12 January 2016

Sephora Australia Rant

I don't know what it is, but I'm extremely frustrated with Sephora Australia. It's been a while since I've been frustrated enough to want to rant about a company on my blog. I don't know if it's because I'm subconsciously expecting a higher level of service (after being in the states where customer service is impeccable and I'm still expecting a similar level of service in Australia).

I've been reading a lot about problems with Sephora Australia, from orders placed online being improperly packaged and arriving damaged to crazy tracking details to price discrepancies in the brick and mortar stores. I personally have not experienced receiving damaged items, but then again I have only placed one order (mask, eyelash primer and a lipstick) and if those items were damaged in transit, someone had to be having a terrible day. 

Today, however, I experienced first hand the price discrepancy issue. I was looking at purchasing the Becca Afterglow palette. I very nearly bought one from the Sephora website for $60 a week or two ago, except I was too slow and it sold out. 

I thought I'd wonder into the flagship store on Pitt Street, Sydney today since I had some errands to run during my lunch break and was in the area. I was so excited to see it in stock, until I saw the price.

$70! I found a sales assistant and enquired about the price difference. I was told something along the lines of "Oh, it's meant to be $70. It's different because the online store is based in Singapore". I found that answer absolutely ridiculous, considering they're meant to be both Sephora Australia. I have no qualms about where the products originated from, and have absolutely no problems with products being shipped from Singapore. I do have a problem with price discrepancies within the same company.

I decided to take this matter up on Facebook privately. This is how the conversation went:

Me @ 12:44 - Hi, can you please advice why your instore price differs from your online price? I'm looking at purchasing the Becca Afterglow palette. It's $60 online and $70 instore. 

SEPHORA @ 13:05 - Hi Abby Reese, Thank you for contacting Sephora. I apologize for the mistake from our end. Please hold while I check with our merchandising team with regards to the correct pricing for this item. Thank you! Sincerely Eriana The Sephora Team SEPHORA.COM.AU 

Me @ 13:08 - Thanks Eriana 

SEPHORA @ 13:56 - Hi Abby Reese, We apologize for the inconvenience caused. We have checked and the price online is wrong. I've gotten the team to update accordingly. Thank you! Sincerely Eriana The Sephora Team SEPHORA.COM.AU 

Me @ 13:57 - That's highly disappointing, as I was about to purchase the afterglow palette and couldn't check out due to it being sold out whilst I was browsing your site. 

SEPHORA @14:34 - I'm sorry. Do click on the Waitlist Me button to be informed once they are replenished. We'll work on replenishing them soonest. 

Me @ 14:35 - I have and my issue is the price difference. This also isn't the first time there's a price discrepancy between the online price and in store price. It's so frustrating. 

SEPHORA @ 15:15 - Hi Abby Rose, I understand your frustrations. Please note that we are working on this to ensure that prices will match in future. We apologize for any inconvenience caused. Sincerely Eriana The Sephora Team SEPHORA.COM.AU 
(Even more frustrated and annoyed now after misspelling my last name)

Me @ 15:33 - I don't understand why you can't implement it immediately. If the prices differ in store, why can't they price match it straight away? It takes 2 seconds to send an email out to your three stores to advise them to price match products. It's not as if I'm asking you to price match a competitor. It's your own company. This does not make sense to me and is leaving an extremely bad impression on Sephora Australia.

I'm still awaiting a reply. Can someone please tell me if I'm being silly and getting upset/frustrated/annoyed over nothing? I know it's a first world problem issue, but I think this whole price difference thing is so stupid, it makes me want to stab someone in the eye.

This whole experience is making me want to forget about this palette, and boycott Sephora Australia altogether. I'm contemplating saving my money and waiting till the Urban Decay x Gwen Stefani blush palette comes out at Mecca (which has far better customer service and store policies).

Have you had any problems with Sephora Australia or has your experiences dealing with them been hunky dory?

EDIT: Got a response. 

SEPHORA @ 17:54 - Hi Abby Reese, The correct pricing as per latest update is $70.00. Changes have to be made by the relevant departments. and we are sorry as this cannot be instant. We look to ensure such things do not happen again. Your feedback is appreciated but the relevant teams will make the correct updates accordingly. I'm sorry you missed out on the products. Your unhappiness will be highlighted to the relevant teams. Sincerely Eriana The Sephora Team SEPHORA.COM.AU

Absolutely lovely Sephora Aus. I bet they will just ignore my "highlighted unhappiness", just like they will "ensure such things do not happen again", considering it has happened before.

EDIT 2: Having spent the last half hour thinking about it. I guess it is a little bit unreasonable for me to be upset. However, I guess I just feel this whole situation is simply ridiculous that the online price and instore price differs. If I was dealing with Mecca instead of Sephora, I reckon Mecca would have rang me up and processed an order for the palette at $60. I just don't appreciate the whole "I understand your frustrations" and sure, I'll pass your feedback on, but you know that they would do nothing about it. I hate to think how many products are incorrectly priced (if that's the excuse they're running with) and how many people have over/underpaid. 
P.S. I'm sorry to have alerted Sephora about the incorrect price on the website, so now everyone will have to pay an extra $10. Although in my humble opinion, if they haven't already realised that it isn't the right price considering it's sold out, surely they're making enough profit on the lower price? Also, I wonder how long they will take to update the price on their website.
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