Author Topic: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............  (Read 3834 times)

Offline Bill Blackhurst

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2009, 17:08:56 »
Hi Bill!  I think I can see the evolution of this question, based on your reply in another thread and I must say that, generally speaking, I heartily agree with you.   :yup:

First, to answer your questions about DS:
1) I have ordered from U.S. Direct Service many times, though not at all in the last few years.
2) My orders were usually for replacement parts that were missing from new sets.  These were always supplied quickly and absolutely free.  One time I had an advent calendar with several problems:  a deformed set of angel wings, and two missing pieces (I forgot now what they were) and it was right before Dec. 1.  The parts arrived by first class mail within a few days so that I was able to sneak them into the correct boxes on the advent calendar in plenty of time.  I think the person I spoke to must have handled it personally in order to get the parts to me so fast.  DS is usually very busy at the holidays and I would not call at that time of year except for this sort of "emergency."  Other than for missing parts, I have placed a few orders for extras.  One example: a bunch of skeletons, pirate hats, and rusty swords to make ghost pirates.
3) Order totals were in the $30 - $50 range
4)  Zero per year now, maybe 2 per year in the past but I would have ordered more if it were easier to do and the process were more like it is for ordering sets.

I have always placed my orders by phone, so I have rarely had out-of-stock situations when the order arrives.  Also, my orders were relatively small so therefore easy to place by phone.

To get to the larger issue, I agree with you Bill that it would be a good business decision for Geobra as well as a great thing for Playmo lovers if parts ordering were handled more like a real online business rather than merely a customer service.  Besides offering replacement parts and add-ons, offering discontinued lines such as Steck, electric trains, etc. could make them a lot of money as there are so many folks who would like to add to what they have in these lines but now must rely on sources like ebay which do not make any money for Geobra.  By offering these lines, Geobra would not be competing with their brick-and-mortar retailers and they would be making a higher profit margin through direct sales and saving costs through less packaging and direct shipping.  Just my  :2c:

Thank you so much for your answers Indianna! In regards to your experience with out of stock issues, I must have different problems with US DS an other people! I place all of my DS parts orders by phone also. The problem I have is when the order processor submits my part number, gives me the price of the item, I then tell them my desired quantity. Depending on the order processor, they will then ask for the next part number, or tell me that the item is out of stock, or that there isn't enough of them in stock to be able to fulfill my ordered quantity. I then secure the entire existing number in their inventory for example; I order 25 of a blue police officers ball cap, they tell me there is only 12 in inventory, & I say, send me the 12 that you have. After the order is finalized, they tell me the cost of the order with shipping included, that they take VISA or MASTERCHARGE, & the expected delivery time. After the order is placed the waiting game begins. When the order arrives 95% of the time, & I am known to place 7 orders a year, a 3 page order will have @ least 6 items out of stock when they are filling the order, & will be in the reorder column. The next issue I won't get into is known as wrong items, because it is an entirely different aggravating subject  :hissyfit:! The amount they say they're going to charge to my credit card is never the amount in the end, it's always considerably less! Maybe this is a good thing  :-[! I'm glad you can agree with me regarding the retired parts collectors market with your  :2c: ;)!
  Forget about all of the other stuff,....all we need is the reintroduction of the 3526 Fire Engine!

Offline Rasputin

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2009, 22:51:33 »
1) I only order from USA DS but if there was a way to order from other countries i would
2) I order to restore sets and to enhance scenes . I may order three dozen books just to make a used book stall at a market .
3) I aim for the free shipping ( $150 ) and this is never a problem, my current list is 6 excell pages .
4) I would say i order quarterly . in the past i ordered more frequently but i have been very busy this year .

I do call in all my orders and they take aprox. 2 hours . I must say if I was still running my Automotive accessories business and a customer called an order in that took 2 hours I would have quit . I was shooting for at minimum $250/hour and i did not have to assemble the order, just forward it to the manufacturer who shipped direct . There is a tremendous amount of work Playmobil does for these measly orders of 25˘ items . I am very thankful they still do it for us  :wow:
If you hear the sound of the bell which will tell you that Grigori has been killed, if it was your relations who have wrought my death, then no one in the family will remain alive. They will be killed by the Russian people. :prays:

Offline Gepetto

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2009, 21:12:21 »
Hello Bill,

Yes, if your order is $150 or more the shipping is free, free, free! My experience is very similar to yours, my orders are all phoned in, if they have 3 in stock I take all 3 and 1 arrives, more frustrating now though are items listed as shipped but not arriving (not listed as backordered but as being included). I know if I place a $150 order they will only bill about $100-130 but I will still get free shipping.

I have a 30 page rotating Excel inventory I use to place my orders and run about 30% out of stock or discontinued but every now and then  :love: and those are the times your live for!!

I agree with Rasputin that we are lucky they do this at all, I sincerely doubt they could could make any money handling and inventorying all these small parts.

Offline Bill Blackhurst

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2009, 22:15:09 »
Hello Bill,
Yes, if your order is $150 or more the shipping is free, free, free! My experience is very similar to yours, my orders are all phoned in, if they have 3 in stock I take all 3 and 1 arrives, more frustrating now though are items listed as shipped but not arriving (not listed as backordered but as being included). I know if I place a $150 order they will only bill about $100-130 but I will still get free shipping.
I have a 30 page rotating Excel inventory I use to place my orders and run about 30% out of stock or discontinued but every now and then  :love: and those are the times your live for!!
I agree with Rasputin that we are lucky they do this at all, I sincerely doubt they could could make any money handling and inventorying all these small parts.

Hi Gepetto! Thank you for the free shipment info! Maybe I'll be able to get to that bonus level soon  :yup:! It sounds like you, & I have basically the same process, & problems with our orders  :)9! Regarding the shortage situations, I suppose it's because Playmobil doesn't really consider the replacement parts a necessary need for customers, but just a necessary evil that they provide  :-\! We do pay for this optional service, & from the way it sounds so far on this thread, a commendable amount of money from serious collectors!
  Forget about all of the other stuff,....all we need is the reintroduction of the 3526 Fire Engine!

Offline Justindo

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #14 on: April 12, 2009, 18:44:24 »
Question 1. Do you order replacement parts from your hosting Playmobil DS?  Yes, Playmobil USA via telephone.

Question 2. Do you order replacement parts to customize or enhance your collection?  Yes, I like to create custom klickies and structures.

Question 3. What is the usual price of your Playmobil DS replacement parts orders?  I've had orders range from around $100 to around $500.  I would say the average is probably around $300.  I've always qualified for free shipping, although sometimes what Playmobil charges my credit card is less than the minimum for free shipping, but that's because they often don't ship items to me that they said they had in stock when I ordered.  This, along with their lack of quantity of items is frustrating.  I've been trying to get a few pieces for a couple years and it hasn't yet happened.

Question 4. How many parts orders only you submit in a year?  I probably place about four parts orders per year.  Once the Egyptians are released here and I place a parts order for extra Egyptian pieces I want, I don't see myself ordering much, or buying that many blue boxes, in the future.
:egypt: :roman: :viking: :knight: :arrr: :indian: :cowboy:

Offline leefert

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #15 on: May 01, 2009, 15:35:57 »
Question 1. Do you order replacement parts from your hosting Playmobil DS?
Question 2. Do you order replacement parts to customize or enhance your collection?
Question 3. What is the usual price of your Playmobil DS replacement parts orders?
Question 4. How many parts orders only you submit in a year?

1. Yes when needed
2. Absolutely (I've come up with far too many ideas that need more parts)
3. Well the last 3 have been, $17, $35, and $42
4. So far I've done 4 orders this year but since US DS won't be getting a restock of parts until the fall, I guess that's all I'll be doing until the fall :)

I keep a list on my computer of parts in my wishlist (and if I can find them on Ebay I will fill my list that way).
I'm glad that I'm not the only one :)

Offline Janice

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #16 on: May 01, 2009, 19:24:03 »
Question 1:  Playmobil USA -Yes, by telephone or letter.  I've never been successful with email.

Question 2:  Yes, I replace missing parts and add to what I all ready have.  I've not tried my hand at customizing yet.

Question 3:  I've placed 7-8 orders over the years @ average of $75.00 each.

Question 4:  Lately I would say that I order twice a year at least.

I have always had courteous service and surprisingly they have been fairly accurate in dealing with the numbers and all those little pieces.  I have usually had a 10 - 14 day wait to receive an order.  The final price never matches with what I'm told on the phone as they are always short on something and I have to check my credit card bill to see what it came too.

I have a running list on my computer and when it gets long enough, I place an order.
Janice

Offline leefert

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Re: I don't want to sound too nosey, but.............
« Reply #17 on: May 02, 2009, 16:01:10 »
My favorite is when you order them by phone and then they ship you your items but on the packing slip you need to re-order.  The funny part is that they will partially fill those items but not charge you for them.  I'm okay with that!  ;D  Right now I am working on building an inventory of parts so that I have stuff to trade with or can quickly set up a scene.
I'm glad that I'm not the only one :)