Yes. And the truth about ecommerce is…
Consumed => “Web ‘Stoopidity'” by Denny Hatch on Target Marketing Mag.
=> My value add (i.e., left a comment)…
Obviously, no one deserves to be this frustrated.
However, as a web savvy marketer who comes from a systems / IT / technical background, I’d like to take this opportunity to re-spin Denny’s thoughts just a bit. I appreciate his venting but I would prefer to channel that into more useful action oriented information for the rest of us.
In short, put the just-add-water myths aside, the truth is that e-comm isn’t easy. And that those who make it look easy are very good at it *and* working very hard at it. Don’t be fooled by what you see on the surface. A best-in-class outfit is working relentlessly to create a friction-less experience.
In addition, it’s worth mentioning that the more sophisticated and and back-end feature-rich (read: enhancements requested / dictated by marketing et al) an e-comm website becomes, the more that can go wrong. And sometimes it does. Certainly, a big dog (read: plenty of resources) like the NY Times doesn’t purposely jinx an order. I’m not making excuses for anyone here. I’m just trying to give some perspective to some request user make for functionality that might be heavy-handed and in turn glitch prone.
Marketers should be very mindful that such systems are not perfect. Just like a guitar doesn’t stay in tune forever, there is always the possibility of unanticipated results. Marketers should plan for those when possible. For example, perhaps if the p.s. in the email from NYT said, “If you are experiencing problems with our website please click here or call.” Obviously that’s not ideal but it’s at least something. The alternative of public execution (via customer verbal complaint) isn’t exactly ideal either, yes?