How NOT to keep a customer

Here’s a basic economic principle: treat your customers with respect by offering good customer service and quality products, and they will return. I don’t think it’s a difficult concept. It’s smart business.

But it’s apparently a lesson Julian Bakery hasn’t yet learned.

I don’t eat grains. I don’t eat glutens. I keep my carb intake low, and get most of my carbs from fruits and vegetables. I don’t have celiac disease, but I have thyroid issues, and glutens and carbs exacerbate the problem. So imagine how thrilled I was to discover that Julian Bakery had gluten-free, grain-free, low-carb bread!

So I went to the site, and immediately ordered two loaves and some cookies!

That was on October 19. A few days later, I received an email that My order had been processed for shipping. I had hoped I would receive the bread prior to leaving for Latvia, but after tracking the package, it still hadn’t shipped.

I returned from Riga on November 2, and the products from Julian Bakery still had not showed up. On November 4th, I sent them the following email:

Hello – I received an email on October 25 that my order has been processed for shipping. To date, I have received nothing, and the UPS tracking simply states that a label has been created. I placed the order on October 19. I realize it can take a few days for an order to ship, but it is now November 4th, and the wait is getting a bit ridiculous. At this point I’m afraid the bread I ordered will arrive inedible! If you are unable to ship the product in a reasonable amount of time, please refund my money. Otherwise, I’d like to receive the products for which I paid.

On November 5th, I received the following reply:

We bake and ship orders fresh within 7 to 14 business days as was outlined when checking out and on your confirmation e-mail. We normally ship orders within 2 to 3 business days but due to an overwhelming demand we anticipate your order will ship this week.

Did it ship that week? I doubt it, because by the time Tuesday morning, November 13 rolled around, there was still no package from Julian.

By that point, I’d had it. I emailed Julian Bakery again when I got to work, and told them I was no longer interested in their product and simply wanted a refund.

Did I get a refund? No. Did I even get an acknowledgment that it took nearly a month to get a product that I ordered? No. Did I get an admission that there was a problem? No.

I merely got a cheerful email from their sales department, telling me that my order should arrive the next day.

Unbelievable. Not even an acknowledgment that anything was amiss.

The products did indeed arrive on Wednesday. They were good. I was happy. Made a sandwich on Wednesday and one on Thursday. Today is Friday. I opened the loaf to make a sandwich this afternoon, and the bread was completely covered in mold. TWO DAYS AFTER I HAD FINALLY RECEIVED IT!


So I went to their Facebook page and left a comment – a short version of what I am posting here. The comment is still there. I wonder how long it will take for them to remove it. We’ll see.

Crappy customer service, product that spoils within two days, and unacceptable delivery times. This is not a way to ensure repeat sales, and not a way to run a business.

I’ll survive without bread, or I’ll find something comparable. But I won’t be ordering from Julian Bakery again.

And you shouldn’t either.


One response

  1. Since having several friends w Celiac disease I’ve become more aware of the need for gluten-free products. You can get some great stuff from Honeyville
    Grains ( and Pleasant Hill Grains ( Raw Almond flour, blanched almond flour, Corn flour, Oat flour, and many others. I LIKE making bread, but it is messy doing it by hand.


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