The following is an open letter to the automatons at Amazon upon the completely screwed-up order for my Sigma 30mm lens for my Olympus dSLR (I have no delusions that this will fall on deaf ears):
Amazon has gone a long way towards ruining my weekend with your half-assed system. I ordered the lens on Friday, September 9th, for a trip to Chicago this weekend. I ordered it from Amazon — paying a premium price — because I believed in you. I paid for the two-day shipping because it told me I would get it by Wednesday — giving me a two-day fudge factor. It sat there in “preparing to ship” mode. I checked hourly for a tracking number. Finally at 3:30PM on Tuesday I looked again and my estimated delivery was pushed back to Sept. 21st.
I searched the web for a phone number (nice job hiding that by the way), and talked to the very pleasant Samantha. She looked into it, told me they were indeed in stock and then assured me it was being packaged and would arrive on my doorstep on Thursday (after a oddly named “upgraded 1-day” shipping). I asked again, explaining the situation I was in, “So I will get this on Thursday?” Her response was “Yes.” I explained to her, “If this isn’t going to be on my doorstep by Friday, I need to cancel the order right now.” She assured me again. The estimated delivery date changed to the 14th and I, apparently wrongheadedly, believed in you.
I continued to watch the order continue NOT being in “shipped” mode.
It continued in this fashion until well after the last FedEx and UPS planes of the day fly over my home and land at Minneapolis International Airport.
Upon arriving at work this morning, still holding out hope that I may magically receive the item today, I checked the status yet again.
It had been bumped to the 19th.
I called again and spoke with the very polite Ahmed. He put me on hold a couple of times to research the situation, told me it was not in stock, and finally relayed that I would receive it “as soon as possible”, and then something about “within 30 days.” I divorced myself from the situation at the “as soon as possible” point and told him to cancel my order immediately. At this point Ahmed told me it was “not cancellable.” WHAT? But it hasn’t shipped yet right? Cancel the order! I don’t want you to make a nickel off of this! You’ve used up all the goodwill I can muster, and gone a long way towards messing up my photo vacation. So now, I’ve got a charged credit card, no lens, no hope that it will arrive, no desire to keep ANYTHING that Amazon would ship me, and anger seething within me.
I’ve been on teams that have built some rather large ecommerce inventory systems. I know all about inventory threshholds and how supply chain works. This is a messed-up situation. There is simply no excuse for it.
Thanks Mr. Bezos.
I could have gone with another vendor. Apparently, I SHOULD HAVE gone with another vendor.
UPDATED at 2:39PM CDT:
I guess “on hand” and “ships soon” has a different meaning in Amazon-world.