ikea sucks

i just got off the phone with an ikea customer service rep (anthony) who seemed more intent on not doing anything for me then helping.

fast facts: an ikea leather couch ($1300+) that i bought had a defective cover that just split down the middle for no reason. i took it into the ikea store in dec 2007 where i bought it with proof of purchase – they told me it was in fact a defect that was common with the piece i had purchased, but they were out of stock. they took my name, number, address, and all relevant info and said they would get the piece in stock in 1 month and would contact me then. i asked for a reference #, they told me no worries, that they would call me. i asked for a number where i could reach them for updates and they gave me their national #.

fast forward 4 months – no word, so i call customer service. i get bounced to the national handling and they said they cannot find my report. (of course). and then they said they would need to “document” my case, so they were going to forward me to someone else. i got forwarded to anthony who said my problem was a “quality issue” which they do not handle over the phone. and he said i had to go back into the store to resolve it. i asked to be transfered to the store, so i could call them and not have to drive myself all the way over there to find out it is not in stock again. he said he could not connect me to the store because the store does not take calls from customers – that their purpose was to help in store customers only. i asked if i could get my case documented by him since that was why i was transfered to him in the first place and he said no, because it was a quality issue. so then i asked what kinds of cases does he document, and he said “not quality issues.” wow, thank you for being so helpful. so i asked again if he could document anything for me so i at least had a record and he said my case was too old since i bought my sofa more than 90 days ago and he only handles cases that where purchase was within 90 days. so i asked, ok, if i had purchased my sofa within 90 days, then he would be able to handle it? and again he said no cause he handled purchases made within 90 days except for quality issues.

so i gave up on trying to understand what his job was and asked again if I could be connected to the person who had forwarded me to him. and he said no. i asked why not, and he said he didnt know who forwarded me to him. i asked him if he could query my name since i had given all my information to the person i had spoken to previously and he said that they do not track customer service calls, they only record them (what the…? huh? i dont believe that for a second especially since ikea is a multi-national behemoth. they must have a well developed call tracking system) so i asked if he could transfer me to anyone else and he said no, that i had to go into the store because it was a “quality issue” and no one in his call center handles “quality issues”. i just do not understand how they could not call for me to even find out if my initial file was still there? is that too much to ask?

if this post is no longer making sense, its because the entire conversation made no sense. i asked him again why customers could not reach in-store people directly, and he actually just stopped talking. i asked again and then sat in silence and said “hello? hello?” before he said, “yes, i am here”. i explained to him that i am not trying to make his job difficult and that i was trying to understand for my own reference how customer service was handled at ikea so i could make sure i am going to the right places and to see where my initial order may be and he basically made it clear that i needed to stop talking to him, stop trying to reach anyone by phone and that my only option was to go back in store. it became very clear from the canned sentences he was giving me that their training was directed at just trying to get me off the phone. if i was an in-store ikea employee, i would be pissed -the back-up team is selling you guys out.

so is that ikea’s only response? you are the one that sold me a busted couch.

if only i wasnt so broke, then i would never need ikea again!!!

12 thoughts on “ikea sucks

  1. I hear you on this one. We bought a new headboard from them and there was a piece missing. Instead of 2 lefts and 2 rights, we got 3 rights and one left. Their response? Come back to the store. The store is 2 hours away so I requested they send me the part. They send me a part. The right side. Now I have 4 rights and one left. I call them back and have it explained to me that they sent me the left side. We spend the next half hour saying “did not” “did too”. Then, I send them a digital photo showing them their mistake. So they send me another part. This time the right (in every way) part. But it is damaged. So I call them again and they offer to give me $40 to come to the store because “they can’t keep sending me parts all the time.” I insist they send the part and they say they will with the caveat that “this is the last thing we will send you.” Let’s see, you sell me a product that is packed incorrectly, screw up sending me the replacement but then later intimate that you only will try to fix my problem three times and then I’m out of luck…..?

  2. @dawn – geez! crazy! here is what i think companies need to understand in order to really reduce customer service issues.
    1) have a clear policy that lets customers know who handles what – ikea’s random policy of dividing up claims between store service and telephone service is not posted anywhere.
    2) keep company info in one place which allows you to track the progress and resolution of customer claims
    3) if you got it wrong the first time and the customer has to come back with an issue, do your best to get it right the second time. be glad your customer is coming back with their issue. this is your chance to win them over – often times, your best supporters are customers who had issues at first, but that you fixed on second try. don’t lose out on us!

  3. I came across this post basically at random. I’ll remember the name Ikea and that I shouldn’t do business with them. Best of luck with your struggle.

  4. IKEA & Poor Customer Service

    IKEA is so profitable (it has a non profit status, believe it or not) that it doesn’t need to listen to customers. Just make stylish (cheap) stuff and they’ll keep coming in.

    I’m one of “those” who keeps subjecting myself to poor service just to save some money.

    I spent $6,000 on IKEA kitchen cabinets and they sold me dampers (slow a cabinet door down) that don’t fit. Then the return desk refused to refund it because I missed the return date (which is the day they charge your credit card and not the day they have the stuff in stock and you pick it up). Get that!

    Anyways, I hope IKEA meet its maker one day and just maybe then it’ll pay a little more attention to the 1000’s of customers they’ve pissed off. Having worked for a department store that ruled the country many years ago and their current attempt to stay relevant in today’s consumer market, I can fully appreciate the importance of cutomer service. IKEA’s day will come.

  5. I too have had a similar experience with Ikea suckz! It amazes me how this can be described as customer service when it is the furthest thing from it. Please explain how they got to be the biggest furniture company in the world because I don’t get it.

  6. Wow, I just knew I would find others that have had problems with IKEA. Initially, I liked IKEA for its prices and cheap knock offs of classic modernist designs. However, lately, I have been reminded that quality does not come cheap.
    I purchased a Jules office chair about five months ago from the Draper, Utah store. It looked fair for the price, but today I noticed the chair was not flush on the floor. I adjusted it and then noticed the welds that hold the five, wheeled legs on are snapping off. Two of the five welds are cracked and the legs are falling off. So I think, okay, this happens when your products are mass produced in a Chinese or Eastern European cheap labor factory.
    So I got online and asked Anna for help. Wow, what a waste of time and the default answers had nothing to do with my questions. So by now, I have wasted 45 minutes and I am getting upset. So I call their customer service hotline. After being on hold for another 21 minutes, I get some clueless teenager who is clearly not listening to my requests. No, she says, you can return the chair within 90 days if you have your receipt. I explain again, I like the chair; it is just that the base is defective and I need a replacement. Sorry, she says, no replacements after 90 days. I ask her, even if the item is defective. I ask her again, even if the welds are clearly defective and not manufactured correctly. Without any hesitation, she answers yes, and tries to end the call. I then ask to speak to her supervisor, because it seems hard for me to imagine a company like IKEA would knowingly not replace defective merchandise. After waiting on hold for 26 straight minutes with horrible IKEA commercials, I hung up very angry.
    So I’m going to call American Express today, have them take the charge off my card and will be warning potential customers not only on defective, poorly made products, but horrible, unresponsive customer service. All they had to do was replace my base, but now I will be warning millions of people about IKEA poor quality and inferior customer service. Make sure you inspect every single part and piece of your product if you are going to buy from this sweat shop quality store.

  7. I agree with all of the sentiments expressed on this page. I to have had a horrible experience with Ikea. I bought their Malm bed. When I got it home and opened I found about 100 pieces of hardware. There were about 20 wood screws that had to be screwed in. I was lucky that I have an electric screwdriver. If I did not have a power tool, I would have not been able to do it without ripping my hands apart. There was also a major part missing. It was expensive and not worth it. Their website sucks and I could not find a real email to send to. The contact form is broken I think. Here is the email I sent them:

    “I am pissed off at your store and I feel ripped off and taken advantage of. Your shoddy products and poor engineering make me very angry.

    I bought a Malm bed, and one part is missing. Besides that, it was very expensive, and so far has not been worth the price at all. The sales clerk upsold me on a mattress that was too pricey and I could have used less.

    It was a huge effort to put it together. I do not know how I could have done it if I did not have an electric drill. Even with a power tool it took me two hours to build it up to the point where I realized I did not have the final part and would have to sleep on my couch again. If your engineers are not good enough to design a hassle-free product then do not bother selling it.

    In this troubled American economy one would hope that a company such as yours would lower prices or at least maintain quality.

    Your website is difficult to navigate. If I start blogging about consumer issues then I will include this account.

    Good day.”

    Joyce, drop me an email if you want to chat more about this.

  8. Lots of the same issues with a dresser I bought. holes drilled incorrectly….was given a replacement that still is not right.

  9. We’ve gone through 2 Kramfors leather covers in 4 1/2 years–and it’s just my husband and me, no kids. The first one developed inch-long tears maybe a year and a half after we got it. The finish on the second one has become somehow rubbed off and started tearing. It was like taking blood from a stone to get the replacement cover, because no one in the store knows their job. We visited 3x and then found someone who knew something. I don’t want to go through it again but I don’t want to buy a new sofa.

    Unfortunately, it appears that real furniture costs real money.

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