Walmart: customer service issues

According to a report from Bloomberg in 2008, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. ranked lowest among U.S. discounters and department store chains in an annual survey of customer satisfaction. Shoppers said they found less value in Walmart’s prices. The first issue encountered by Walmart is rude services provided by its employees. This can be seen in complaints plastered throughout online forums and web discussions. Forums can be a source of information because people voice out their experience and opinions without much concern due to the anonymous nature of the Internet. Websites such as ComplaintsBoard.com, Consumeraffairs.com, and ReportYour Complaint.com highlights a lot of issues involving rude Walmart employees.

Examples of rude behavior from Walmart employees: shouting at customers, accusing customers of thievery, managers avoiding customers, or even employees scratching customers’ cars. These petty issues may not be newsworthy enough, but it does not mean the customer service situation at Walmart is healthy. Besides rude employees, a lack of honesty can be a huge problem that can cripple the retailing giant.

As reported by Reuters, more than a dozen of Walmart stores were closed down in 2011 after accusations of the stores’ action of mislabeling ordinary pork as organic pork for over 2 years. Walmart was also fined for selling expired duck meat in China. These scandals can damage Walmart’s reputation. These stores’ actions are cheating customers into buying something of inferior quality. Long waiting lines is another problem at Walmart.

People often complain about the checkout service. Most of the time, customers complain about how they have to wait for long periods when there are plenty of empty checkout counters. Besides, customers also complained about slow checkout services. These issues are brought out through the Internet, once again. No retailer can guarantee that the merchandise they sell will be 100% defect-free.

This is why a return policy is needed to give customers a peace of mind. Retailers should always be ready to offer a new product for exchange when customers return a faulty product. Walmart hit the news in December 2011 when a mother and son filed a lawsuit against Walmart. The mother and son went to Walmart to return a television set after they discovered the television set they have just bought is not the model as shown on the box. Instead of getting a new television set, they were assaulted by the employees (Pavuk, Sentinel, and Weiner, 2011).

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