Posts Tagged ‘quality’
Today, I had a run in with another small company. I know the company name and I know that they sell items via Amazon – but that’s all I really know about them. I don’t know how big they are, how high their turnover is, or even where they are based.
When I recently purchased an electronic device from Amazon, this company was recommended as the supplier. The Amazon supplier page gave me an automated delivery date range – fair enough. The order was placed, and I received a nice order confirmation from the company confirming the delivery date originally presented – all good stuff.
Except the item didn’t arrive. In fact, by the due date, it had not even been despatched.
It needed me to chase the company for them to provide another date. Now not only did they fail to give a reason for it not being despatched, but they also failed to offer an apology. They don’t know what the item is for – it could be for me, or for somebody’s birthday or for a work project – they don’t know what impact a late delivery will have.
So I did what I always do, went back onto Amazon and gave them a negative review. Nothing too harsh, just a “Missed the promised delivery date”.
The request for credit where credit was not due
My negative remark triggered an email from them saying (and I cut and paste here)… “We would like to plead with you regarding your feedback. We are a small business and would like to politely request that you consider changing this to a positive review as a negative feedback will adversely affect our small family business should you decide not to”.
So despite them missing their target, they actually want a good review? They want me to lie? You note that they don’t ask me to remove the negative comment – no, they want me to replace with a positive.
Price Verses Quality
So this takes us to the point of this transaction conflict and what I did wrong. I went for somebody cheap, and what I should have done is find a balance of cheap(ish) and reliable.
This if the difference between consumer spending and business spending. Consumers are swayed a great deal by price, whereas businesses buy on risk, reliability and then price. If we do business to business work, being Mr or Mrs Cheap and reducing the quality may put us at risk.
All businesses are at risk of having negative reviews placed against us. Ebay, Amazon and business review sites makes it very easy for anybody to vent their anger about us. Even for small shops or companies who think they are too small for such rants, anybody can vent their wrath on a blog site.
For big multi nationals, a few negative posts will get lost in the PR positive noise that they create so will have minimum impact. But for us small businesses, one negative review can really hurt us.
So is it better to be cheap and let people down, or price for quality and deliver what you promise? Or as a wise business coach once told me; Quality will be remembered long after Price has been forgotten.