I order a LOT of junk from Amazon.com. I do this because I like how they have everything I could ever want to consume (books, DVDs, music, games, gadgety bits, even sports equipment) in their database, which I can store using their “wish list” in one convenient place. I’ve always liked surfing from product to product seeing where my interests take me. In fact, I was in a Barnes & Noble this week with the girlfriend and I was paralyzed: I didn’t know where to browse! I pined for my Wish List and for a Recommended List.
So needless to say, I’m a fan of their site. I’ve been ordering from there since May 1999.
However, since their debut of Amazon Prime, the shipping scheme for suckers and compulsive buyers, I’ve noticed that the speed of their free shipping option has been steadily declining. Now, I’ve always been of the assumption that the different shipping rates were based on the costs of the shipping partner to get the product from their warehouses to my doorstep. Clearly, this was incorrect.
I ordered a couple books on Monday. These books were listed as In-Stock. Yet in checking my Order Tracking page, these items will not even ship until the 27th, eight days after I ordered. This isn’t the week before Christmas – I know they cannot be hammered by unexpected activity. So what is causing them to just sit on my order for eight days? My guess, and it is only a guess, is that they want to skim money off the top on shipping fees and force people into their idiotic Amazon Prime conjob.
Zappos, on the other hand, provides free shipping (both ways if you need to return something) and the time between warehouse and door is usually 2-4 days.
Providing inferior service on purpose has never been a strategy that succeeds in the long term.