I didn't want to write this. But I am going to. I don't like to be critical, but sometimes one has to be in order to attempt to get word out to a local business in an attempt to help them improve. It is up to the business whether or not they want to compete in this economy.
Now, I PREFER doing business with a LFS. I like to support local businesses. When I can't find what I am after however, I won't hesitate to go online. Local businesses however need to leverage one key advantage. Customer service. As soon as a business gives up customer service, they aren't going to get very far, especially when there are other LFS' in the area that are willing to work with their customers.
Now the story:
I bought my Apex & EB8 from Aqua Addicts over a year ago. They had the item in stock. I could have ordered it online, but instead I drove 2 hours round trip to pick this thing up. Why? To support a local business.
Not long after I was looking for an Apex breakout box. I called Aqua Addicts and inquired about it. I was told it wasn't stocked (perfectly fine), and that they would look into getting one and it would probably take a week or two to order. The guy in the store didn't seem to know what it was, so I explained (I was surprised he didn't know about this accessory, as he carried Apex products and even used it in his store). I never got a call back. I checked in a few more times over the next few weeks. Apparently I was forgotten about. So I let it slide. No sale.
About a month ago, a year+ after the last 'event', I needed a new/second EB8 for my new tanks. I inquired with Aqua Addicts IN PERSON at the store, giving myself a good 3 or so weeks head start, hoping to get the thing by the time the tank was ready. Supposedly it was ordered. Again, I ordered this in person and wrote down my name and #. In Person. Did I say in person? A week goes by. I call. Nothing. Another week. Nothing. He had my phone number and I 'ordered' this item. I was told I'd get a call. Never got one. I then took a week off. I was home for an entire week over my son's school vacation. I was ready to swing up and pick up the EB8 on any day. Nothing. Crickets.
I gave up. My tank that needs the EB8 should be coming online TONIGHT as I start to fill it with water. I tried to be patient. I even waited until the last minute.
I am now going to order the EB8 online. I may swing by Aqua Addicts again if I just happen to be nearby, but if a business doesn't want to do business, then I won't do business.