I ordered a couple of items from different Folksy shops in the run-up to Christmas and have to say that the experience hasn’t been ideal. Previous purchases I have made here have all been of the quality I would expect, with friendly and professional customer service; indeed, based on what I read here on the forum, there is no reason to suppose that that isn’t the norm. It is therefore, disappointing, to have received one item with a few cat hairs thrown in (and I am a cat lover!), while I am still waiting for the other, ordered on 18 Dec and since chased twice by email (not had a reply from yesterday’s email yet, though there are no notices to say the shop is on holiday). The reason I am sharing this here is because, if I wasn’t a seller and this had been my first experience of Folksy, I might well not bother to come back. As it is, I know the hard work, skill and love that goes into most shops here… and have a fairly significant wishlist! However, it does highlight how we are, in part, accountable to each other, as well as our customers, to provide quality, not only in the goods themselves, but also in the presentation and packing, communication and overall service.
That’s a shame.
I totally agree. When someone spends their money at your shop they are buying the whole package. I don’t think that should stop just when the money has cleared. I do all I can to double check everything is wrapped up nicely- because it’s an online purchase and may be bought as a gift for someone who has never been on Folksy, the wrapped up item as you have sent it is their first impression- and you can only make one first impression.
I try very hard to make my customers items the best they can be and that the customer is happy with their item and buying experience.
At this time of year one does expect mail to take longer than normal to arrive.
Also with what is going on weather wise one doesn’t expect every shop owner to be able to be online and able to answer emails as quickly as they might at other times.
Remember Folksy shops are one person operations and not large companies with 24hour customer service.
Earlier this year twice I as without internet connection due to circumstances beyond my control ie a workman cut through the cable that connects me to the internet and a second time well we had a modem fail.
Just because an email has been sent doesn’t mean the person at the other end is avialable or even able to received and read it. We put our trust in technology and the Royal Mail but neither are perfect.
It is a real shame you experienced that!
Can’t you find a phone number to contact the seller? Have you reached out to Folksy to see if they can reach the seller?
Things can happen with the internet. life can get in the way etc, but I’m afraid if we are selling online or from a distance we have to make sure we are available. That’s the way internet selling goes. As our shops are open 24/7 to receive money upfront, customers also expect 24/7 availability to receive a response.
I obviously didn’t put all the details here and I will try to contact them again after the bank holiday, before involving Folksy. I suspect they’ve gone on a seasonal break and it will all be sorted in time. Thanks for your support
Sorry but to expect 24/7 would mean no sleep and is totally unreachable and not practical and totally unrealistic. I would never expect that of a seller whether their business was on the internet or not.
We, sellers, know that. However, buyers who pay money up front or enquire about a product they are interested in don’t see it that way. Attention spans are short and they are getting shorter.
I once contacted a seller who replied to me 2 weeks later to say she was moving house. There was no notice in her shop. I moved on 2 days after I contacted her and purchased from someone else. Why would a seller think that an interested customer will wait days and days? If your shop is open, that means you are available to reply to queries and ship packages.
If you had a shop on the high street and a customer walked in, would you say to them ‘I’m busy, I can’t reply to your queries, come back a couple of days later?’
Again…online customers see things differently.
I have 2 cats, but they are not allowed in my sewing room…for their safety as well as my sanity! Saying that, their hairs do stick to my clothes so couldn’t guarantee to be totally cat hair free…however, I do run over all my items with a lint roller and inspect very carefully before packing just to try and reduce the risk of there being any on my items.
I also have a part time job…and have to get my 8 hours sleep, so could not be available 24/7 although I usually get back to people within 8-12 hours of an enquiry.
I’ve been disappointed with customer service from some (but by no means all) sellers on here too - goods inadequately wrapped and no courtesy note included with the package being my main gripe. I’ve never had anything go astray on its way to me thankfully.
I don’t know why, but I expect more from a folksy seller than I would from, say, an ebay seller.
I guess we just have to accept that other sellers may not be as careful or particular as we are - and just hope that the majority are for the sake of our collective reputation!
Do @Folksyadmin produce a packaging guide with tips for new sellers?
Sorry to hear that you’ve had a rotten experience as a buyer. The postal delays can be a little frustrating around Christmas, but I’d hope that sellers would at least respond to queries. I had several slightly panicked buyers in the week before Christmas, wondering when their items would arrive (they all ordered just before the last posting date). Thankfully everything turned up in time for the big day, but I was in touch with them all the way until they confirmed that all was well. It would have felt very rude to ignore them.
Hope you have a better experience if you do buy from other Folksy sellers again @RavelloDesigns
Good idea to produce a packaging guide @StephanieGuy…
While I wouldn’t expect a seller to be available 24/7 - we all have to sleep sometimes! - I would expect to receive a reply within 24 hours. However, due to the floods there are some areas of the country without electricity or internet, or worse, and while my own first thought in that situation would be to put my shops into holiday mode (if I could) I would understand perfectly if that didn’t occur to someone affected by the awful things happening in some places.
I have had my own bad Folksy experience, ordering and being completely ignored and going through the Paypal dispute process which also received no response etc etc. I do think some craft magazines ‘make your fortune by selling your crafts online’ have a lot to answer for, it really is not that easy and I guess some people set up a shop and then forget all about it when nothing happens.
But, that one bad experience has been outweighed by the many lovely things I have been able to purchase through Folksy that I never would have dreamed of otherwise.
I must admit I’ve never had a ‘bad’ experience while buying the odd item on folksy.
Oops, I never put in a “courtesy note” as mentioned by Stephanie @StephanieGuy. I put most types of my pewter jewellery in a gift box and enclose a business card and a product leaflet. I usually pack and post my items straight away. I must say, I would never expect a courtesy note from anyone else…
Me neither, I put the Paypal packing slip and a business card and that’s that. I don’t gift wrap unless asked to, although of course I wrap appropriately to keep the item safe. Must say I’m not a big fan of receiving extra ‘stuff’ with my packages so I don’t send it out either.
I simply wrap in tissuse paper and organzier ribbon with a tag with my business logo on along with a delivery note on headed A4 sheet with a hand written ‘thank you’ at the bottom. When I have business cards available I pop one in.
I then packed in recycled outer packaging so it gets through the postal system in one piece.
If it’s a small item then it goes into a organzier bag or see through cellophane bag between sheet of protective card.
Yes I like my items to go out looking nice but I also want to get them to my customer in one piece and clean without adding more and more rubbish going to landfill.
It’s the ones that send just the item in bubble wrap with nothing else that bug me.
I don’t include a business card or receipt (the customer has an electronic one of those) but I always include a handwritten a6 note with the story behind the piece of art. My business details are printed at the bottom of the note.
The art work itself is placed in a poly sleeve inside a certificate of authenticity, which is inside a handmade envelope, wrapped in tissue and then taped to card for the journey.
I include a copy of the order and just hand write a ‘thank you for your order’ on the bottom of it.
Most items I wrap in tissue and put in a self seal cellophane bag. Bigger items like tote bags can be difficult to wrap in tissue so tend to just put in a plastic bag. Smaller items will then be put in a jiffy bag or a large letter size box. Larger items will go in a box or be wrapped in brown paper depending on what’s appropriate for the item/items. I always make sure items are well wrapped and sealed, with bubble wrap added for protection if needed, or will add some stiff card to the parcel to prevent creasing and crumpling!
Oh dear I hope I don’t unwittingly include a hair from my cat. She’s very stressy at the moment and is over grooming, there are random hair clumps all over the house.
I always wrap items in tissue and put them inside a pretty organza bag along with a business card and hand written thank you message.
All of my Folksy purchases have been really lovely so far.
I, too, have a cat, but having seen so many eBay sellers promoting that their products are from pet-free (and smoke-free) homes has drawn my attention to the fact that others don’t necessarily want to share our pet’s sheddings! And even more important when the item is a gift for someone else. It’s just another thing to bear in mind
On the subject of gifts, I don’t gift wrap, as I assume the buyer would want to see the goods him/herself before giving them to someone else. All items are presented in a gift box though, and I include a little card containing my basic details and saying what the item is made from inside, because while the buyer has seen my product description online, the recipient hasn’t. It adds a little personal touch from me to the recipient too, who can also check out my website if they want to. (I include a business card for the buyer.) It all helps to reinforce my ‘branding’.