Monday, September 30, 2013

Retail Fairytales: Sears Mattresses

Gather 'round kids! It's time for Retail Fairytales!It all begins last May, Sears sends a Memorial Day sale email with huge, one-day-only savings on mattresses. It just so happens I have been looking at mattresses, and see the one I am interested in for a great price.   I proceed to buy it online during the 6 hour sale marathon.   I schedule delivery for July.   

A few days later, Hubby and I, while at our local mall, stop by Sears to see the bed and quickly get the bum's rush by a sweaty, wild-eyed close-talker mattress salesman.

His spittle-fueled patter basically drove home the point that we were sold a TERRIBLE product but not to worry . . .

that he had a MUCH better one for the same price, and he could cancel the first transaction, and take care of everything!

Memorize it!  MEMORIZE IT!
He proceeded to give us a 1 hour and 20 minute dissertation on every mattress in the store.  At one point, there was a PowerPoint presentation and an audience quiz.   Hubby had long fallen asleep on the tester mattress, and I had developed a nervous tic from the indoctrination/reprograming, and would have agreed to ANYTHING at that point.

Sensing our weakness, he showed us a Stearns and Foster mattress that was apparently made of clouds and ground-up unicorns.  It SEEMED quite comfy, but then again, we would have walked across hot coals to escape to the food court.  We gratefully signed the sales slip and watched him scuttle to the back like a roach under a dishwasher.

So, fast forward . . . mattress is delivered, and it is literally like laying on a fabric-covered marble slab. 

Disappointing, yes, but no fear: Mr. Mattress at Sears said that the mattress had a comfort guarantee, so I immediately call Sears to return the slab. The Sears troll that answered said that returns were not allowed, so I battle on to the Assistant Manager troll, who asserts that there IS a comfort swap allowed, for $250. I dodge and parry and encounter the SENIOR manager troll, who admits that the fee was brand new, but waived for us. 

SO . . . Another mattress is purchased, old one is picked up on a Monday, and the new one arrives Wednesday and all is well.


I fully paid for the first one and was told the funds would be refunded upon its return. In the meantime, I also bought the second one. Weeks go by, no return. Hours on the phone with the Sears mall trolls, who have VERY short memories, Sears customer service, Sears delivery, Sears warranty. Nothing.

Today, I traveled the world via conference call, zinging through space from one overseas Sears Oompa Loompa to the next, each less able to help than the previous one. Records are incomplete, computers are frazzled, every Oompa Loompa says they have no proof of the return despite having all of my scrolls in order, my Sears card number, my receipt number, my local store number, the dates of the purchases and the return.

All hope seems lost.


I kept a teeny, tiny, little, eensy, weensie slip of inconsequential paper that the deliveryman gave me when he picked up the slab.   It had his initials, the date and a magic code. Once uttered to the Searsians, the heavens opened up, and I was instantly transferred to a chuckling, bubbly Glenda The Good Witch of a woman who uttered the beautiful words, "I have processed your full refund, Mrs. Martin."

Moral of the story: Keep your paperwork. And don't trust mattress salesmen.

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