Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Amazon: doin' it right

I know there are people out there who don't like Amazon for various reasons, but I love them. And I realized two more reasons why I love them:

1. Now, for many of the things you order, there is a link to tracking information right on the e-mail confirmation. No copying and pasting 12-digit alphanumeric things onto the UPS or USPS website - just click and it tells you where your package is.

2. Even better - I realized the other day lots of places I've ordered from (a couple online fabric shops, Caswell-Massey, and some of the gourmet food places), unless you specifically opt out of e-mails, they will e-mail you EVERY STINKING DAY practically, to remind you they're there. And Amazon doesn't.

Look, Caswell-Massey - yes, I shower regularly but it takes me some time to use up soap. Same thing with talc, even though it's eleventy-hundred degrees here in the summer and I need it so I can feel a bit fresher during the day (though I am probably more like one of Harper Lee's "teacakes with frostings of sweat and sweet talcum" by the end of the day). I don't need you to e-mail me regularly and say "Hey, hey, I'm still here! Hey, hey, want to order something from me?" It's like having emotionally needy friends.

Yeah, I have to go through and find the opt-out screens for a bunch of those sites and just prune the danged advertising e-mails I get (about 5/6 of the e-mail I receive....).

Amazon doesn't do that. They e-mail me when I've ordered something, they e-mail me when the thing has shipped, they e-mail me if I've sent someone a gift - but other than that, they leave me be. They don't send out weekly mailings with some kind of minimal percentage off to tempt me into buying. They know that I know they're there; they don't need to expend energy in reminding me.

(Frankly, I think way WAY way too many companies have bought into the "Constant Contact" model of business, where they have been told that customers won't use them unless said customers are constantly reminded of the business' presence - or that customers are so needy and desirous of attention that they need coddling every day.

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