When Amy DeBartolo saw an online deal to get her favorite photograph made into a canvas by a website called “Canvas People” she says she jumped on the offer. She uploaded a portrait of her infant daughter, clicked on the size canvas she wanted, confirmed the order, and couldn’t wait to surprise her husband.
But when the canvas arrived, Amy was the one who got the surprise. She says inside the package was a canvas portrait of a little boy! “I was very upset when I opened the box. The photo was going to be a Valentines Day gift for my husband.”
Amy says she tried calling the company but couldn’t get through to a live person. We found the Canvas People website actually discourages customers from calling. Here’s what’s listed on the contact information page: “Prefer to speak with someone? We'd like to speak with you too, but due to the busy holiday season, we'd ask that you contact us though the form above. Once we've had time to research your inquiry we'll get back to you by phone if we have any questions. Thanks so much. We truly appreciate your business!”
So Amy sent an email. Canvas People sent her an auto reply saying someone would be in touch with her within 2-3 business days. When three business days passed, and Amy still didn’t get a response, she emailed this complaint to the company:
“I received a picture of a strange boy who certainly is not my own child. I am horrified by the fact that most likely someone received a picture of my infant daughter. This has to be the worst customer service of any company I have ever dealt with. I expect a full refund of the money I paid for shipping along with the correct photograph. Also since this was to be a gift I expect the correct order to be mailed immediately.”
Amy tells us she got another generic auto reply in response, saying the company would get back to her in 2-3 days. Three more business days passed. Nothing from Canvas People appeared in her inbox. No one called. Finally, seven business days after she sent that second email, Amy says the company responded. “They were sorry and they would be sending me the corrected image. There was no mention of providing me with a refund which is what I requested. There was also no mention of who received the picture of my daughter which I found troublesome.”
Canvas People did offer Amy another chance to do business with them. They sent her a promo code good for a free 8 x 10 photo canvas or $55 off a larger canvas, though shipping and handling fees are on her. Amy says she just wants her money back and won't be placing any future online orders with the company.
We reached out to Canvas People for a comment, via email of course, we’ll let you know what they say.
Better Business Bureau records show Canvas People has 28 complaints filed against it. The majority are for problems with products or services. Canvas People does seem to respond to BBB complaints. Ripoff Report also shows several complaints which mention poor customer service.
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