Monday, October 15, 2012

Shit Shop

Do you know what’s shit?

I’ll give you a clue: It’s Argos.

That clue probably made it a bit easy didn’t it? But I didn’t want you spending too long thinking about it and coming up with wrong answers, so I was doing you a favour really. You’re welcome.

My little boy is starting to look ever more likely to haul himself up onto hands and knees and commence a life of sprightly mobility. So far he can do a very impressive push up. He can tuck his knees up under his bum. He can balance on his belly and move all four limbs at the same time with a fantastic level of determination. He can not do a combination of more than one of those things at the same time. Phew.

So, for now, the vast quantities of assorted ephemera scattered about our living room are not a danger. But they will be. Soon. So the more organised half of Cam’s parenting team (Mrs L, obviously) made the decision that we needed some new furniture. Furniture in which we could hide the aforementioned assorted ephemera.

We looked at IKEA, but we didn’t want anything from there. Nor did we wish to go there. We looked at Oak Furniture Land, but our wallets whimpered in our pockets. So, being children of the 80s and having fond memories of evenings spent poring over their capitalist bible, we turned to Argos.

I will spare you a detailed description of the Argos shopping “experience”. It has been covered by people far more entertaining than I. Plus, unless you are extremely lucky, you’ve been there. You’ve ham-fistedly scrawled your seven digit reference number on a tiny piece of paper with a tiny little pencil. You’ve waited to have your number called in the queue at the world’s least inspiring deli counter.

But, have you tried shopping at Argos ONLINE?

I have just tried to visit the Argos website. This is what I found. Have they heard about my blog somehow?

I like online shopping. Browse, click, click, spend money you don’t have, feel reassured by the fact that it probably isn’t real money because you haven’t seen it/physically handed it over, wait for goods to arrive in post (without paying for delivery), rejoice at never having left the house!


Online retailers are in fierce competition with one another. The buying public are ever more price conscious and expectant of good service. This tends to ensure a speedy, efficient service, dripping with customer care and good will gestures if something goes wrong.

Not so for Argos.

Ever the innovators, Argos were the first store I can recall who would sell you something online and then ask you to come and collect it. I think they called this “Click and Collect”. I called it “a load of total cock”. Why, if I’m ordering online, would I not want you to deliver it? I have never thought of a reason, perhaps someone will enlighten me?

No worries, there IS a delivery option. With a minimum charge of just £3.95 it is comfortably undercut by every* other online retailer IN THE WORLD. Magic.

The best thing about the delivery option, is when they want you to pay £25 for it (when, actually, you could go and collect it for much less) and have to stay in for a six hour delivery window.

All of that I could deal with though. I’m a patient sort, and I’m sure Argos (somehow) has my best interests at heart.

The thing that has made me think Argos is shit though, is this: despite ordering our furniture over three weeks ago, we still don’t have it. The delivery date has been rescheduled twice now, due to “supply issues”. Funny that, there was no indication at the point of ordering the furniture that it wasn’t in stock. Most online retailers would mention it. Another example of Argos’ innovation. Perhaps just as innovatively, they’ve seen fit to take the money from my account.

I could be buying sweets and chocolate with that money. Instead, Argos has it. The bastards.

If you hear a cry of desperate disdain on or around the 24th of October (between 12 and 6pm) That will be me. Not receiving my furniture and watching as my son pulls all manner of heavy stuff onto himself.

Tell me, friends, have you experienced the shitness of Argos? Or do you think they are awesome, and some other online retailer raises your ire? Let me know. I’m making a list. 

*possibly an exaggeration


  1. We waited in 3 days for an argos garden table to arrive. On day one we called them and they said "it is in the van its just running late" by 6.30pm we discovered it had been sitting in the warehouse all day. Day 2, the drivers didn't put it on the van because they weren't allowed to lift it because it didn't have the weight written on it. The warehouse manager wrote the weight on it (after I told him it off the website) so that it could be delivered the next day. Day 3 we waited, and waited....and we were told it was out of stock!!! So the table that they warehouse people had physically gone down to look at twice to find out why it hadn't left the warehouse had been delivered to someone else!

  2. Did you know Homebase and Argos are the same company and stock much of the same furniture? We were going to get ours from Argos until I checked online to look for other stockists and found this out. Not only was Homebase actually cheaper for what we wanted (shocker), I think I managed to get free delivery as well. No problems with delivery either. The biggest shock of all though? It was delivered in an Argos delivery truck!

  3. Well this is very good to note to not shop online with Argos. I usually sneak in and out again from the actual shop if there is something I want to get from there. All online shopping in this house tends to be done with Amazon.

  4. we had to wait around four months for a settee we'd ordered way back in 2003 - although I've been impressed with Argos recently - went into the local one to pick up a reserved item and was out in three minutes - I've never had anything like that there ever - I'd have to wait whole lunch hours to get something ridiculously small in the past.

    Dreams are my bugbear at the moment... never again. Don't go there - they'll sell you it even if it isn't in stock, but will only let you know if they're delivering on the actual day. Rubbish!

  5. I dont think I have ever ad anything delivered,however i went to by one single pillow and had to wait almost 30 mins for it to come down the slide thing and be handed to me. Me and my sister sat there humming why are we waiting, people starred however I was enjoying myself lol.
    Our number had been and gone off the screen, 30 mins later I was handed a pillow by a less than savoury person!

  6. My friend has been sleeping on a matress for about 3 months as she sold her bed to make room for the larger king size one she had ordered from Argos. They rescheduled twice, then told her it was out of stock.

  7. I think I grew up with the general rule of thumb about argos that whatever you ordered it would have 1 less of whatever it should have when you picked it up - be that table legs, screws, game parts, plugs... Now, everytime I get something (and their 2 toys for £15 deal is great for birthday party gifts when you look like you've spent loads but haven't) I am pleasantly surprised if it works and heave another sigh if it doesn't.

  8. It's staggering in this day and age isn't it that they can't be more efficient. Especially given that the whole point of the shop is that it's basically a warehouse.
    Although I did have one website delaying the delivery of a cot for 3 months and then once they had delivered it pestering me with phone calls to deliver another one *head, desk*

  9. I hope you don't mind - but I love your blog so much I've nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award :)