I have used Chemist Direct perhaps 5 or 6 times, always saving up an order to save on postage. I use them for household medicines, fish foods/water treatments, and for the occasional really low offers on pretty much anything.
Overall while the savings are sometimes exaggerated by comparisons to an irrelevant benchmark, you WILLl get low prices, on hard to find goods, and available in large quantities.
For delivery they have never missed an order, or in fact substituted anything so their stocks and systems mst be good. One irritation is that they prefer to wait for stocks to come before despatch so on occasions I have had to wait a number of weks for delivery. I do buy some odd stuff though, so with CD I basically order 2 weeks before I run out for this reason.
I was also glad to see they are doing some customer loyalty and seasonal offers, so the company is probaby improving slightly for me rather than falling apart, which others are doing ihn the recession.
This is a solid company, a good choice if you accept the few quirks above.
I originally discovered the flaws in the Trustpilot model on Autonet, and am unhappy to see this happening still. Basically the flaws are that they are PAID under certain copnditions by the companies they purport to review 'independently'.
The major weakness in this is that they then allow those companies to challenge any review they dont like, retrospectively as soon as they become a customer of Trustpilot, thereby inproving their rating from under 2 stars to 3-4 stars overnight.
The worst companies then 'play the system' by making anyone who has posted a (negative) review confirm that they are still a customer with that very same (crappy) company.
Unfortunately they then go further to incentivise positive customer reviews, a fact you can deduce by looking at the dates and tone of the reviews (often all on the same day, and written in the same style/'voice'.
The business model is currently broken and you should not trust this site under any circumstances.
(this is the additional comment and re-response to the standard Truspilot comments below - it explains how bias creeps in and how the distinction between a testimonial and a review is completely misunderstood by Trustpilot....)
The response of Trustpilot below does not address the aspect of partiality or misrepresentation in firstly downplaying the fact that they take money from companies and are therefore more likely to bias in favour of them.
The next issue is that many reviews for the worst companies tend to be written on the same day in similar style. Again looking at Autonet you used to be able to see a random pattern of 4 negative reviews versus 1 favourable review coming in naturally at about one a month. If you look at them now their new favourable reviews are clusterd into just one day or consecutive days. This is statistically a million to one probability of being random reviews rather than promted testimonials but Trustpilot fails to discover this because their validation process is feeble and favours the company who can validate any customer they wish to.
The next issue is ethics. It is bad enough that the company still used the word Independent rather than sponsored, but it seems even worse to take on clients with ratings below 2 and then allow them to immediately and retrospectively improve their ratings within days. The ethical approach would be to prevent new clients of Trustpilot from removing any reviews over a week old (they have always been informed in the past), and also to make it clear that promting for testimonials is unethical and will lead to a termination of their relationship.
The validation process is particularly weak for two reasons. Firstly it allows the client to institute a compulsory check on any reviewer that it takes a dislike to, and when you consider people with a horrid experience will have left such a company in disgust it is very unlikely and quite intimidating to have your review challenged and to have to reapproch the company again.
The second reason is that even if the ratings are left (which they arent) then almost all ratings will tend over time to a top rating of 5 if there are challenged positive reviews. Since the terrible companies are also the most cynical ones gaming the system then its a fairly good bet those will be precisely the ones engineering a bunch of apparently positive reviews.
The Trustpilot response below also makes further implication that because the old bad reviews are invisibly there in the numbers, then everything is fair. In fact most people read the first 5 or 10 reviews and since all the bad reviews have been challenged and are invisible, the average reader assumes those ratings are old.
Taken as a whole, Trustpilot must now be aware that they are allowing gaming of their review system, and should also be aware that their indiscriminate acceptance of poorly rated companies.
I also have to say that the deletion of reviews on Trustpilot itself is alarming since every time I look on it a good proportion of negative reviews are being suspended as being against terms and conditions. If you are a review site these should stay. If you are a testimonial site then they would be removed. Applying the same procedures of bias to your own ratings would be scandalous and cynical in the extreme.
Suffice it to say anyone with a knowledge of statistics knows this site is a mess. Yeah its great that the site works and it can post a review, but if you look at the substantive comments (many of which are deleted) then Trustpilot is bottom of the heap.
This company messed me around more than anyone could think possible on a simple renewal. (details below) They are also in the process of engineering more favourable opinion by having negative reviews challenged and deleted on this site. Around 6 reviews rated one star have been targetted. At the same time a new system has been introduced which favours good reviews and makes disgusted reviews difficult.
In each case the new complaints and review process, as of 3 days ago, for this company requires you to obtain a reference before you are able to post a review, which is unlikely after the company has already messed you around for a one star review.
You should therefore look at many opinions on other sites and examine very carefully whether the reviews sound genuine or not. Thats a general rule of course. The attempt to bias the neutrality of these sites is a sad statements of the times we live in.
Highlights of their origional misservice include: asking for an old proposal form to be signed after the contract was already modified and agreed and fully paid for, and not sending out a new corrected one, not having any address or envelope to put it in, cancelling the policy automatically on non-receipt of the form which had been sent by me 10 days previously, finally finding the aformentioned out-of-date and incorrect proposal form a day after i complained for the third time, having my e-mails bounced back by the server, and FINALLY TO ADD INSULT TO INJURY, OBLIGING YOU TO PAY A PREMIUM RATE PHONE CALL TO EVEN SPEAK TO THEM TO EXPLAIN WHAT MUPPETS THEY ARE.
New highlights include a the very obstructive new process to even allow you to make a review, and the recent influx of pre-validated perfect reviews for this company over a 3 day period, compared to 18 months of terrible reviews on this and all other websites.
Unless theyre £ 100 cheaper for you its not worth the hassle - thats my personal opinion, and if you are unhappy please be sure to get your reviews reinstated !!!
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