Monday, 28 November 2011

Ebuyer deals? not likely

"Well, what a complete waste of my time!"

 A good 45 minutes of my life has been wasted this morning trying to access the much publicised and much socially hyped "£1 clearance sale" on at

To follow on from the annual techgeek shopping event of Black Friday run primarily in the US but ported over here by and traditionally part of a wider and greater retail sales event by most large retail giants to celebrate the day after "thanksgiving" and stimulate sales for the run up to christmas.

Ebuyer, an often visited favorite of mine - is a technology website dealing in both full systems like your PC worlds' as well as the more geeky component stuff that I like, they are several other options out there but I use Ebuyer mainly due to their customer service and their site design more than their offers or prices, its a good looking site, *works well* and offers users multiple payment gateways for ease of transaction.
They decided to run a massive sales event this morning selling seemingly random products (some good, some lame) all for the princely sum of £1 (not including postage). Sounds fantastic I know! The deals were set to "go live" at 11am this morning all on one page of their website, however if you were a "friend to Ebuyer" or "liked them" on facebook you got access to the page at 10.30am a full 30 minutes before the rest of the world. On the face of it this sounds great, who doesn't like a £1 deal, like the fascination with the pound shops of the uni days, but these deals are often too good to be true! But, I like Ebuyer, I am already a customer, so how can we go wrong? I'll pop on and pick up a few deals, after all its a thank you to their regular customers and a way of stimulating the christmas spends no?

No, It was all a bit of a disaster really. They mainly cater to the geek community and so don't need to use Facebook as a means to reward their regular customers with the 30 mins free offer. We are all at work and so could do with not dancing around on Facebook looking for the 'all important link' to the offer, just email or tweet it to us! I know why they used the facebook like system, as a means of tracking the potential numbers coming into the site at 10.30, however once these numbers had been calculated perhaps someone should have informed the site TD, as from 10.31 this morning the site has been in a constant state of limo between up and down due to the numbers, people have not been able to access the deals, and when they do they cannot complete their order before losing the site again as well as their basket. I have been refreshing the site constantly trying to see what was on offer, I did get on once or twice and there were some good deals to be had, however I rather feel that it was a case of; if you were lucky enough to get on and stay on you would just buy out the entire deal of that one product as long as you were online long effort to consider your purchase, so people just adopted a traegy of grab and buy, and sort out later, instead of buying what they wanted . This led to deals and offers disappearing within seconds, as soon as you got onto the site you were knocked off and sat their hopelessly watching these deals disappear into a cloud of "out of stock" being replaced with the product displayed at full price! I would have left this off the page to be honest!

I have read many stories from equally loyal and enthusiastic customers who have struggled this morning with trying to get any sort of deal on the site. Ebuyer is not Amazon, its fan base is smaller, geekier, and UK only, so target your offer to us, think about what we are capable of, we don't need to be floating around on Facebook, we don't need to be walked through the sales process, and we don't need to be cheated (check ebay for many of the same offers still going at one pound - after the site displays an out of stock label, hmmm) - So, what are we left with on the site?

A couple of cables, WII accessories, and ipod speaker docks. Not, exactly what was promised by a rather good marketing campaign for this pre-christmas sale.

I guess that Ebuyer have made money though, as they can fire most of their packing staff this christmas as many of their loyal customers will not be returning to shop here for a while. Ebuyer, take a leaf out of the US handbook of retail sales, see how Best Buy did their Black Friday and of course Cyber Monday deals, or pop to and see how they are coping with their Cyber Monday rush today.

PS. both their sites work for a start!

1 comment:

  1. couldnt have put it better. thx