Karen Millen give master class in appalling customer service


I’m kind of sad that I’ve been driven to writing a damning post about what I thought was a quality brand just to try to obtain an answer to a simple question.

I work online and see complaints about websites every day. Often I side with the business as I assume that the customer maybe just doesn’t understand how complicated it can be to operate in e-commerce. Sometimes things go wrong but as long as the company try to put things right then that’s all you can ask for.

Unfortunately my experience with Karen Millen is that they have not made any effort to answer my query which is a shame as it should have been easily resolved…

04/06/12 – I ordered a dress from Karen Millen at a cost of £175. Not just any dress I might add. This is a dress for my bridesmaid, very carefully chosen after weeks of hunting and in just the right shade of purple! The express delivery option promises delivery in 3 working days.

06/06/12 – Email notification from Karen Millen that my parcel is on its way. Hurrah!

12/06/12 – The expected delivery day has been and gone (impatient bridesmaid is stamping her very pretty feet) but I decided to give Karen Millen another day’s grace before asking where the parcel was.

13/06/12 – Rather surprisingly I receive an email from Karen Millen saying “Just to let you know we have received return of your recent order at Karen Millen.” They also informed me in another email that they have refunded my payment. Very nice of them but I don’t want my money back I want the dress!!

I assume we have an issue here with the courier perhaps going to the wrong house so fire off an early morning (6:40am) email to KM asking why the dress has been returned. No answer by 4 pm so I repeat the request.

14/06/12 – I wait patiently (well not very) for an answer. In the evening I give up and post a query on KM’s Facebook page. It is a customer service channel after all. Amazingly I get a response which I’m grateful to receive so I await further news…. and then I waited some more and then I lost more patience. A friend of mine who runs her own business, so understands the value of a client relationship, chipped in to the post.

15/06/12 – Still no further response and I’m getting a bit bored and more than a little irritated with the scenario, not to mention amazed that such a large brand would A, treat customers in such a shabby way and B, not resolve a very public issue on their Facebook page.

Whilst on said Facebook page I discover that rather a lot of ladies are also having problems with a lack of communication from KM and have also resorted to posting on Facebook to try to get a resolution.   You can see a sample of the rather shameful amount of comments that I found from the last few weeks in the image below:

Karen Millen customer services fail

So working online and working for a company that gives great customer service, IMHO, I am a little incensed at so many people being treated so shabbily.  Of course I also would like a reply to my own query so I spent some time trying to track down someone to talk to. This was no easy feat as Karen Millen appear to closely guard their telephone numbers and also the names of anyone that might be able to help.

Eventually I found the details of Karen Millen’s brand communications director, Lynn Ritson, on LinkedIn. After giving customer services one last shot by email on the 15/06 I gave up and sent a direct message to Ms Ritson via LinkedIn.  So by the 16th June I had sent:

– 3 emails to enquiries@karenmillen.com

– 5 or 6 comments on Facebook

– 1 direct mail to Lynn Ritson

Guess what? Still no response from anyone!! To cap it off I tried to login to my Karen Millen account tonight to make sure I’ve not missed any internal messages and I cannot access my account despite two efforts at resetting my password.  This is a fishier tale than those of Captain Birdseye!

The annoying thing is that this was probably a very easy problem to solve:

– Apologise for the mix up on delivery, take another £175 off my card and send me a new dress. Simples…..

So I am left answerless and dressless. If any other lovely fashion brands have a similar outfit to this one please let me know and I will gladly take it off your hands.

I suspect that the previous disgruntled shoppers that have left bad reviews for Karen Millen on Review Centre will also be happy to find somewhere better to shop.

Update 21/06 – Further digging on the Karen Millen Facebook page has uncovered even more complaints from customers like these examples:

Karen Millen complaints

Having had no response from customer services or Lynn Ritson I’m hoping that their head of global marketing, Roberta Travagin might prove more communicative. Such a shame to see a (formerly) British brand in meltdown.

20. June 2012 by Caroline
Categories: Online Branding | 5 comments

Comments (5)

  1. My family and I literally spend a lot of money with Karen Millen but have had numerous bad experiences with Customer Service reps which has recently culuminated in the worst ever experience we have ever had, anywhere and with any retailer! The last 3 pairs of shoes ordered over a few months period were each sent with one or more of the following problems: worn, unwrapped and unprotected inside the boxes and subsequently damaged by chaffing against each other! In spite of photographic evidence, Customer service simply and unhelpfully advised us to return the shoes for a refund!! When we complained about leaving the resolution solely to the customer when the customer is not at fault, a representative emailed an apology suggesting that they would send out vouchers for any disappointment and find replacement items in good, ‘new’ and well packaged condition if we could email the details. We did this that same day and that is when the real problems began! That was on the Friday. We did not hear back until the following Monday in which the same rep re-sent the original request for the details in order to find replacement shoes and send the vouchers! And guess what? In the history of the email she sent to us containing her second and duplicate request, was our reply to her! You know the one she was asking for again, claiming she had not received it!!!! Following this we re-sent the request to her and other reps 3 more times, once to enure it was read and registered we even pasted a copy into a new email, only to get yet another request for the information and being told that if we did not send it the case would be closed!! We then sent yet another complaint and forwarded the email containing the evidence to the rep claiming not to have received it and guess what! We have heard nothing!! We are unlikely now to ever order on-line with Karen Millen again, it is really truly appalling!!

    By the way, we too were ‘locked out’ of our account when we made a complaint!! Sound familiar?

  2. I have tried to ring customer service and I just can’t get through I have recently spent a lot of money in the shops. I am very disappointed in the lack of poor service I will not be ordering anything again or buying from Karen Millen

  3. What’s the point in customer services and having a helpline number if your not taking calls

  4. Paying £6.99 for next day delivery and then awaiting delivery 2 days later is not what I paid for very disappointed

  5. I placed 1 order and received 4 order confirmations which means the item has been ordered 4 times not happy at all

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