DealFlashy.com, a website based in Cedar Park, Texas, uses social media to announce “deals” for consumer electronics and accessories such as cellphone covers. The website claims to negotiate discounts with popular local businesses and product manufacturers and promote those deals to thousands of consumers.
Better Business Bureau (BBB) serving Central, Coastal, Southwest Texas and the Permian Basin found a pattern of complaints from consumers who say DealFlashy.com will not honor its return policy. Consumers say they were billed immediately for their purchase, but either did not receive their order or received a faulty product and were unable to get the business to issue a refund. Consumers also told BBB they were unable to get the business to answer phone calls or emails.
As of Oct. 8, DealFlashy.com has received 12 complaints in the last year. The business failed to respond to eight of those complaints. In cases where the business answered complaints, it promised to deliver the product, stated it had already delivered the product (which the consumer disputed), or the consumers informed BBB they had received their order.
Scott Cobern of Cedar Hill, Texas, ordered an iPhone cover that didn’t fit his phone properly. When he tried to email DealFlashy.com about returning the phone cover for a refund, there was no response. He tried calling them, but just got a recording.
“I got the iPhone cover, but decided I didn’t want it and decided to get the money-back guarantee,” said Cobern, referring to the return policy on the DealFlashy.com website, which states, “Money Back – Don’t like a product? Returns are easy as 1-2-3! Simply contact us and you are done. That’s it!”
Cobern said, “The iPhone cover was not what I thought it would be. It was cumbersome on the buttons. I found them on Facebook. They’re still on Facebook, selling different products. I tried to return it, but they would not respond to my emails. When I called, I got a recording and no one called back. Finally, after a couple of weeks I called Better Business Bureau.”
Mark Blankenhorn of Roseville, New York, made a purchase from DealFlashy.com after finding an ad on Facebook for a Chrome iPhone 4 cover. He says he never received the cover and has been blocked from contacting the business on Facebook.
“I ordered it the day before Christmas, 2013 and still have yet to receive it. Now, I don’t even have the phone any more. I have an iPhone 5. It was inexpensive, less than $20, but that’s not the point. The point is their terrible customer service. They wouldn’t respond to me and blocked me from Facebook. They said they shipped it out, but I never got it. They wouldn’t give me a tracking number.”
When buying merchandise online, BBB offers the following advice:
- Pay with a credit card. Under federal law, charges made on a credit card can be disputed up to 60 days after the purchase.
- Keep documentation of your order. After completing the online order process, there should be a final confirmation page or an email confirmation. Save any receipts for future reference.
- Know your rights. Federal law requires that orders made by mail, phone or online be shipped by the date promised or, if no delivery time was stated, within 30 days. If the goods aren’t shipped on time, the shopper can cancel and demand a refund. There is no general three-day cancellation right, but consumers do have the right to reject merchandise if it’s defective or was misrepresented. Otherwise, it’s the company’s policies that determine if the shopper can cancel the purchase and receive a refund or credit.
- Do your research. Check the company’s BBB Business Review at bbb.org before making a purchase to see its complaint history, details about complaints and any advertising-related issues.