How much faith do we put into reviews when buying products? Are you one of those people that ignores reviews and shops on instinct, or are you like me and often base your purchases on other people’s reviews?
If you buy from Amazon and do make purchases on the trust of reviews , you may want to rethink after reading this: or at least read the reviews with a keener eye.
Personally I am a big fan of Amazon: I’m a prime customer and regularly buy from Amazon as my first port of call. It’s easy, the choice is wide and I trust it on the basis that other people like me are adding honest voices to the reviews, however my recent review was rejected which makes me wonder how many bad reviews are kept away. Not only that but the discovery that there might be a loophole for suppliers to link good reviews from different products is worrying and means I will definitely be keeping a closer eye out in future.
My honest if somewhat aggrieved review (which was rejected) for
When deciding upon a laundry basket I had hoped that this one would reflect the reviews given however I am currently learning my lesson about reading them more closely!
The product I received was alike to the image above with four canvas bags that sit on a frame but the product received showed the poor design where aesthetics have been valued over practicality. I do admit that I was swayed by all the good reviews that I skimmed over and the star ratings, yet PLEASE DON’T BE FOOLED – ACTUALLY READ THEM!
Now that I am attempting to return this product and wondering why there were so many good reviews I notice that somehow most of these reviews are about a different product!!!
If you actually read the good reviews, many mention the ‘natural’ effect rather than metal or plastic and some say ‘sea grass’ in the review so I can only assume that these were given about a different product: perhaps a woven laundry basket or even a waste paper bin: either way most of these reviews were not written about this product! – HOPEFULLY AMAZON WILL CHECK THESE LINKS FOR INTEGRITY!
The product itself seemed to be good at first, the frame went together well and in good time: it seemed sturdy enough for the price. The problem began when we added the hooks which hold the laundry bags. Due to the sloping nature of this design the hooks were not able to sit well between the poles: they have not been made with differing ends so they would only ever be able to sit right on a level frame.
After reporting this to the supplier, I was informed that I could bend the hooks to help them sit on the poles. So taking a pair of pliers I set about trying to bend a hook so it would stay on the pole which caused the end safety caps to pop straight off. I wasn’t really happy having to force the design however it seemed easier than having to return and find another basket. After forcing a hook to stay on the poles however it was realised that the bags would also not stay on this slanted hook, obviously they slide down the hooks too and gather up (this was without even adding any laundry).
When reporting this to Tinkertonk customer support, I was offered a £4 refund and the offer to keep the basket, however I really don’t want to have to bend bars and sew bags just to get something functional, and I also don’t want to be left with extra rubbish that will have to be taken to the tip.
I had thought that a courier would just pick up the return however I didn’t realise it wasn’t prime ( the postage was free) which meant I would have to post it at the post office. I would have asked someone with a car to do this for me however after speaking to Tinkertonk, I was also informed that they would not refund the postage anyway: leaving me very much out of pocket due to poor design!
So now I am left with a box sitting in my hallway and a loss of £21.19 from my bank so I am not a very happy customer: especially after realising that the main reason for my purchase (the good reviews) were not even connected to this product!
Hopefully this review might stop anyone else falling foul to this hoax!
Ok so perhaps on reflection this was a bit of a shouty post with far too many exclamations however I don’t appreciate being out of pocket for something that just isn’t fit for purpose. If I had ordered something and just not liked it or changed my mind then I wouldn’t expect a refund, and yes I am still annoyed, maybe because I am annoyed with myself for not actually reading the reviews properly and leaving myself open to blind faith in Amazon reviews.
The annoying thing is perhaps that if I had bought this via credit card or Paypal then they would have honoured this refund however Amazon leaves this disagreement between seller and customer. Overall though I really hope that Amazon might look into their reviews and supply better quality checks: who knows how many other products are being marketed in this way.
Failing that I hope this post might at least encourage one more person not to be deceived by a shiny star review