Dell.com Customer Complaints

By: James Kara Murat

Dell.com has been facing sinking customer ranking in their reviews and an ever increasing customer complaints. The University of Michigan released figures ASCI (American Customer Satisfaction Index) that the ratings for customer reviews have sunk by 6.3% which has become a big set back for the company investors.

Claes Fornell, Director of the National Quality Research Center and Professor of Michigan's Ross School of Business, wrote in a report, "Customer satisfaction in particular has become a problem, and service quality lags not only Apple but also the rest of the industry. Customer complaints are up significantly, while long wait times and difficulties with Dell's call center abound."

However, Dell has not experienced any drops in its sales growth despite the tarnished customer satisfaction rate and bad reviews for their machines, it had maintained over the past few years.

Dell printer and PC buyers have reported a series of complaints against the Dell customer service, and though these haven't been able to pose catastrophic impacts on the company figures yet; the Dell executives acknowledge that these complaints against various models are troubling and they have taken steps to address them.

"While the most recent changes appear incremental, Dell's overall techs support scores for desktop PCs have dropped substantially since 2001." said Jeff Fox, senior project editor at Consumer Reports.

The issue of Customer Reports, published in March, was based on a survey of 4,100 consumers who gave Dell 62 points out of possible 100. Dell's score has "stayed down and hasn't gone back up," Fox said.

Dells satisfaction rating slipped down from 83.4 to 80.98 in the 3rd quarter of 2003 according to The Hampton, N.H., firm's fourth-quarter report. Dell customer complaints were crammed with problems faced over telephone tech support where hold times were beyond bearable.

"My Dell laptop XPS M1210 failed to perform consistently since time of purchase. After replacement of two motherboards, one internet card and numerous hours on the phone with technical support, Dell refuses to credit me or refund my purchase." Says Stacy, (CA, 11/27/07) in her review.

Trevor Anderson, an information technology manager at a law firm in Canada in his review about the brand quality, complained about the frustration caused by the company customer support forcing him to opt into finally switch the brand. He said he got weary of the way he was treated by the Dells tech support representatives over the phone.

However Todd Penner, director of Dell's U.S. consumer tech support operation has a different opinion saying "The majority of our feedback from customers is positive--both from surveys and the awards we win (from) third-party publications,"

Dell acknowledges the fact that with rising figures in terms of growth in sales, profits and market share for their brand, maintaining high customer satisfaction ranking and persistent positive reviews is not as easy as it seems. However Dell hasn't denied acknowledging these shortcomings and commits to resolve the issues customers have with their machines in the near future.

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