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Restoration Hardware = Customer Loyalty

Two years ago, right before we got married, Kelly and I moved into our current apartment. In the mind of my wife, new marriage and new apartment could only mean one thing: new furniture! For a month, at least one day of every weekend was burned spent in the various Bay area furniture stores looking, first and foremost, for a couch.

Despite the various cool, hip, trendy furniture shops we went to, we actually ended up buying our couch at Restoration Hardware. At the end of the day, they had the most comfortable couch we could find, in a style we liked and at a decent price. Sure we had to live with the embarrassment of being, well, hopelessly suburban - but we really liked the couch.

When we bought the couch, Kelly had a pretty long discussion with one of the clerks over style and color. The clerk managed to sell us the linen cream colored down model, assuring us that my wife's concerns that it would stain, wrinkle and lose feathers were unfounded. I, obviously, had no opinion on the matter.

Anyway, fast forward a few months, the couch arrives, I spend the greater portion of my free time on it, and a month or two after we have it, it already looks 10 years old. Yep, it's wrinkled, showing some slight stains and shedding feathers. Ugh. After a while it gets to be too much for Kelly, so she actually gets in the car and goes back to Restoration Hardware to see if they can do anything. I assume this is a fool's errand, and we're stuck with the couch until the next redecoration.

In the words of Fonzie, I was wrrrrrrrrr. Restoration Hardware, with little or no complaining, agreed to not only take back the couch we had (stains and all) for a full refund, replace it with brand new couch of a different style - but also take care of all the delivery hassles. No charge. Don't forget that like any furniture store, couches aren't inventory item. They're custom made. Hence, the usual 6 weeks waiting time for delivery after you buy one. I repeat: they took it back no charge. Wow.

I have a friend who used to work a as controller in the corporate office of Restoration Hardware. After a year, he left. He said on the creative side, it was a great place to work, on the finance side it was maddening. Taking back three month old wrinkled, stained couches for full refunds and replacing them no questions asked? I can see why. From a finance side, this is madness. But from a business side in every other sense, it is awesome.

I bring this up because fast forward two years later, Kelly and I are n the market for a bed frame and dresser. Guess where we went? Yep. Restoration Hardware. First and only stop. Needless to say, we're loyal customers for life.

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Comments (4)

emily:

GAH! Your couch sounds exactly like the one we bought about two years ago at Crate and Barrel Furniture. Linen covers in pale butter yellow and so comfy...until it started to look like we dragged it in from Sanford and Sons junkyard. I only *wish* we bought it at Restoration Hardware. Next time.

Blair:

Restoration Hardware now has a new disclaimer that any usage of their furnature by a man of your level of sloth eliminates it from eligability for return.

Dave:

Customer satisfaction aside, did you ever consider that taking back your old slimey couch is probably a wash for Resto?

Think about. In addition to the 13 chicken McNuggets, a few filterless Camels, 9 Pacifica bottle caps, the 1996 SI Swimsuit Issue, 11 Buffalo wing carcasses, and a floppy a disc, they probably discovered about $750 worth of chips from the Bellagio. Seems like a wash to me.

Dave, I'm offended. Even in my hey day, I never smoked unfiltered. :)

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 17, 2008 5:38 PM.

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