? for those who order from Soundstage Direct

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by Budysr, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    Jay is awesome; Seth means well. I think the speed in which you received things prior was based on how long ago you ordered, if a previous customer like Tullman and I are typical as we did get out items timely (in my case, not everything timely, but we’re only talking a few days, not weeks and weeks) and if they had the item in stock. Probably all that is shipping now are things that are sitting in their warehouse. It would be telling to see if anyone here has received any new release vinyl lately.
     
  2. Tullman

    Tullman I prefer analog

    Location:
    Boston MA
    I received the cinco #2 box lately.
     
    Jrr likes this.
  3. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    Glad it’s working out for you still. You hate to see a good vendor disappear, and a lot of people were happy with them and you still are. This is a very difficult, extremely low margin business where the product is the same no matter where you get it, so it’s very hard to distiguish yourself. And there are too many choices; I doubt having all these on line music retailers is sustainable. Where SSD has done a good job distinguishing themselves is pushing trades and then selling them. But you really have to turn it quickly or all of the sudden you find you’re really low on cash, and the vinyl business that is part of their business model is nothing if not great at draining your resources as a dealer. New releases every single week. If you have a music store it’s the same dynamic. A huge portion of it just doesn’t turn. That’s dead money. On a good day there might be a 30% profit margin on music software, less the 20% off crazy sales I keep seeing...and you cannot possibly run a business selling $25 stuff making 15%. None of this makes any sense as a business owner to me. Hardware would help augment the low vinyl margins, but knowing what I know now after owning a retail music business many years ago, I have no idea why anyone does this. It’s kinda fun and a bit glamorous, but a lousy way to make money. A brick and mortar mid to high end equipment store with excellent service who does home theatre...that’s the only end that you would have a prayer in making it and you better be good at what you do. And that also requires intensive capital. What I learned is the best segment to be in is the guy buying it, not the one selling it! Note to self: appreciate the good on line vendors and support them! It’s warms my heart to see so many of you being loyal to the one’s you enjoy good service from. That’s the backbone that motivates us that have a business to work our butts off and give people the best we have. Some of you give vendors multiple chances....very, very nice!
     
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  4. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    Yeah, it seems like this is kind of a spotty occurrence with them. Of note, however: no credit to paypal yet. It only took seconds for them to charge me in full for the 'table: it should be just as quick to refund, I would think (and I was charged on a Saturday).
     
  5. Tullman

    Tullman I prefer analog

    Location:
    Boston MA
    I bought 3 VPI's over the years, two of them from Music Direct. Each time it took VPI months to deliver. I was never given a firm date on delivery. Just because you spoke to someone at VPI doesn't mean you were given accurate info. Did you bother asking if SSD ordered your Prime? Did you ask if your Prime was in line to be manufactured? Steve ordered another tonearm from VPI to be reviewed. It took months for VPI to deliver.

    In other words, I believe that ordering a VPI from SSD is different than ordering records.
     
    pathguy likes this.
  6. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    All that aside, the refund should have been issued immediately per PayPal merchant terms. It’s been 48 hours. And a lot of people aren’t getting their orders. It isn’t relevent what was ordered once money is taken. These are facts. And with these facts, and the added issues I personally had less than a year ago, makes me curious why you are defending them. It’s a very disingenuous way to do business, at the very least, and a recipe for a real hassle for a buyer if things go sideways. There is a time limit as to how long a buyer has to file a merchant dispute. This guy is about hitting the wall on that. I’m a bit sensitive to this because I encouraged him to buy this. And one other thing: a merchant is not supposed to actually use deposit money. They are supposed to just put a hold on the amount. We as merchants are supposed to deliver the merchandise before we request the funds to be put in our account. I would be surprised if Music Direct used your money until you got your tables. I would really be with you had SSD not taken the money prior to shipment, and refunded this guy, who caused none of this and was very patient, immediately. You have every right to your opinion and I have valued it repeatedly on this forum, but I don’t know how you can really argue these points. And VPI said they didn’t get the order. I mean, really, the customer should err on the side of throwing caution to the wind and assume VPI is mistaken? Really? Ultimately I was treated okay, and so were you, but it took forever for them to resolve my issues and all signs are pointed that things are getting worse, not better. This is two orders that I know of that have been recently cancelled.
     
  7. Tullman

    Tullman I prefer analog

    Location:
    Boston MA
    When I ordered my Avenger, I only had to put a deposit down. I paid in full when they received the TT and Jay was setting it up.
     
  8. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    Oh I totally get that. However: 7+ weeks is different from 2-4. And I know that this is different than your run-of-the-mill turntable. Still, if it was known that there would be a delay, just keep me in the loop.

    Again, this is nothing personal at all. It's business, as they say. ;)
     
    Jrr likes this.
  9. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    I will say Jay is awesome! I hope they can get out of the hole they seem to be in. To clarify, I think it’s fine to request a deposit...I do as well in my company. But it’s supposed to be a hold on your available limit. From what people are saying here, SSD actually gets the money right away but isn’t crediting it back immediately. Wow, that’s a huge no-no if you are a credit card merchant or accept PayPal. And that’s why you aren’t supposed to run a card though 100%. What happens if you don’t have the funds to do a refund? I’ll just leave it there.
     
    HankM likes this.
  10. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    Well, and that’s the other issue. It gets a bit personal if you get to know the person you are doing business with. No one including me is saying we didn’t like dealing with Seth or anyone at SSD. Quite the contrary...he’s a great guy. But then because it gets personal, it’s even more disappointing, and makes it harder, when you feel compelled to cancel an order. I don’t think, quite honestly, you had any choice. I placed an order for a table there and (knowing what I know now) of course they didn’t have it. I got a call and ended spending a lot more on a higher end table, something I normally would never do, but he was very engaging and excited about the product he thought I should get instead. And, he was absolutely right and certainly earned my business. There were some bumps afterwards, but it was all resolved but I did have to get VPI involved later in the process.

    By the way, pathguy and I have been PMing through the process and in his defense, he was continually told things and then those things did not happen. He really needed to get out of this deal, and he gave SSD every chance, trust me. He did not want to go this route at all! He’s exactly the kind of client I always hope to have when I enter into a deal.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2018
    pathguy likes this.
  11. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    All is good: received notification that paypal will be credited :righton:
     
  12. Jrr

    Jrr Forum Resident

    Well, that’s a relief! Now, back to the fun of ordering and the anticipation while you wait for it to arrive. However, once you get it and it’s dialed in, I know you are going to say it was worth it. Let us know how you make out.
     
    pathguy likes this.
  13. googlymoogly

    googlymoogly Forum Resident

    I was just looking through this thread again after not seeing it for a while. I'm frankly surprised these issues are still being discussed - not that the complaints aren't legit, but I'm surprised there are folks still ordering from SSD. I haven't bought anything from them for a long time, and have no plans to do so. I get their promotional emails, but ignore them. SSD packages stuff well, and that's about the most positive thing I can say about them. Sorry, but when another retailer can ship out in-print items the same or next business day, there's no reason to give SSD a virtual loan to ship out whenever they can get stock, even with the discount (which I'm also surprised they continue to offer on such a regular basis). I also agree that they probably ought to focus on hardware sales and setup, because they seem to be asking for a beating both financially and in terms of customer goodwill when they take peoples' money and then don't deliver orders for weeks!
     
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  14. vinylsmokes

    vinylsmokes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Florida
    This is good to hear, since I suspect I will be forced to go the same route. Seth must’ve been making the rounds last week, because I got a call too.

    To echo what everyone has said, he was super nice. Thing is, there’s a fine line between it appearing to be genuine or simply a way of buttering you up to keep you on the hook.

    Seth said they were getting a shipment from VPI this week. Maybe I’m over analyzing it a bit, but he didn’t actually say MY turntable was in that shipment. I didn’t think to ask for clarification, because I assumed it was implied (since he called).

    The turntable I ordered appears to be in stock at Music Direct. In fact, Michael Fremer recently posted a tour of their facility... and there they were, right on the shelf! So why the heck am I sitting here waiting in the dark with SSD?

    The only reason I chose SSD was their extremely generous 2 year upgrade plan. But if I don’t get a notice that my table has in fact arrived, I’ll be cancelling and going to MD.
     
  15. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    I was/am in the same thinking as you. Two weeks ago, I was told that VPI would be shipping to him and that I would have my TT the following week...which was last week. No call or email that it hadn't shipped: I called VPI and they hadn't even sent anything to SSD.

    I still have not received a credit to my paypal, but did receive an email on Monday from SSD saying that I would be credited the full amount.

    Hope it all works out!
     
  16. vinylsmokes

    vinylsmokes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Florida
    Thanks for the additional info, though this is really troubling to hear. I may continue to wait on the vinyl fulfillment, but from what you’re telling me, I’m almost definitely canceling the TT order and taking my business elsewhere.
     
    pathguy likes this.
  17. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    It might be worth it to give VPI a call to see if they have shipped it yet. I know SSD is a smaller outfit, but they are so close to VPI I'm surprised they don't get things expedited.

    I will be contacting paypal this Friday if I don't have the refund: 1 week is more than enough time to wait for that, in my opinion.
     
  18. vinylsmokes

    vinylsmokes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Florida
    I called VPI a few weeks ago. They took my email and phone number. Presumably, they were going to look into it, but never got back to me.

    Plus, since you said SSD’s story didn’t mesh with VPI’s, it’s impossible for me to come to any other conclusion than we’re just getting the runaround. I think I’ve done enough chasing people down for answers.
     
  19. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    Aw man, that sucks. I hope everything goes smoothly. Keep us updated.
     
  20. vinylsmokes

    vinylsmokes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Florida
    I decided to cancel. I ordered the turntable through Music Direct this morning and got a tracking number a few hours later. :righton:
     
    pathguy likes this.
  21. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    Excellent! I just opened a dispute with paypal because I haven't received a credit since cancelling my order a week ago. I don't like this at all.

    Did you get a refund yet?
     
  22. btf1980

    btf1980 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC
    My last experience with Sound Stage Direct earlier this year was abysmal. The records I ordered were listed as ships in 2 to 3 days. After over a week and no shipping notification, I reached out via chat. The rep said it would ship the next day. Of course, I got no shipping notification the next day. A few days later, I reached out again via chat. Rep was always apologetic, says the records are shipping soon etc. After several chats, the rep says the records were delayed from the manufacturer. My issue is the complete lack of communication. You're just left in the dark. Complete radio silence. If something is delayed, backordered, not in stock, fell off a truck or whatever, why wouldn't you inform the customer? Why should I be chasing around the order and hearing this info only after I reach out? Communicate with your customers if things are delayed. Stop giving customers the runaround. Customers shouldn't have to chase orders to find out what's going on. Long story short, the order arrived in their warehouse, and was shipping the next day the rep said. Still got no shipping notice. I inquired, and was told their systems were down. Then was told they had a power outage because of the heat. I eventually received my records, but weeks after the order was placed.

    I'm a long time customer, but this is unacceptable. SSD should stop sending coupons to buy records they don't have in stock. It's not enticing anymore, and it just sucks. What good is the coupon if I have to wait a month to receive the order? I live like 2 hours away, so it's a bit of a joke to have had this back and forth. It was even more annoying when I realized that the records were in stock at other online retailers (Music Direct, Acoustic Sounds, Elusive Disc, Amazon etc) and literally every brick and mortar record store I went to. It was a complete waste of time and was senselessly aggravating.
     
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  23. vinylsmokes

    vinylsmokes Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Florida
    I’ve been jonesing so bad for a TT upgrade, that I didn’t want to wait until the refund was officially complete. I put in for it yesterday, so it’ll happen, whether it’s the easy way or the hard way (PayPal dispute).
     
  24. pathguy

    pathguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    Liverpool, NY
    Over a week and no credit to my account yet. This is crazy.
     
  25. btf1980

    btf1980 Forum Resident

    Location:
    NYC
    File a claim with paypal and the BBB. This is inexcusable at this point.
     
    Shawn and pathguy like this.

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