I've signed up with SMC starting with their special introductory rate of $114.45 a year membership which includes a Big Value Website. When I got my membership and called my business coach Joan Miller, I was told about a full e-commerce website which cost me $2795 and includes catalogs and gift cards. I told her that I had a Big Value website but she said that it will be a fully operated website where they would do the work for me. I thought it was a good deal so I've paid. A red flag came up when Joan never called me for our appointment on 8/14/08 to go over my marketing plan to launch my business. Also, I've never received a receipt or instructions on my website. So, I've call customer service that day and they told me that my business coach has changed to Rick McFadden and schedule an appointment with me on 8/18/08. I've never receive a call from him. I'm thinking because I didn't buy anything else from their company, they're not calling me. I've call on 8/18/08 and was told by a Stacey in the cancellation dept. to wait for my business coach and told me that I was only getting back my membership fee and not the money for the business. At this point, I've already sent a written letter to cancel my membership for the website and SMC membership. I couldn't wait so I've called again on 8/21/08 and spoke to Kathy Oliver and she told me that I should keep my membership because I've spent $2795.00 in the business and told me that the website that I brought was not a full e-commerce site, it was an advance gift card redemption site along with the Big Value website that I had in my initial sign up which gave me a super seller status which had nothing to do with the e-commerce site. She also told me that on the infomercial that any money spend is consider a investment and you not be entitle to that money back (which I didn't see the infomercial, I've looked online) and demanded me to have someone else to help me, she gave me numbers to supervisors (she was located in the Arizona office and doesn't know what's going on in CA branch). I've also called the tech support to give me something that says what type of website that I've purchased (The company never gave me instructions on purchased website). So a sales person name Adam Patterson from e-commerce website called me on behalf of Kathy Oliver and told me that he was going to help me with the website upgrade but I would have to put up and extra $295 and they will have to take $750 from my account of $2795.00 which I didn't understand why and it wasn't clear. Why should I pay for something that I should of received in the first place? So I've paid. Thankfully I've got the $295 dollars back and $750 was credit back to my SMC account. I figured that I still have my big value website, but on 9/2/08, I've asked for technical support for the website and Howie the online support (record of chat attached) told me that my big value website was cancelled because I've cancelled the upgraded website. I've been mislead from the time that they mailed the special offer to paying for a super seller website that I never received to find out that I've paid for an upgrade gift card redemption site and to have a status of a super seller that I didn't even want. I believe that I am entitled to my money back because if I invested in stock and I'm not happy with its performance, the broker can't make me stay in the stock and lose my money. The Big Value Website supposes to be with my initial membership but I don't have it anymore because I've cancelled the paid upgrade (which I shouldn't had to upgrade since that was suppose to be the website that I've paid $2795 for). So now I don't have a website at all. What did I pay for?
I've contacted the BBB and my local Consumer Protection agency to no prevail. This only provided them a mediation tool to which they said no they weren't going to give me my money back and they closed the case claiming that they had me recorded agreeing to the gift card website. So I went to my bank and told them that they promised me one thing and gave me other and ask them to charge back the charges. Well after two months of waiting (60 business days of their invesitigation), the bank charge back the money back into my bank account saying that SMC committed an error.
So If you got scammed by SMC by their promises or if they said that they weren't going to charge your card and they did, or that your returned the welcome package and they won't give you your money back, go to your bank or credit card company and ask them to charge it back. You didn't get what you were promised and this is called misrepresentation and rightful grounds to get your money back! (Please remember depending on your bank or credit card, you may have 30-180 days to chargeback the amount in question so do it as soon as you've been wronged). I'm lucky that I've received my money back and I would never fall for a scam like this again.
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