Buyer Beware: Cheaper Than Dirt
I posted this in the Industry sub-forum for CTD over on AR15.com, but I wanted to post it in this community as well as a bit of a word of warning to folks considering doing business with Cheaper Than Dirt.
It seems to me that CTD is "hit or miss" in terms of order quality. Some people have done quite a bit of business with them and never had an issue while some people have horror stories. By no means do I believe my situation is the case for 99.99% of CTD customers... but it has been so disappointing that I felt it worthy of sharing with the community.
To be fair I thought it might also be worthwhile to open a simple poll in this thread asking if from personal experience or reputation, you would do business with CheaperThanDirt. I'm sort of curious to see what the perception of them is.
As Posted on AR15.com
"My wife and I thought it would be fun to order a few of those "Nothing Inside Is Worth Dying For" yard signs as Father's Day gifts. We searched around for the best price and found it at Cheaper Than Dirt. On Friday, May 11th I placed an order for three of the aforementioned yard signs and some ammunition.
The order shipped promptly and shipping was pleasantly quick for the cheapest standard shipping CTD offered for an order where ammunition was included. By Tuesday May 15th I had a box at my door. Only trouble was the ammunition was the only thing in the box.
Thinking that perhaps the items were going to ship separately I checked my order status on CTD.com. There was no indication the items would ship separately, so I e-mailed CTD's Customer Service (CS) via the form on their website on Wednesday May 16th. Later that day I received a response, albeit a bit terse and surprisingly unapologetic, that the items should have all been shipped together and they would be re-shipping the signs for me. Now I'm not the type that requires a gushing apology for honest mistakes because they happen, I was just a bit surprised that a simple apology for the inconvenience was omitted. Certainly not a big deal, though.
On Saturday May 19th, the signs arrived. However the items were not as advertised on the website. They did not include the mounting kits as specifically stated on the product page. Additionally, they did not appear to simply be missing the stakes as I could not see the correct holes in the sign to mount the sign to the stake at all. Something appeared amiss, so on Sunday May 20th I e-mailed CTD's CS again to see what the issue might be. They replied on Monday May 21st that they would have to check with the warehouse to see what the issue was. I did a bit of additional digging around their website and discovered that the same item was posted on the website twice. Exact same picture, description, SKU, price - everything. Only difference was the CTD Item # was ended in "7" for one and "9" for another.
On Tuesday May 22nd another package of three of the incorrect signs arrived leaving me with a total of six. I was advised that the item I had ordered did not include the mounting kit but the "other" item did and it appeared the web team made a mistake posting the items with inaccurate information. I notified them of the additional signs I had received and asked how I could exchange the six incorrect signs with three of the correct ones. On Wednesday May 23rd, I was e-mailed a pre-paid FedEx return label to return the incorrect items. They were shipped at a local office that accepts outbound FedEx mail a few days later.
On Wednesday June 6th I e-mailed to ask the status of my exchange and was told that the return had not arrived (or been processed?) and the replacement signs had not yet been shipped. I inquired again on Tuesday June 12th explaining that I had ordered them as Father's Day gifts over a month in advance and it was starting to seem as if that was not going to happen. I received a reply the same day that my return had still not arrived.
On Thursday June 14th I received an automated e-mail that the order with my replacement signs had shipped. FedEx has the delivery scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday June 16th. We'll see if they're the correct units this time. Assuming everything is fine tomorrow, it will have taken 37 days to get my order completed as ordered. The only words of concern I've gotten in any of the communications I've had with CTD regarding this issue is one e-mail on May 21st where I was told "We apologize for the inconvenience."
Frankly, I am only really offering this story as a word of warning towards potential CheaperThanDirt customers. I can't say that the experience has left me wanting to do any business with CTD again. Like I said: I'm not the type that requires a groveling apology for anything. I'd never ask for one. Having said that, though, I have dealt with many companies in the firearms industry over the years and have never had a buying experience like this. Generally speaking companies in this industry are very concerned with their reputation and can't apologize enough even for a simple thing. Perhaps this is a result of the "100,000 orders per month" that CTD explained in another post they receive and some mistakes will happen. True, but the mistakes should still be handled with some professional courtesy."