Oregon Scientific, Good Products, Everything Else… ?

I’m a big fan of Oregon Scientific products.  I’ve been purchasing their stuff for over 15 years.  I’m impressed with every single one of their products, but they always (of course) have that one little bug that prevents them from being perfect.  I’ve written to the company 3 times over the past 15 years.

I wrote to the company because I was after one of their products. Recently I got a new phone with the wireless charging capability Qi.  I’m trying to find a good wireless charging mat. I like the energizer single, but that seems to have disappeared like a roller skating rink.  I saw that Oregon Scientific had one… maybe even two options.  Read on for my customer service engagement.

Dear Oregon Scientific, I have been a customer of yours for probably 15 years. Starting with your weather radios, and upgrading every time you were one of the first companies to implement a new feature or technology. I started buying your weather stations and sensors. Often I would get bit by some unusual bug (like systems resetting) or other weird problems. But I still stuck through it, and even purchased your items as gifts (heart rate monitors, etc.).

I have to tell you though, that every time I try to navigate your website, I find myself in utter confusion.

So here is my progress. I have a new phone, and it charges with qi. You have a qi charger (maybe even 2 of them). So I go to Oregon Scientific’s website: http://oregonscientific.com/index.asp and get some kids showing me your tablet.

Cool. I click on products, and get this page: http://oregonscientific.com/products_wellness.asp

I click on mobile style which as this link: http://oregonscientific.com/products_smartHome.asp which redirects to this link: http://oregonscientific.com/products_mobileStyle.asp

In the lower right, I see 3 products. A desktop cradle, what looks like a qw201 and I guess a qw202. Clicking on the qw202 I see information, but no way to purchase it. It also doesn’t seem to come up on any search queries on your website (not even a coming soon, or only available in Tartuga). So I click on the qw201 image, then the buy now link: Time-and-Weather-sub-Designer-Clocks-prod-Time-and-Weather-Charging-Station

Find me surprised when I see this:

Time & Weather Charging Station Product Code QW201

Now $1,298.00 [~US$166.41]*

I thought it unusual that the price increased that much. Also, where is the 202?

In summary. I think your company is good. But I REALLY think it could be great. I think there are marketing opportunities you could do, I think there are new products you could make, and I think there are usability issues with your website that could be addressed. If there is any way I could help please let me know. In summary, I’d really like to know more about the qw202. Thanks much.

–Brett Thorson
Owner Cranial Thunder, LLC

Here is the reply:

Dear Brett, Thank you for contacting Oregon Scientific Customer Support.

We are very sorry for the inconvenience.

For your reference, here is the link to download the manual of the unit QW202. http://corporate.oregonscientific.com/manual/QW202.pdf

Hope this information helps and please do visit our website at us.oregonscientific.com for product information, special discounts and best deals.

As a sign of our appreciation on your interest or continued patronage of Oregon Scientific products, we also sign you up on our newsletter list so you may receive similar information for your future shopping needs and reference.

If after reading this email you find that you require further assistance, please feel free to email us again.

Because we respond to many emails each day, it is important you include the entire content of our conversation in each email. Thank you for the opportunity to be of service. You can also reach us by calling 1-800-853-8883 (Toll-Free Within the USA) Phone and email support are available Monday – Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM Pacific Time.

Sincerely,
Debbie S.
Oregon Scientific Customer Support

What?

Technically you could be correct that I did ask for more information about the qw202, and that is exactly what I got.  However, if anyone bothered to read and understand the entire message, you would see that I want to be a repeat consumer, with sufficient funds and a history of purchasing their products. I want help finding a way to buy it but coming up with the fact that I need to be in Hong Kong and be willing to pay 10X the price.  Also, as a sign of appreciation, you have signed me up for your newsletter.

Yeah, I don’t think that means what you think it means.

As a sign of my appreciation, I have relegated your domain name to several spam lists (just kidding, but can you see the correlation Oregon Scientific?)

The conclusion:

I’m just going to keep plugging my phone in, and hope that someday, someone at Oregon Scientific realizes how much business they are losing by not properly engaging their past, current, and potential customers.

As always, I stand willing to help!  I’m an idea guy, and I get things done.

–Brett Thorson
Owner – Cranial Thunder, LLC