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New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Hello, back in July, I was informed about the warning message from The Retail Equation.  One of the workers at the store said it was most likely due to an error made by them when returning an iPad.  It made it look like I had returned 3 when that was not the case.  I called The Retail Equation and they said they could not do anything about it, and that Best Buy would have to lift the ban.  I then called my local store again, and the manager even agreed he saw no reason why I should be flagged.  He called around and could not find a way to get the ban lifted.  He even called The Retail Equation on my behalf and told them of the situation.  Today, I tried to return an unopened amiibo to find out that I was blocked from returning anything, no matter the price or condition of the item.

 

I was then told to call The Retail Equation again, and they told me they had no ability at all to lift the ban, they could only send me a report or tell me how long the ban was for.  I am frustrated as this is my third time calling The Retail Equation after trying to work with both my own store as well as the customer support general number for Best Buy.  Neither side can tell me how to lift the ban, only that it can be lifted.

 

I have been an Elite Plus or Elite member the last few years, and am frustrated at the inability to get an answer from anyone on this topic.  I also purchased 4 years of Gamers Club reward, so I don't want to lose the ability to buy games where I have invested this money. It is tiring to get thrown back and forth between two companies, only to be left with inability to purchase something from a store I go to for almost all purchases due to having no return option.

 

I would like to be able to get an answer on who I need to contact about the ban and potentially getting it lifted.  I am happy to work with any Best Buy customer support rep to go over my purchase history and explain any questions someone may have.  It's discouraging that no one is able to help, yet I have the manager at the store recognizing my name and face from buying so much from there while also reviewing my account saying he sees no issues with my returns.

 

Posts: 4,853
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Blog Posts: 11
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Registered: ‎01-21-2014

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Thanks for joining the forum, KurtYonke,

 

One reason why we have a Return and Exchange Promise is that we recognize that despite best intentions, not all purchases end up meeting a customer’s expectations or needs. We certainly don’t want people to have to keep something they don’t ultimately wish to keep, so I’m sorry to hear you were banned from making returns or exchanges when trying to get your hands on a working iPad.

 

As you may know, we partner with a company called The Retail Equation (TRE) to help monitor returns and exchanges on a regular basis to help keep our prices low for all customers. No system is perfect though, which is why customers have the opportunity to request a return report. Once received, customers should have the ability to review their purchase history and dispute any transactions they believe to be in error. To start this process, please contact TRE by following the instructions found here, as any discrepancies must be disputed with them directly. Alternatively, you may call them at 1-800-652-2331 to discuss your possible options.

 

Sincerely,

Alexandra|Social Media Specialist | Best Buy® Corporate
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New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

As mentioned in my initial post, I have already done so 3 times. Each time they tell me they can only send
me the report and that I need to work with Best Buy again. It's frustrating to get bounced around like this. Why is no one able to give me a definitive answer? Why is The Retail Equation saying to work with Best Buy, then Best Buy customer service is bouncing me back to them? Meanwhile, the store manager is trying to work to get me unbanned yet he doesn't even know the official solution.

I understand why Best Buy has The Retail Equation track these things in order to prevent fraud, but at this point all it is doing is denying a legitimate customer the ability to do normal business with a store.

Why is no one on either side able to offer a definitive answer? When you take the action of banning a legitimate customer from returns, you would think that the company doing so would at least have an avenue for recourse. And that avenue should not be sending me to talk to The Retail Equation as they claim they cannot help.
New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

One update on this. I just received my return report, they first of all seemed to only track four of my returns in 2017, the iPad is not even on there. So according to this report, I have had 4 returns all for a combined total of less than $150.00.  So I am now confused by what this company actually tracks.  Assuming that report they sent me is correct, why am I being banned for only 4 items in 2017 that were all returned unopened and with a receip?.  They were also purchased with my debit card and then the money was returned to that same debit card, so I fail to see how it could look like fraud.

 

I would appreciate some response on this besides the standard language of talking to The Retail Equation.  It is clear from this report that their tracking method is not accurate, and it makes it even more confusing that a return ban was imposed.  I have talked to The Retail Equation, Best Buy general support number as well as the corporate office help line. Each party bounces me to the next with no solution. I can't even dispute this report as it doesn't even include the one item my store told me to dispute.

 

Why is it that neither side can help me with this? It is easy to see The Retail Equation's tracking method isn't great, so why can't Best Buy step in to help in this type of situation?

Posts: 4,853
Topics: 254
Kudos: 188
Blog Posts: 11
Solutions: 237
Registered: ‎01-21-2014

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Hello again, KurtYonke,

 

I realize this may not be the answer you’re hoping for, particularly as I understand you’ve tried to speak with them about this in the past; however, we would ask that you continue to work with TRE if you would like to dispute anything found on your return report. I apologize for any frustration or inconvenience this may cause.

 

Respectfully,

Alexandra|Social Media Specialist | Best Buy® Corporate
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New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

I was told by the Best Buy corporate office that Best Buy is the final party to lift the ban. So with this report and with my own Best Buy account, why can't I work with you guys on a solution to this? You tell me to work with The Retail Equation, but the return I wanted to dispute was not even on there.

But apparently to lift the ban, I have to get a case number from my dispute which will then be sent back to Best Buy which will then allow them to lift the ban. I have clearly offered my side to you, offered to work through my returns and review my account, got my TRE report, yet still get asked to go through them when I can't based on the report sent to me. This ban is enforced by Best Buy, so why are you always trying to send us back to TRE when it's clear they won't be able to help me in this situation.
New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Hello, another update. I called The Retail Equation, and I asked for my entire report so I can dispute the iPad return. They told me since I live in Illinois, the only report they can provide is the one based on the transaction ID, thus leaving me with my incomplete report and no option to dispute the return.

So now I have exhausted my options with The Retail Equation. If I can't even dispute the return I'm getting banned for, how can I work to get this lifted? At what point does Best Buy step in and help with this situation? I have been patient and gone through The Retail Equation every time it's been suggested in this thread, yet I am no closer to getting this fixed.

Why can I still not work with someone from Best Buy on this situation when it's clear The Retail Equation can't help me? I have the store manager vouching for me and calling The Retail Equation, and I have offered the willingness to share my account history and explain any returns.

It's frustrating to continually get bounced around like this, especially as someone who is an Elite member who does most of my shopping at this store. I don't get why customers have to go through so much work with Best Buy showing no support, especially when it's clear from other forum posts that The Retail Equation is less than ideal to deal to work with. On this thread, at the bottom, it shows me related threads all dealing with people being frustrated with The Retail Equation.

I want to work this out with Best Buy and not be given the standard response to go back to The Retail Equation.
New Member
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-02-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Any response to this? Why can someone from Best Buy not help me with this, let alone respond to my request for help in the post above?

Posts: 4,853
Topics: 254
Kudos: 188
Blog Posts: 11
Solutions: 237
Registered: ‎01-21-2014

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

Hello KurtYonke,


As previously advised, we would ask that you continue to work with The Retail Equation (TRE) for further assistance, as they placed this reported ban on your account. I truly apologize if they are unable to honor your request to lift it.

 

Please know this is Best Buy's final answer, and we will not be addressing further incoming communication to this inquiry. If you have any other questions about another matter though, feel free welcome to post on the forum again. We'll be happy to help however possible.

 

Respectfully,

Alexandra|Social Media Specialist | Best Buy® Corporate
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New Member
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎08-10-2017

Re: The Retail Equation - No Definitive Answer from Both Sides

I too have the same issue.  It is basically a way for Best Buy to circumvent their return policy.  Bottom line, if you buy a lot you will also have returns.  I buy from Best Buy not to use and return the way others do but because I know if I don't like the product, I can easily return it for something else.  

 

Best Buy and Retail Equation is now saying no to this policy.  

 

And the fact that Best Buy, who pays Retail Equations, is not accountable or helpful is the worst form of customer service I've ever experienced.  They are basically passing the ball with no responsibility yet it is their stores who are "suspending" customers from returning.

 

What is amazing is in a world of multiple options for consumers and the decline of brick and motar stores, Best Buy has no problem with shunning good customers (many Elite and Elite+) and pushing them to other vendors.  They would rather lose customers than honor their own policy.  What's worse, is they do not tell you this up front.

 

We have options as consumers.  One is to report this practice for the BBB and Consumer Affairs.  The other is for as many people who have been affected to report this their local news consumer advocate resoruce.  They will surely pick up on this and help to get this practice out to all of the public.

 

Once people know that they are being tracked I am sure many will drop Best Buy and go elsewhere.

 

As someone who spends an average of $4k with Best Buy each year, I know I am going elsewhere becauase of this practice.

 

And it is obvious by the BB responses that they don't care and wash their hands of the situation.