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Shopping online can sometimes leave you out in the cold

December 24, 2010 - Art Smith
In our busy lives online shopping seems like a great way to save some time and eliminate the frustrations of shopping. At times it can have exactly the opposite effect.

On Thanksgiving Day, in an effort to spend a little less time in the crowds of Black Friday, we ordered around a dozen items from the online version of a major local retailer.

The next day we ended up in the brick and mortar version of the store and even saw a few of the items that we thought would be arriving on our door in a few days.

We were wrong.

Days passed into weeks, November turned into December. All we had to show for our online efforts was a bed for our dog Maggie. At least she was warm. The flannel sheets and blankets were stuck someplace in the cold of cyberspace.

It was time to take action.

I called their customer service number, and talked to some very friendly, but not very helpful people in THE PHILIPPINES, I tried e-mailing the directors of the company, thinking they could earn their million dollar salaries. Apparently most of them don’t have e-mails that follow normal naming styles. All my e-mails bounced.

Next the company started e-mailing us asking how we liked the products we had purchased but never received. I will leave the contents of the reply e-mails to your imagination.

The company eventual determined they had sent our order to Pennsylvania, they then sent a replacement shipping to the correct address.

It is now Christmas Eve and we have gotten about 80 percent of the order that we placed on Thanksgiving. Hopefully we will get the rest of the order by the Fourth of July.

Shopping online is a great to get things when buying locally is not an option; just don’t be in a hurry to have the items.

Several other online orders placed through companies with more online experience arrived remarkably fast. The established online companies such as Amazon.com and Apple.com are very good at filling orders and filling them quickly.

It seems that the companies that treat their online stores as an after thought are the ones that seem to struggle to get the goods to the door.

This Christmas season was a record season for online retailers with more online shopping making up more than $36 million of the Christmas Shopping season, a 15.4 percent increase. Hopefully with a little more practice, everyone can actually get everything delivered.

 
 

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