In Podcast Episode 28, I talked about my frustrations trying to order cold brew coffee shots from Bizzy, an online retailer and coffee start up. The back story behind the order was that I checked out a tweet from our friends, The Coffee Recipe. They retweeted a picture of a new, sweet-looking coffee product. We talked a little on Twitter, and I decided I was going to place an order. But feeling like a selfish jerk, I decided I was going to order a box for The Coffee Recipe as well. I was thinking maybe they could review Bizzy on their site and we could review Bizzy on our site. Then we could compare notes and come to a conclusion that would give you better insight as to whether you should get Bizzy or not.
Well, ordering was no problem. At $30/pack, you’d expect the online ordering portal to be relatively painless. I was able to use my Amazon account to order two packages, and get shipping for me and for The Coffee Recipe. Bizzy’s tag line is “Real Coffee, Without the Wait.” Their FAQs specifically addressed the question: “When will my coffee ship?” The answer was: “We process your order immediately and packages typically ship within two days. You can check on your next shipment and the status of your current shipment on our oder management page” and they give a link to click through to. Which, by the way, didn’t work because I ordered using my Amazon account and I didn’t set up a Bizzy account. Just a minor irritation, really.
So far so good. Then I get an e-mail, stating I can’t get Bizzy yet. The auto-responder e-mail thanked me for my support, told me $3 out of every $12 is going towards some super-exceptional community service program of some kind, and that I can expect my coffee to ship at the end of March. Over a month away. I thought to myself that this auto-responder must not have been updated from a previous campaign. Since the company was new, that’s not too much of a stretch. It could’ve been referring to March of last year, because there was no year listed in the e-mail.
So I e-mailed them back to get some clarification. No response. No problem, I’ll give them a day, they’re probably Bizzy. And they were. They were busy updating their FAQs to now tell customers that “We apologize, but due to demand we have a delay in product shipping. Our expected ship date is currently in late March. Your experience is our top priority, so we will send an email update with your order’s status.” That’s better for people who haven’t bought yet, but they took my money already. So the wait for over a month to get real coffee without the wait was for real. No getting Bizzy for me or for The Coffee Recipe.
The next day, I received a full refund, and an apology e-mail about the delay. So why am I still upset? Because a company had the audacity to take my money, promise me a product within a few days, and couldn’t fulfill their promise. And with today’s technology, that’s a sign they don’t care. What do I mean? I mean you can set up your Shopify, Big Cartel, Big Commerce, etc. online retail provider to set a limit for your products. If I have 50 T-shirts in size large, I can set it to take 50 orders for that product and then mark it as ‘sold-out.’ But then, I can’t take your money any more can I?
Now, don’t get me wrong, as a small start-up, I’m happy for Bizzy. I’m thankful they can’t ship until the end of March. It’s a great problem to have- selling too much stuff, having too many e-mails to respond to in one day. Congratulations. But it would be even better if it was coupled with transparency and integrity from the very beginning. Not trying to make me feel better about them deceiving me by shifting focus onto how much of my money is going to some philanthropic project.
So now, I’m sending The Coffee Recipe some of my favorite coffee from Press Coffee Roasters. I won’t be gettin’ Bizzy and won’t be sending their stuff to friends around the country, either. I’ll save that for a brand that’s earned my trust. Should you?