No its not a complete, “I hate Dell” post.
I was the student representative for IIM Indore, in handling all the IT problems. I loved it, and liked fixing the varied problems that my classmates, juniors and seniors had. Back then, we had a tie up with Dell for laptops. Roughly at any point of time, at least 70 laptops were there from Dell. The warranty on them had lapsed in a years’ time, so … as Murphy would have it, the problems started cropping up only after then. Thus started the telephone calls over Warranty issues, and the constant bartering … over warranty given on paper … then comes the line, read the fine print. I was glad to hand over the ITCom Secretary post to my able junior .. whew!!
Now I do not own a Dell laptop anymore, but two of my colleagues do. Both have malfunctioning laptop batteries and chargers to boot, so the machine refuses to run without AC power and a functioning battery. Ok … easy solution … go to support dot dell dot com and raise a request. One month wait for customer care to respond. Fine, lets raise a sales enquiry of purchasing a new battery and a charger … one month wait for sales to respond. Is the site working anymore?
If you have a website and are making case studies of it in so many b-schools, then can you make sure it works properly; and if it is working properly, then why not respond to the customer, establishing their expectations. No response is a no-no. That has not only resulted in lost sales, but more importantly lost customers. An easier approach would be to sell extended warranty support to them and retain them as customers.