eCommerce: Your Lazy Logistics Shouldn’t Be My Problem

Posted By Debbie on June 15, 2018

I’ve been ordering protein powder jars from another country. It’s the best deal I can find! I’m desperate here! 🙂

The website with the best price and ships to where I am is a decent website. Good UX. Nice features like easy re-ordering. But there is one place where it can improve.

I can only put one jar in an order.

We’re burning through protein powder over here. I’d love to order 4 jars every other month. There is no subscription or schedule, so that means a lot of ordering. That could be made easier.

But worse than that is the website suggests I buy at least 3 in an order to get the discounted price… but then only lets me order one at a time. It gives me an error message and stops me from placing an order if I try to buy 2 jars in one order.

Why?

Shipping weight.

According to the error message I get, they can’t ship a package weighing more than 4 pounds to me.

They can’t ship a box weight more than 4 pounds and each protein powder jar is 2.84 pounds. That shouldn’t be my problem. If you have figured out international shipping, then figure it out for more than 4 pounds.

Don’t make it harder for me to spend more money with you.

More packages to ship, more shipping to pay for, more packages to lose.

And more weirdness to Customs, who sees an international package coming to us now every 2 weeks. They already audited us for our protein powders, asking us to sign docs swearing it’s for our personal use and we’re not reselling. 🙁

One package already went missing. The company issued me a refund but claimed that was a one-time courtesy. In the future, if packages go missing, I will just lose the money and not get the product. Really? What kind of customer service is that? I’m spending $47 every time I order and I’d like to not eat that, especially if you can track the package and/or put in a claim on it.

I’m also being charged between $4 and $8 per package to ship it. I imagine I could save on that if we just put 4 of these jars in one bigger box.

You’re also wasting more boxes and tape. Not so eco!

And I have to come to the site every 2 weeks to order another one. Not respectful of my time.

You’re killing your upsell. If you want to upsell me something that weighs more than a pound, I’m done. Can’t order it. You will error me out and tell me to remove things from my cart before checking out.

Build an experience that solves my problem.

There are ways to solve this problem so that it’s never a problem to me, the customer.

  1. Work with international shippers so that you can ship more than 4 pounds. I have definitely received boxes weighing more than 4 pounds from Amazon UK. Figure it out! Take my money!
  2. If you can’t figure it out, make it easy on me. Let me check out ONCE to buy 4 of them and make it clear that you’re charging me for shipping 4 times because you have to ship it easily. Sucks. Will be ugly and I will feel like I’m really overpaying. But communicate it clearly and save me time from having to come to the site and order so often.
  3. Take (another) page from Amazon and get me on a subscription or recurring order. You know I order this frequently. You figured that out. Let me place one order and say I want one of these every 2 weeks. Set it and forget it. Keep taking my money without me having to think about it, come to the site, do more checkouts, etc.

Don’t make your logistics my problem.

Good UX makes behind the scenes business ugliness and logistical wackiness transparent. When I order from Amazon, I have no idea how many warehouses are shipping me boxes. I only know that I trust I will get my items on the date they said I would get it.

If you sell heavy items and you want to ship internationally, find a way to improve your logistics without giving me error messages and keeping me from spending more money. Talk to DHL, who you appear to be using for these shipments, and find out how to ship more than 4 pounds at a time. I bet they’d be happy to talk to you about that business.