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Zappos Customer Service Is Indeed Impressive

zappos_logoAs a company, Zappos is known for their exceptional customer service (indeed, “Powered by Service” is one of their taglines – see logo at left). I’ve long been a Zappos affiliate, meaning I get a commission from sales made via clicks from this site, but I’ve only ever ordered from them a few times. And until today I’ve never had to make use of their customer service.

Yesterday I ordered two pairs of Inov-8 insoles from Zappos. I often get asked about thin, flat insoles, and I wanted to check these out for a post I was planning on writing. Mainly I wanted to see if they are the same as the insoles that come in shoes like the F-Lite 195. Anyway, I ordered pairs of the 3mm and 6mm Inov-8 insoles ($10 each) and I was surprised when a Zappos box arrived on my doorstep today, only about 24 hours after placing the order.

When I picked up the package it felt heavier than a package containing just two pairs of thin foam insoles should. I opened it up to find 11 pairs of insoles inside. One pair of the 6mm insoles, and 10 pairs of the 3mm insoles. I started to worry that maybe I had made a mistake and added a 0 to the quantity in the shopping cart. Last thing I needed to do was spend $100 on a bunch of insoles I don’t need. I checked the packing slip and indeed it said only one pair should have been sent.

Inov-8 3mm Insoles

Being an honest guy, I tweeted @Zappos about the mistake, expecting I might hear back in a day or two. They responded in what I’d estimate was about ten minutes. They asked me to direct message my order number to them via Twitter so that they could look into what happened. I did, and got another tweet shortly thereafter telling me that I needed to follow them in order for them to message me back. I did that, and a few minutes later the phone rang. It was the guy I had been talking to on Twitter, and he said for some reason he still wasn’t able to message me, so he figured he’d just call.

He said that indeed someone (or some electronic device) had made a mistake on their end. I asked if I could send the extra insoles back. He asked me if I needed them. I said no. He asked me if I might have friends that need them. I said I write a blog and was going to write about them so I could probably give some away either via my website or at my clinic. He said that would be great, keep them and find them a home.

So now I’m the proud owner of 10 pairs of flat, 3mm thick Inov-8 insoles. And Zappos has proven to me that their customer service lives up to its reputation. I’m impressed.

About Peter Larson

This post was authored by Peter Larson. Pete is a recovering academic who currently works as an exercise physiologist, running coach, and writer. He's also a father of three and a fanatical runner with a bit of a shoe obsession. In addition to writing and editing this site, he is co-author of the book Tread Lightly, and writes a personal blog called The Blogologist. Follow Pete on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and via email.


  1. So.. When’s the giveaway? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Just out of curiosity…how wide do those fit?

  3. Great story, and another example of outstanding customer service online. I recently had a great experience with Running Warehouse, and also a very good one with Amazon. Great to know we can order with confidence from these companies!

  4. Sweet! So good to know. I was just kicking myself for not harvesting the insoles from my F-Lite 230s.

  5. So I guess this means that we’ll be getting your opinion on those as replacement insoles soon? Excellent! I have been looking for some good replacement insoles.

    And the few times that I have ordered from Zappo’s, they have been very quick.

  6. I have a similar story. I ordered a pair of CEP calf compression sleeves from Zappos a couple of years ago. I got a box the next day with two pairs. Since they’re not cheap and because I was pretty sure I’d find a use for the second pair, I felt compelled to email customer service. I offered to pay for them, but they just told me to keep and enjoy the spare pair, no charge. Pretty great!

  7. So where do I sign up for the insole giveaway? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  8. I love when companies act this way. We should support companies that support us and stand behind their products and services.

    I’m also really curious to hear what you think of the insoles.

  9. Love Zappos’ once ordered at about 7:45 pm eastern and had my shoes before noon the next day, free shipping as well, cannot be beat. Amazon dreams of it zappos does it.

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