I wrote earlier in the week about the package of Sonos goodies that never showed up.

I ordered all these from Amazon — sold by Amazon and shipped by Amazon on the Prime program. There’s nothing in the way of getting them from the fulfillment center to me except the carrier.

I’ve had (literally) hundreds of orders from Amazon — most well before they were my employer — and every time that a package got to the carrier it got to me.

So now I have a fail after all this time.

I ordered this on Monday night a few minutes before the cutoff for Wednesday delivery. Around eight hours later the speakers were in a box and off in FedEx’s hands. They, as expected, arrived on Wednesday.

The other package has been a comedy of errors.

Now, as you’re reading this, keep in mind the delivery commitment was Wednesday the 29th.

It left the FC (allegedly) at around 8:30 on the morning of the 29th. The delivery estimate was still the 29th. This, in and of itself, wasn’t too shocking since Amazon has same-day delivery in some cases.

Wednesday came and went with no box. There wasn’t any tracking at either Amazon or OnTrac either.

I emailed customer service. They didn’t really help out and told me to wait a day or two.

Yesterday, Thursday the 30th, I started a chat online.

The rep wrote (direct copy paste from the window — color added by me):

Thanks for your information.

I’m sorry to hear your package hasn’t arrived by the estimated delivery date of August 29.

I notice the carrier has failed to deliver it on time and it’s been delayed in transits.

I also see that the carrier is expecting to deliver the package within August 31.

If you still can’t locate your package by August 31, please let us know if you would like us to send a replacement order or refund so we can make this right for you.

This would be OK if it were true.

As it turns out he didn’t have that information. A simple “I’m not sure, I’ll check and get back to you” would have been infinitely better.

You can see where this is going now…

So today (Friday the 31st) , still no box. This time I call.

She confirms that the package is not to be found either in Amazon’s or the carrier’s system. Another one is next-day’ed over (now it’ll be here on Tuesday… :-/ ) and if the other one ever shows up I’ll send it back.

I can see a couple problems. This is looking both from the inside and the outside. It kinda sucks for me since I don’t have my stuff. In a broader perspective it sucks for me because I’m sure this isn’t just happening to me.

The first problem is using a carrier like OnTrac. The second, and even more important, is saying you know something when you don’t. Sure it gets the customer off your back, but at what cost? A misstatement like that is, effective, lying. It leaves a bitter flavor in your mouth. And this comes from someone who works there. Mistakes happen… I’m not saying that you can make a system that never fails, but this has several layers of bad wrapped in one.

Time to dig deep to figure out how this might be able to be fixed. It’s not my department (far from it) but I don’t think we should be doing this to customers. None of the above is confidential information in any way… I’m writing this from the consumer’s point of view; a set of observations on a transaction. I have a foot on the other side too — a side that I might be able to leverage to make it better for the next guy.  :-)

Like I said though… This is the outlier in many hundreds of transactions that went down with a flaw. It’s only exceptional since so many mistakes were made.