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Hey All,

Well after a bit of searching, I finally managed to find someone selling long sleeve baby t-shirts at a reasonable price, who will ship to Australia.

However, the company in question has been, IMHO, a little less than proactive in answering my questions. Every question is answered with just enough information, and no more (with no initiative taken). The final straw for me was when I asked how much postage would be on a certain number of items to Australia (I gave details including postal code) and I got told to look it up myself on usps.com - without even being told their postal code (which fortunately is on their website - I guess I'm lucky they gave an estimated package weight). I tried doing this, and maybe I'm dumb, but I can't work out which of the 10 or so types of postage (ranging in cost from $5USD to $40USD) are the one they are going to use.

Frankly, I guess, I feel like it isn't my responsiblity to calculate postage on an item they are selling - I don't imagine any of us ask our customers to guess the postage on a t-shirt we're selling retail, so why should I have to guess postage on a wholesale order. I'm sure someone in the US, who is actually doing the shipping, would know which of those options it is and it takes a whole five minutes to go through the process on the USPS site and email me back the answer. I feel like ditching the supplier, because I'm beginning to feel like if it is like this in pre-sales (where, theoretically, you should get the best a company has to give, because they want your cash), what's it going to be like after I've placed an order if I have a problem, when they already have my money. On the other hand, I can't find anyone selling the Apples & Oranges l/sleeve baby T, and the American Apparel one seems rather expensive (I think the best price I found was about $7.50USD - convert that to AUD, add postage, and you're almost at the price you'd want to charge retail!!). I know I am not a "big guns" customer and my order(s) will be very small compared to others, but I still feel that I am entitled to a little bit of service.

So...I don't know what to do. Am I being unreasonable? Do you think I should continue trying to work with them - I mean the merchandise might end up being great and my standards are just too high?

Honest feedback appreciated...
Kath
 

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Hi Kath, I think part of the problem might be related to the seller being wary of a fraudulent internatioinal order.

Have you tried giving them a phone call? They may be just giving you the bare details if they think you are trying to scam them (there's a lot of fraud sometimes in t-shirt sales and international orders...not to Australia, but the seller may be just extra wary).

It's also possible that the seller is really busy and have a different communication style (some people aren't wordy, they just get right to the point).

Maybe you could follow up with an email (or better yet a phone call), to let them know of your concerns about their customer service.

edit: To answer your title question. No, I don't think you are being unreasonable :) I just wanted to try to give reasons why you might be getting the responses you're getting. It could be the above reasons, or it could be just poor customer service.
 

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No i dont think that you are being unreasonable at all? Anyone with good customer service will try to fulfill the needs of their customers. It seems as if you can possibly guess too much for shipping and pay more than you should. Placing one order should not be a huge hassle.
 

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funtimesx said:
Am I being unreasonable?
Probably.

"Just enough information" is, in your own words, enough information. Shipping postcodes aren't necessary as shipping rates are based on country to country, not whereabouts you are within that country. The postal system is pretty easy to figure out (USPS tells you how fast the different shipping options are, so you can make your decision on that basis). If they told you to find out your own postage cost, presumably they will ship it with the method you request and pay for - it isn't an unknown. If your postage cost is in the $5-40 range I can only imagine your order is very small - if that is true you're lucky to get answers to your questions at all, as most suppliers aren't going to want to deal with international orders of less than a couple of hundred pieces.

Obviously it would be nice if every company offered great customer service to every customer, but it doesn't happen and we (as customers) can't expect it to happen. Minimum orders, reluctance to ship internationally, etc. is a massive pain - but unfortunately it's a fact of life that needs to be dealt with. If someone is willing to work with you (when so few are) it's generally best to likewise work with them.

As for whether or not you should continue working with them, I couldn't say. In principle not offering extra information and expecting you to work out postage cost is not grounds to abandon a company. On the other hand maybe your concerns about laziness and their customer service post-sale will prove warranted. Bear in mind though that some companies treat you a lot better after they have your money, because until you're a paying customer they don't take you seriously. That said, if you don't trust them don't deal with them.
 

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I send to Australia on occasion and just wanted to let you know that I always use United States Postal Service "Globabl Priority Mail" The variable weight Global Priority Mail box has a maximum weight of 4 pounds. There's also a letter-sized Flat Rate envelope for about $9.00 and Tyvek variable weight envelope. If you can use American Express credit card, the company can verify that you are legit. Or provide your bank's phone number. I have called Australia before (means I'm calling at 10:30 at night LOL).

If you want to PM with what you are hoping to buy. I'm going to Los Angeles garment district for supplies Friday late morning. And will probably be looking at apparel so maybe I might see what you want...ya never know.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi Solmu - OK, I feel quite "dressed down" now. :eek: Possibly I was overreacting a bit (I'm quite tired as my twins aren't sleeping well, but no excuse, really!). The reason I assumed the postcodes were necessary is that the shipping calculator asks for it. I got confused because some options quite obviously don't seem to apply (even when you select "parcel" it gives you options that seem related to letters only), but then some have more general names and I don't know whether they apply to my parcel.

You're right that my order is very small - the first one particularly so as I really wanted to just order samples to ensure the product is what I want (which I had explained in the email), before I went about ordering larger quantites (although admitedly they are probably also "small potatoes" to the rest of you!). I am just quite cautious as I have a box of unsaleable onesies here that I bought from the States last year, and then found that the product wasn't great (the crotch snaps rust easily and are very "stiff" to use - not something I'd sell).

I'm not necessarily saying they are "lazy" - perhaps part of the fault is mine for asking somewhat open ended questions rather than just sending a list of 15 specific/yes-or-no questions.

Anyway, I've pretty much decided to try to get a decent night's sleep and give them a call in the morning (I think it will still be Friday afternoon in the US then?) and see if I can work with it. As you say, suppliers who will accept international orders and have low minimums are as rare as hen's teeth.

To whomever asked about AMEX - I don't know what it is like the States, but a lot of merchants here (in Oz) don't accept them, because apparently it costs more (to the merchant) than all the other kinds of credit cards. So no, I don't have one. I've got MasterCard, though :D
 

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Rodney said:
Hi Kath, I think part of the problem might be related to the seller being wary of a fraudulent international order.

Very good point. I've been taken before from someone ordering from overseas. The credit card came up good but right before I shipped the order three days later, the card came back as stolen.

I would have been out $2,000.00

Allot of companies are paranoid to this.


Bryan
 

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funtimesx said:
The reason I assumed the postcodes were necessary is that the shipping calculator asks for it. I got confused because some options quite obviously don't seem to apply
Yeah, unfortunately the calculator is a little cruddy.

I guess I'm just used to it so I don't really give it much thought - but you're right, it does ask for information it doesn't need and ignore other information it has.

There's nothing wrong with making a small order (almost everyone starts small), it just unfortunately means you are often going to get ignored or under-serviced.

Good luck with your supplier.
 

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Hi,

It's probably because they are leary of international orders. I know before "9-11" i used to ship internationally but after that time I limited shipping to Canada only because I started getting a lot of attempts to fraud especially from "Indonesia".

I've had someone call me on the phone and tell me they wanted to order shirts in "a foreign country" they worked there as a aid but their credit card was in "the states" and they wanted me to ship it to them. I asked them to send me a copy of the "Front and back" of the card which is when i got the explanation listed above.

So often i get emails from someone saying they are in Nigeria that wants to order shirts and gives me a long list of shirt sizes, colors, etc. they want to order and want a quote. I ignore the orders as if they read my site "like they say they have" they know I "don't ship internationally".

All this to say is that "due to the illegal acts" of some it has made vendors "reluctant" to take international orders seriously.

I believe the reason they told you to "look it up" is that if you "take the time to do so" and follow up with them they know you really want the order.

Just my 2-cent
 

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"I" have "heard" that there are "problems" with "taking orders" from this "Indonesia" place you "mention" too.

A lot of Australian eBayers won't ship to Indonesia (despite pretty much shipping worldwide otherwise). Likewise a lot of US eBayers won't ship to Italy.
 
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