Adorama Return Policy
Items that qualified for free shipping that are being returned will have our standard shipping charges deducted from refund or credit. The return shipping cost (the cost to send an item back to us) is not refundable.
I can see why this might be an unpopular policy, so I'd like to explain; when we offer 'free' shipping (not really 'free', cos someone has to pay it, ie Adorama), it's like us offering you a discount on the goods or a gift.
If we were giving you a couple of 'free' batteries as a gift with your order, and you returned the order because you changed your mind, you wouldn't be upset with us if we hoped to get the batteries back as well - I assume?
It's the same with the shipping. We use part of what would otherwise be profit for us - we are a business, after all - to cover the cost of the shipping. If you return the item to us we potentially lose twice over; once because we can no longer sell the item as new and again if we don't ask you to cover the shipping cost that we gave you as a 'gift' WITH the order.
Can you imagine how many people could potentially abuse the free shipping alongside the 30-day returns period to 'rent' goods from us? (Actually, a number already do....) Ultimately, the price is paid by everyone else.
Not sure if I've explained it clearly, so please don't hesitate to email me directly if I haven't! Helen@adorama.com
The problem is that your competitors, Amazon to be exact, does not have such strict and unpopular rules. I hope Adorama management realizes that.
When I buy something from Amazon, I pay no shipping, and if the item has a problem, I return it, no questions asked, and get my money back in a total of 4-5 days (from the time of me dropping the item off at UPS). They never charge for return shipping, in fact, they even pay EXTRA for insurance on your behalf for items that have MSRP of higher than $1,000. Now please tell me, why would people buy from Adorama instead of Amazon when Amazon price matches Adorama instantly?
I definitely see your point, but unfortunately we are in year 2012 and if you guys don't want to loose market share, you will need to adjust your strategies. Take me for example:
- I just recently bought a 5d Mark 3 with 24-105 kit lens, Canon 50mm L F1.2, 2 nano UV filters, and bunch of other things. I spent around 5.5-6k.
- I wanted to sell my used gear so I said, why don't I go to Adorama, explain them what I want to do, and maybe they'll offer me a decent price on my used equipment.
- Guess what, I was offered ridiculously low prices on my used items. So low that, my jaw dropped. A lens for example that everyone was selling in Amazon/E-bay for $250, I was offered $120. That's half of market price. I understand you have to also earn, but you need to see the big picture (which they didn't). I was ready to spend a ton of money on your shop only if you were a bit lenient for a few hundred dollars. But anyways, even then I was ready to pull the trigger as a few hundred dollars wasn't going to stop me. I only wanted to mention this so that maybe you can relay the message.
- Next thing I realized, for NJ, you pay sales tax! That's like another extra $400, bam, right there it hit me. But guess what, even then, I still wanted to go for it, because just as I was going to do the checkout, I realized you offered bundles amazon didn't (with extra lenses or software, which I could sell later on to make up the difference).
- Finally, it was the "return policy" that had me close my browser and go to amazon.com. I'm a customer, I will go to the place that has the best service possible with the least amount of headaches. After reading your return policy, I said, what the heck, I'm not going to deal with this. When I want to return something to amazon, I click 2 buttons, print a UPS shipping label that they pay for, I put the stuff in the box it came with, and I return. Nobody asks me questions. Granted I don't abuse the system and I'm sure some people do, but I don't care, why should I? It's my hard earned money, and I want the best service possible. When I buy a $2,000 lens and it's back focusing, I don't want it to be fixed or sent it to canon, I don't care. I want a brand new one, BEFORE, I send out the old one so that I don't stay without the lens. You see, that's how a consumer's mind works. If I bought the camera from you and if it had an issue, I would have to go to UPS, pay for shipping, pay for insurance, and worry about the shipment and loose sleep over if the box made it safely to your warehouse. With amazon, as soon as I drop the package at UPS, my responsibility ends. It doesn't mater if a meteor hits the UPS store, they still give me my money back (or the replacement). If I want to exchange something, they send me a replacement, no questions asked, they don't charge my card or put authorization on it, they give me 30 days to return the old one.
By the way, of all the things I bought, I didn't have to return anything. So if I bought them from Adorama, it would have been fine, but I just didn't want the "risk" of headache, does that make sense?