(othree)

Amazon Now Using Lockers For Return Shipping

Do you know what’s an even worse problem for online retailers than customers who never get their packages? Shipping back the items that customers did receive, but don’t want. Fortunately, Amazon has found a way around this problem: since late last year, they’ve using their lockers designed for deliveries to send products in the other direction. [More]

(Joel Zimmer)

You Don’t Say: Study Shows That Bad Weather Is Good For Online Merchants

From the Global Department Of Studies That Tell Us What We Already Knew, a recent study of online retail data shows that while retail spending is down overall, shoppers spent more money online in January 2014 than in January 2013. What could the reason be? Well, speculates the company that did the study, maybe it’s because of the run of really crappy weather in highly populated areas of the country in 2014. [More]

(jojoannabanana)

During Shipping Frenzy, Amazon Limited Prime Memberships

Now that the Christmas shopping and shipping frenzy is over, Amazon is providing free extensions of their Prime no-limit free shipping service to shoppers whose packages didn’t arrive. Before the holiday, though, Amazon was actually limiting signups for Prime during peak periods. Maybe they didn’t want to clog up the shipping works with boxes containing single packs of cookies and other small impulse items. [More]

Maybe Calling Itself A “Showroom” Isn’t The Best Holiday Marketing Plan For Best Buy

Maybe Calling Itself A “Showroom” Isn’t The Best Holiday Marketing Plan For Best Buy

A showroom is a place where you go to look at stuff and think about buying it, but it may not necessarily be in stock or even available. In the e-commerce era, it has a slightly different meaning: the term “showrooming” means visiting a nearby store to check out an item in person, then buying that item online from a different company. [More]

(Flyinace2000)

Test Your Internet Knowledge With Consumerist’s History Of E-Commerce Quiz

We’ve mentioned it before and now Pizza Hut is proudly crowing over it again: The chain is laying claim to the honor of the first purchase ever made on the World Wide Web — a mushroom, pepperoni and extra cheese pizza back in 1994 — which brings up a good point: How much do any of us really know about the history of e-commerce? Take Consumerist’s quiz to find out. [More]

(Lordcolus)

Walmart Erroneously Labels Me ‘Credit Risk,’ Won’t Send Data Plan Code

Kirk shops online a lot, but has never made a purchase from Walmart before. Apparently, this is some kind of crime, and has held up his online order of an activation code for his new T-Mobile prepaid plan. Walmart customer service calls him a “credit risk,” but T-Mobile thinks that his credit is peachy keen. [More]

(frankieleon)

Report: Google Nudging Into Amazon Territory With Tests Of Same-Day Delivery Service

That sound you hear is Google tiptoeing up to Amazon, ready to tap on its shoulder and be like, “Hey, I’m all up in your business.” The company has started testing a same-day delivery service called Google Shopping Express, which could help it move farther into the e-commerce world currently ruled by Amazon. [More]

(soul_motor)

You Can Buy Staples Gift Cards Online, But Can’t Use Them On Staples.com

Jenny has a problem with Staples, and happened to find a post that we wrote about the same problem four years ago. Staples, you see, has a web site and they have about 1,600 stores. You can buy Staples gift cards in many places, including from Staples’ own website. But back in 2009, you couldn’t use Staples gift cards to buy things on the site. You still can’t. [More]

Efficiency in action

Amazon’s Order Fulfillment: Efficiency Through Inefficiency

Is Amazon’s shipping system spectacularly efficient, or woefully inefficient? The company’s success has come from getting items where they need to be as quickly and efficiently as possible. Reader Jesse sent along an illustration of exactly how this efficient inefficiency works: the windshield wiper blads that he got for his car last week. [More]

(Ron Dauphin)

Target Sent My Package To The Wrong Address, Says It’s My Fault

It doesn’t matter where you tell Target to send your online orders: if your account has a “default address,” your packages will go there no matter what. Diana didn’t realize this. She thought that if she updated her billing address, then ticked the box that said her billing and shipping addresses were the same, her package would end up where she currently lives. Not so fast! Now the person living in her old apartment has her new jeans, and Target just blames Diana. [More]

How does this happen?

Rockport Sends Me Same Size Shoes, Different Sized Insoles

If Aaron had different-sized feet, he’d be all set. Well, also if his shoes were different sizes. Neither is true. He ordered some Rockport shoes more than a year ago, then set them aside. When he opened the box, he discovered that they had two different size insoles. How does that happen? He doesn’t know, but Rockport isn’t willing to send him a replacement insole. [More]

(ixot)

How Does Shutterfly Still Exist?

More than one thousand online photo-printing services have entered the marketplace in the history of the Web. Only a few remain. The most successful survivor is Shutterfly, founded in 1999. The 16 billion pictures currently sitting on Shutterfly’s servers aren’t your garden-variety snapshots of sandwiches and shoes. The pictures on Shutterfly are treasured images, and destined to decorate photobooks, prints, calendars, wall decals, mugs, greeting cards, and other items. [More]

(Alan Rappa)

Amazon Retains Its Crown Among Online Retailers In This Year’s Holiday Consumer Satisfaction Survey

Online retailers are sitting pretty these days due to the convenience they offer during busy times like the holidays, but according to this year’s survey of consumer satisfaction, some businesses made out better than others. Amazon is the reigning champ of customer satisfaction, and it held onto that title again this year, beating out upstarts like Gilt.com and RueLaLa.com. [More]

(tjean314)

A Reminder: Clicking The First Link You See In Google Isn’t Always Such A Great Idea

Theatregoers, beware. Well, actually, people who are out to buy much of anything, beware. Just typing what you’re looking for into Google and clicking on the first link you see can lead to a world of trouble. Or at least a world of overpayment. That’s what Doug learned when he went to surprise his wife with tickets to the musical version of her favorite movie. He clicked on one of the top links, which he didn’t realize were sponsored ones. [More]

(Bravo Six Niner Delta)

Barnes & Noble Nook Virtual Store Zaps Me Wrong Book, Wouldn’t Take It Back

Steve isn’t a big adopter of shiny new technology, but he found the Nook Color really appealing, and bought himself one as an early Hanukkah present. Then he went book-shopping. One $2.99 title looked appealing, so tap, tap, he purchased it. And received a different book instead that cost three times as much. Getting B&N to take the unwanted book back was more difficult than he had anticipated. [More]

(Stéfan)

Study: Amazon Has Cheapest Toys Online [Cue Other Retailers Scrambling To Cut Prices]

In the retail world, it’s all about beating out the competition. And if you can offer the lowest prices and thus lure the most customers, well then you’re the winningest of all. A new analysis of retailers has come up with a big old carrot of motivation by saying Amazon has cheaper online prices for toys than major chains like Walmart and Target. Let the price wars begin, just in time for the holiday season. [More]

(funny strange or funny haha)

Facebook Testing New “Want” Button So Your Friends Will Know What You’re Coveting

Always one to figure out how to take what we like doing and turn it into revenue, Facebook has teamed up with retailers to test a new feature, the “want” button. It’s kind of like the “like” button, but instead compiles a wish list of all the products you’re lusting after on the Internet and lets your pals (and ostensibly, the retailers selling the item) know. [More]

Now Proflowers Thinks I Have Two Wives: The Margaret Saga Continues

Now Proflowers Thinks I Have Two Wives: The Margaret Saga Continues

Last week’s post about a baffling and possibly incriminating e-mail solicitation from ProFlowers produced a hilarious comments section and a lot of speculation as to the identity of Margaret, the woman (not his wife) to whom reader Chris was being encouraged to send more flowers. We have an update. The good news: Both the offending ProFlowers account and Margaret have been found. The bad news: The couple has no idea who Margaret is, but they have her full name and home address. They still have no idea how Margaret’s info ended up in the account in the first place. [More]