• Report: #77141

Complaint Review: Office Max

  • Submitted: Thu, January 15, 2004
  • Updated: Mon, September 13, 2004

  • Reported By:Bartlett Illinois
Office Max
368 W Army Trail Bloomingdale, Illinois U.S.A.

Office Max Just bait, no switch Bloomingdale Illinois

*Consumer Suggestion: Office max; it sounds like no one is in the office to make the sale. it sounds like he got the run-around

*UPDATE Employee: We do what we can

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I'd been down this path with Office Max before where they advertise an item that is deeply discounted and has additional rebates that bring the final cost of the item down to a too-good-to-be-true price. On Sunday, 1/11/04,Office Max advertised a MagicSpin DVD 8x +/-RW +/-R burner priced at $180 with a $50 in store rebate and a $50 mail-in rebate. In addition to this I had a $30 off coupon good on a purchase of $150 or more.

I went to my local Office Max on Wednesday, 1/14/04, and could not find the item on display. I checked with one of the store clerks who said they were sold out. I was going to ask for a rain-check, but having asked the question before, I knew the answer was going to be that the store policy is that they do not issue them. That answer had never sat right with me, after having been trained in "consumer education" during my high school years. I figured that their pack of attorneys had played some loophole, small-print-detail, shell game and that's the way it is.

This time I offered to pay in advance for the item "on backorder" and they could call me when it arrived. The clerk told me she would check with the manager. Of course she returned to tell me they were unable to do this. I asked if they could check stock at their other locations. They did and told me that every other location IN THE COUNTRY was sold out and would not be getting the item in again EVER. At this point I remember that the reason I had spoke to the clerk in the first place was not just because the item was not in stock on the shelf, but because that there was not even a spot on the shelf for the item.

Knowing I was not going to get anywhere by following their suggestions, I decided to forge ahead just to see how deep the sh*t would get. They told me to contact their phone order center so that is what I did next. The story was for the most part well scripted and read the same. The most noticable diference was the response that I received after getting through to a customer service manager and pointing out that most honest retailers would substitute a similar item or make some other attempt to "make good" on the advertised offer. I was told that because the sales are coordinated and the sales flyers are printed as much as 6 months in advance there is no way they can guarantee that ANY item will actually be in stock and available by the time that the sale runs.

Wow! I'm no media mogul, but I know that technology and communications are all about efficiency. Can you imagine the size of the warehouse that they would need to do that for every major market they are present in. I also pointed out that nowhere in the ad did they state "inventory is limited" or "while supplies last". They didn't even say "We reserve the right to revoke this offer before it even begins". But that is pretty much, from my perspective, what they have in mind and it is completely apparent that they are bringing these "one time leaders" into the store deceptively and at the consumer's expense.

Bartlett, Illinois

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/15/2004 03:20 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Office-Max/Bloomingdale-Illinois-60108/Office-Max-Just-bait-no-switch-Bloomingdale-Illinois-77141. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Suggestion

Office max; it sounds like no one is in the office to make the sale. it sounds like he got the run-around

AUTHOR: Paul - (U.S.A.)

The bottom line is that Ed, above, tried to buy something that was advertised. Instead of getting his item, it sounds like he got the run-around.
Either you intend to sell something or you don't. It's certainly no bargain to drive over to the store, only to find that the item you came in for is gone, or in this case, never there to begin with.

All that is likely to do is upset potential customers to the point that they never return.
I'm not looking to get something for nothing. A DVD drive costs money to make. I expect to pay good money to get it. I'm not looking for some kind of rebate scam that brings the end price down to nothing, or next to nothing.

The customer above would have been better off to go to a real store that sells this particular item at a fair price. He would have made his purchase and went home satisfied. Instead, he ended up at Office Max, with nothing to buy. He went home disappointed. Think he'll be rushing over to Office Max anytime soon? Not likely. Sound business practices. Reasonable prices and reasonable profits. Having the products that customers want. These are the strategies that make a store a winner.
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#2 UPDATE Employee

We do what we can

AUTHOR: Matt - (U.S.A.)

I am a front end seller at my local Office Max, at Springhurst Shopping Center, and i and my co-workers deal with the problem your talking about now. This past year Office Max has merged with Boise and many, many things have improved including out shipping systems.

Since we have merged we have improved our shipping orders greatly. Unfortunatly we sometimes sell out of sale items a day or two early. This is b/c the costomers just happen to buy them(which happens a lot) and other times it's b/c of our early internet ads. what i mean by this is that if u sign up at our web page(officemax.com) they can send u the sunday ads early. What happens then is that customers buy the sale items a day before and gets a price adjustment later on so they get the sales price. They can do this b/c of our 14 day price match gaurentee saying that, " If you purchase an item and that exact items goes on sale within 14 days of the date of purchase, will give it to you for that price!"

Also we can not backorder any items b/c one, it's against company policy, and secondly we don't want you paying for something that could possibly not be sent to us. It might not be sent to us b/c it's been dicontinued and the MANUFACTORERS will not send them to us.

so i hope you understand b/c I know exactly what you going throw b/c i have too. But what you must relieze that the company is trying to make changes to improve our stores.
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