Report: #1070331

Complaint Review: Inventory Source

  • Submitted: Fri, July 26, 2013
  • Updated: Fri, July 26, 2013
  • Reported By: is customer — los angeles California
  • Inventory Source


Inventory Source Inventory Source is a Huge Rip Off!! Don't Use Them Or You'll Lose Money Internet

*UPDATE Employee: Clarification on call times and IP security checks on free hosted site plans

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Inventory Source is the biggest rip off ever. They charge $50 a month to basically host your store when you can get it for less than $5 anywhere else. The reason I am writing this report is because their support is  absolutely incompetent. They claim to have great support which you can reach over the phone, but of all the times I tried, they NEVER picked up. Or called back. My web developer can attest to this. 


I'm beginning to think they don't have real support people to contact and possibly outsource them form another foreign country because they always reply to my emails at the oddest hours. Anyways, not only are they incompetent it replying and actually solving your problem. They basically just send a generic answer that they copy and paste, which doesn't even help! 


2nd problem - their host SUCKS. It's extremely slow as I'm sure it's on a shared server. Also, my IP is constantly getting blocked. How is soneone supposed to maintain an ONLINE store when they can't even view or login to the site??? I basically can't do anything but wait until they unblock me which takes over a day and a half. Their reply is usually "We've unblocked your IP. Please try again", but to no avail.


Please don't sign up for this company. You'll be wasting $50 every month getting nothing in return but horrible customer support and website you can't even login to yourself.

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 07/26/2013 10:46 AM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 UPDATE Employee

Clarification on call times and IP security checks on free hosted site plans

AUTHOR: Inv.Source - ()

I just wanted to follow up with a few corrections on the site issue for the client.  Clearly they had an issue with their free hosting account.  Even though we don't charge anything for the hosting or cart support, its still our goal to have 100% satisfaction with the store service.  Given that we have $0 setup cost and a cancel any time policy without issue, it would not make much sense for us to offer a hosting option which causes problems for our clients.  Any hosting issue is resolved, but it was clearly not resolved quickly enough for this client, and for that I, and the rest of our team, are sorry.

1- "the biggest rip off ever. They charge $50 a month to basically host your store when you can get it for less than $5 anywhere else. "-
I am sure we can all think of much bigger business issues than charging $50 for a $5 hosting account, BUT the issue here is not the "biggest" claim, but their mention of the cost and summary of the service.  Their site platform (which included several default customizations and features added over a standard Zen Cart install), managed hosting account, and SSL, and platform support were added to their account for $0.  Not $50, or $5, but $0 (that means for free).  Our data solutions can be applied for $50/month to any integrated cart platform like Magento, Yahoo Stores, Open Cart, ProStores, Big Commerce, Presta Shop, osCommerce, osCMax, Zen Cart, and others.  We also offer the same service on a hosted and customized Zen Cart install with cart support (something you don't normally get with an Open Source cart) at no additional cost.  In fact, its on special for $49.95 which makes it 5 cents cheaper then the normal service, and it is a quick and easy way to get a site launched and add support for an Open Source package.  It's not the only option; its just one option we promote for free to help users get started.

Also, even with Zen Cart as the preference, we can help users apply the service with any hosting provider they do want. If they want to migrate their current site to their own host they can or we can even help migrate the cart for them.  When we offer this we also charge $0 for the migration.  Our goal is to have our members on the platform they want and the host they want.  The goal is to get you on a store platform and hosting setup which will make you an effective seller while getting the product data updates you need.  We offer the hosted site solution for free and include the phone and email support with it as a way to help.  It would not do us any good to offer a free service if it was not a value add for our members.  It is possible to have a server spike or network issue or need to rebalence the servers which we do, but give that we make it free and simple to start with the hosted site option and just as easy to change or leave there is no benefit to offering it as a solution, unless it would meet the needs of our store members.

2- "but of all the times I tried, they NEVER picked up. Or called back. My web developer can attest to this. "  We offer both phone and email support Mon-Fri during business hours.  We don't pick up before or after, but any VM is returned in the order received.  With phones there are 2 options if our team is currently on other calls with members which are: 1- hold or 2- leave a quick VM and we will call you back in order.  Our phone support covers a range of questions, so we cannot estimate hold times, so if our reps are on calls, we just have you leave a quick name/number and the next free team member calls you back.

Like most business in America, we do not have a 500 person call center, but our team is here to help.  100% of the calls during business hour are picked up when there is an available rep (which is much of the day) and 100% of the calls with a number left in the message are called back.  It would not make sense to have phone support without any pickups or call backs.  Our goal is to have 100% of our calls picked up with the first ring, but if not, we just call back our messages or we can help schedule a call time if more convenient.  The only time there would be a non-call back is if there is no clear name/number on the message or if the call comes in after hours (or weekend), and it would be called back the next business day.

It should also be noted that when using any of the Open Source hosted carts on ANY host, there is zero platform support.  Hosting companies can respond to questions on memory or bandwidth but not any platform specific support, but we do.  We offer full support with all of our data services, as well as platform support on the free hosted package option as well.  We still feel our support options are a huge value add for our members, and they have been for the past 10 years.  We could charge for the hosted site option or for platform support, but our approach is to offer both phone and email support, even if we are not able to fund a large team for 24/7 questions.  However, as noted above our service can work with any host and multiple platforms, so while we don't expect any member to need to change hosts, it does come up with one or two members each year, and we just get them migrated for free to an option which is a fit for their needs.  And, while most hosts offer zero platform support on Open Source carts, like Zen Cart, we feel that our support options and cart upgrades on the free account are still a perfect solution for most members in need of a site.

Nothing is more important to you than your site, and nothing is more important to us than your site, and while we have been helping users with their stores on multiple platforms for close to 10 years, it is clear we did not resolve this clients IP block issue for them quick enough, but I am sorry they felt this somehow qualified our offering in the manner they described.  With the free setup, free hosting upgrade to the automation service, and cancel any time options on all services including the hosting, it would not make sense to offer support and simply ignore a voice mail call in or question from our member during business hours.

3- "I'm beginning to think they don't have real support people to contact and possibly outsource them form another foreign country because they always reply to my emails at the oddest hours. "
I can assure you that we do have "real support people".  First, we would like to be clear that we at IS view "foreign" people as real people.  We have integrations with distributors in the US, Canada, UK, and more.  We also have members whom we appreciate and whom we help who are located all over the world.  If our member is able to get approved by their wholesale supplier program, then we can help with the data management services for both the free or paid account level access regardless of their location.  IS is based out of Jacksonville, FL (and has been for the last 5 years after relocating from our original HQ in NC) and 100% of our phone support and management team is in the Jacksonville office.  If you have updates from the team at "odd hours" its because either someone in the Jax office is working late and getting you an update on their own time when checking the desk remotely or its from our early AM email support.  We don't feel the need to always wait until the next posted business hour to respond, if we can get you details then.  We think that is part of what makes our dedicate support team so great as we are committed to your success.  We have both day and night processes which run and sometimes we might have updates from a team member out to a support ticket even if it is outside our normal business hours.

Also our team does not have "copy paste" responses, but I am sorry if that was the impression for this client.  I would note that for some issues, like an IP block on the fire wall for security reasons when the wrong ID/PW is used 3 times in a row...there are just not that many ways to explain how the block is trigger or how to confirm their IP so we can check the fire wall with the hosting team to resolve without it sounding similar.  We are always happy to go through details via phone, setup a call time, or add more information to the support ticket if needed.  Our goal is to be perfect and never have an issue, and while that is how it works almost every day for every member for the past 10 years....we can sometimes have an issue getting something closed as fast as we would like or clearly as fast as our members would like and that is something we will also work to improve.

4- "their host SUCKS. It's extremely slow as I'm sure it's on a shared server."  It is 100% is on a shared server.  We have several dedicated servers which are used by our members on the free hosted plan options.  If there is ever a speed issue from a few sites with load spikes, we rebalance the server in the off-peak hours.  Its not a common issue but when it is seen, we resolve it although not quickly enough for this member, and for that we are sorry.

With a free hosted site, we are not providing Private Dedicated or VPD servers, and we never present them in this way...and I am not aware of any host that offers dedicated servers on a free plan or a $5/month plan or even on much more expensive option.  Speed is always something we monitor for and work to improve.  We can migrate users to any host they prefer but we try to keep there from being any issue even during one day which might cause a member to feel like they need to cancel or change.

5- "Also, my IP is constantly getting blocked. How is soneone supposed to maintain an ONLINE store when they can't even view or login to the site???"
We have security settings on our plan so if an IP attempts to access a secure back area of a site with the wrong ID/PW it gets blocked.  If it is cleared and the wrong ID/PW is used again it will get re-blocked unless we apply a chance to the firewall but our goal is to help keep that IP from getting blocked by getting the user to see where they are referencing an old ID/PW (such as using an ID/PW from an old hosting plan with the same domain or having an ID/PW saved in their webmail URL or browser which they might not realize.   It sounds like the person here got their IP blocked and then had it blocked again once removed.  It can be frustrating and never blocking an IP would keep our members happy and certainly cut down on calls or emails if this issue occurs...but it also would not be a responsible way to manage a hosting offering by keeping the sites less secure.  We have a few other options such as helping you have your ID/PW set to a previous ID/PW you might have used with your last host or other change options, but our goal is to make sure our members are clear on their security access so there is not an issue like this and so there is no need to reduce the level of security on the server simply to make the access points more simple.  However, security settings are there with any host...and if you have had a host which allowed unlimited ID/PW entry without issue it might be better to ask them why this was the case with their service, and not why we have these security steps in place on our system. 

Issues can happen with any hosting plan, but our difference is that we can still walk you through any hosting related questions or security settings, as well as also offer product feed tool support and more importantly platform support for the hosted users....even while offering the cart and hosting option for free with a data service.  We view this approach as offering not only a great ecommerce solution but a great service option and quite the opposite to the opinion expressed here, but we are happy to see if there is anything we can do to help if this user contacts our support team so that we can pull up your account details.


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