/ Warning: Go Outdoors = a mess
If, like me, you keep an eye on the sales at Go Outdoors because sometimes you can get good gear for low prices there, BE CAREFUL.
They were recently taken over by JD sports, and the result seems to be both a meltdown in their online platform's functionality, and a collapse in customer service.
About a week and a half ago I ordered a bouldering mat for in-store pick up. They emailed me a few hours later to say the order was cancelled. Annoying, I thought - but I tried again with a different model. Same thing happened...even though the website was still saying (the next day) that both models were still in stock at the selected store. I tried reserving at another store - same thing.
I didn't think too much of it, and just aimed to go and look in person the next day - which I did, picking up a cheaper mat in store, that wasn't listed on the website at all (unlike all the cancelled as 'out of stock' items, which still were).
However I've been charged for ALL THREE of the mats that Go Outdoors cancelled on me. I've tried to contact them via both the online form and their customer service number. The former produces an automated reply promising to get back to me in 24 hours (thus far, not true, both times). The latter leads to a recorded message saying they are too busy to put me on hold, and then hangs up!
A quick Google indicates that this is happening all over the country, to a lot of people. Some are out of pocket to the tune of nearly £1000.
In other words, if you want something from Go Outdoors, don't pay for anything in advance, and probably don't order anything online either. Go to the shop in person and try your luck - or better, Go Elsewhere.
Trustpilot reviews are damning:
I paid for two transactions on my credit card and am hoping to claim those back. The other was on my debit card, which means I basically have very little consumer protection if Go Outdoors keep refusing to talk to me...
Can confirm, recently saw the scarpa vapours old model for £70 on their website but could get no delivery for them what so ever. Went in store and found them in store for £112 and told that the online offer was womens only even though it clearly says Mens shoe in the product name.
I think their website is just completely messed up.
> They were recently taken over by JD sports, and the result seems to be both a meltdown in their online platform's functionality, and a collapse in customer service.
They've been owned by JD Group for over two years (so not that 'recently') - are you sure that's the cause of your misfortune?
It would seem not! Duff info at my end on that one.
Whatever the cause - it’s bloody annoying, and I don’t really care why it’s happening I just want my money back!
I agree it's a pain when things go wrong and obviously being £1,000 down temporarily is very annoying but I've been shopping at GoOutdoors for years for most of my outdoor kit, I always use the 10% price match beat thing and always get things for cheaper than you can anywhere else.
I have 100% faith that everyone will get their money back because they are a successful national brand, rather than some small company trying to fraudulently rip people off before declaring themselves bankrupt. Maybe give them the benefit of the doubt - if they really have a website issue then they are probably being temporarily inundated with calls for refunds.
Perhaps try calling their customer service at a time they are unlikely to be busy, perhaps try tweeting them, perhaps try going into a store if it's convenient and speaking to the manager (I have always found them to be helpful).
If it helps, I know you can dispute a payment with Amex online and they immediately give put the money back on your card while they investigate, e.g. the retailer is "guilty until proven innocent" so to speak. Obvs this may not help with your debit card issue. I think to say that you will need to revert to the consumer protection provided by your credit company is somewhat exaggerating the issue.
edit: regarding stock issues most stores stock systems aren't real-time they get updated periodically, this is why sometimes it says there is stock in store when there isn't. If I need to be sure I will call up that store and ask them to personally check for me while I wait.
Judging from the trail of pissed off people on Trustpilot, I worry that it will take so long to get any refund that the easiest thing is just to get the card company to cancel. (It doesn't help that I'm skint this month from having spent too much money on a trip to Scotland plus, er, exuberances following Liverpool's Champion's League victory.)
I've also been a fan of Go Outdoors for years, but clearly something has gone very badly wrong in recent weeks, and whatever it is, they are a mess right now - so I recommend nobody buy anything online, and only in store.
> obviously being £1,000 down temporarily is very annoying
Very annoying if you have a spare £1000 laying around, devistating to your accounts if you don't. Payment should be taken after stock is checked at the very earliest.
> Trustpilot reviews are damning:
> I paid for two transactions on my credit card and am hoping to claim those back. The other was on my debit card, which means I basically have very little consumer protection if Go Outdoors keep refusing to talk to me...
You can still do a chargeback on a debit card, and if it's a Visa card Visa voluntarily offer exactly the same protection they do on their credit cards. So contact your bank.
Phone your bank and "dispute" the payments - they'll probably ask you to email the details. That tends to make things happen a bit faster...
Just to add a bit of balance, I have recently brought various bits in store and received very good service. Got price match and very good discount on a number of items, plus they were happy for me to return a helmet that I brought that didn't fit my daughter.
And have brought an excellent OEX bamboo base layer that I've been very impressed with for the price.
Never purchased anything via their website so cant comment on that.
I got an incredible deal on some DMM passive pro recently. It said I needed a discount card but I just went through without one and it still gave me the discount, so some people are doing ok!
Yes, I agree that it's annoying, whatever the cause.
One of the things that annoy me with GoOutdoors is that they won't let you order stock from another store into your local one (I was told that their delivery policies have changed a few months ago). So, if whatever you need is not available in their warehouse or your local store, or, like in my case, you want to try the thing before you buy (in my case, it was a harness, so non-returnable), you now have to travel to whatever store has the item in stock.
You can still have stuff delivered to Blacks and Millets stores (which are also part of the JD Group), so I think this is GoOutdoors' own policy, not JD one.
From what I understand they are now running the stores and online as effectively two parallel businesses - which accounts for the screw ups and this weird policy of not moving things between stores (which wasn’t the case in January for sure).
Very odd. My guess is a few people are going to get fired...
This is how Sports Direct do it - it's a completely separate part of the business. Click and collect for them doesn't mean you get an item in the store reserved, it means they courier it to the store for you.
> This is how Sports Direct do it - it's a completely separate part of the business. Click and collect for them doesn't mean you get an item in the store reserved, it means they courier it to the store for you.
I'm not sure how this could be with GoOutdoors as it currently stands. I bought some cams last week and picked them up from the shop about 30 mins later.
which is fine if they are in stock, but as stated above you waste a load of time on the website and go to the checkout and it says 'cant click and collect' and can only get it from certain stores, then you have to search for one with it stock. total bag-o-shite
To be fair you can understand why it might be easier to supply from the central warehouse only - moving stock around is a fairly admin-heavy activity for relatively small financial gain. I'd expect most firms not to do that these days. This is fine when the warehouse has the item, a bit of a nuisance if it's an end of line item, but that's how things go at a discount retailer.
> which is fine if they are in stock, but as stated above you waste a load of time on the website and go to the checkout and it says 'cant click and collect' and can only get it from certain stores, then you have to search for one with it stock. total bag-o-shite
But this is not the point I was addressing.
I have always found Go Outdoors to be utterly useless online. They would bombard me with emails and ads with spectacular offers at ludicrously low prices but the items were never available for home delivery and never available on any store near me. The site would however have similar products on offer at a much higher price. Funny that.
It was a long job but I have eventually managed to block their ads and emails
Yeah i get how/why it works but their online web site/store should say, 'not available online' (in fact some items it does) not leave it to the checkout process to find that info out. Or say only available at these stores ... and give you a list. It's a poor experience.
and gethin i agree not quite what you were saying but it gave me an opportunity to rant Maybe they had yours in stock at the wharehouse and in you 'home store'. Seems to me they have or pretend to have quite accurate stock levels at stores and you can reserve it at your store if indicated in stock but cant/wont move stock around between stores.
JD are expanding massively, they have just bought out one of their rivals, Footasylum. There main warehouse / distribution centre is on the business park next to my clubs running track, since opening it in 2012, they have doubled the size of the facility from 1m sq. ft, to 2m sq.ft.
I can assure you that they are only pretending to have accurate stock levels regarding what’s in their stores!
I put an order in online then picked it up and didn’t realise till after I had paid £15 more than I had been quoted online. It’s nothing compared to people having their money stolen by this company recently though
> I can assure you that they are only pretending to have accurate stock levels regarding what’s in their stores!
I agree, super cheap climbing shoes advertised £30!!, but can't find a store that stocks them!!
Emailed saying their site is complicated and unusable, got a replay to another problem, I hadn't posted.
Shambles doesn't cover it, I suspect these "bargains" don't exist and are simple clickbait.
you have been reasonable long enough, I think the only logical recourse now is to stage a dirty protest in your nearest store until they cough up
I fondly remember when they were CCC....
I nipped in to the Sheffield branch the other day, first time after their 'refurb'. Funny how a lick of paint, new lights and a bit of plasterboard seems to have changed the whole vibe of the place. Staff didn't seem nearly as friendly as usual (though to be fair it was only about 20mins before closing and they'd probably had a long day at that point).
Didn't buy anything in the end - given the choice between paying a fiver to renew my expired 'discount' card or paying double the price on the thing I wanted, I carried on just up the road to Decathlon instead. Given the choice I'll buy from an independent shop if I can ('Foothills' for example) but CCC has well and truly gone and there doesn't seem to be any reason to prefer one gigantic chain over another.
Might be worth an email to watchdog - they were covering similar practices elsewhere last week
On the flip side, the mat I ended up actually buying in store was priced as £105 on the label, and online, and for some reason they only charged my £85 for it at the checkout...
So I suppose sometimes the shambles can work in the customer's favour...
Similar experience to me. Popped in today and though I did find the cheap deal I was after, it certainly seems like less bargains to be had.
Now this isn’t a personal comment re your circumstances, but surprise surprise, “cut price outlet has less than perfect customer service.”
Ccc and then go outdoors a few years ago had excellent customer service. It's recent that it's a mess.
Constant downward pressure, something has to give. I used to work in an independent specialist retailer. Knowledgeable, experienced staff and a good stock level for costumers to see for real was very hard to sustain 20 years ago no there’s no chance. Stock you can touch costs, trained staff cost, high street premises cost, unfortunately too much for many.
i haven’t had any negative experiences with staff this time around, mostly because I haven’t been able to interact with an actual human being.
When I bulked up on Scottish winter gear in January, the website worked fine and the staff at the Preston store were lovely and service was excellent. This is very recent collapse is standards.
After using CCC/Go Outdoors since it first opened I think it was well known that during any "sale"there was a lot of cheap stock brought in. I never once noticed a drop in price of any of the major brands.
This aside, I recently was enticed by the "Massive Sale" due to the refurbishment only to find that a jacked I had purchased two weeks previously had actually gone up in price by £5.00. This made me notice that there were some very dubious "previous price" declarations. The one on my coat certainly contravened the regulations.
So, haven't posted on here in years but thought I share cause that's rather appalling.
Ordered a Cam online last months. Money was taken from account and received email from Go Outdoors imminently afterwards cancelling the order due to no stock being available (well, OK I can live with that). Refund was supposed to be completed within 5-7 working days.
Haven't heard anything since. Refund is still outstanding, no response to email (except for an automated reply). No way of getting through via phone either, only answer machine.
Would recommend to avoid ordering anything online until they have got their act back together - currently trying to claim the payment back via my bank.
If anyone has a phone number that actually get's you through to a human being, would be most appreciated.
Was told by an employee that their warehouses had been rearranged/changed and that they had been told they would not be able to get any new stock in for six weeks, hence nothing on the shelves. I get a scout leaders discount of 15% from them which is pretty hard to beat so I hope they get back up and running again before too long.
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