Online Success Story

Buying online is commonplace these days. Sure bricks and mortar stores can be shiny and dazzling, but you can’t beat the convenience of buying that much-longed-for dress while sitting in your PJs at 11pm.

Australians spent an estimated $37.8 billion online during the last financial year, with around four in ten of us buying at least one product online during an average four-week period. But there are still pitfalls to be aware of.

Not all online vendors operate on the right side of the law. And that law can be further open to interpretation depending on which country they’re based in. Once your purchase has been delivered and it doesn’t meet your expectations, often the returns process can be lengthy, painful, and ultimately without resolution.

Hands up who has an ill-fitting online purchase languishing in their wardrobes? Sometimes dealing with the admin associated with online returns is better consigned to the ‘too hard’ basket for your own sanity.

But my faith in online shopping has been restored.

Earlier this year I purchased a pair of ASICS sneakers from ASICS is not my usual brand but I was facing five weeks in Europe and wanted a shoe that would be able to handle a lot of walking and bike riding and offer me support.

I picked them up for just $100 and put them away for my holiday. On departure day I laced them up and loved then . . . until just ten days into my trip when both shoes started ripping, rendering them no longer waterproof.
I was perplexed. Surely shoes are made to last more than ten days?

So I spoke to ASICS. I was in dire need of a pair of shoes and travelling with just hand luggage so couldn’t fit in a new pair.

They were really keen to help until they realised the shoes had not been bought from one of their stores. Now this is where it gets murky. According to ASICS, due to my shoes being bought from an online provider, they were likely to be parallel imports and not made to the same standards as ASICs sold in Australia.

This blew my mind. Surely branded items are made to the same standard globally? Apparently not . . . (and we’ll leave that story for a follow-up investigation).

So I limped along with my torn, shabby, shoes and once returned to Sydney, contacted catchoftheday directly. And they couldn’t have been more helpful. I was offered a choice of repair, replace or refund immediately. I opted for the refund btw.

I was compensated for having to return the shoes to them. And my complaint was handled online so I could keep track of where I was in the process. It couldn’t have been simpler.

And most impressive of all, it was all perfectly representative of the Australian Consumer Law and how it should protect consumers in these situations.

Nice work!


Hiya Claire

How wonderful to learn of such a stellar example of good customer service!

I have purchased from Catch of the Day previously, as their specials are very good but I have never had a reason
to return any of the merchandise purchased.

It is wonderful to hear that the business will take care of Customer complaints and look after us effectively.

Thanks so much for posting.
Cheers Natalie :slight_smile:


I have purchased a number of products from Catch of the Day over the years . I have had to return two products , a camera and a PVR . PvR was "dead on arrival " and the camera had a spot on the inside of the lens . They were very courteous and offered immediate money back or replacement . I took the replacement . They sent a courier to pick up the returns , no expense to me , and the replacements arrived within 2 days . Great service .


Hiya vax2000

Catch of the Day sounds like a good company to continue to deal with…

Nat :wink:


Hi Nat , :smile_cat:
Yep I’ve had no probs with them . They offer some great bargains too . How you going ? Well I hope .


Hiya Mike

Thank you for your kind words. I am really well and trust all is well with you too.
Take care.
Cheers Nat :wink:


Claire - you were fortunate to be dealing with a company that stood by its products. The internet is chock-a-block full of “firms” which are little more than an email address, that take your money and promise the earth - at a discount to normal prices. A favorite is the so called “grey market”, which is sales of brand names, that don’t originate from the manufacture who owns the brand, or from dealers authorised by the real manufacturer. The norm in those cases is that the manufacturer will stand by its right to tell you that it’s your own fault, and that you have no right to claim compensation from the manufacturer.

ASIC has a mantra - “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn’t”. Your grandmother had another one - “there’s no such thing as a free lunch”. And there’s a ton of those sayings, from here to the horizon, going beyond there.

If you do your homework - and I mean REALLY do it - there are serious savings to be made in some cases, buying online. But you might also find that if you discuss them with your normal store, they will price match, so there’s no advantage - and the online purchase may still be risky.

I’ve done both - over a lifetime - and I’ve been caught by both. I can vouch for both the risks and the benefits, of either online or in store purchases. At the end of the day, it all boils down to how careful you were to protect your own interests.

And using your example of sneakers - I generally buy mine when they are on sale, at a reputable outlet like Jim Kidd - I get fantastic bargains, and because sales aren’t on all year round, I generally “buy ahead”. I’ve never had a problem with them. Even better - the pair I am wearing right now is so good that, before I even left the store (wearing them), I went back to the salesperson who’d served me and bought a second pair!