Ordering from Sweetwater - My experience

Discussion in 'General Music' started by Alex, Sep 19, 2009.

  1. Alex

    Alex Administrator Staff Member

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    Since Sweetwater is a new sponsor for the Forum and website I thought I would order from them to see how the experience was. I can tell you that they may have a problem becoming one of the big boys if they keep doing things the way they are doing. Let me explain.

    I thought I would order something simple and inexpensive to start with. That way I could fly under their radar and get the "real" customer experience. I have ordered from other places before and I know what it takes to compete.

    1. How can they expect me to spend needless hours browsing around their website to find that obscure cable I want with one straight plug and one 90 degree plug if they provide me with buying guides that explain in great detail what each and every part is used for and how it works:

    http://www.sweetwater.com/expert-center/buying-guides/

    If that wasn't bad enough, they put together a simple cable finder that with a few simple clicks of the mouse had me zeroed in on the exact cable I was looking for in a few seconds:

    http://www.sweetwater.com/shop/cables/finder.php

    This is going to make things difficult for me to order the wrong thing and blame it on them when it arrives!

    2. Okay so now I order the exact cable I need and I sit back and wonder where in the process this is going to go wrong. It's only a cable, so it's got to be so low on their priority list that it will take weeks just to get this. I'll never get this cable I need. Maybe I should have gone to my local store. Wait a minute, the phone is ringing. I'll be right back.....

    That was Sweetwater calling. They wanted to confirm my order and let me know that everything is on track to be shipped right out. They went over the details of my order to make sure everything was perfect. They even asked me if there was anything else they could help me with. Boy do they have a lot to learn about customer service. Where were the rude people with the funny accents that read from a script? Isn't that how things are done these days? They are so behind the times!

    3. Well I took the free regular ground based shipping that was available on this item. They should put this on the truck and once it fills up it will make a bunch of stops and my little ole cable will get lost. Wait a minute, the doorbell is ringing. I'll be right back.....

    That was the FedEx guy with my cable from Sweetwater. Let's see, I ordered on Wednesday afternoon and here it is on Friday afternoon. Not bad for free shipping.

    4. Okay, things have gone great so far but now is the true test. Let me open up the box. Where is my cable??? First I see a large 2 page brochure thanking me for my purchase. When I open it up it is asking me to review the contents of my shipment and it is giving me the toll free number to call if I have any questions or concerns. Oh and if I need technical help there is 24/7 FREE online Tech Support. They also offer complete factory-authorized repair services for the products they carry.

    Next is my invoice. Besides detailing my order, I have the email address and direct phone number of the sales engineer who processed my order in case I need to complain about something (I have been looking for something to complain about but so far I haven't found anything).

    Following the invoice is a prepaid customer comment postcard so I can submit my feelings about this order.

    Finally, there is my cable. Just exactly what I ordered. EXACTLY. Just like it should be. Oh wait, there is one more thing. A full 480 page full color catalog filled with many of the products that Sweetwater sells in case I want to browse for things to buy when I am in my "reading room".

    I have never had an experience like this when I ordered anything, large or small. Yeah, Sweetwater has a long way to go before they can compete with the likes of some other large mail order places. I for one just hope they stay a long way away, and keep doing things just like they are doing. Before long maybe everyone else will wise up and see how important customer service is and every ordering experience can be like this.

    Oh and did I mention that they do all of this at prices equal to or lower than most everyone else. I just have to ask, why wouldn't you place your NEXT order with Sweetwater???
     
  2. TNT

    TNT Active Member

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    I went to their distribution center to get my stuff and not only did they give me all that stuff, but they send me that phone book-sized catalog about every 3 mos. I get e-mails from my salesman asking how my merchandise is doing and what else can he do for me?
    I've related my experience with things that were backordered. They underpromise and overdeliver and make you feel happy that you bought from them. In retail you can't really ask for more.
     
  3. iblive

    iblive Well-Known Member

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    You forgot the candy. My orders alway have a few pieces of candy thrown in.
     
  4. nynvolt

    nynvolt Member

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    I've ordered from sweetwater, unfortunately forgot to click from the site, oops. But it was great service, the guy called me literally like 10 minutes after I ordered to confirm, then did a follow up call too. I know they really wanted to sell me extra stuff but I have to admit it is nice to get those phone calls in this day and age. I actually was kinda chit chatting with the dude about guitars, music etc. real personable and I like that.

    Service was great, shipping was fine everything was cool. Only problem I forget to click from etsg...

    I wish I had more cash would love to buy a guitar or amp from them.
     
  5. Alex

    Alex Administrator Staff Member

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    [quote author=iblive link=topic=19761.msg239548#msg239548 date=1253376667]
    You forgot the candy. My orders alway have a few pieces of candy thrown in.
    [/quote]

    You are totally correct. There were a few pieces of candy in the box.
     
  6. Alex

    Alex Administrator Staff Member

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    [quote author=nynvolt link=topic=19761.msg239550#msg239550 date=1253377446]
    I've ordered from sweetwater, unfortunately forgot to click from the site, oops.

    Service was great, shipping was fine everything was cool. Only problem I forget to click from etsg...
    [/quote]

    The deal with them doesn't depend on clicking on the links to go to their site. Still it does help show traffic to their site when it comes time to renew with them so it's always a good thing to do.
     
  7. Six String

    Six String Moderator Staff Member

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    My several experiences with them have been exactly like you all have said. And TNT..... you made it to the new location? Awesome place.

    What Tom says about the ordering is true......... they are helping our site so if you need to order something anyway, why not thru Sweetwater? I am ordering thru them, but I have the advantage of being about 30 miles away from them and it's always a pleasure going in there. I had recently taken my 84 Sp in for a bum tuner button and had them put on a new set of vintage tuners..... which were in stock! 8) The only thing that made me unhappy was they were done so quick! (But I stuck around anyway to have lunch and look some more............ ;D)

    Think about it and I'd like to hear some other experiences with Sweetwater.......... :coolsmiley:
     
  8. sgtbeefheart

    sgtbeefheart Well-Known Member

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    WOW, that must be some sponsorship deal you got there Tom. :evil5:
    ;D
     
  9. Alex

    Alex Administrator Staff Member

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    It helps to cover costs around here. They are also supplying some giveaway items for some contests we have coming up. We were very selective about who we would enter into such a deal with. We had to believe it was the best choice for this site, and so far it has been.
     
  10. suicidehummer

    suicidehummer Active Member

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    I bought a switchwasher from them not too long ago. GC and Sam Ash were asking $6-7+shipping. Sweetwater had the same part for $3 with free shipping. Needless to say I ordered from Sweetwater and the item arrived in no time. I got a call from them as well and was sent the huge booklet. I couldn't go to a local store and get one that cheap yet I only spent $3 out the door at Sweetwater including shipping! No candy in my box but hey, the service is the real treat.
     
  11. iblive

    iblive Well-Known Member

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    [quote author=suicidehummer link=topic=19761.msg239612#msg239612 date=1253566996]
    No candy in my box but hey, the service is the real treat.
    [/quote]

    Ya gotta spend at least 4 bucks to get the candy. :coolsmiley:
     
  12. suicidehummer

    suicidehummer Active Member

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    Ahh shucks!
     
  13. guitar_randy

    guitar_randy Member

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    I have little bit different opinion of sweetwater.I emailed a question on a guitar.Made the mistake of giving my email address and phone number.Should have just gave email address.Not even 1 minute later,phone rings ,its Ryan from sweetwater,answered my question.Ok great.Now he wants me to buy it before it is sold.I told him,I am not decided on getting it yet and if someone else comes along wanting it,go ahead and sell it.I'll let him know if I am interested.After a few more lame attempts to get me to buy it then and there,he finally seemed to get the idea that I was no ready to buy it yet.
    So phone rings day later.Hi,its Ryan from sweetwater have you decided on the guitar yet,before someone else comes along and wants it? I tell him same as day before,if someone wants it ,sell it to him,I am not ready to buy it.So after few minutes,he again SEEMS to get it.Few days later,phone rings,Ryan again,guitar is still available,have I decided on it yet.I tell him same thing and also I will contact him if I decide to buy it so just relax.2 days later,Ryan calls again,this time my wife answered and told him I am not around.Then he emails me and give me same pitch again.This same thing went on for about 4 weeks.By now,I don't want anything to do with this or guitar of anything from sweetwater as I don't appreciate heavy sales pressure and constant calls regarding same bs.
    Some days he sends 2-3 emails.He still calls out of the blue and seemed to get it that I don't want the guitar,but now when he calls periodically he trys pitching things I totally have no interest in.
    Ryan from sweetwater is a pain in the ass and because of his high pressure,constant calls and emails,I won't give sweetwater any business.I told him numerous times I will call him directly if I want something from sweetwater and he can have the sale,but I will contact him,he need not contact me.doesn't get it.
    So I realize you are fluffing sweetwater up because of the sponsor thing,but sweetwater ,or at least Ryan from sweetwater is aa bit over the top and more than I can handle for sales pressure.
     
  14. vic108

    vic108 Well-Known Member

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    Ken from SWEETWATER is great.

    He has my email address, home phone, and work phone,
    and he has NEVER abused it at all.

    Service is great and returns are a snap.

    They are the NEWEGG of the music world.....
     
  15. iblive

    iblive Well-Known Member

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    My personal sales rep is Richard. Very low key. He did, however, have to call me several times one afternoon about a purchase I was attemting. Seems these old eyes of mine was have a difficult time reading my credit card. Not once, not, twice, but three times. Did I mention LOW KEY. Other than that one time, after any other purchase, I have received either one phone call OR one e-mail thanking me for my purchase.

    So, the moral of this story is that if you get a high pressure sales rep, don't give up on Sweetwater. Ask for another sales rep. High pressure is not the norm from this place.
     
  16. Six String

    Six String Moderator Staff Member

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    Brendon is my rep and we have a very good understanding....... that being I will buy when I am ready. When I took my 84 in for the repair, I asked him about a 150 W driver for monitors and he found just the unit I'm looking for. I said I would be in when I was ready to ready pick it up. I have not had a call or email.

    If you are being pressured beyond your limit, I'd suggest that you remember Ryan will have a supervisor. Call Sweetwater and talk to that person expressing your dismay with the sales tactics. Every salesperson has to be sharp enough to know who they can push and who they can't. If there is a history of this type of service, Sweetwater would want to know about it....... and address the issue if there is.

    I would suggest that if you get any more unwanted calls, ask Ryan to speak with his supervisor. Your situation does seem like an extreme for them. If you still have problems, PM me.
     
  17. oldrockfan

    oldrockfan Well-Known Member

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    I like sweetwater and although I also got a few calls from them after my last purchase... just a polite please don't call me for sales stuff was all it took and no problems since.

    One heads up to Tom though... when placing an order, there is a spot where you can tell them where you heard about sweetwater and it lists several websites but no everythingsg.com I wrote it in on the order I just made but maybe you should ask them to add it to make it a bit more convenient for shoppers?
     
  18. Alex

    Alex Administrator Staff Member

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    Yes I am going to ask them to do that.

    guitar_randy I am going to pass along your experience to them.
     
  19. vic108

    vic108 Well-Known Member

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    [quote author=Tom link=topic=19761.msg240223#msg240223 date=1254535785]
    Yes I am going to ask them to do that.

    guitar_randy I am going to pass along your experience to them.
    [/quote]

    Tom, that's been done already..... ;)
     
  20. guitar_randy

    guitar_randy Member

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    Ok,Maybe it will help from it happening to anyone else in the future which is great,but ,just one favor,if they want to call me or email me to talk about it,I'd rather not hear from them in any way again as I am just done with the place.I just don't want to go there.Glad no one else here has had that happen to them ans hopefully it never will.It just kinda creeped me out,and really pissed of the mrs.,so go ahead and give them my statement I wrote here if you want,but if they just leave me alone its best for me.
    Oh,and I was going to buy a Gibson 335 from them,but Ryan kinda blew that.Got it from elswhere already ;)
     

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