Review: Why Macy’s Stinks

I have been holding off on writing this for a long time, since someone on Facebook started touting Macy’s praises.  There’s a reason I waited, but here’s the story:

More than a year ago, we purchased a Macy’s gift certificate for my mother-in-law’s birthday.  She took the certificate to her local Macy’s in Atlanta, and they told her she couldn’t use it there, that she had to go online.  She was not pleased.  There were fourteen steps to activate the gift certificate.  She printed it out, took it to Macy’s, and they still wouldn’t honor it.  It stated right on it “use in store or online.”  Now, she’s a tough cookie, having retired from retail herself, so you know they had to have been firm in not letting her use it.

She showed us her several pages of information in July.  So we gave her the $75 and thought we’d use the GC online for something we needed, anyway.  What could go wrong?


First, there is nothing at that I would consider an incredible buy.  It’s all just real expensive.  Since we’d paid $150 at this point for this “gift,” I tried real hard to find a bargain that suited our needs and sizes, but I couldn’t.  I finally settled on undershirts for my guys, at $20 per pack of four.  Ouch.  I picked up a lip shimmer for myself to bring the order as close to $75 with S&H as possible without going over.

Everything except one pack of Ts came in one shipment, the faulty paper tape on the box was split, and the box was folded open so that I was afraid items had slipped out (they hadn’t).  The separate pack of shirts came from a store in Minnesota, with no paperwork.  Unfortunately, what was supposed to be undershirts was two pair of very nice Levi’s that we couldn’t use (and someone else didn’t get their back to school jeans).  All I wanted was to return the Levi’s (there’s no retail store here in Omaha) and get the undershirts.

There is no phone number on  There is no customer service chat.  There is only a form to submit your information.  So I did, and got an automated reply stating I’d hear back within 24 hours.  I got an automated email thanking me for my submission.  I waited 57 hours, and finally had to contact them again, through the website again, about this issue.  What happened to the 24 hour customer service time frame?  I got lots of emails in reply to my second submission, with the same information, but they all seemed distant, cold, and uninviting.

Oh, I got a few apologies for the delay, and an assurance that my order would ship within a day or two, and a promise that I would receive an email when my order shipped.  I received an institutional email explaining the return process and a prepaid shipping label for the jeans.  I decided to hold the jeans until I got my shirts.  I didn’t get a shipped email, but had to make the effort myself to go online to see that it had shipped.  It actually arrived before their shipped email was finally sent to me.  And, fortunately, it was what I’d ordered, so I sent back the jeans.

Two days later, I received another package, with another pack of the undershirts, again with no paperwork.  I have held this package for more than 30 days, waiting for them to contact me about it.  Nothing yet.

On the plus side, my husband is very satisfied with the undershirts, and said they are good quality.  I am enjoying my lip shimmer, but wouldn’t have paid that much for it locally.

Here are my beefs about Macy’s.  They lied to my mother-in-law about the gift certificate, telling her she couldn’t use it in the store.  They don’t publish a phone number to contact them initially for faster customer service.  Their method of communicating with customers is cold and quite impersonal.  They don’t follow through with customer service.  And, finally, they don’t care enough to manage shipping issues to keep costs down.

Here is an example of their fine customer service response, from Shiela De Guzman.

Thank you for your comments regarding  On behalf of Customer Service, please accept my most sincere and deepest apologies for the recent shopping experience that you have found deplorable. 

I didn’t say my experience was deplorable, or any other adjective in the original message she quoted at the bottom of this email; I simply stated the issue and asked for another ship and how to return the jeans.  Why come at me like this, especially if you’re representing the customer service arm of your company — trying to make me look bad by putting words in my mouth?  In fairness, I called their customer service “awful” in my second submission.  And I gave them fair warning that I would blog about this.  Still, she felt compelled to send this to me knowing that.  So I’m sharing.

I know I’m not the only dissatisfied customer — what about the poor kid who didn’t get his jeans?  Macy’s does not provide good performance in Internet sales or in its customer service.  I can’t recommend Macy’s, either in store or online.

So beware.  If you love Macy’s, that’s great, and I’m glad you have had good experiences.  But now you’ve been informed.


One thought on “Review: Why Macy’s Stinks

  1. Wow! What an awful experience. Thank you for sharing, though, to give us all a “heads up.” I don’t want to buy anything from Macys!!


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