BBB Business Review

BBB Accredited Business since 06/24/2011


Phone: (415) 459-4945Fax: (415) 459-3743View Additional Phone NumbersPO Box 11623, San RafaelCA 94912-1623View Additional Email AddressesView Additional Web Addresses

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This company sells magic trick training videos and DVD's.

BBB Accreditation

A BBB Accredited Business since 06/24/2011

BBB has determined that Ellusionist meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.

BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.

Reason for Rating

BBB rating is based on 13 factors. Get the details about the factors considered.

Factors that raised Ellusionist's rating include:

  • Length of time business has been operating.
  • Complaint volume filed with BBB for business of this size.
  • Response to 5 complaint(s) filed against business.
  • Resolution of complaint(s) filed against business.

Customer Complaints SummaryRead complaint details

5 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 1 closed in last 12 months
Complaint TypeTotal Closed Complaints
Advertising / Sales Issues3
Billing / Collection Issues1
Delivery Issues1
Problems with Product / Service0
Guarantee / Warranty Issues0
Total Closed Complaints 5

Customer Reviews Summary Read customer reviews

2 Customer Reviews Customer Reviews on Ellusionist

Customer Experience Total Customer Reviews
Positive Experience 0
Neutral Experience 0
Negative Experience 2
Total Customer Reviews 2 Customer Reviews

Complaint Breakdown by Resolution

Complaint Resolution Log (5)
01/29/2014Delivery Issues | Read Complaint Details

These were paid for before the notice of a potential delay was posted on their shipping page. These waits are egregious. Would like refund on shipping
Order XXXXXXXXX placed 12/4 did not arrive until 12/23 (paid for UPS Ground - 5 business days)
Order XXXXXXXXX placed 12/4 did not arrive until 12/16 (paid for UPS Priority - 3 business days)
ellusionist was negligent in not anticipating the holiday rush and being prepared to ship on time. When I posted my concerns (without profanity) on Facebook my account was banned. Orders were placed for items which were all purportedly in stock.

Desired Settlement
I would like my shipping refunded. ($57.18 for the UPS and $32.90 for the USPS)
I would also like them to be better prepared last year, since it seems this is an ongoing holiday issue.

Business Response

We agree with this customers request. We have refunded his shipping for these two orders in PayPal, and we have taken steps to insure that next year we are better staffed and prepared for the large volume of Christmas orders we are expecting.

thank you,

******** *******

Final Consumer Response
(The consumer indicated he/she ACCEPTED the response from the business.)
Shipping was promptly refunded. Thank you very much.

05/30/2013Advertising / Sales Issues
12/03/2012Billing / Collection Issues
01/27/2015Advertising / Sales Issues | Read Complaint Details

On and before 12/18/14, products were advertised as available when they were in backorder. Immediate shipping was expressly advertised.
My Ellusionist order #XXXXXXXXX was placed on 12/18/14, during the Ellusionist Holiday special. There have been many problems with this order, some of which do not fit into this category. My attempts to work with Ellusionist have not produced results, and in fact I now have multiple grievances to report based on this single order. I will file separate complaints for each incident. For clarity, I will only address here the details of this particular grievance. As of the time and date of the placement of my order #XXXXXXXXX, the Ellusionist website listed the "Metal 3" DVD as in stock and available for purchase. After placing a sizeable order including many items that were meant to be given away as Christmas gifts, the order was put on hold. I contacted Ellusionist customer service and a rep named *********** ******* who informed me of the mistake. I asked him to deliver the rest of the order separately and agreed to pay separate shipping for the second order, but after checking with his manager *********** flatly declared that Ellusionist would not ship any partial orders, even though this was a mistake clearly of their own making. I still have the emails to verify all of this. As far as I am concerned, Ellusionist criminally misrepresented itself twice in this one act. First, they advertised and continue to advertise on their website that all orders received before 1:00 PM EST ship same day. My order from 12/18/14 has still not shipped as of 1/7/15. The second and more obvious misrepresentation was in declaring that a product was in stock and available for immediate shipping when that was not the case. An additional misrepresentation has arisen at this time. Ellusionist originally claimed (via *********** ********* e-mails) that my order would ship as soon as all backordered items were in stock. Presently all said items are once again listed as being in stock, but Ellusionist has still failed to ship my order. Despite my efforts to work with Ellusionist, they have not offered any explanation for the additional delay, nor have they yet responded to my inquiries at all.

Desired Settlement
All I ever wanted was for Ellusionist to make good on its advertised promises. Since they have already failed to do that repeatedly, what I want now is for them to ship the order. If there are any items still in backorder despite Ellusionist's clear advertisements to the contrary, I expect that the items presently in stock will be shipped immediately, and anything not presently in stock will ship as it becomes available at Ellsionist's expense.

Business Response
Dear *******

I apologize for the totally unfortunate series of errors regarding your order. You've been a great customer for many years and this nightmare happened right during one of our busiest times at Holiday. Part of it was Pyro being out of stock due to its popularity (a number of popular blogs promoting it), and part was a software glitch not letting us know we were out of stock on DVS etc in time. My apologies that you felt you needed to go to BBB in order to get our attention. That should never happen. So here's what we're going to do about it.

We will ship the majority of your order today as we promised in our last communication. The 2 backordered items will ship as soon as they become available.... at our expense. I've sent a gift certificate to your email address for $150.00. You can spend it at your leisure. I'm doing that just to make up for the aggravation of waiting so long for the great stuff you've ordered.

Again, my sincere apologies, my hope is that this never happens again! We're working on that software glitch as we speak. Have a great 2015.

Thank you,

Head of Customer Service.

03/22/2013Advertising / Sales Issues

Industry Comparison| Chart

Tricks & Jokes, Internet Shopping, Clothing - Retail, Magicians Supplies, Playing Cards

Additional Information

BBB file opened: 12/17/2003Business started: 12/01/2000
Type of Entity


Incorporated: December 0207, CA

Contact Information
Principal: Mr. Brad Christian (President)Customer Contact: Ms. Heidi O'Doherty (Customer Service)Ms. Jennifer Riordan
Number of Employees


Business Category

Tricks & Jokes, Internet Shopping, Clothing - Retail, Magicians Supplies, Playing Cards

Service Area

This business service area covers the bay area.

Alternate Business Names, LLC

Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Summary

Ellusionist has received 3.68 out of 5 stars based on 2 Customer Reviews and a BBB Rating of A+.

BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Overview

1 Locations

  • PO Box 11623 

    San Rafael, CA 94912-1623Fax: (415) 459-3743

Industry Comparison ChartX

The information in the table below represents an industry comparison of businesses which are of the same relative size. This is based on BBB's database of businesses located in the San Francisco Bay Area and Northern Coastal California. Businesses may engage in more than one type of business. The percent of time the business engages in a type of business is not accounted for. There is no known industry standard for the number of complaints a business can expect. The volume of business and number of transactions may have a bearing on the number of complaints received by BBB.

*Ellusionist is in this range.


Types of Complaints Handled by BBB

BBB handles the following types of complaints between businesses and their customers so long as they are not, or have not been, litigated:

  • Advertising or Sales
  • Billing or Collection
  • Problems with Products or Services
  • Delivery
  • Guarantee or Warranty

We do not handle workplace disputes, discrimination claims or claims about the quality of health or legal services.


Additional Phone Numbers

  • (866) 244-2426 (Disconnected)

Additional Email Addresses


BBB Complaint Process

Your complaint will be forwarded to the company within two business days. The company will be asked to respond within 14 days, and if a response is not received, a second request will be made. You will be notified of the company's response when we receive it (or notified that we received no response). Complaints are usually closed within 30 business days.


Industry Tips for Tricks & Jokes


What is BBB Advertising Review?

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BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating Overview

BBB Customer Reviews Rating represents the customers opinions of the business. The Customer Review Rating is based on the number of positive, neutral and negative customer reviews posted that are calculated to produce a score.

Customer Review Experience Value
Positive Review 5 points per review
Neutral Review 3 points per review
Negative Review 1 point per review

BBB letter grades represent the BBB's opinion of the business. The BBB grade is based on BBB file information about the business. In some cases, a business' grade may be lowered if the BBB does not have sufficient information about the business despite BBB requests for that information from the business.

BBB Letter Grade Scale

BBB Rating Value
A+ 5
A 4.66
A- 4.33
B+ 4
B 3.66
B- 3.33
C+ 3
C 2.66
C- 2.33
D+ 2
D 1.66
D- 1.33
F 1
NR -----
Star Rating scale

  Average Score
5 stars 5.00
4.5 stars 4.50-4.99
4 stars 4.00-4.49
3.5 stars 3.50-3.99
3 stars 3.00-3.49
2.5 stars 2.50-2.99
2 stars 2.00-2.49
1.5 stars 1.50-1.99
1 star 0-1.49

BBB Customer Review Rating plus BBB Rating is not a guarantee of a business' reliability or performance, and BBB recommends that consumers consider a business' BBB Rating and Customer Review Rating in addition to all other available information about the business. If the BBB Rating is NR then only Customer Reviews are used for the Star Rating.

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BBB Business Reviews are provided solely to assist you in exercising your own best judgment. Information in this BBB Business Review is believed reliable but not guaranteed as to accuracy.

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