It’s easier than you think.
One of the annoyances of dealing with online companies is getting customer support by phone. Yes, there’s all kinds of information available on their Web site. But there are a lot of instances where the information that’s available online for your account simply doesn’t answer the question you have.
Like me, today, with Amazon.com. On December 26, I ordered a Caphalon One saucepan to complement the set my sister, brother, and sister-in-law so generously bought us for our Christmas/belated wedding gift. The pan cost a small fortune, so it qualified for free “super saver” shipping. My past experience with this free shipping is that if the item is in stock, it usually arrives 5 to 10 days after I place the order. I was in no real hurry, so that was fine.
But by today, nearly 3 weeks later, I still didn’t have the saucepan. I followed up on Amazon.com’s Web site and learned that the item had not yet shipped and was not scheduled to be shipped until January month-end — a full month after I placed the order. That was simply not tolerable. It was time to talk to Amazon.com.
Poking around the Help pages will eventually get you to a clickable button that you can use to contact Amazon.com by phone. Here’s the generic link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/contact-us/call-me.html/
Here’s how it works. You click the button (or above link) to get to a Contact Us by Phone page. You then click the Call Me button. A window like the one here pops up. Enter the phone number for the phone you’re nearest to and make sure Right Now is selected. Click Submit. Your phone rings immediately. Answer the phone. You’ll then be on hold for a short while until someone (most likely in India) picks up and begins reading to you off a script. If you’re lucky, that person will understand enough English to answer your question. If you’re really lucky, that person will be in West Virginia, like the person I got the first time I did this.
I went through this exercise today for my saucepan problem. The Indian woman on the other end of the line “upgraded” my shipping to standard at no charge. I’ll have the saucepan in 5 to 10 days. While this doesn’t answer the question of why shipping was delayed in the first place — that question was beyond her capabilities to answer — it does prevent any further delays.
Update: Want to comment or e-mail me with an Amazon.com customer service or technical support question? Read this first.