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Customer service shout-out: Schneiders Saddlery

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  • Customer service shout-out: Schneiders Saddlery

    We so often complain about awful service, and usually rightfully so--but it's also great to hear what a company does right. Or, in my case, more than right--they went above and beyond their policy and helped me out.

    As many of you know, I had to euthanize my beloved mare Sept. 30 of this year, and was left with many painful reminders of her--including a brand new Schneiders storm sheet I'd bought her the previous season. When I ordered it, another storm was going to hit before the sheet would be delivered, so I bought a cheaper sheet to last in the meantime and never actually wound up using it. I was saving it for the next, this, season. So, it sat in my tack room, still shrink-wrapped and in the SStack zipper bag it had arrived in.

    After a few months of grief and shock, when I finally knew I was getting another horse (a 16.2 OTTB, as opposed to the 15.0 Arab I'd had--so no way was this sheet fitting!), I felt ready to call Schneiders and see if they would take back the sheet. I was way, way beyond the return policy's time period, but thought I'd see what they'd say. I was stunned, and relieved, and grateful when the woman told me to return it to them with a note detailing what had happened, and they'd issue me a credit.

    I did (including a picture of my mare--SStack blankets always fit her best!), and was issued the $70 credit almost immediately. I used the credit plus cash to buy my new mare a nice bridle. I lost some money covering shipping costs, but I didn't care.

    Schneiders was more than gracious and understanding, and they certainly did not have to take back the storm sheet. They would be in the right to say no. But, in accepting it, they have secured my loyalty and my praise.

    So, thank you and Merry Christmas, Schneiders Saddlery. I look forward to shopping your sales for my new horse in the New Year.
    SA Ferrana Moniet 1988-2011
    CP Trilogy 2002-2015
    My bloggity blog: Hobby Horse: Adventures of the Perpetual Newbie

  • #2
    Maybe they are reforming. Schneiders generally sucks. Worst customer service ever....only Dover is worse. I thought about filing a BBB report on Schneiders but after 6 months my merchandise FINALLY arived.

    And FYI ... SmartPak would have NEVER EVER made you pay shipping in this situation.


    • #3

      Thank you for posting the experience you had with Schneiders. We appreciate that shout-out! It is always nice to know our customers are happy. We are so sorry to hear about the loss of your horse, but happy to hear you have a new companion! Good luck and enjoy your new bridle!


      • #4
        Originally posted by Auventera Two View Post
        Maybe they are reforming. Schneiders generally sucks. Worst customer service ever....only Dover is worse. I thought about filing a BBB report on Schneiders but after 6 months my merchandise FINALLY arived.
        Are you sure Dover is worse? Dover got someone to pick up the faulty dressage saddle I ordered from them, free of charge, and refunded my money promptly.

        Schneiders made me ship my faulty turn out sheet, plus $30 per sheet back to them for repair, claimed they did not receive it until I provided shipping notice, and sent me back the sheet in worse condition than before.


        • #5
          I had nothing but a good experience with them too. Of course, my order did not have any issues, but I got their nice closed front fleece liner and a noseband and it came super quickly.

          I think Smartpak is still generally my number one, but Schnieders does have some stuff that Smartpak just doesn't. Plus, I can always find some kind of promo code for at least $10 that helps offset shipping costs.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Gloria View Post
            Are you sure Dover is worse? Dover got someone to pick up the faulty dressage saddle I ordered from them, free of charge, and refunded my money promptly.

            Schneiders made me ship my faulty turn out sheet, plus $30 per sheet back to them for repair, claimed they did not receive it until I provided shipping notice, and sent me back the sheet in worse condition than before.
            Search the Off Course board for Dover. Get a drink and sit back for awhile. Lots and lots of bad threads over the years.

            Doesn't surprise me at all about Schneiders. Yes they do have some neat items, and they have a lightweight blanket I am interested in because I LOVE closed fronts, and those are SO hard to get. But every time I order something from them, it's a struggle to decide - should I just deal with the fact that their customer service is awful, and there's a great chance all the hardware will break and this thing won't be waterproof........or should I just try it and HOPE that somehow this time will be different and I will get lucky??

            So far I have been disappointed with every item I have bought from them except for one. Didn't order the lightweight yet, and still on the fence if I should or not. It's exactly what I want but in the back of my mind, I just know it will turn out to be a crappy product and I won't be able to send it back without paying the $17 shipping fee to do it.

            I keep hoping Schneiders will get all new management who will actually care about customer service and quality. Because they DO have some neat styles for blankets that nobody else has. I love closed fronts, and I love the V-free wither concept. The same 2 features on one blanket - heavenly! If they could just bring a blanket to production that is actually waterproof and has hardware that will last more than 3 days, and a good return policy, I would buy a lot more from them.


            • #7
              I have never had any problems with schneiders but I have been dealing with them since the early 80's both phone and in person. I havent yet ordered on line.
              Friend of bar .ka


              • #8
                Originally posted by bumknees View Post
                I have never had any problems with schneiders but I have been dealing with them since the early 80's both phone and in person. I havent yet ordered on line.
                Yes, I, too have only had good experience with Schneiders, but I have never ordered on line.


                • #9
                  I just ordered online and received a Schneider's fleece adjusta fit dress sheet for my guy. Followed the measuring instructions, ordered according to the result, and it fits great! No problems. Got it within days. The purchase prior to that took place in 1996 for an Adjustafit mid-weight winter blanket. Again, all went well. The blanket just went out to a rescue last year, still in good condition. No breaks, no tears, no repairs. However, hubby's horse was very easy on his clothes. I would order from this company again.
                  "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits." Albert Einstein



                  • #10
                    When I used Schneiders for a winter blanket last year, they went above and beyond to make sure I received my order.

                    I ordered it, and had it shipped to our place in the SW. Unfortunately, (not Schneiders' fault...), it didn't arrive before we left to go home (and therefore noone would be at the house for 2 months).

                    Schneiders got ahold of the courier to give special instructions on leaving it in the locked backyard, then shipped me a second blanket to Canada, free of charge, so my horse would have his blanket when it got cold. (Thank goodness, because it was a terribly cold winter last year!)

                    They then sent someone to pick up the extra blanket 2 months after the original order when we were back in the SW.


                    • #11
                      I've never had an issue with Schneiders. And I've ordered online. A lot of stuff I've purchased I couldn't find elsewhere. I tried shopping at SmartPak once, but I found the selection pretty limiting online, and I'd rather shop at one place. Same for Stateline, just not what I need.
                      "Sadly, some people's greatest skill, is being an idiot". (facebook profile pic I saw).


                      • #12
                        Schneiders ships out items promptly. I have never had a problem related to ordering online. They do follow up with phone calls if required. That's not the issue. The issue is when you have a problem and need to send an item back. That's when all the excuses start about it not being their fault...you measured wrong...you must have washed the blanket wrong and now it's not waterproof...you'll have to pay your own money to ship it to us because that's our policy......

                        When I ordered a 76" sheet from them and it was so tiny that it barely fit my 69"/70" horse, they told me I obviously didn't know how to measure a horse and I measured wrong. LMAO! Ohhhh kay. Sure they were happy to take it back. BUT, if I had tried it on the horse and there was a horsehair on it, I wasn't getting my money back. And I had to pay to ship it back to them myself.

                        I did pay my own $17 to ship a sheet back once and it really P'd me off. I have two blankets from them that are defective but of course I have to pay to ship them back. They are heavyweights! They would cost probably $25 each to ship back. So they hang on my blanket rack and take up space.

                        There are other instances of defective and poor quality products I bought from them, but I won't nag on about it. You get the point.

                        I have a feeling Schneiders sends their work out to several different factories and the quality measures between the factories doesn't jive up. People are either super happy and blankets last forever, or you get a blanket made with a cheap batch of fabric and hardware and you're not happy.


                        • #13
                          I used to buy blankets, other stuff from their store when I lived in Ohio. Never a problem. Recently ordered a bareback pad so I could amble around on my retired guy. Pad had a girth problem in that the buckle was badly designed and the girth came undone all the time. Also a problem w/ rivets popping out of pad's web billets. I emailed Schneiders; they responded w/in a day, said they would credit my account for cost of pad and not to bother returning it. Made me a happy camper...
                          We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Auventera Two View Post
                            Schneiders ships out items promptly. I have never had a problem related to ordering online. They do follow up with phone calls if required. That's not the issue. The issue is when you have a problem and need to send an item back. That's when all the excuses start about it not being their fault...you measured wrong...you must have washed the blanket wrong and now it's not waterproof...you'll have to pay your own money to ship it to us because that's our policy......

                            By the way, Auventera Two, I, like you, kept hoping "this time will be better"... and that is how I end up with three fly sheets, two hoods, two blankets, and three turnout sheets.... Hate to throw them out because they were used only once or twice. Now they just collect dust in a corner of my tack room.

                            I guess it was stupid of me to keep doing the same thing, and expecting a different result. I finally learn some lessons though. Now when I need horse clothing, I stick with Pessoa, TurtleNeck, International (yes, dover brand), or Rambo. And if I can't find any item anywhere else, I ain't getting it. Not worth my time and effort and headache.


                            • #15
                              Yeah, no kidding. Why do I keep going back?? Closed fronts and V-free withers are so tempting I just can NOT seem to learn my lesson. I just keep hoping that I'll luck out this time and the product will actually be worth it....and then it's not. I'll end up buying the techno-fleece blanket with the nylon liner, closed front and v-free. I know I will. I will because I'm insane and keep doing the same thing, hoping for a different result also. LOL


                              • #16
                                I order from Schneiders several times a year (I always order online). I have 3 dog coats and 9 horse blankets (from sheets, coolers to turnouts) and have NEVER had a problem with any of them. They fit my Morgans really well too. Guess I'm lucky...


                                • #17
                                  Never a problem!

                                  I have ordered from Schneiders and never have a problem!


                                  • #18
                                    As someone who works in the call center/customer service industry, I think that there are a few things that come into play here.

                                    What SmartPak seems to have accomplished that no other large horse-goods company has is a consistently well trained, horse-centric, flexible staff in a culture of true "customer service".

                                    While some other companies may indeed try to maintain the culture that would please us all, they are sometimes too big to maintain an employee and management base that "gets it" and uses their "powers" for good. Instead, we find them hit or miss because the person on the other end of the line may be one of three types: "horsey" and tries, "non horsey" but tries, or "just punching a timeclock" and doesn't really give two hoots.

                                    Not to wax economics and best business practices...but I think that SmartPak is the GE or SouthWest Airlines of the horse world. They have managed to get their culture to permeate the entire company.

                                    As such, they have customers (like me) who will wait and wait until they carry product A in lieu of ordering it from another company because I know that if I DO order and it doesn't work out, I'm not going to be left holding the bag.

                                    Further, their frequent (and well documented) examples of compassion drive the loyalty even further. When I had to rehome one of my horses due to economic failure on my part, I called to cancel the next shipment...unfortunately, it had already shipped. Yet, I was told, "We're sorry to hear about that. Please give the supps to the next owner or donate. We'll credit your account." I didn't ASK for this. I certainly didn't expect it or feel entitled to it. But they did it.

                                    Just like they had done when I had to euthanize my old guy.

                                    Their "compassion"--even if it is a company culture that is FORCED--is such that they do the RIGHT thing for the CUSTOMER in a bad time. And that garners serious loyalty. From me and others.

                                    Companies like Schneiders may be playing a bit of catch up here. I am POSITIVE that their company as a whole culture wise wants to do right by the customers. But sometimes, a handful of bad eggs at the other end of the telephone ruin it for them.

                                    We encounter that in my business. Perhaps the difference is that we have QA staff listening to calls 24/7/365 and we get rid of the bad eggs as quickly as possible.

                                    Just a thought.

                                    I have no personal experience w/ Schneiders. After all, I'm a dedicated SmartPak customer now.
                                    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

                                    Might be a reason, never an excuse...


                                    • #19
                                      Great post BuddyRoo. Your point is well taken.

                                      When I had trouble with a defective blanket and sheet, I wrote a negative review on their site. It wasn't nasty but it just pointed out the several flaws with these items. I got a call saying they would fix it and in return not post my negative review on their site, so as not to tarnish the 4.9/5.0 rating this particular blanket style has. Ok.

                                      I was told that they identified a manufacturing quality control error and that replacements would be sent to me free of charge. The note I jotted down said that they switched to a new facility and the workers got the patterns offset by 2". Keep the old ones, we are so sorry, this was our error. Excellent!! I was VERY happy.

                                      UNTIL - replacements did not show up.........and didn't show up........and didn't show up............months go by.

                                      I call CS and the chick I talked to was horrible. She had no notes about this in the system, no clue what I could possibly be talking about, I must be mistaken, nope sorry there's nothing I can do for you.

                                      I had to ask to talk to a manager. Manager gets on the phone and nope, no clue what I was talking about. Sorry but we can't help you. Went round and round with no resolution.

                                      Lucky for me I found the note with the CS's name and ext. number whom had initially called me to say they wouldn't post my review if they could fix this. I called her. SHE HAD NO CLUE what I was talking about. Had to look it up in her computer, get back to me, etc.... more run around.

                                      I ended up having to convince these people to send me replacement blankets because the old ones were defective. The neck holes were so tiny my horses could not lower their necks to the ground to eat. I had to send them emailed pictures to prove it. Which they said they never got. I had to email them twice.

                                      Yes, Schneiders DID send me a new sheet and a new blanket free of charge. No, I did not have to send the old ones back, but mostly that was because I said I was NOT about to spend my own money to send them back. Ridiculous.They did give me follow up calls to be sure I was happy with the replacements. However, I'm not happy. Necks holes are still too small. Leg strap d-rings are still misplaced. The brand new sheet soaked all the way through on the first rain it encountered. The heavyweight blanket has some weird crease running the length of it, which causes it to bunch and pull on the horse. I have tried to fix this and can't.

                                      Bought a Duratech fly sheet and neck cover from them with a bellyband. It "kind of" fit except the bellyband was WAY too short. And this horse is NOT fat. She's my fit endurance/trail horse that works all the time. She does not have a big fat belly. I had to rig it up to make it work. There was too much material sagging down in the butt also. She wore it a few days, and I took it off to wash it. The shoulder lining shredded into strings in the washer and one of the clasps on the leg strap snapped in half. Now it's unusable and unsellable.

                                      I do like the polytech dog warmer I bought from them although the sizes are nuts. They sell a 22" and a 27" but nothing in between so it's either too small, or too big but never just right. I had to resew the velcro to make it work but I do love the material and the fact her belly is covered. That is very difficult to find in a dog blanket!

                                      Schneiders has some awesome innovative product ideas. They have blanket styles that nobody else has. If they could get a handle on achieving consistent quality and CS, I would be a dedicated customer.


                                      • #20
                                        I ordered several blankets/sheets from Schneiders by ph, and never had a problem. I got orders promptly, and the people I talked to were very helpful. LOVE my sheets/blankets and liner!