Friday, 31 July 2009

Underpromise and overdeliver

Last week I bought some aftershave for my other half from Though I was a little put off by the name, the website was a joy to use: I could order the item I wanted quickly and easily, and the delivery terms stated that I could expect my order within two to three days. I placed the order late on Wednesday night, expecting it to arrive Monday or Tuesday. My parcel arrived on Wednesday, almost a week after I had placed the order. Whilst it wasn’t an urgent purchase this time, if it were a birthday gift I would have had some explaining to do. Maybe CheapSmells would be better off changing its delivery promise to three to four days. That way, it would outperform expectations if the item is delivered within two days’ time, making for a happier customer.

Making me a happy customer is exactly what apparel retailer 3Sums did this week. I placed an order for a pair of trainers during my lunch break yesterday and took advantage of 3Sums’ standard free delivery. My order confirmation stated that I should expect to receive my shoes with two to five working days. So imagine my surprise when the postman delivered the parcel today, less than 24 hours after I clicked buy now. Now that’s how to underpromise and overdeliver!—MT

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