Is WebstaurantStore Legit? Buyers BEWARE !! [Urgent Update]

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  • Post published:February 11, 2024
  • Post category:Reviews

WebstaurantStore is one of the largest online restaurant supply stores, offering over 300,000 wholesale foodservice products. With promises of low prices and fast shipping, WebstaurantStore seems like an ideal supplier for restaurants and other food businesses.

But is WebstaurantStore legit? This in-depth review will examine WebstaurantStore’s reputation, products, shipping policies, and more to help you decide if it’s the right supplier for your business.

Overview of WebstaurantStore

WebstaurantStore is an ecommerce company based in Lititz, Pennsylvania that sells commercial kitchen equipment, restaurant supplies, janitorial supplies, and foodservice products.

Founded in 2004 as a division of parent company Clark Associates, WebstaurantStore has quickly grown to become one of the top foodservice supply companies in the US. They have eight warehouse locations across the country to enable fast order fulfillment.

Some key facts about WebstaurantStore:

  • Sells over 300,000 wholesale foodservice products
  • Ships over 1 million packages per year
  • Has served over 1 million satisfied customers
  • Family-owned company founded in 2004
  • Headquartered in Lititz, PA with warehouses nationwide
  • Employs over 2500 people

WebstaurantStore’s wide selection, low pricing, and fast shipping have made them popular with all types of food businesses, from mom and pop restaurants to nationwide chains. Their website and customer service also make them accessible to smaller businesses.

But what do customers really think? Are they legit? Let’s look at some WebstaurantStore reviews.

WebstaurantStore Reviews

Is WebstaurantStore legit? Reviews from credible sites can give us insight into real customer experiences with WebstaurantStore. Here are reviews from several popular consumer sites:

Trustpilot

  • 2.7 out of 5 stars based on 1700+ reviews
  • 51% of reviewers give 1 star
  • 26% give 5 stars
  • Common complaints involve damaged items, incorrect orders, and poor customer service

SiteJabber

  • 2.5 out of 5 stars based on 800+ reviews
  • 55% negative, 28% positive
  • Pros: wide selection, website, delivery speed
  • Cons: customer service, refusal to take responsibility, failure to remedy issues

BBB

  • A+ rating with accreditation
  • 3.56 out of 5 stars based on 250+ reviews
  • 68 complaints closed in last 3 years
  • Common complaints about delivery issues resolved by the company

Google

  • 3.6 out of 5 stars based on 340+ reviews
  • 49% give 5 stars, 20% give 1 star
  • Positive reviews mention good prices, selection, and shipping
  • Negative reviews cite incorrect/damaged orders and bad customer service

The majority of negative reviews seem to cite receiving incorrect or damaged items and poor experiences with customer service attempting to resolve issues.

However, positive reviews mention the value WebstaurantStore provides with their wholesale prices and wide product selection. Their fast shipping is also touted as a plus.

While they may not have perfect reviews, the resolution rate provided by the BBB along with the large number of positive reviews indicates WebstaurantStore is making efforts towards improving the customer experience. Their A+ rating shows most issues brought to their attention are eventually resolved.

So, is WebstaurantStore legit? To get a balanced perspective, let’s take a closer look at what WebstaurantStore offers.

WebstaurantStore’s Product Selection

Is WebstaurantStore legit? With over 300,000 products, WebstaurantStore has one of the largest selections of any online restaurant supply company. They carry major national brands along with their own exclusive wholesale brands.

Brands Offered

Some of the most popular brands available at WebstaurantStore include:

  • Commercial refrigerators: True, Beverage-Air, Delfield
  • Cooking equipment: Vulcan, Garland, Imperial, Pitco
  • Smallwares: Cambro, Rubbermaid, Metro, Vollrath
  • Dinnerware: Corelle, Duralex, Melamine
  • Janitorial: Rubbermaid, Carlisle, Vikan
  • Disposables: Dixie, Dart Container, Genpak
  • Food and ingredients: Heinz, French’s, Nabisco

In addition to major national brands, WebstaurantStore has over 35 house brands that offer commercial grade products at discounted prices compared to name brands. Some of their private label brands include:

  • Kitchen equipment: Avantco, Solwave, Regency
  • Furniture: Lancaster, Steelton
  • Dinnerware: Acopa, Choice
  • Glassware: Banko
  • Smallwares: Vigor, Choice

This combination of brand name and private label products gives customers options at various price points. WebstaurantStore’s house brands allow budget-conscious businesses to save money without sacrificing quality.

Product Categories

WebstaurantStore organizes their huge selection of foodservice products into several major categories:

  • Cooking Equipment: Ranges, ovens, charbroilers, griddles, steam equipment, pasta cookers, kettles, and more
  • Refrigeration: Walk-in coolers, reach-in refrigerators, ice machines, prep tables, merchandisers, beverage dispensers
  • Storage and Transport: Wire shelving, dunnage racks, bus boxes, insulated bags, food pans, bakery boxes
  • Tabletop: Dinnerware, glassware, flatware, buffet ware, table linens, displays, service ware
  • Disposables: Cups, lids, cutlery, bags, containers, aprons, gloves
  • Janitorial Supplies: Chemicals, cleaners, floor care, towels, soap, trash bags
  • Furniture: Tables, chairs, stools, booths, bars, decor
  • Food and Beverage: Produce, dairy, condiments, dry goods, beverages, alcohol
  • More: Smallwares, business supplies, healthcare, hotel supplies, and much more
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This extensive range of products allows most foodservice businesses to source all their back-of-the-house and front-of-the-house supplies from WebstaurantStore.

You can shop by specific categories or use the search bar to find exactly what you need. An alphabetical product index is also available to browse every item.

No matter what type of food business you run, you’ll likely find the equipment, dishware, ingredients, and other supplies to stock your commercial kitchen.

Pricing and Payment Options

Is WebstaurantStore legit? One of the biggest benefits of WebstaurantStore is the availability of wholesale pricing, even without a business account. How do their prices really compare?

Pricing

WebstaurantStore says their wholesale prices are 10-15% lower than big box stores. Based on spot checks of popular items, this seems accurate.

For example, a 100 pack of black disposable aprons is $16.99 at WebstaurantStore vs $19.99 at Restaurant Depot. A Metro shelving unit is $159 vs $199 at Lowe’s. Cambro food storage containers and Rubbermaid commercial cleaning tools show similarly lower prices.

They are able to offer these discounts by purchasing directly from manufacturers and bypassing retail markups. Savings are passed onto customers.

Private label brands like Avantco refrigeration and Choice tabletops offer even more budget-friendly options – often 20-30% cheaper than name brands with similar specs.

Overall, WebstaurantStore provides affordable pricing on par with or below other restaurant supply companies, both online and brick-and-mortar.

Payment Options

WebstaurantStore accepts all major credit cards, including American Express, Discover, Mastercard, and Visa.

They also accept debit cards, PayPal, and WebstaurantStore gift cards.

For high volume purchasers, they offer corporate accounts with net 30 payment terms. A credit application is required. This facilitates easy reordering for large restaurants and chains.

The ability to order online and pay with a standard credit card allows small businesses to shop like wholesale customers and secure discounted pricing without the commitment of a corporate account.

Ordering and Shipping Process

Understanding the ordering and fulfillment process can make the shopping experience smooth. Here are the key steps:

Placing an Order

Orders can be placed 24/7 on the WebstaurantStore website.

  • Browse products and add items to your cart
  • Proceed to checkout and select shipping address
  • Choose shipping method (see shipping section below)
  • Enter payment method and place order

First time customers will be prompted to create a user account to save payment details and enable easier reordering.

Registered accounts also gain access to order history and rapid reorder lists.

Order Processing

  • Stock items: orders are processed within 1 business day and release to the warehouse for fulfillment.
  • Drop ship items: orders ship direct from the manufacturer, often within 2 to 6 weeks. Check manufacturer lead times on the product page before ordering.
  • You will receive an order confirmation email with details after submitting payment.
  • Another email with tracking info is sent once the order ships from the warehouse.

Delivery Times

WebstaurantStore offers standard ground shipping and expedited shipping options to most addresses in the continental US. Here are the average delivery times:

  • Ground: 1 to 7 business days depending on location
  • Second Day: Arrives within 2 business days
  • Next Day: Arrives by end of next business day

See the shipping map for estimates to your state.

For oversized items, WebstaurantStore partners with trucking companies to offer affordable common carrier shipping. This includes:

  • Lift gate service for curbside delivery
  • Inside delivery for an extra fee
  • Overnight frozen/refrigerated shipping
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Delivery times for common carrier vary by location from 1 to 10 business days.

The ability to get expedited delivery on small parcels and affordable freight shipping on large equipment makes WebstaurantStore a convenient one-stop shop.

Is WebstaurantStore legit? Returns, Exchanges, and Refunds

Understanding the return policy before ordering allows you to shop with confidence. Here are the key points:

  • 30 days to return most items from date of delivery
  • Items must be in original packaging and condition
  • 15% restocking fee applied
  • Return shipping costs paid by customer

Some exceptions with shorter windows:

  • 7 days for shoestrings/insoles
  • 14 days for certain electronics
  • 30 days for drop ship items from receipt

Items not eligible for return:

  • Made to order products
  • Bulk foods/ingredients/alcohol
  • Items requiring refrigeration
  • Gift cards

For damaged or defective items, customers must report within 3 days of receipt for replacement.

Overall the return policy is comparable to other restaurant supply companies, although some retailers like WebstaurantStore offer free return shipping. Be sure to check items thoroughly on arrival to ensure they are in good condition and what you ordered.

Customer Service

The level of customer service can make or break an online shopping experience. Here is an overview of WebstaurantStore’s customer service options:

  • Phone: Available Mon-Fri from 8AM to 7PM EST at 717-392-7472. Automated service also available 24/7.
  • Live Chat: Available 24/7 on the website. Wait times may vary.
  • Email: Can message customer service at [email protected]
  • Ticket system: Submit a support ticket for non-urgent issues. Responded to within 5 business days.
  • Returns: Start a return online or call the product return department.
  • Social media: Active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. May take 1-2 days for a response.

Response times vary by channel – chat and phone will yield fastest service during operating hours. Email and social media may take up to 48 hours for non-urgent issues.

Compared to other ecommerce companies, WebstaurantStore provides above average customer service access for a company of their size. Most channels are available 24/7.

That said, some customers have complained of slow response times and unhelpful service when trying to resolve issues like damaged/incorrect orders. This highlights the need to thoroughly inspect orders and report any issues immediately.

Is WebstaurantStore Legit and Right for Your Business?

Now that we’ve examined the facts, is WebstaurantStore a legit and reliable supplier option? Here are some key considerations:

Pros

  • Extensive product selection with 300,000+ items
  • Availability of major brands and discounted private labels
  • Low pricing with 10-15% savings vs retail
  • Fast shipping with affordable freight options
  • Accepts all major credit cards without account

Cons

  • Some complaints about damaged and incorrect orders
  • Mediocre customer service response times
  • Restocking fees and shipping costs for returns

Best For

  • Restaurants that want brand name supplies at wholesale prices
  • Large volume purchasers with a corporate account
  • Businesses that need specialty items not found locally
  • Customers in rural areas lacking restaurant supply stores

Not Ideal For

  • Small orders where shipping eliminates price savings
  • Businesses far from warehouse locations
  • Customers wanting white glove delivery and installation

The Verdict

For most foodservice businesses, WebstaurantStore is a legitimate and worthwhile supplier option. They provide an unmatched selection of top brands at discounted pricing shipped fast.

However, be sure to thoroughly check orders upon arrival and report any issues immediately to customer service. Carefully consider shipping costs for small orders.

Overall, the sheer product range, competitive pricing, and rapid delivery makes WebstaurantStore a prime one-stop shop – especially for bulk purchases. Most issues reported by unhappy customers are eventually resolved by their customer service team.

Just weigh the pros and cons against your business needs to decide if WebstaurantStore is the right foodservice supplier for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before you shop with WebstaurantStore, read through these commonly asked questions to get the information you need to make an informed purchase.

Company Questions

Q: How long has WebstaurantStore been in business?

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A: WebstaurantStore was founded in 2004, making it 18 years old as of 2022. Its parent company Clark Associates has been in business for over 60 years.

Q: Does WebstaurantStore have retail locations?

A: No, WebstaurantStore is only an online business. They have warehouse locations but no public retail stores.

Q: Does WebstaurantStore offer discounted pricing?

A: Yes, WebstaurantStore offers wholesale pricing 10-15% below standard retail costs on most of their 300,000+ products.

Q: What types of businesses does WebstaurantStore cater to?

A: WebstaurantStore serves all segments of the foodservice industry, from independent restaurants to nationwide chains. They work with everything from pizzerias to caterers, cafes, bakeries, and more. Both back and front of house.

Q: How many warehouses does WebstaurantStore have?

A: WebstaurantStore has a total of eight warehouse locations: Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Nevada, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania (2), and Texas.

Purchasing Questions

Q: Does WebstaurantStore require a membership?

A: No membership is required. Anyone can place orders online using a credit or debit card for payment.

Q: Does WebstaurantStore offer payment plans or financing?

A: They do not offer payment plans or direct financing. Customers must pay in full at time of ordering. However, paying with a business credit card does provide the ability to carry a balance.

Q: What are the payment options on WebstaurantStore?

A: WebstaurantStore accepts Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, debit cards, PayPal, and WebstaurantStore gift cards.

Q: Can I place orders by phone?

A: WebstaurantStore only takes orders online through their website for security purposes. You cannot place orders via the phone.

Q: How can I check if an item is in stock?

A: You can check current inventory levels by viewing the product page. Items in stock will have an “in stock” label while out of stock items will be labeled “out of stock”.

Q: Can I use my business’ tax exempt status on WebstaurantStore?

A: Yes, during checkout you can enter valid state tax exempt documentation and file for exemption. This must be approved to remove sales tax from the order total.

Shipping & Delivery Questions

Q: How long does shipping take from WebstaurantStore?

A: Standard ground delivery takes 1-7 business days depending on location. Second day air and next day air options are available for expedited delivery.

Q: Does WebstaurantStore ship internationally?

A: WebstaurantStore primarily ships to the US and Canada only. For select items under 25 lbs, they can ship to about a dozen other countries.

Q: What shipping carriers does WebstaurantStore use?

A: WebstaurantStore primarily uses FedEx for ground parcel shipping. Larger freight shipments are handled by trucking companies like SAIA and Old Dominion.

Q: Does WebstaurantStore offer free shipping?

A: They do not provide free shipping, however shipping costs are not baked into the product cost. Customers only pay the actual shipping charge. Their Webstaurant Plus membership offers unlimited free shipping on 200,000+ items for $99/month.

Q: Can I pick up my order from a WebstaurantStore warehouse?

A: No local pick up is available from their warehouses. All orders must be shipped to a business address or residence.

Q: How do I track my shipment from WebstaurantStore?

A: You will receive emails with shipment status and tracking info. To check anytime, you can view order status in your account or look up by reference number.

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