Poor Customer Experience with SuperbrightLEDs.com

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UPDATE: SuperBrightLEDs found this post on Google and contacted me, scroll down to see what they had to say.

SuperbrightLEDs.com is an online that sells LED light bulbs to replace any number to types of regular lamps. I’ve replaced most of my car’s interior lamps (and a few exterior lamps) with their products, and recently found some really great candelabra style lamps for my garage and entry fixtures.

At $20 a pop these things aren’t cheap, but they barely nibble on the power while putting out a LOT of clean, warm-white light. These things are the same size as standard incandescent lamps (not enlarged like the CFLs are) and look very, very nice.

I’ve replaced all of my CFL lamps in both fixtures on either side of my garage (6 total) and recently purchased 6 more (3 for my entry fixture, and 3 for my stairs fixture). I got the package yesterday.

I installed the first set of three with no problem, but when I went to install the second set of three I noticed one of them didn’t match the others. I’ve been ordering warm-white/clear-housing. One of these had a frosted-housing. Not a big deal, but I want them all to match.

I called the company and talked to customer support. She apologized for the error, it turns out that it had been packaged wrong rather than picked wrong. She said she’d get a return label mailed out to me so I can return the incorrect bulb, and when they got it back they’d send me a replacement.

“Wait, so because of a mistake that you guys made, you’re going to take 4 days to mail me a label, another 4 days to get my lamp back, and another 4 days to send me a replacement? You won’t advance-ship the replacement with the return label in it? You won’t cross-ship the new bulb?” No to both questions. Why? They’ve had some cases where they don’t get the bulbs back. Okay, fine, you’ve got my credit card information on file, right? If you don’t get my bulb back in, say, two weeks, call me and charge my card for it. There’s no risk! Sorry, not their policy.

I was very polite though the whole ordeal, but closed with the statement:

I understand the reasoning behind your policy, and you have to do what you feel is right for your company. However, I have to do what I feel is right for me, the consumer. I’ll jump through your hoops this time, but next time I’m looking for LED lamps I’m going to remember this experience and it will weigh negatively upon my decision to shop with you versus a competitor.

I would advise that you buy from another company before you consider SuperBrightLEDs.com, at least until they decide to fix problems caused by their own employees without making you wait two weeks for a replacement.

Update 1

It turns out they snail-mailed me a replacement AND Pre-Paid Mailing label at the same time (which was contrary to what their customer service rep told me on the phone). I got it Friday, installed the replacement lamp, and all worked well. The “wrong” lamp was at work, so it’ll go back in the mail to them on Tuesday’s shipment.

I’m still a bit wary about their customer service, but at least they did the right thing (even if they told me they wouldn’t).

Update 2

Months later Adam G. from SuperBrightLEDs wrote me with the following:

Hi Joe,

My name is Adam, I am the marketing representative for superbrightleds.com.

I recently was doing some searches for our company on Google and came across your post from February about a poor experience you had with us. I wanted to let you know that since the time you made your post our return policy has changed. It is now our policy that when the wrong product is mistakenly sent to a customer we will send out the correct product immediately along with a postage paid slip for sending back the incorrect bulb back to us and, just as you stated, if we do not receive the product back we contact the customer to let them know we will be charging them for it.

I apologize for the poor experience you had with us in the past and I hope the change in our policy allows us to be considered by you for future LED purchases. Please feel free to email me directly if you have any questions.

Thank you

So, I don’t know if it was my complaint or my blog post that ended up prompting them to change their policy. In any event, they did. Which means they’ve matured to the point that they need to own up to their mistakes, and are willing to act on that. That’s really good news.

The next time I’m in the marker for LED bulbs, I’ll consider SuperBrightLEDs.com again…

Thanks for doing the right thing, guys!

One thought on “Poor Customer Experience with SuperbrightLEDs.com

  1. Just an update: It turns out they snail-mailed me a replacement AND Pre-Paid Mailing label at the same time (which was contracry to what their customer service rep told me on the phone). I got it Friday, installed the replacement lamp, and all worked well. The “wrong” lamp was at work, so it’ll go back in the mail to them on Tuesdays’ shipment.

    I’m still a bit wary about their customer service, but at least they did the right thing (even if they told me they wouldn’t).

    http://www.JoeLevi.com

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