Google's Bad Incompetent Customer Service Destroys Disabled Seller's Livelihood
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIFORNIA -- I am a disabled individual and own an online store which I depend on for my livelihood. My livelihood is now threatened, and I am looking at my server being shut off, my business being destroyed, being unable to pay my business rent, and ultimately being homeless as a result of Google's extremely bad customer service (no customer service phone number, hidden contact form, employees who don't read emails and instead copy and paste replies that don't address the issue, oftentimes they don't even respond to customers) and false libelous statements made by Google's Google Base support team.
As a small business, I must rely on Google Product Search for customers to find my items because the large shopping comparison engines are out of the price range of all but the largest stores. I had been submitting data feeds for my store to Google Base since its inception without problems until last week without problems. Last week I started receiving "failed messages".
Google doesn't provide a customer service phone number and keeps its contact form well hidden. After opening a ticket via their contact form it can be days before they reply - oftentimes they simply ignore customer tickets and never reply. Google knows that they have a virtual monopoly on search and that businesses need to appear on Google to survive and thus Google has decided to turn the normal customer relationship upside down: at Google the customer isn't always right...no, instead Google expects customers to bow down and worship at its feet and never express any complaints about its abysmally awful customer service and business practices.
Two days after opening a ticket I received a reply (signed anonymously "The Google Base Team" -Google apparently likes to operate under a veil of anonymity and its customer service emails aren't even signed with a human's name). The reply stated:
QUOTE-"Thank you for your email. While reviewing your data feed we noticed that your site isn't compliant with our Program Policies. We have therefore disabled your Google Base account. You must own any products that you submit to Google Base and ship these products directly to the buyer. We aren't accepting sites which sell products on commission, including, but not limited to: - Affiliate sites - Readymade 'wholesale' or 'drop ship' sites" - Comparison shopping sites-END QUOTE
My busieness hasn't violated any of the policies Google listed in its copy and paste reply which I know is a copy and paste because here are dozens of reports on the Internet from people who have also been falsely accused by Google of violating the same policy
My business does own and ship the products we list on our site. We are not an affiliate site and there are absolutely no affiliate links on our site.
We are not a readymade wholesale or dropship site.
We are not a comparison site.
When I replied to "Google Base Team" to tell them that we do not engage in any of the practices they cited and thus are not in violation of any policy, I received this response:
QUOTE-"Thank you for your email. Currently, we're unable to accept products sold through commission or multi-level marketing programs. This includes sellers who sell products through an affiliate marketing relationship, sellers who drop ship orders through third-party wholesalers, and independent distributors who sell goods offered within a cataloged marketing program-END QUOTE
Surprise, surprise, once again, Google's customer service had falsely accused my business of violating policies and engaging in business practices which we do not do. I think I know how my business operates better than the outsourced customer service reps at Google who never even visited my site before copying and pasting their inane replies.
We have never sold any products through commission.
We have never taken part in, or sold any products through multi-level marketing programs.
We do not sell through affiliate marketing relationships, or third party wholesalers, or cataloged marketing programs.
When I emailed Google that they were incorrect and my business is not engaging in the business practices they cited I didn't even receive a reply from them
As a result of Google's customer service staff's incompetence and their false assertion that I had violated the policies of their terms of service, traffic to my website and sales have virtually dried up and I am looking at being forced to close my business and being left without an income.
Message to Google- terms of service are legally binding upon both parties not just one. I did not violate the sections of the Google Base that your staff falsely accused me of violating. My business does not engage in the practices your incompetent customer service staff accused me of violating.
I can prove that my business doesn't engage in any of the practices your customer service falsely accused me of and I am prepared to go to court to prove that your customer service staff's false and libelous accusations about my business are wrong.
Are you proud of yourselves Google for destroying a business with false accusations and putting a disabled individual on the edge of homelessness?
Your competitors provide customer service phone numbers and don't treat their customers like pond scum. Eventually your customer service failings will catch up with you as enough people voice disgust and take their business elsewhere. Contrary to Google's belief, customers deserve to be treated with respect.