So I just learned about Jomashop and their "in stock" practices. I ordered a watch from them on Saturday that I've been mulling over for a while. Just got an email stating that the watch I ordered wasn't in their warehouse which is something I'm frankly not terribly accustomed to seeing. I figured I'd start googling and just spent a good 2 hours sifting through forum posts about Jomashop.
Something I've seen in a lot of the threads I read are comments to the effect of; "It's "GM", what do you expect?" or "you should know when you order from a GM dealer it's not going to be the same as an AD" etc. What strikes me about that is that the general public has no idea what kind of shop Jomashop is and half probably don't know what a grey market dealer is. In my case, I actually had no idea they were GM (I buy mostly vintage stuff on ebay and don't spend a lot of time here). I googled the watch I've been thinking about buying and the #1 result in google shopping was for Jomashop. In my mind, at the moment, I processed that I've heard the Jomashop name before and I've seen their site a ton, so they must be reputable. I think I've even read threads before about people buying from them and I've googled them before from a perspective of "are they a scam" etc.
I buy tons of things online. I've bought countless things from Asia through questionable websites that I fully expected to be a scam only to receive the item in astoundingly fast turnaround times. I've bought from small websites that are clearly run out of someone's basement and never really had any issues in the thousands of transactions I've had. In all those orders, I've probably only ever run into the "item not in stock" thing maybe 3 or 4 times. All of them were from reputable stores that legitimately made a mistake in inventory and actually went out of their way to fix it. I recall one time they simply refunded the money and said they would contact me when it was back in stock. In all cases, they profusely apologize for the mistake. This email from Jomashop about the item not being in stock isn't worded like I would expect. There is zero apology for the mistake (because it isn't a mistake, it's deliberate) nor personal response. Just a "It is our responsibility to keep you up-to-date about your order with us. item not physically in our warehouse.". All matter of fact like.
That's my problem with Jomashop. They're presented as a professional, reputable site with front page google results, an amazon and ebay store etc. In my mind, I classified them as a large, reputable online dealer. It wasn't until I hit "place order" and then received an email a few days later about the item not being in stock that I started searching for that specific thing and realized what they really are.
This is all pretty deceitful as far as I'm concerned. In essence, they probably don't have half or even a third of the items they're listing for sale. Their "ships in 1-2 business days" "estimate" means absolutely nothing. In my opinion, they would be better off stating; "we don't have the item, but we'll find it for you at the price we have stated or you get your money back". If they had that statement on the item I'd buy it without hesitation. When you put a statement of "ships in 1-2 business days" and then let the cat out of the bag that you don't in fact have the item and you have no idea how long it will take you to find it I take offense. Label yourself as a broker or "watch finder". That's what you really are.
I think most people assume when a website says "ships in X days" that they're saying that's their processing time. Not the amount of time it takes them to locate the product in the world, ship it to themselves and then re-ship to you.
I could possibly overlook the "in stock" issue, but the more posts I read, the more uneasy I became. From crazy hoops to jump through for RMA's to destroyed watches from their "warranty/service" to a number of other things. I decided to bail on the deal and cancelled. It's not that I don't really want to deal with the wait, the warranty or any other issues. It's the deceit. I just have a sneaking suspicion that their new estimated ship time of 6-9 days is going to turn into 3-4 weeks and then who knows. So the lies just keep piling up. On the other hand, they could find one tomorrow and ship it Thursday and I'd receive it faster than initially estimated. I don't care, I don't like the lies. That's not the kind of business I want to do business with.
Every once in a while I'm reminded that I need to do more research on a company before I place an order with them. Hopefully this thread comes up in some future search by someone looking for information on what Jomashop really is.
I have nothing against GM dealers necessarily. It's when they masquerade as a reputable company that I lose all respect for them. I'm sure someone will argue that their prices should be the tell that there is something fishy going on. Honestly, in my case, the watch wasn't that far off in price than other known reputable dealers/online shops (amazon, ebay etc.) so it didn't raise any red flags. They were also having a "flash sale" or something, so I assumed the price was lower than usual due to the sale.
Seriously though, this might cause some debate (if anyone cares at this point), but I'm really trying to make a statement for the future google sleuths.
TL;DR, Jomashop is a grey market ("GM") shop who doesn't actually have half the items they list in stock, you don't get a real warranty (or you shouldn't use it even if they do), and good luck getting a timely response or truthful information from them. Don't take my word for it, google some more and read the numerous other threads about them.