Is Groupon's customer service a great deal worse than it should be?
We've recently received plenty of emails from avid Bitterwallet readers recently on the subject of Groupon. It seems people are having issues with the daily deals website, and their customer service - or lack of it - in particular.
Reader Stephen had this grumble:
I recently ordered a Groupon offer... and emailed them on two occasions, both times receiving an automated reply. Then nothing. At all. I've also called them several times only to hear an automated message that sounds like someone's mate sat in the bath.
Reader Dunc sent us an email chain dating back to May concerning a £300 refund order that Groupon had promised to refund but failed to pay after nearly a fortnight, while Barry has had several issues getting in contact with the company after making purchases. Another reader, Jason, pointed us to this recent thread on HotUKDeals that is stuffed full of people feeling let down by Groupon's customer support.
Meanwhile Bitterwallet reader Richard pointed us to Groupon London's Facebook page, which also has more than its fair share of complaints - this is a selection from the past week:
That's the 2nd Groupon offer I have bought where company has gone bust - and no response from Groupon Support...
Groupon is a ripoff ...i bought four deals ...it's been impossible for me to redeem them .....and now Groupon are just ignoring my emails !!!
its been a week and no one has repiled to my multiple emails to customer service about the hair salon in chiswick that would not accept my valid voucher.
My husband and I have been emailing groupon for 3days now and trying to call regarding a refund WITHIN the 7 day cool off period (on 2nd day) but to NO avail. How do I get some Customer Service, I'm not happy tbh, a big company like yourselves let down by the lack of correspondence and care for your customers.
So what's going on? We contacted Groupon this morning, and a spokesperson had this to say:
“Due to technical problems, our phone system had been down for some time over the last couple of weeks. This has lead to delays in our response times to customer service issues, for which we wholeheartedly apologise. The technical issues are now resolved and we are quickly working our way through the backlog of enquiries.”
That explains issues in August, but the complaints on Groupon's Facebook page stretch back far beyond that. Their deals cover the whole of the UK; dozens of new offers appear every week and some attract tens of thousands of sales. Is it a case that the number of complaints are proportional to the number of sales that Groupon are generating? Or is the deal deals website seriously dropping the ball on supporting customers?