Customers say the darnedest things. Especially when they're really angry or enamored with a company.
In 2015, The Best Companys.com surpassed 17,000 real customer reviews. Those reviews were aimed at companies in a wide swath of industries, from airlines to affiliate marketing. While many of those reviews were glowing, with customers feeling the love from good customer service and quality experiences, many others were not. And, in the course of getting these feelings off their chests, many customers revealed their funny, weird, or just honest sides.
As we wind down another great year here at The Best Companys.com, we commemorate the 20 funniest, strangest, most epic, and most insightful customer reviews of 2015.
Comcast Xfinity can't seem to catch a break when it comes to customer reviews. As if they actually tried. The majority of reviews for the company are negative, scoring below 5 on our 1-to-10 scale, but one review this year in particular caught our eye for its dramatic approach:
Most people know that payday loans are not the most trustworthy industry to get involved in. Rita Ball's review of Blue Trust Loan, a payday lender, captured the shock and broken heart of a first-time payday borrower:
Check our page on US Airways and you'll see that, more often than not, they were lambasted by angry former passengers for apathetic customers service, dilapidated aircraft, and lost luggage. One review was especially epic in its assault on US Airways' pathetic attempts at deflection.
When former passenger Elizabeth Koplon and her family were left, thanks to the airline, without their luggage while on vacation, customer service responded by recommending that they "go out and buy one outfit per day and only purchase the necessary essentials," which then spawned this rant:
Sometimes a review comes along that perfectly encapsulates everything that's wrong with a product or service, while simultaneously leaving us hungry to know more about the story behind the review. Take this Tinder review from Canio Costanzo, for instance:
Oh, call center personnel. Bless their hearts. Having been one, I know firsthand that they have one of the most difficult, dehumanizing, and-let's just call it what it is-boring jobs in the first world. It's a job where human beings become mere extensions of computer software, reading screen after screen of canned dialogue to angry people. Michelle Williams' review of Cigna Healthcare highlights the valiant efforts of one such call center worker:
Speaking of reviews that leave you wanting to know more about what led up to the review, this review from Sunshine about online dating service DateHookup.com is classic:
On our page for Carnival Cruise Line reviews, most were positive, even gushing, about precious memories created on the high seas and outstanding service. But not for one reviewer.
In her recounting of her cruise into mediocrity, reviewer Gillybean chronicled rowdy pool users, unresponsive room service, broken light switches, dirty windows, and unhappy bartenders. But, after all these disappointments, one thing became the icing on the cake, as it were:
Most of our Crossfit reviewers write novels of praise for the extreme workout regimen, but one reviewer sums up all of his or her satisfaction in one sentence:
So GiftTree.com offers overnight shipping at a higher cost to make sure perishable gifts (think fruits, candy, etc.) arrive on a specific date, like a birthday or anniversary. If their customer reviews are to be believed, however, GiftTree.com has a habit of not actually getting things to their destination "overnight." This leaves a lot of angry customers, like this reviewer who chose to be identified only as "S."
On freelance sites like Upwork and Odesk, dealing with language barriers is a regular occurrence, especially when hiring somewhere to translate your documents into another language. For this reason, you never want to take it for granted that the translator has done their job accurately, as Caroline T. discovered on Upwork:
Finding yourself in rental properties that look nothing like what you reserved online? That's just another day in the life of an Airbnb customer. But finding yourself stuck in the residence of a possible voyeur? That gets you into horror movie/paranoid thriller territory, which is where Airbnb regular and reviewer Donna Mee found herself during a trip to London:
While our reviewers can use some flowery or colorful language to make their voices heard, few actually create new words in the process. Maka Shu Chi's brief yet profound review of MLM OriFlame is one of those rare instances:
More than a few reviews make you wonder if there isn't more to the story being shared. Tales of inexplicable freakouts by customer service reps. Reports of epically bad products. Either these companies are affiliated with the evil Empire or there is more to these reviews than meets the eye, as is the case with this seemingly tragic review from former H&R Block employee Angela:
Your average customer review on The Best Companys.com is about one paragraph. And then there are those that go above and beyond to detail the customer's interaction with the company. Sometimes this seems to be done just to blow off some steam, but others aim to document every minute of the interaction to help the customer get some kind of compensation for a bad experience. Skandi's review of vacation rental service HouseTrip falls into the latter category, going into painstaking detail to cover the customer's ordeal play by play. Here are just some of the highlights:
In case you're wondering, yes, there's more.
Some reviews become memorable not because of their length but because of their lack thereof, their unusual use of language to evoke... confusion. This indecipherable review of music streaming service Deezer by Levi earned this distinguished place on this year's list:
Although many customers have left solid reviews with us this year, few have shown the tenacity of reviewer Victor Wroblak. In his crusade to educate the web-surfing public about his experience with Trinity Solar, or to catch the company's attention (or maybe just to keep his sanity while waiting), Victor didn't stop with just one review, but came back months later for two updates:
Thanks, Victor, for keeping us posted! We look forward to the next chapter and hope it involves you finally getting that solar system you were promised.
Not all of the reviews we get are from traditional customers. Many are from former employees or clients of these companies who have worked closely with them. But even among this small group of reviews, we've never seen a review quite like that of Dave Brown, former employee of a client of SEO agency Boostability, who not only pulled back the curtain on the company's shady practices, but implicated himself in the wrongdoing with unflinching honesty:
Some reviewers elevate their entries to an art form, as was the case with Shopping Cart Elite customer Craig L., who concocted this zinger for the ecommerce platform:
Yes, we all know that sometimes words can only get in the way of conveying our true feelings, and customer reviews are no exception. Rosa Rodriguez's somewhat obscured review of Lending Tree yanked at our heartstrings not for the review that it was, but the review it could've been:
Finally, our top review of the year comes courtesy of reviewer Faye in her entry regarding DateHookup.com. Many of our reviewers use caps to convey their frustration or delight with companies. But for an entire paragraph, Faye refused to turn off the all caps to get her point across. In the process, she captured our hearts and the number-one spot: