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  1. #1
    Eruption
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    04.07.16 @ 01:19 PM
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    Why Guitar Center(s) SUCK BALLZ...

    Hey gang:
    Just thought I'd offer to show you all my letter of complaint I wrote up tonight, reguarding my most recent experience with them. I'm sure I probably will not hear back from them, but you know, it will be their loss and my local shops GAIN! Enjoy...

    Sear Sir/Ma'am:
    I'm writing in regards to my dissatisfaction with your store, most recently with the one near Robinson Mall, in Pittsburgh.
    My experience started out great. I walked in, was noticed by people at least 2 different times within a few minutes. I did not require help, so I politely told both salespeople. I looked around, and at the moment, had plenty of time (I was killing time before work). After about a half hour of looking, I came to thinking about asking the prices on guitar cases, namely one a Fender Stratocaster would fit. I walked over to a salesperson by the name of Luke. He was friendly, but seemed a bit nervous/uncomfortable. I asked Luke if they had a case for my Stratocaster, to which he told me they did. I told him I specifically did not want a squared case, but a case that resembles (sort of) the shape of my Strat. He seemed confused by this and told me that he would have to check his warehouse. I told him not problem. GI don't think he understood, so we stood there looking at each other for a moment, and he repeated the question, "Would you want to check the warehouse?" Again, I said no problem. He asked me to come with him, and we walked to the back room. He stopped and told a manager what I was looking for, to which we seemed to understand from what the manager told us, that he would take over and assist me.
    From here, things went downhill. The manager hustled off to the floor. I stood there and asked Luke, "Was I supposed to follow him?" To which Luke "yes." I walked out to the floor and the manager walked over towards the cases, then an employee called the manager over. I followed over to the counter. He assisted the employee, but then the phone rang. He answered and started to talk to the other person on the phone. I stood there for approx. 10 minutes, but soon grew tired of waiting for the manager to speak with me. I felt that he did not excuse himself from me, which would have been totally acceptable, which started to bother me because he started to do other things and seemed to not even acknowledge me. I grew bored and went to walk out the door, when Luke came rushing over saying, "Sir! Sir!" I put my hand up and did not look in his direction as I walked out the first set of doors. He got outside of the second set of doors and practically jumped in front of me to stop me. He spoke very quickly to me at this point(frantically).."
    Sir, what's wrong? What can I do to fix things?" I replied, "Nothing, I think there was enough done." Luke spoke again, "Sir, what can I do to make things better?" he asked again. I began telling him, "I didn't care to be left up at the counter..."I was cut off before I could finish. "Sir, let me make it up to you, I'll cut you a deal!" I listened but it seemed to only frustrate me more. "I think its bull that I'm left..." again cut off. "Sir, we can get you your case for OUR COST." I tried to explain again. "Luke,"I began, " I came here to waste some time and see how much cases were..." only for Luke to interrupt again, "Sir, please let me make it right. I can get you the case for our cost. I don't want you to have a bad experience with us." I started again. "Luke, this is the third time I've come here." Luke began to interrupt, but I told him I need to speak to tell him my problem. "I've come here three times, and with the exception of one gentleman (I forget his name, but I know him by face, he is an ASSET to your company)I've NEVER been happy with the service your store has given me. Now, I was handed off to your MANAGER, which was fine, to find a guitar case. I am easy to work with, however, I don't appreciate being left at a counter, ignored, when the LEAST he could have done was ask me to wait a moment." Luke again seemed to try to fix the problem by taking the blame, which frustrated me more. "Luke, I said, I have no problems with someone else helping me, but I did not like that he just left me there and seemed to forget I was there. I have a job to go to, I don't have time..."
    Luke interrupted again. "Please let me make it up to you, I can get you that case at our cost." I told Luke that I did not have money today, but I got paid tomorrow, and I would be back.
    I went back today, and I looked around for a bit, to which no one this time came and greeted me. I found Luke near the register. He asked if he could help me, and I reminded him of the situation from yesterday. He said no problem, and jumped at the situation. He walked over to the cases and picked up one for me. He told me how much it would be, and I told him okay, give me a few moments, I was going to look a bit longer.
    I finished my shopping, and Luke helped me out to my car with my merchandise. He thanked me, and I left.
    Upon getting home, I went opened my case, to which the guitar case had a HORRIBLE smell, the type of smell NO ONE would want to deal with. I put some air freshener into it to try and get the stench out, and left for work. When I came home, I realized then that the situation was even worse. Luke had given me the WRONG case! So now I have to return the case, which is ANOTHER trip to your store.
    I guess that I should tell you my frustrations. I have been to your store in Colorado. I've been to your store in Peoria, Illinois. I've been to the store in Monroeville, PA, and of course, the one in Robinson, PA. I'm amazed by the lack of knowledge your people seem to give. When I walk into your "mom and pop" guitar store, I feel welcome. I feel like Iím important, that they care and want me to buy from them. And I do! Those ďmom and popĒ stores have a vibe that your stores just to completely miss, which blows my mind. Your stores have an amazing layout and you'd think I'd want to come back, but I really don't want to. I wish I felt differently too.
    When I walk into a Sear's electronics department, I would NEVER get that kind of service. I really think your company needs to seriously take a look at what they are building and realize how much money they will be losing in the near future, when guys like me are willing to buy a full stack Marshall JCM 900 Amplifier, another Les Paul Custom, and pedal effects, to boot, however, are going to BOLT out the door, because your people could not take the time to exercise some courtesy and excuse themselves, or offer knowledge to myself about things, or worse, sell me product that is not what I am looking for.
    Sincerely,
    Josh Smith

    Feel free to discuss...Red43j
    Eddie must think I'm a BOZO to want to drop THAT much on one of his new Charvel Guitars!

  2. #2
    Eruption Darby's Avatar
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  3. #3
    Eruption mk5's Avatar
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    04.30.16 @ 03:52 PM
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    Red43j,

    Guitar Center and the big name chain stores are all about pushing volume. The turnover rate for employees is something like 30 days-3mos. The reason many of the GC employees seem like they are clueless is because they ARE. I worked music retail for five LONG years in a mom & pop chain store. People would come in, suck up all my time, and then go buy it at GC because they had one in new in the box for $50 less. Guitar Center works off of the "wow" factor--the feeling you get when overwhelmed by all the gear. However, most mom & pop shops will match prices of GC. Most Moms and Dads don't know what to get for their kids (and believe me--for kids, it's 70% of Moms buying the gear) or where to go, so they go with what's easy, "Guitar Center." The name says it all. There may be a few diamonds in the rough, but most of GC's employees are hacks who are all talk.

    If I were you, I'd buy from one of these online shops with free shipping unless you want to support your local music mom & pop store.

    Just my 2 cents.
    Last edited by mk5; 04.08.05 at 10:42 PM.
    How open-minded do I have to be before my brains start spilling out?

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk fast98dodge's Avatar
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    08.07.17 @ 08:14 PM
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    I remember buying my Wolfgang back in March of '97. I bought it from Music 6000, a locally owned store here in Olympia. My brother and I have spent a decent amount of money in there over the years. They gave me a square deal, the thing retailed for about $1800 and they gave it to me for $1435, which was $1550 with tax. Before I bought it, I got a call a few months earlier from American Music in Seattle asking me if I wanted their first one which is the earliest known one according to wolfgangguitars.com. It was a purple one that is looks like this:





    Anyways, I asked them how much they were asking for it and he said $1800 and I told him what Music 6 was going to sell me the guitar for. He said immediately he'd match their price and I told him no because I didn't want purple anyways. I told him not to call me back because I didn't want to really do business with them at that point.

    I originally wanted the Amber, but they got the red in first. I was very happy to wait over a year for a beautiful red Wolfgang and to give my business to the local guy!

    I have worked in a "Mom and Pop" appliance store for over two years and know the value of doing business locally even more.

    Everyone out there, remember to support the old school guys who have been in your local area forever!
    Last edited by fast98dodge; 04.09.05 at 12:08 AM.
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  5. #5
    Good Enough kowski's Avatar
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    12.03.17 @ 11:54 AM
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    My friend and I went to the GC here in Peoria, IL. We played through their Soldano SLO just for fun, with no intention of buying it. Some guy kept coming over and doing the sales pitch even though we said we weren't going to buy it. He pointed out a few times how "it sounds like a Mesa"...right. He later said how it was such a good deal, especially since we won't find another one modded like it. Apparently he thought he could just cajole us into dropping $2600 like it was nothing. I know that's his job, but still. I have a job where I sell crap to people too, but I make no effort to sell them more of the crap than they want.

  6. #6
    Hot For Teacher riddick's Avatar
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    12.11.17 @ 03:01 PM
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    I support my local Mum and pop stores, the big stores try to sell you what they are autherised to sell, but the mums and pops stores actually try to sell you want you want, and you get better service to boot, and l'll pay an extra $50 for that.

    Riddick.

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk Lodewijk's Avatar
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    05.21.17 @ 06:59 AM
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    I've had real good experiences at GC , bought lots of stuff there ! It's my local Sam Ash that I can't stand ! That place sucks !
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  8. #8
    Atomic Punk
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    05.31.14 @ 08:17 PM
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    You get what you pay for, GC deals in volume and they are the 500lbs gorilla on the music equipment/instrument market. Like someone already said, they have a high turn-over rate. My guess is that their salepeople have quotas to make (either $$ or ##of sales or both), if they fall short they are gone.

    The problem at that GC sounds like the manager, he's an idiot. If he was with you first then he shouldn't have taken the phone call - period. Plus it sounds like his staff has no training, good retail enterprises have constant sales training session on a bi-weekly basis to keep the sales crew sharp and up-to-date with the latest gear. I was in retail sales for 15 years and I can almost tell which brand of sale's training tape a person has seen or been trained on by their approach and (worse) scripted spiel.

    Look at it this way, that GC is loosing money - they have to be. The gang upstairs will see it on their trend-sheet and the manager will be gone. I haven't returned to the GC in San Jose, CA, for the same reason but the GC in Ventura kicks ass, though I suspect it's because of the wealth of talent in that area so GC can have it's pick.
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  9. #9
    Good Enough
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    03.30.13 @ 09:28 AM
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    I think if you walked in there and asked for a molded case for your strat you could have saved yourself and the salesman, who's trying to make a living like anyone else, a lot of grief.
    Same applies if you'd have opened the guitar case before you left the store.
    When you buy something check it over properly before you leave the store or it's not their fault.
    They also took you into the warehouse, which a lot of stores would not do.
    Did you really think that after walking around for a half hour and then asking for a guitar case that's really a low budget item everyone was going to jump up and down to serve you?
    I'm pretty sure that the manager was human with problems like the rest of us, and some of them even more important that walking up and down looking for a 50 guitar case.
    I believe they did go out of their way to help you on this one but it just wan't good enough for you.

  10. #10
    Top Of The World baddmann28's Avatar
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    04.08.12 @ 05:51 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by tribb
    I think if you walked in there and asked for a molded case for your strat you could have saved yourself and the salesman, who's trying to make a living like anyone else, a lot of grief.
    Same applies if you'd have opened the guitar case before you left the store.
    When you buy something check it over properly before you leave the store or it's not their fault.
    They also took you into the warehouse, which a lot of stores would not do.
    Did you really think that after walking around for a half hour and then asking for a guitar case that's really a low budget item everyone was going to jump up and down to serve you?
    I'm pretty sure that the manager was human with problems like the rest of us, and some of them even more important that walking up and down looking for a 50 guitar case.
    I believe they did go out of their way to help you on this one but it just wan't good enough for you.
    Actually the point is that day he only needed a $50.00 Guitar case. The next time it could have been a $1,000 amp. You build a customer base by taking care of the little needs/ purchases just as if it's a $10,000 order. All customers are the same and should be treated as such. Sounds to me Luke was trying hard to make things right for a bogus manager. I'd never go to that store as long as he was manager and find somewhere else to shop. You obviously have musician friends, refer them to somewhere else. That will hurt worse than a letter to their Corp. that the right people probably will not see anyway. Just my two cents.
    Those that say money cannot buy hapiness don't know where to shop.

  11. #11
    Good Enough
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    03.30.13 @ 09:28 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by baddmann28
    Actually the point is that day he only needed a $50.00 Guitar case. The next time it could have been a $1,000 amp. You build a customer base by taking care of the little needs/ purchases just as if it's a $10,000 order. All customers are the same and should be treated as such. Sounds to me Luke was trying hard to make things right for a bogus manager. I'd never go to that store as long as he was manager and find somewhere else to shop. You obviously have musician friends, refer them to somewhere else. That will hurt worse than a letter to their Corp. that the right people probably will not see anyway. Just my two cents.
    You're absolutely right. All it was, was a 50. case, and later it could have been a higher priced item, but these guys deal with customers screwing them over on a daily basis, and sometimes it's hard to see the bigger picture.
    In theory all customers should be treated the same, just like you say, but in the real world, whether it's true or not, that simply doesn't apply.
    Because we're human there are too many other governing factors that apply to make your experience a good or bad one.
    When I go into a store and someone treats me in a way I don't like, I'll still come back. If I'm approached by the same salesman I just say " no thanks, I'd like to talk to someone else." I don't really care if they get the message or not.
    About a year and a half ago I said that to a salesman, and when he said he could probably help me, I said " no thanks, you're a prick. I said I'll talk to someone else," and just walked away. He looked like I slapped him in the face, and probably didn't even remember me, but I think as the little wheels went around in his pea brain he got the message.
    Referring your musician friends will not make the slightest bit of difference to the store because they won't follow the advice if the item they want is there, and cheap, and unless you know hundreds of musicians it won't affect their sales at all.
    I agree that the people who should see the letter will probably never do so either.
    One thing not mentioned is that although a lot of people buy through mail order there are hundreds and hundreds of stories with bad outcomes going the on-line route that people never read about. At least at a store you're able to try an item out and make a decision based on trying the instrument.

  12. #12
    Sinner's Swing!
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    12.09.17 @ 08:19 PM
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    A new GC just opened near my town, and I can barely stand to go in there.

    It's like Wal-Mart or something. I do like the room w/ the bongos and drums, though. I like the room w/ the acoustics as well, not that the room is "exceptional". It's merely pleasant, which is nice.

    I've never met more clueless salespeople in my life, nor have I heard a more gigantic assortment of awful players, although much of that is due to today's music.

    I know people joke about multiple kids going into a guitar shop in the 80's and banging-out "Eruption" or "Stairway" while showing-off, but let me tell you, there's nothing worse than 4 teenagers MASSIVELY BUTCHERING a friggin' Blink 182 song while playing out-of-tune guitars using arthritic guitar technique.

  13. #13
    Eruption
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    04.07.16 @ 01:19 PM
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    Tribb and everyone-
    Just so you know, I may not have explained myself as well-I originally DID ask Luke for a $50 dollar case (I just wanted to walk around first and check out things-like I said, I am aLWAYS amazed at how much gear they have). Ya, maybe a $50 dollar case doesn't mean much, but I'm a firm believer that if you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. Luke was a nice KID. I have nothing personal at ALL against him, in fact, I know he was trying, he just needs time and needs to learn how to work better with customers so that they DO RETURN- . I'm sure he could become a better salesman, BUT I really didn't have the problem with him, it was the manager I had a problem with.
    As far as Badmann28's point, he hit it on the head. Tribb, I'm sure if you were in my shoes, just wanting to know how much it is and you were told someone is gonna help you, only for them to walk off, only to STOP acknowledging you, and strat doing other things, you would not care for it either. Theres a ton of stores around here, Guitar Gallery, Pittsburgh Guitars, Washington Music Center...I could go on and on!
    I gave Gutiar Center a 2nd chance, which some people would NEVER do.

    Now, with that said, I called the Center today to speak about my dissatisfaction. Spoke to a gentleman named Chris who was in charge of pro audio. Nice guy. Told him everything I had told you guys (I originally asked for the manager but he was out). After hearing my complaint, he appoligized, and told me he would call the manager to tell him what was up. He promised me he would call me back in about 10-12 minutes. I gave Chris my #'s.
    Chris called back like clockwork and told me he spoke with his manager. He again appoligized and told me if I feel I'm not ever getting the service I should to come find him, he would be MORE than happy to help me. He said KEEP the case, that he was told by the manager to pick out the MOST expensive case they have that will fit a Fender Stratocaster, he would be mailing it out to me UPS, along with a gift certificate for $50 dollars because they WANT MY BUSINESS and want me to have a BETTER experience. I told him I appreciated it and told him I felt that was more than reasonable, I would give them another chance.

    So, to the guy who gave me that Tampon box, as well as Tribb, I feel it PAYS to get the service YOU deserve. WHY settle for LOUSY service? I'm not slamming you guys, but jeez, could it have been THAT hard for the ASSISTANT MANAGER, they guy who is supposed to SET EXAMPLES to say, "Sir, can you give me one second? I need to help my employee with this transaction?"
    Guys, I'm pretty easy to please. Courtesy goes a LONG way with me. In closing, I feel they went WAY beyond treating me right in the end-heck, all I woulda needed was a "Hey man, I'm sorry I made you feel like we blew you off" from the assistant manager, and I would have been fine.-Red43j
    Last edited by Red43j; 04.09.05 at 06:18 PM.
    Eddie must think I'm a BOZO to want to drop THAT much on one of his new Charvel Guitars!

  14. #14
    Little Dreamer
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    06.14.05 @ 07:49 AM
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    i worked in music retail and it's very stressful. luke didn't do anything wrong so don't screw him over by sending out this letter. he actually did more to get you a case that you wanted then anyone i've ever known in music retail so if anything you should send a letter talking about how good he was to you.

    the problem is that working in a large volume store you have a lot of bullshit to deal with from your bosses and then the corporate heads and then the customers demand that you take off $500 off a $200 guitar for a fingerprint (not a typo)

    it's hard to explain but it's something you can't understand until you work commissioned retail for a high-volume store.

    edit: also, the salespeople are at the store to make money and honestly a $50 case isn't worth it just becasue you don't know if you're going to be working there in a month when the customer comes in to buy something bigger. i would have loved to stand around and shoot the shit with a customer or help them get the best $50 case they could get but money is money and if I had a customer buying picks i would politely "blow them off" to help a guy who was looking at $2500 les paul customs.

    and as a non-saleman whining about something like that makes you come off as a bitter old man with nothing better to do.
    Last edited by pewing33ny; 04.09.05 at 07:15 PM.

  15. #15
    Sinner's Swing! twonabomber's Avatar
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    12.08.16 @ 03:21 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by tribb
    I think if you walked in there and asked for a molded case for your strat you could have saved yourself and the salesman, who's trying to make a living like anyone else, a lot of grief.
    yeah, but if he didn't know what he was looking for, part of the salesman's job is to help him figure it out...

 

 

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