Small Hatchery Seeking Advice...

cmfarm

Crowing
May 3, 2010
1,492
514
281
Elgin, TX
I buy a lot of shipped eggs, and I can say that there have been a few times that just a few eggs where very smashed while the rest where fine, so she may be telling the truth about that. As far as the customer is concerned, it may just be better to give her a full refund and be done with her.
 

Sally PB

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Aug 7, 2020
8,455
37,119
933
Belding, MI
Something I do is when I send the tracking number I usually take a picture of the package with the label on it

I used to work in shipping and some things were large and fragile. I learned to take pictures (cell phones are such wonderful things) of every stage of the packaging. The item wrapped in bubble wrap. The box/crate with foam blocks to stabilize. The final box with label and tracking number. We even got special "shock" stickers to put on some things when UPS was damaging a lot of stuff. Were I ever to ship eggs, that's what I would do, and send an email notification of "item has shipped" with those images attached.

I don't know what OP can do, legally, about this customer. The great thing about the internet and social media is that you can find out a lot of stuff quickly and easily. The bad thing about it is that there's no way to tell what's true or false as quickly and easily.
 

Awakening Forest

FreeBird
Premium Feather Member
Aug 14, 2020
1,094
3,257
356
North Central Florida
I will be shipping eggs starting this spring and this is a concern for me. The distance you shipped and the season - especially for the buyer- is an immediate red flag. I wouldn't have shipped 3000 miles to a northern location in the cold weather. That said, I will only be shipping to the eastern half of the U.S. (I'm in Florida too). I was burned by an Etsy seller this year and had to file a dispute to have the money refunded from a seller who did not communicate at all and missed the final delivery date by 10 days. she did finally send eggs but none of them developed. Going by her silence to my emails, even after I filed the dispute, I'm guessing she decided to send something but not necessarily what I purchased. I say this because there is a reason to be suspicious on both sides of the equation and with the booming popularity of chickens, I suspect there will be many more problems this coming year. So my advice is to refund her money minus shipping and to be sure that your ordering/ shipping policy clearly reflects the hazards of shipping eggs and that the risk is the buyer's risk. I ask that you reconsider selling eggs to buyers on the other side of the continent. This could have been a set up- like someone said - premeditated. Her reaction is clearly over the top. And know this will pass. The Online community has an incredibly short memory. Best wishes with your new business. May you have a blessed and prosperous and healthy New Year.
 

deidreg

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
Jul 6, 2020
738
2,842
256
Connecticut
Out of curiosity, I looked up your Etsy page and see the review you reference. From a customer perspective, I think your response is good through the sentence about the postal inspector. Scolding her about professionalism, as much as she may deserve it, reads as defensive. It would give me pause. I do note the excellent review that follows, so that is helpful. I think your FB page is good--fun, positive. I hope your business does well!
 

MissMonty

Songster
5 Years
Sep 12, 2015
497
986
186
Dayton, OH
Out of curiosity, I looked up your Etsy page and see the review you reference. From a customer perspective, I think your response is good through the sentence about the postal inspector. Scolding her about professionalism, as much as she may deserve it, reads as defensive. It would give me pause. I do note the excellent review that follows, so that is helpful. I think your FB page is good--fun, positive. I hope your business does well!

Kind of going along with this, I read reviews as well. A bad/negative review will not automatically turn me away from a seller. Things that will turn me away is review trends, so if you have multiple negative reviews saying similar things. Or seeing how someone responds to a review. Things happen we are all human but for me as a buyer what is more important than the negative review is how the seller handled the review. Don't get in the mud and start slinging like the buyer, keep it professional and personally I'd likely over look a single negative review.

I also went and looked at the review. It probably would have been best to stop before the professionalism piece. The rest of the response was golden and exactly what I'd like to see as a buyer.

You never want customers to worry that if something does go wrong they'll get attacked over it back.
 
Jul 26, 2020
123
313
108
I can not stress the importance of customer service when running a business. The cost to ship her new eggs (taking a loss) and refunding the old eggs while maintaining an empathetic attitude is worth 10000 times the cost and headache the transaction has become.

A few points about your now public response on Etsy.

"We are not responsible for eggs damaged during transit by the US Postal Service."

As a customer based business you are responsible for damaged eggs. You need to use this experience as a way to improve your packaging. Shifting the blame, although it was the USPS that broke them is never a good tactic.

"Furthermore, in regards to professionalism... it is highly unprofessional to let a business know about a damaged product, which was damaged by a 3rd party during shipping, through a misleading and very unprofessional slanderous review."

Unfortunately the only one who is held to a professional standard in this matter is the business. I'd hope that the customer would remain professional but they don't have to, only you do. Also again your focusing more on shifting the blame on the USPS then figuring out a way to make it right.

"The professional thing to do would have been to send a private message."

This is just a petty statement. I understand the frustration but as a professional business you can't do this. Being 100% honest and referring to my original point. The cost to refund her in full, and eat the cost to ship a replacement batch would have been a better choice here. Your way past that point now, but for future reference. I hope this helps.
 

JacinLarkwell

Crossing the Road
Mar 19, 2020
16,161
33,904
861
South-Eastern Montana
I'm not really agreeing with the whole don't send eggs to the other side of the continent, but that's a selfish reason. A lot of the birds I like to get are all apparently only on the eastern side (at least that I can find for sale). I regularly buy eggs from a very, very far distance, but i know the risks are larger with every mile they travel. My last batch was from somewhere near Florida or Texas (not quite sure on the state) and I had 2 out of 12 hatch and only one other develop past the first week. If you're expecting a perfect hatch, go and pick them up yourself.

Rant over 😀
 

Studabird

Songster
May 8, 2020
222
430
116
Southwest Louisiana
I agree that the buyer was probably over reacting. If I were selling eggs online I would put language in the return/refund policy that photos of damaged good should be taken. For instance if the box is smashed take a picture before even opening it. That way everyone is held accountable. You get to see where the packaging failed and can prevent it next and the buyer has to show what went wrong.
 

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