This week, we want to talk to you about ways we are attempting to help you, the customer, have the best experience possible when shopping at Adorable Essentials. There are systems that we have put in place that are a great help to you as customers, but you may not know about them or you may not know why we use them. We hope to share some of that information with you so that you can enjoy shopping with us whenever possible.
To do this, we'll try to answer some commonly asked questions:
"Why do you ask us to use the E-mail me when back in stock button for items we would like but are not in stock?"
We use the "E-mail me when back in stock" button for two reasons. The first may be fairly obvious. If you use the button, you will receive an e-mail as soon as the item you are waiting on comes back into stock. The second reason is equally important, but may not be as obvious. When you use this button, we receive information about what is out of stock and what our customers are interested in purchasing. When enough customers show interest in purchasing a particular item that is out of stock, this provides a prompt for us to reorder that item, thus reducing the wait time for items to come back in stock?
"How do I use the "E-mail Me When Back in Stock" button?"
Here is a step-by-step tutorial for using the feature:
First, choose your item:
Next, choose your color and size. If the items is out of stock, you will see the green Email When Back In Stock button appear on the left side of your screen:
Enter your e-mail address in the box provided.
Following these three simple steps will assure that you will receive an e-mail as soon as your item is loaded onto the website!
"Why do you ask us to e-mail email@example.com, rather than dealing with customer service issues on the facebook page or in other ways?"
This is a great question, and we want to share with you our reasons for asking you to send your customer service issues to firstname.lastname@example.org. When customer service issues are received through our support e-mail, a ticketing system is used to log each and every issue. This gives a record of your contact with us and allows management to keep track of how your customer service issue was handled in ways that are not available through facebook and even by telephone. We can find out if an issue was dealt with incorrectly or not in a timely manner and we can use the data we receive to improve our customer service in the future. So, when we ask you to e-mail email@example.com, we assure you that we are not blowing you off...we are simply trying to make sure you have your customer service issue resolved efficiently and correctly.
"Why are your items 'All Sales Final'/Why do you not do returns?"
At AE, our policy has always been to sell our essentials at the most affordable price possible. In order to maintain affordability, we can either offer free shipping or we can offer returns. Each year, we ask our customers, both on our Facebook page and on our B/S/T board if they would prefer free shipping or if they would prefer allowing returns. The responses each year are overwhelmingly to keep free shipping.
What does that mean for you, the customer? You will continue to receive your items without paying for shipping, but all sales are final.
"Are there any reasons that you will accept returns?"
We will accept returns for merchandise that is truly defective. We will accept returns if we sent you the wrong item or the wrong size. We will not accept returns because your child didn't like the item, because the item didn't match what you intended the item for, or because the item did not fit your child. We attempt to be as accurate as possible with measurements and IRLs of colors for all of our items so that you can know what you are getting ahead of time.
Please check your items before you wash them and/or have your child wear them. We will accept returns of defective items, but only if the items are unworn and unwashed.
"How do I know what size to order?"
We provide at least basic measurements for all of our items. Our recommendation is to take an item that already fits your child well and compare the measurements to the measurements for the item you are planning to purchase. We seek to be accurate in all of our measurements, but small variations in measurements will exist from piece to piece.
"I'm trying to find an AE color to match a piece I already own? How do I find out what the various colors look like."
We have created a color tab on our website to help you see how each color looks.
There are some color sample photos that show with each item, but the color tab shows IRL photos of all of the colors AE currently has in stock.
Because of different monitor settings, the color may vary slightly, but it should give you a good idea of what the color looks like.
"What other things are you doing to improve my experience as an Adorable Essentials customer?"
There are three things that we are doing to improve your shopping experience:
1. We are planning to implement a barcode system starting in 2016! The plan is to transition to a barcode system for all of our inventory. The barcode system will help our shipping staff to get orders out more efficiently with fewer mistakes. It will help us to have more accurate inventory counts, reducing the need for those dreaded, "Your item is out of stock and you have been refunded" e-mails. And finally, it will help our Shipping Staff to get your items out to you more efficiently and with fewer mistakes. The reality is that for even the best Shipping Staff consists of human beings, and with human beings, mistakes will be made. Placing barcodes on all inventory makes catching those mistakes before items are shipped a lot easier to do!
2. We have hired additional shipping staff. We had one of our two shipping staff resign in the past few months, leaving the burden on our one remaining person. Because this is too big of a job for one person to do, all of us have pitched in, from the newest employee, to Tammy, the owner of the company, in order to try to maintain our shipping schedule. We have new shipping staff that are starting this week, and this should allow for us to return to our normal, efficient shipping schedule.
3. We are looking for ways to share with you when items will be restocking. This can be difficult, because we often do not have control over how our suppliers bundle their shipments and we don't know how quickly items will pass customs. Having said this, we would like to keep our customers in the loop as much as possible as to what items are coming and when they can be expected.
Adorable Essentials has experienced a large amount of growth since our humble beginnings in Tammy's basement, and we are working hard to keep up with that growth. We are restocking items more quickly than ever before and trying to adjust our ordering to customer demands. We are working hard to deal with customer service issues in a way that brings customer service issues to an efficient and satisfying resolution. We are working hard to ship items both efficiently and accurately. We are doing all of this to create the best experience for you, our loyal customers!
Are there things you would like to see us doing? Let us know...we'll keep working to make your experience the best it can be!