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Foreign fast fashion brands neglect after-sales service
Publication Date : 13-03-2013
Despite their explosive sales growth here, foreign “fast fashion” brands do not offer after-sales service.
Sales of five major imported SPA brands Uniqlo, Gap, Zara, H&M and Mango jumped over 50 per cent each year to nearly 2 trillion won (US$1.8 billion) in 2011, but none of them had an official after-sales service center, Consumer Research said on Tuesday.
The stores did not take any calls for after-sales service, and offered no alteration or repair services except for hemming pants.
Customers were unable to get any help when they lost buttons or the clothes were torn.
Uniqlo, Gap and Zara provided paid alteration services through designated agencies, but H&M and Mango did not have these, prompting customers to use the dry cleaner’s to have hems or sleeves adjusted, repair holes and tears, or replace broken zippers.
Even when customers were willing to pay, the stores were unable to provide information on whether the clothes could be repaired at their designated after-sales service agencies.
Three Uniqlo stores and a Zara store said their clothes couldn’t be repaired while two Zara stores and a Gap store provided contact numbers for their designated agencies, according to Consumer Research.
Most homegrown fashion franchises, on the other hand, run after-sales service centers.
Spao and Mixxo of E-Land Retail, Codes Combine of Codes Combine offered alteration and repair services through their centres. 8ight Seconds of Cheil Industries did not.
Retailers say that they are not required to keep buttons or other expendables in stock for clothing manufactured abroad and that it is hard to run after-sales service centers considering their low margins.
“When there is a problem with product quality, we accept returns and exchanges within the quality guarantee period of one year,” Uniqlo spokesperson Lee Na-rae said.
“Even though we do not have a customer service center, we guide our customers to visit nearby alteration shops.”
These fast fashion stores offer a wide range of new clothing within a week or two by designing and manufacturing quickly and cheaply based on the latest trends presented at Fashion Week.