Are you a do-it-yourselfer? Do you like assembling furniture? Or would you like Rent-a-Dad to handle furniture assembly FOR you?
Your answer doesn’t matter on the “have Rent-a-Dad do it for me” point—at least not for this story. Ready to hear why Dad says “Do Not Buy Furniture From Amazon”? OK, kids; strap in …
This one comes down to something quite simple. It’s not about Boycotting Amazon, and while I could discuss the often-odd way things work at Wayfair, we’re not going there, either. This story is about the difference in what happened when you buy furniture from Amazon and there’s a problem.
Do Not Buy Furniture From Amazon
Take a look at the picture we’ve included here. It’s two of three legs that support an otherwise-pretty-solid dinette table that a Rent-a-Dad client bought through Amazon. The purchase seemed to make sense; it was precisely the same dinette set he could have bought from Wayfair … for $100 less. Furniture shipped to be assembled, for less money and arriving more quickly? Yes, please!
But … see how there’s a bolt inserted into a hole that was designed to accept that bolt on one leg, but that the hole on the other example is not open enough to accept the same bolt? Uh-Oh!
Now remember, I said this piece is available from both companies. And since it’s drop-shipped by either one and neither Amazon nor Wayfair produced this piece nor specified how the piece should be built, it’s not like either of them are responsible for the quality control problem that let the defective table leg get shipped. The issue is that having received a defective item from Amazon and—wanting a replacement—this Rent-A-Dad client had a “where do I go to fix this?” problem.
Why? Because had he bought this item from Wayfair he could call in and get a replacement—usually with no obligation other than to throw the defective piece away—by making just that one call. When something goes wrong at Amazon they’ll fix it … eventually. Amazon’s process is a multi-step, we-have-some-investigation-to-do maze that cannot be navigated quickly, nor especially easily.
And unless you’re good with having an issue like this hanging over your head, while wishing you had somewhere to eat your dinner or do your job, then waiting for Amazon’s process to complete isn’t gonna be fun, is it?
Yeah, I just recommended that you spend more money than you need to. And yes, if you happen to have one of those “5% back on everything” credit cards from Amazon you give that up when you buy from Wayfair, too.
So let’s restate the thesis.