truly sorry for that!
That said, we’re working hard every day to change that and have made tremendous progress just in the last few months. Here are some updates about customer service efforts:
1) We no longer charge credit cards until we have validated that the part is in stock or otherwise unless we get explicit permission from the customer to wait for a backorder. This means if your order can’t ship right away, then you’ll hear from us right away and you can decide whether to wait for the backorder or cancel.
2) We have a new management team in place as well as new reporting tools and target metrics. We now focus very carefully on responsiveness. At the time I’m writing this, we boast an 85% call success rate and respond to emails within one business day more than 90% of the time. This is dramatically better than what we were accomplishing at times in the past, and we are still getting better.
3) We went through a staff-wide re-training. Our customer service and sales staffs have now gotten a more formal education about our policies and procedures, and are better trained than in the past. They’ve also been reminded what our satisfaction guarantee policy is and how to make sure we honor it.
Many of the comments here and on other public review platforms helped lead to these improvements. It doesn’t make poor experiences from the past any better, but at least your feedback has helped lead us to positive change for our company.
If anyone has an open concern that was never satisfactorily addressed by Andy’s, please contact me directly or leave a post here and I’ll make sure it gets resolved.
Andy’s Auto Sport
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