My Experience with Asos.com

This article was not written to post libelous claims about “ASOS” but to show how Automated systems sometime don’t entirely solve the problem of Fraud (sometimes these systems make the whole thing a terrible experience for legitimate customers). I created this blog for the purpose of voicing my opinions on things that i see including those that give me displeasure.

UPDATE 1: A human going by the name Jean got back to me via email. Praise be to God in the heavens

UPDATE 2: I was also contacted by ASOS on this blog (see the comment below). It seems my message has been understood clearly. I appreciate that they got in touch.

UPDATE 3: I will send what they requested for.

This experience greatly reminds me of how MoneyBookers (Now Skrill) lists Nigeria in their country list but doesn’t allow payments from residents of Nigeria (who does that, i mean Paypal didn’t even include us in their list at all, you can check for yourself. At least PayPal was clear about their stance). See the MoneyBookers convo below

Seyi Taylor talks about MoneyBookers and their problems

 

Online shopping has always been a minor part of my life (up until recently and by that i mean a year or two ago). So i’m very picky about the sites that i use. This is why i only use it for essentials services (Web Hosting from Namecheap and Godaddy, ordering food from Easy Appetite, buying products from our very own Whogohost (Web Hosting Provider and Domain Name registrar in Nigeria selling all our Nigerian top level domain names)…. The list of essential services can go on and on)

On Wednesday (4th of June, 2013), I decided to try ASOS to see if they had the kind of variety i was looking for. And behold, they did. I selected the categories i wanted to shop in (you know, the essentials) and i got an initial list of 1200 items to choose from.

After careful curation for about two hours and thirty minutes, i had my saved list of 128 Items. Finally the moment of truth came and i had to make a choice on what to buy. I had about 300 US Dollars to spend but i didn’t want to spend it all in one transaction because i had never used ASOS before. I can say it here that if i had all the cash, i would probably have bought all 128 items without a second thought. And if i had known what would happen next, I would have spent those hours doing something more productive.

Anyway, i first selected three items (because i wanted to spend just 100 US Dollars) but after about 10 Minutes, i changed my mind and decided to spend 200 US Dollars. This spurred me to take some items off the list and replace them with some other items. I then spent another 1 hour consulting friends, family and the online size guide on ASOS (its a great guide by the way) before finally hitting the “Pay Now” Button.

Once i was there and i initiated the checkout process, i looked over to the left to see the estimated shipping date. It was due to arrive my chosen Shipping Address on the 18th but there was another option neatly place underneath the ‘Standard Shipping” option labelled “Express”. And i saw that it reduced the shipping time by a whole week. However this costed 33 US Dollars and i asked the opinion of my colleagues whether it was worth it or not. They told me that since i was making an order of 200 US Dollars (208 to be exact), it was advisable to go for the express shipping option becuase it saved time and lifted the burden of having to wait too long. So i chose it, it slashed the estimated date of arrival by 7 days to the 11th of June 2013.

I then got to where i was to enter my Billing Address and thats where the problems came in. Due to dated UI Elements that had limitations on how long the address should be in terms of lenght, i was forced to split my address into two parts, placing each part in the two address line fields (Note, Both fields had similar but not equal lenght limitations). The same applied to the Shipping Address Section also. After getting past those daunting obstacles, i was finally able to enter my card details (ASOS asked for mundane details like Start date and End Date instead of the standard Expiry Date field), they also placed the CVV2 (Verification code) field on another page and to make matters much worse, i had to choose the type of card i was using (which was Mastercard). All these things could have been streamline into one form that would not have unnecessary fields.

I can’t tell them how to do business but ASOS need to be in touch with the times in terms of your business logic (This isn’t 1999 for crying out loud). At least they use some modern backend and frontend technologies for their website (PSA to Developers out there: They use Jquery 1.7.2 and Modernizr 2.6.1 as part of their website to ensure compatibility on all browsers) but they have an otherwise harmless but potentially dangerous flaw on their website (check here and scroll down to connection).

Note the yellow caution sign
Note the yellow caution sign

ASOS, don’t make an otherwise pleasurable experience a chore for your customers.

Before submission, i crosschecked all the data i entered making sure that my billing address matched what was on file for my Account in GTBank. Note that this is a card i have used without a hitch in many other places (at least 40 other websites including Google, Amazon and GoDaddy). And then i clicked “Finish”. Not too long after, i got an email about the order confirming that it had been made. I was happy and i had it in mind that my stuff was on the way.

asos

Hours Later, just before i walked into Church (Covenant Christian Centre) for the midweek service, i got this email.

Dear Akinbobola, We are sorry but we have been unable to process your order, so unfortunately it has been cancelled.

When you place an order with ASOS, our system goes through a series of checks to validate the information you have provided. Before we can accept any future orders from you we just need to ask you for a bit more information to confirm your details.

Please could you send us the information listed below:

– A scanned copy of your Passport or Driving Licence – A scanned copy of your card statement dated within the last 3 months, clearly stating your name and billing address*Please blank out your card number however leave the last 4 digits visible. Confirm your relation to the delivery address and the full name of who will be signing for future orders (if this is a work address please provide the company name)

All you need to do is scan the documents, save them as a ‘jpeg’ or ‘gif’ file and send them to us by replying to this e-mail.

Please be assured that once the security checks are completed the information supplied will be destroyed.

We look forward to hearing from you. All the best, ASOS

They even had a fancy header to make it look very nice. Which online store asks for all that? None that i know of. Well i had to give them a piece of my mind because i felt that i was being unfairly discriminated based on my IP Address. They could have at least presented me with other options for Payment (Bank Transfer or something like that, even the Apple Store allows for that), i would have gladly obliged. They should know that i’d never send them the information they asked for (its not like they were going to give me a UK Visa or something)

Here’s my reply to them, I tried my hardest possible best to be civil in my rant. See it just below

First i would like to inform you that my first order on your website was cancelled for no concrete reason and it definately will be the last i’ll ever make on your website. I’m going to close my account. Asos came highly recommended from my colleagues at work who had used it and successfully recieved their items at office. Oh the joy we have when we are unpacking all the boxes labelled with “Asos”. I’m still baffled at why my order was declined (I pay for courses on Skillshare, Hosting on Namecheap and GoDaddy, and other online services including NSFWCORP). But what baffles me more is you asking me to send in a scanned copy of my Nigerian Passport and my card statement. Newsflash: They don’t give card statements in Nigeria, they give account statements so get your wording straight. Also i would never send you a scanned copy of my Nigerian Passport (never). You didn’t even have the decency to have a human contact me, you just allowed your bots do the talking via Automated Emails. Never ever ask for such over email. You say that you’ll destroy it after the check is complete. How can i trust you on that?

On a parting note, Mastercard is still holding the money for the order so please let them know that you didn’t fulfil the order so that they can give me back my money. Kindly get this done before i escalate it to the local business bureau in the United Kingdom.

Signed Akinbobola Akinola A Proud, Hard Working Nigerian

I now patiently await a reply from them. Will update you with their reply. *End of Rant, Drops Mic*

DISCLAIMER: I’m a critic.

DISCLAIMER 2: I couldn’t find the tweet i referenced above all by myself so i used Snapbird to find it.

DISCLAIMER 3: A foreign company has cheated me before and i had to leave them for another provider. For those who want to know, Mochahost is the culprit, don’t ever use them for your Web Hosting, they have shoddy services. 

UPDATE: Here is their first Reply

Hello,

Just to let you know that we’ve received your email and we’ll get back to you within 24 hours.  

In the meantime, did you know we have a help section on the website? Click here to check it out – you may find the answer to your question there.

There’s no need to reply to this email, we just wanted to keep you updated.  

Best wishes,

ASOS Customer Care

14 Replies to “My Experience with Asos.com”

  1. Oh no! We just came across this from our Twitter and it’s deffo something we need to look into for you. Pop over a tweet over to @ASOS_HereToHelp, drop us a PM on Facebook or send an email with the subject ‘Twitter’ and we’ll get right on this for you. Thanks, ASOS Thomas

  2. Lmaaoo!! I’m sorry but this is funny 🙁
    I’ve been ordering from ASOS since last year,never got that message
    Maybe ur card details didn’t matchup or sumn,happens to me on ther sites
    Had to change my address to a foreign one at the banks
    Nice blog btw

    Thefashionengineer.com

    1. Lol. I finally got my money back after many days. The point of the whole tantrum was to revolt against their lack of support at the time i needed it the most. Found out later on by myself that it was because i entered the postcode for Sabo instead of the standard 23401 that caused the whole issue.

  3. Amazing. I’ve introduced people to asos and I’ve been shopping since late 2012. No such drama.sorry about that. Asos is a reputable company and I always go back because of their excellent customer care.

  4. Pls, am trying to make my first ever online order, and i want to order from asos. Am in portharcourt and would like to know how i can go through the precess, and the postcode to use. Thanks plenty

  5. Sorry about your experience with asos.. I was planning to shop from them but after all this I’m on the fence. Are you saying I should use 23401 as my postcode and the ajah postcode, which is where I stay?

  6. hi. made a mistake on my address. n am trying to track the order or how do I track my order. please do you have any of the delivery man no. thanks .

  7. i have been shopping from asks since 2012, never had such problems, sometimes your card might be blocked for some reasons like an incomplete secure code registration or some online transaction activation you ignored. asks is reputable and have excellent customer service, it is best to use the express shipping that way it gets delivered to you directly, if you choose a random postcode you might never get tour item, so for standard shipping make sure you have a postcode you have access to, sometimes items could get missing trust nipost,lol, so to be safe express shipping is a better option.

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