Bad customer service

London Drugs – Alone Among the Electronics

When I told people my next customer service blog would be on London Drugs, the most common question I received was, “which department?”  So, to be fair, I will focus on that section of the store.

Halloween is fast approaching and for my costumer (‘70s Adult Film Star), I thought it would be a nice touch to have a tiny speaker play porn music from that era.  I found exactly what I was looking for on the London Drugs website.  The site did say that not all stores would carry every product but I decided to be adventurous and check out the local outlet without a pre-strike phone call.

The Order

I made my way over to the electronics department and took a gander at the products, hoping to zero in on these speakers.    I walked right.  I walked left.  I even walked over to sections I knew wouldn’t have what I was looking for.  Why?  Because no one, not a single person from the three staffing the department was even pretending I was there.   I finally took myself over to the counter and asked if they carried the mini-speakers.  The staff member immediately said he hadn’t heard of it but to his credit, he did his job and came over to look at the area he believed the product to be in but nope, nothing.  “Maybe I should try the computer department.”

That’s another blog as I’m sticking to electronics here.  Needless to say, no luck there either.

I left.  Empty-handed.  A few days later I called another branch, fully prepared to take a bus out to the other London Drugs to get these $15 speakers.  Graham, the brother from another mother (and by mother I mean another London Drugs), reported he did indeed have the merchandise.  For giggles I asked him to check if my local store had the speakers.  Guess what?  They did.  Three of them.  Graham called the closer store and confirmed they were there and where to find them when I went to the store.  Thanks Graham.  If I meet you in person, I’m going to give you a cool nickname.  He’s “golden.”  (get it? Huh? Sad right?)

The Service

Not just bad.  Wow-bad.  Actually, let’s be fair, I would have had to have been talked to and given some…or any sort of effort to even consider it “service.”  When I went into the electronics department, two things were obvious.  One, the three employees were far more interested in having a very uninteresting conversation with each other than doing their jobs.  Second, I WAS THE ONLY ONE IN THE DEPARTMENT!  It’s not like they couldn’t see me.  I wandered that area like a guy who wanders a lot.

When I did end up talking to an employee, he did the absolute minimum when it came to service.  If he had only checked his computer for back stock, offered to check a location nearby, or taken an order to get it into the store, he would have made me a happy camper and I would be writing a much different blog.

The Conclusion

Booty Call – If I don’t have anything else better going on, I’ll stop by. The only thing that prevented this experience from being “friend zone” worthy is Graham, the guy from the other branch who ensured my speakers were where they were suppose to be.  London Drugs might just be a “friend with benefits”, don’t call me, I’ll call you.

Service Rating System:

Friend Zone – I just don’t like you in “that way.”
Booty Call – If I don’t have anything else better going on, I’ll stop by.
2nd Date – I’ll give you a second chance.
Going steady – This could be the beginning of something major.

The Tip

As a customer, call staff out on bad customer service.  I’m not talking “3 o’clock in the smoke pit and bring your milk money” when I mean calling out.  Let them know that this isn’t acceptable.  When I called the branch London Drugs and discovered I had been given crap service by my local store, I asked the guy on the phone if it was policy to not check the computer if you’re not sure on stock? (yes mom, it’s a double negative but it’s there for effect).  The service metre was turned up to eleven, guilt and embarrassment kicked in and I got my speakers.  You have to let people know if their service sucks or they won’t know no better (did it again).


  • I only go to London Drugs once in a while for make-up, mainly because they happen to carry some of the higher end brands that department stores carry and the prices are a little better.

    I always have good service but then again, different department.

    Maybe you should stick with buying make-up rather than electronics!

  • The only item that I am comfortable going to London Drugs for is…wait for it…wait for it…DRUGS. I find their pharmacists courteous and knowledgeable.

    I’m still always a little bewildered how a drug store started selling laptops, groceries and underwear.

    Their poor service in their non-drug departments is a symptom of our society’s current need for the cheapest prices possible by whomever can deliver them whereby we will fore go any proper service.

    “I know that nobody new anything about the products, but hey, I just got a laptop for $350 and a pack of TP for $2.99!”

  • Hi there! Thanks for this very valid information. I’m a rep for London Drugs and I’ve passed this off to our Customer Service Department. We hope you see an improvement on your next visit.

    • Thanks “wracine.” Customer service isn’t hard but it is rarely done well. Thanks for taking the time to read my blog and I do look forward to my next visit to London Drugs on Yates. Good or bad, I’m sure I’ll write about it.

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