For the last couple of weeks, I've been thinking about treating myself to a new LCD monitor. And this caused me to start thinking about what I really wanted from my viewing experience. High on that list were two things: a crisp display and t he ability to support a portrait mode. "Wait a minute," I thought, "didn't Radius make and license it's pivoting technology before it joined other Macintosh suppliers in the graveyard?"
"Hell yes they did" I said to myself. So off I went on a online crusade to ViewSonic and other vendors. Monitors are one of those peripherals I live with for a very long time. In fact, I've come to learn that monitors, along with keyboards are gating factors that govern my use and enjoyment of a PC. SO I remembered that I had really enjoyed using a Samsung LCD monitor I bought three of four years ago. Simultaneously, an ad for TigerDirect.com popped into my email. Searching their site using the words "pivoting LCD monitor" yielded a 19-incher that pivoted that was well within my price range. I clicked it into my online shopping basket and intellectually moved on to another task.
Ten minutes later, I was sill trying to buy the damn monitor and my patience had grown razor thin.
What TigerDirect couldn't deal with very easily, was the fact that I was a new buyer on its site-- and this was after they've sent me more than 100 "online sale" emails in the last 13 months. SO here I was, about to spend $400-plus dollars but so frustrated that I was about to abandon my shopping basket and jump over to Fry's Outpost.com site. But putzing around paid off, and low and behold I had completed the order after 14 long, documented, minutes.
So what do they do? They intercepted my order with a damned marketing survey.
That really annoyed me.
Hey TigerDirect, grab a clue. Label one of your check out entries "First time buyer" and make it easy for me to get what I need and get the hell off your site. And, if you're going to intercept me with a marketing survey, make it worth my time. I f you really value what I think about your site and its shopping process, give me a break on shipping or comp me with a useful trinket.
Any commerce site that doesn't make it easy for me to conduct a transaction flat out isn't worth visiting. TigerDirect needs to log on to Amazon.com, buy a book on online commerce and pay for it with one click. Maybe then its executives will understand why Amazon gets consumer bucks and long-term loyalty. If they don't understand this, I know of a couple of vacant storefronts near Fry's stores here in California. Maybe they should try competing with Fry's for walk-in customers.