Miss Terry Shopper and the SurfStitch Customer Service

Being Miss Terry Shopper can be a difficult task. Although I shop online at a regular basis, a lot of the time my experiences tend to be relatively ‘ho hum’ and uneventful. It is always liberating to write about the things that anger you about a shopping experience, but what about those experiences that impress you? Today I am going to tell you about a shopping experience that did just that!

Don’t get me wrong, at first I was disappointed with the outcome. Recently SurfStitch, a pureplay brand I shop on at a (very) regular basis sent out an email advertising a snow sale – all snow products that were already on sale would have another 20% off. I thought to myself in the words of Charlie Sheen’s midlife crisis – ‘WINNING!’

I was desperate for a new jacket and pants. The pants I had been wearing represented a particular stereotype of men who wear their pants low and baggy. As for my jacket, well, lets just say I have been wearing the same one since I was 16. An update was necessary.

So I searched the website until I found the perfect jacket and pants combo that would save me from belting my baggy pants and year 10 taste in fashion. The order went through and I excitedly waited for them to turn up on my doorstep…

On arrival I was so excited I tore the wrapping and tried my new outfit on. But alas! I could only JUST do up the pants, and the jacket was extremely snug. To the point, if I was to fall over in the snow – I don’t know if I would have been able to get up again! This is a girls worst nightmare… Thinking I had put on a big winter coat already (and at this point, it was the start of June) I was close to having my own mid life crisis.

Then even more devastation, SurfStitch don’t refund sale items, they only exchange. So sadly I took off my outfit thinking I would have to sell it onwards to someone on eBay. Then there was a light at the end of the tunnel – the pants and jacket were labelled ‘S’ when I knew I had ordered and ‘M’, but the other tag attached was labelled with a ‘M’… Well this was interesting. Looks like Billabong may have made an error. So I immediately got on the emails to SurfStitch and I was requested to send photos.

Surfstitch were quick to recognise their error, and I received a few emails about the next step. The Customer Service Representative  I dealt with was Jane*, and yes I only dealt with one person the whole time, I wasn’t thrown from customer service rep to customer service rep, that was a big tick for SurfStitch in my books. Jane quickly told me she had put a jacket in the correct size aside for me, but unfortunately the pants I wanted had sold out, however I would be refunded and SurfStitch would reimburse me for the postage of sending the incorrect items back.

Checking my bank statement, I noticed SurfStitch were trying to charge me another $100, well that’s a bit cheeky, so I immediately emailed Jane, and asked her what was happening. The reply I got was that it was an error, she had cancelled it (and sent me a screen shot of the cancellation) and she had put through the refund for the pants and the postage costs. The lesson you can learn here, keep an eye on your credit card statements!

So some of you reading this might think I am pumping up SurfStitch’s tyres and every business should be or does follow a similar process. But the short answer is no, they don’t. There is still a number of e-commerce businesses that are not making the effort to make the returns process easy for the customer – so I hope if your business is one of them, that you will turn your act around, or in a few weeks/months, you might see your name mentioned here…


*Customer Service Representative’s name may or may not be Jane

One thought on “Miss Terry Shopper and the SurfStitch Customer Service

    • Lex
    • 22nd August

    Hi Miss Terry,
    Firstly, thanks for your kind words and for being a loyal shopper, we love you!
    Secondly, I apologise that your mentioned experience wasn’t perfect as we expect nothing shy of that for every customer. No you can’t win them all but we sure do try.
    Just a quick note to let you know that we are about to open up refunds on SALE items. This does buck the trend but I do agree that if you can’t try it on prior then why be penalised? Stay tuned, will be live and notified shortly.
    On the other ‘charging’ issue, that is something we are very aware of and are deep diving to find the bug causing the ever so infrequent occurrence. I can assure you that EVERY refund/exchange order is audited by our CS angels to ensure it is rectified ASAP.
    Thanks again


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