Thursday, April 21, 2011

Has Lululemon Bought Your Love Back With a $20 Gift Card & Expedited Shipping?

Dear Lulu,

Don't upload this until I get my new gift card. This is what I am going to buy with it.


A Cheap Date  ;-)

The Power of the Blog (Ok, Maybe Not Just This Blog...)

Check out what just came in my email (and the email of those whose packages were mis-routed):

Thank you for your patience during our ecommerce transition. We have been working through some shipping issues from orders placed last Friday and Saturday and sincerely apologize for any confusion or delays that these may have caused. We installed 4 new FedEx stations in our warehouse, and each of these stations started processing at the same tracking number which led to the duplication of tracking numbers and confusion. We can assure you that this has been fixed, and we are working quickly towards a seamless operation and are feeling very confident about on our new operating platform.

We are partnering closely with FedEx to get your product to you as quickly as possible. Our guests are the heart of our business, and to thank you for your loyalty and understanding, we will be sending you a $20 gift card and a complimentary upgrade to expedited shipping when placing your next order. We will send out your gift card next week as well as instructions on how to redeem your complimentary shipping upgrade. In the interim, should you have any questions at all, please call our guest education centre at 1.877.263.9300 extension 1.

Thank you for your trust and confidence as we work through these growing pains.

Love from,
Your lululemon athletica team

All our complaints worked. Thanks, Lulu!

NEW! Mudra Pant

Mudra pant on mannequin and hanging to the right
I like the wide waistband, the slight flair at the bottom and the seams on the back of the leg. They come in black, coal, and heathered blurred gray. I'll have to look for these next time I go shopping.

Great closeup showing some CRB colors - pink mist, heathered grapeseed, heathered tango red, white, and black.

Some Customer Feedback on Shipping, Website, and Customer Service Issues

From all I am reading on Facebook and the blog comments, Lululemon has really angered many of their new and old customers with the handling of the website "upgrade" and the shipping mislabeling. Not only is shipping being mislabeled but people are getting dirty items (white visors with fingerprints on them) and packages without receipts. I think Lululemon needs to see this feedback and work on their customer service issues.

________________________Blog Comments ______________________________________
  • I actually would say they have not been up front. GOOD service would be to proactively contact everyone with a messed up order and explain what happened and what is being done to fix it. There has been no proactive communication. (I have 2 orders, no tracking number and no response from GEC.)
GREAT service would be proactive communication plus a gift card or discount. In this case, WWND (What would Nordstrom do?) is a fair question. They are a company that does the right thing, all the time.
  •   Anonymous said...
I have a friend who works at FedEx that say they are PO'd that Lululemon is blaming them and it wasn't their issue. Lululemon prints the labels on site. FedEx doesn't add them to the packages once they receive them. That wouldn't make any sense. Yes, the address labels are created on FedEx's system, but Lululemon runs them and it's Lululemon's information that transfers to the label. And yes, Lululemon provides Free Shipping, but that's about the only discount I've *ever* seen them give a customer. All other stores have loyalty programs, times product are 10% off, etc. Maybe others aren't appreciative of good customer service, but I've always let them know when I've had an outstanding experience. And Lululemon isn't being up front with their customers, they're covering their asses and making excuses. Delete
Anonymous said...
I am too, not happy with Lulu. Ordered on the dreaded April 15. No confirmation, tracking etc...Called GEC 3 times before someone actually do something and email me the confirmation and tracking. (Mind you, this is over the course of 2 days, waiting patiently for a "callback" that was promised, but never happened.)Then, tracked @ FEDEX and product update says "packaged undeliverable". Called GEC again, (getting worried and POed by now,) but just got the same schpeil...FEDEX's error, will still get the package sometime in the 5 to 7 biz days. Adding to the drama...stupid enough to order again yesterday..wanted to change my order 10 minutes after it was made, notice that the option to "cancel or change orders" are no longer there. (Anybody else notice this?) Called GEC pronto and was told that order cannot changed due to it already being processed and picked and packed and shipped...which I do not believe, since it was only 10 minutes since the order was placed. To add insult to the injury, when I checked the order status this morning (a whole 24 hrs after it was "shipped", still actually in the "process" mode. Not shipped yet!!! Sorry to rant and rave here, just had to get it out of my system...stark raving MAD at them.
April 21, 2011 7:25 AM
Anonymous said...
Just spoke with someone who worked for a company & knew how the shipping labels. Got the scoop - but my package just came as well & you can see where LULU put their shipping label on the package & then a second temporary one had to be assigned for it to get to me. I don't care if it is LULU or Fed ex - Too many of us are having problems. Looks like 1st # sent it to Grove city - where Fed Ex found out it was going to the wrong place & then put the proper temp tracking # on it so I could get it - LULU really needs to get their act in order quickly As much as I like their things & need to order from the site - this doesn't sit well with me or say much for LULU LULU should think of a way to apologize for the inconvience they are causing all of us
 Anonymous said...
That's IT! Let's all stop buying LLL. I'm DONE!
April 21, 2011 8:02 AM
Anonymous said...
I used to work for a medical company and the shipping department shipped out supplies using Fedex. The way it worked there and everywhere else I have worked is that the shipping department has some sort of interface built in (Fedex employees come to install/set this up when the original agreement is made to use them as a carrier). Shipping labels are printed at the company but look like they are from Fedex because of this interface between the Fedex system. It's how both companies have the tracking number (or should in this case) of the same package without any manual inputting for each order. This is definitely lulu's error and they should be trying to help lessen all the anger by offering something - they sure can afford to! I think using the argument that the shipping is free is ridiculous. Many companies offer free shipping and most stand behind their carriers and will help correct the situation. I would be pretty pissed if my money was being held on my credit card while I waited for my package to arrive from somewhere on an unknown date. I think lulu should be giving people the option of refunding customers affected right away and taking it upon themselves to call Fedex and have the package re-directed back to them. At least people could get their money back and order again online or in store if they want. I did not order online during this time and it makes me not want to until I know this is all resolved. Luckily my local stores will get to see me more often!
April 21, 2011 8:59 AM
X said...
Beyond the shipping fiasco, there have been a number of issues with the site's ordering system (addresses not being saved, order entry data issues, spelling errors and bad links on the confirmation e-mails). As someone who has worked in this area before, I'm appalled. It's not up to the customer to test Lulu's site for usability, and telling us that we should expect some bumps is especially silly. These are issues that could have been handled quickly with proper testing, and it does nothing but make them look bad. If they can't even QA their own site and their own ordering process, how can I be assured they are QA'ing the actual product?
April 21, 2011 9:15 AM
  J said...
I'm actually not shopping from the website anymore, which cuts my Lulu purchases by more than half. I adore the girls at my local Lulu so I'll still give them my business but I have been completely turned off by the GEC and every interaction I've had with them. Two separate phone calls where I wanted to ask what was being done about the "missing" packages and instead of listening to my question, the girl on the line proceeded to talk over me to the point that I thought she was a recording. The phone staff there is just downright rude and condescending.
April 21, 2011 9:32 AM
  J said...
PS. I've always thought of Lululemon as a very interesting business case study. From their business model to their use of scarcity and toying with the website to create desire/need in their consumer base, all their actions in the past have at least been intriguing, even when they were frustrating. In terms of the actual snafu with shipping, I can understand that things like that will happen, but in regards to how they are handling the issue, creating almost an adversarial relationship with their core consumer base... well let's just say I won't be recommended this particular business strategy to any corporations I consult for.
April 21, 2011 9:36 AM
KA said...
I have to agree with the others that this is definitely not FedEx's fault. At my work, we also use FedEx to ship hundreds of orders and after the labels are created, we upload a file that FedEx has created with the order number and tracking number. From what my tracking number looks like, I have two reference numbers, order numbers, etc, so whomever it was that was processing the FedEx labels (or Lulu's new system) made a mistake with the way that the labels were to be formatted for the upload file to be correct. With an incorrect upload file, we've seen some new employees at our company screw up the tracking information that was sent to customers and I'm thinking that this exact same problem happened. Unfortunately, they didn't catch their mistake, but even then, they should be able to go back into their system to figure out what tracking number is correct for each customer. I actually think that Lulu's new system was so messed up that when they went to process the files with the orders to process labels, their file had mismatched order numbers and ship-to addresses. Generally the process for us is: 1. Download order file with customer information (order number, items, shipping address) 2. Print labels 3. Upon printing, FedEx ship program creates an upload file with customer order number and tracking information. 4. We upload the FedEx file to our order processing program to update customer orders. The problem is rarely between step 3 and 4 which would make it FedEx's problem. I'm thinking Lulu's problem happened at step 1 with their new in-house inventory management software. As much as I understand the problem from a fulfillment prospective, I don't think we've ever been so flippant when customers were given wrong information.
April 21, 2011 10:07 AM
DeleteZ said...
Just another viewpoint -- Tory Burch upgraded their system and I am waiting on an order -- I called Customer service and they gave me a 20% percent discount, upgraded my shipping to overnight and reversed the shipping charges -- That is FAN-freaking-TASTIC customer service -- needless to say -- i will definitely be shopping at Tory Burch again!
April 21, 2011 10:22 AM
Anonymous said...
@ Z - Exactly! Now that is customer service. Lulu's GEC doesn't offer customer service from what I'm reading. When I first started buying lulu just over a year ago, I was shocked at how poorly the online store was run. Everyone (myself included) would point out the wrong picture displayed on the main page and the standard GEC response would be something like "Thank you, we'll notify the web team". Does the web team not check the site throughout the day for errors? I stopped notifying them because I'm not paid to do so. Now with this new online site that is supposedly in-house, it's not looking any better and lulu's attitude is pretty sad. For a company like this to not even be able to launch a new site properly is shocking. This is all after being shut down for a month and warehouse relocation which should not have caused such a long delay. Other companies are able to do this transition behind the scenes without any closure. With all the money lululemon has made, you would think they could hire qualified employees with some experience in this are.
April 21, 2011 10:44 AM
Anonymous said...
Got my order today, but no receipt was included and the packing slip was crumpled beyond belief. OH well, at least it got here...eventually.
April 21, 2011 11:43 AM
Anonymous said...
Yes, I would think LULU by now would realize they have really given all of us a bad taste in our mouth!!! They just don't seem to care.
April 21, 2011 1:43 PM

__________________________Facebook Comments______________________________
Here is an illuminating thread started early this morning from a Lululemon-related Facebook site. You could say this group of about 800 women is a hardcore Lululemon fan group. This thread was commented on by 14 different people and they are disenchanted about Lululemon's handling of the website/distribution "upgrade.

  • I think my honeymoon phase with lulu is over. I am just not into buying any of their stuff anymore.

    • I can agree. I am sorta loosing interest as well.

    • Sad huh? I am keeping all my pieces but I don't need anymore. I am finding that I would rather get cute work and causal clothes at Banana Republic, JCrew, Gap, Nordstroms, Lucky, etc.

    •  I'm getting sick and tired of this BS too.There must be somewhere else to shop,i should just go back to VS.This is thursday ,why isn't there anything on the web site new,i don't understand why they can't figure out the stupid website,I'm so annoyed

    • I'm in the same boat as you, Ms. X. Just bought a white Luon headband from the website, though, just because I've already wanted a white headband, but not really interested in anything else anymore

    • Me too. This bumpy transition thing made me wonder if their whole company is run this way. What are they going to tell the shareholders at a quarterly meeting if their profits decline? Relax, breathe deeply?

    • I think the hype is over with me too. Honestly think that I an find even cuter and better quality stuff from other brand at 1/2 the price. I will be returning my last purchase but keeping the cap and that's it.
    • ditto for me.. my order is stuck somewhere in Kansas... wonder if/when its gonna get here
    • Again, love what I have, but I look at the mudra wrap and thinking, I spent $118 on something because it is lulu? Really? I could have gotten a similar one for a lot less.

    • Ms. X, that's kind of always been my feeling about most of their casual wear. It seems overpriced and fragile for what it is. My one exception is the Vinyasa Scarf, which as you know is magic. It's the only non-workout Lulu that I own!
    •  Hmm, maybe it's because I don't really buy the fragile items, except for the live healthy wrap, because I actually think they're more durable than my casuals from JCrew and BR which I literally had to baby and one sweater from BR got a huge hole after I washed it in a bag. I agree that Lulu items can be overpriced for what it is (a $98 sweatshirt???) however.
    • Seriously, I went to Banana Republic last week and for the price of a jacket I got a ton of jewelry, a top and Heritage pants. All on sale, and I get rewards. Oh and I can wear it to work or out.
    • Oh and Nordies and REI have the BEST return policy.
    • Mainly I'm interested in the technical running pieces because they're functional and stylish (although the quality is hit or miss, it seems). I wear a lot of Patagonia because they really stand behind their product (and they have awesome sales and customer service). If I can buy something similar from elsewhere, I don't even bother with Lulu.
    • Patagonia has nice stuff
    • I mean true they do!
    • I'm at the point now where I ask myself if an item wasn't lulu, would I even buy it? The quality of their items is not worth the price. I have yoga pants from walmart that have held up 100 times better than my grooves and they were $20. I c...alled the GEC about my groove pants that were piling like crazy and were sueding really bad, they told me the pill because the luon is such a "high quality" material that it attracts lower quality materials such as cotton. I can wash my walmart or marks work wearhouse yoga pants with towels and they're perfectly fine. Must be cuz they're "low quality". The more I see of lulu and all their arrogance, the more I think that I have become a brand sheep. They can do whatever they want, treat their customers poorly and have no benefits to customers who buy their products regularly. I'm tired of all their "high quality" and this whole website upgrade is just icing on the cake. I have a black scuba that I have washed twice and it now looks like it's been washed 50 times. Sorry lulu. If you want to keep customers who are willing to pay $100+ for a single item, you better significantly increase the quality and your customer service.
    • Ms. Y, I agree 100%. Esp the sheep part at times
    • Ms. Y, thats funny. I have a pair of pants and crops from wal mart that were $20 and $30 and they still look like the day I bought them. And I DO NOT baby them like my lulu. so I totally agree with what you are saying. But, then again, th...ats why I dont really buy lulu pants.. I maybe own 8 pairs. I own a few wunder unders just cause they are the best tights, never get a muffin top with them. All the others I own were on sale, stir up pants, vita crops, and well.. i had to own a pair of still pants.. but other then that, I dont buy a bunch of grooves and astros and all those pants.. waste of money I think!! I see girls wearing them out and to the gym, and when they are pilled, they look dirty and cheap imo
    • That's true. I always have to step back and say "Is this really worth $x?" That's partially why I like to shop with other ladies and I usually ask my fiance before I take the tags off. When I'm shopping in store, everyone is so enthusiastic, I end up going on a shopping spree. This is also the only brand I've been acquainted where there are Angels that help find merchandise. LOL

    • I'm on board as well. I've gone into lulu the past two weeks and have been able to walk out with nothing. I love what I have, but I'm over the hype....for now at least ;)

    • Amen, Ms Y! That's a great way to look at it. I just got 2 things today and that's all I need for a while (minus a pair of Tango Red speed shorts). After that, I'm done unless there is something I just have to have and love the look of and would pay a premium for if it wasn't Lulu (and not the "Lulu obsession...must buy everything now mentality" that I've been dealing with for a few months).
    • I agree, if it was not MADE by lulu, would I buy it? Would I think it is actually strange looking?
    • So true Laura! Some of their stuff is so weird looking. I wonder if it's popular just because it has a lulu logo on it??
    • Rachel, I have been soooo afraid to say that! I am glad someone agrees

    • I agree that some of the stuff has been rather weird looking. Those are the items that end up in loot for a million years. Remember that pink plaid jacket/pullover that finally sold out (maybe) a few weeks before the rehaul?

    • Yeah that was quite the pullover!

    • I laugh because I think some of those are still up on eBay with exclamations like "rare", "hard to find" and "SO CUTE". Kudos for trying, I guess?

    • Agree. All my sense of worth and price gets tossed out the window. Most of the time I feel "lucky" to get in on a piece of the action. Wacky!
      • I totally agree. I cannot stand lulu's arrogance, declining quality, and poor customer service. as they say $$$ talks and BS walks. I'm gonna try to take a break from buying lulu.
      • Lulu will need to revamp their customer service and relations and increase quality of products if they want to keep my business. At this price point, it's too much to compromise. I basically have all enough Lulu to last me for a while so this break has been a great for me to reassess my spending and if it's worth it. I've spent half the amount I did last month and it feels great!


Grapeseed Uploaded Today, New Scubas, And Photos

Grapeseed items were uploaded today. I wonder what will be uploaded tomorrow. Maybe Pink Mist. It's so odd that new Scoop Neck tanks are not being uploaded because there is something like eight new colors in the stores. I didn't order anything today. I am kind of in a lulu lulll as far as desiring any new items. It works out because I've been on a big spree the last couple of months and recently sold a bunch of stuff on eBay. My closet was getting too full and I was feeling guilty at not wearing some older items. It's weird, all of a sudden I fell out of love with a lot of my older stuff and decided they could go to new homes that would appreciate them.

Two new Scuba colors - Pink Mist and Toothpaste - have shown up in my Australian store product alerts. Not feeling either of these, although I kind of like the Pink Mist one but know I'd have trouble keeping it clean.

Heathered Blurred Gray Define and Black Seabed Wunder Unders. I returned my Vinyasa scarves last night and was all set to get either the Heathered Blurred Gray or Heathered Sand Dune Defines and ended up leaving with neither, even after hemming and hawing in the changing room for twenty minutes. I liked them both a lot but not enough to spend $100 on them.I think I have reached Lulu saturation, but I know in a week or so I'll be itching to get something new.

I love how the Grapeseed Deep Breath looks with the white Dance Studio Pants. Lulu should bring back white Grooves again.