The great and powerful amazon

tinkerdan

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#1
I recently ordered a number of items with amazon July 30th
And later the same day order a handful more.
Then on august 1 I ordered another handful.

And where is this going?

I do not have a prime account and I always order enough for free shipping standard shipping and usually the orders get to me anywhere from three to six days.

However this time I've been checking and even though every item I ordered was listed as in-stock and ready to ship all three orders have not shipped at all. It looks as though they are holding on to them so that they won't get here any sooner that seven or more days and if they wait any longer they will have to ship it two days to get it here before the standard shipping 5 to 9 day shipping estimate arrives and goes past.

Has anyone else ever noticed that they hang onto orders just to delay delivery. I suppose they could just be so busy they can't put my orders together. Maybe their system is broken.
 

Foxbat

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#2
Yes. I've noticed recently that this has been happening (and I've also been inundated with emails in the run up to Prime Day telling me how good Prime is). Coincidence? I don't think so.
 

tinkerdan

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#3
From Amazon: Answers to my inquiries have been.
"You can be assured that we will be shipping those in the most efficient manner."
What's annoying is that at the same time I ordered these items I ordered books from some of their affiliated book sellers and those were free shipping also and they not only responded the first day to let me know that they had my order--they all responded to say they had shipped the same day.
I have all three of those already delivered and amazon has yet to ship my orders.
So, who is being efficient?

I tend to gauge those plans by how well they treat their general customers; before I decide to buy into anything special. If it take 6 days to assemble items that are in stock then how in the world could you possible offer 2 day delivery? Not to mention same day delivery.
 
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dwndrgn

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#5
One of the big issues is that they don't have enough people to deliver things and all resources get put to shipping those two day items first. They use every independent and not shipper available and they are still as busy as can be. This is from a friend who works for them.
 

tinkerdan

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#6
Well, after 12 hours from my chat with a representative--all three orders appear to have been stuffed into one shipment and went out according to tracking.

I suppose shipping them all together might seem efficient.
Perhaps they were waiting to see if I would order anything else that they could add.
 

tinkerdan

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#8
The package with all three orders showed up wed the 8th.
I looked back and the English for free standard delivery is 5-8 days so if we take off a day for Sunday they just squeaked under the wire. Though I've received a number of packages(from amazon)on a Sunday so maybe we shouldn't take that off.
So it took three days to deliver--and 6 for handling. I always forget about handling. Not this time though and I made sure I washed everything thoroughly; just in case.
 
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oganalp

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#9
They tend to merge shipments due to not having enough trucks for delivery. Even for Prime, they sometimes slack. If you are driving a semi, there is always contract work available for Amazon. At least here in Ontario.
 

Foxbat

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#10
Strangely enough, I've just ordered three items to get free deilvery and they're sending them all separately. kind of blows out the water their argument on keeping down shipping costs.

Also worth noting that Amazon have had an advert banned in the UK regarding next day delivery with Prime after over two hundred complaints that this was not happening.
 

tinkerdan

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#11
The next stage of the saga:
On the 9th I order two books direct from Amazon with standard free shipping. 5 to 8 days.
At the same time I ordered two books from separate amazon affiliate used book stores.
The used books stores mailed out the next day and those arrived yesterday the 16th I tracked them all the way.

At the same time I watched the Amazon order . It sat un- shipped from the 9 th until the 16th when at 3:53 Am my time, they shipped and were delivered on the promised time which was the next day today the 17th. The eighth day.

So I got next day delivery and 7 day handling. One thing is certain with those methods there is little hope in getting anything within the lower end of 5 days in the free standard shipping.

However it is efficient: I didn't pay anything for shipping and have no idea how much extra they had to pay to get that to me the next day.
 

Highlander II

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#12
Strangely enough, I've just ordered three items to get free deilvery and they're sending them all separately. kind of blows out the water their argument on keeping down shipping costs.
This is possibly related to Amazon having multiple warehouses/shipping locations.
 

Highlander II

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#13
The next stage of the saga:
...

So I got next day delivery and 7 day handling. One thing is certain with those methods there is little hope in getting anything within the lower end of 5 days in the free standard shipping.

However it is efficient: I didn't pay anything for shipping and have no idea how much extra they had to pay to get that to me the next day.
This is pretty common in retail shipping. All of the 'express delivery' packages go out first, then the rest. And a lot of the non-express packages can get pushed to the tail-end of the delivery window. Amazon is a huge shipper, so they've probably negotiated a rockin' deal with UPS that keeps their overall shipping costs low.
 

Brian G Turner

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#15
This issue made the news last week:

Amazon's one-day delivery ad 'misleading'

The Advertising Standards Authority said the adverts for Amazon Prime on its website in December meant customers would assume "one-day delivery" applied to all Prime-labelled items - and that these deliveries would arrive the day after the order was placed.

However, elsewhere on its website Amazon explained that delivery time for its one-day service was "one business day after dispatch", and what time an order was placed would determine whether an item was dispatched on the same day.

The ASA said it was unlikely customers would find this information, before signing up for Amazon Prime.
 

Cathbad

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#16
Walmart is very good with their 2-day delivery. I use this very often.

My problem with them comes from my Management side: They waste so much in shipping, I can't believe they still make a profit!

I order five items: Item 1, a bottle of shampoo (3 in 1) comes in a box large enough for a car engine, with a ton of packing paper or bubble wrap. Item 2, 12-pk toilet paper, coms in an equal size pkg. 3 and 4, cookies and greeting card, come in a box about 1/2 as big. The last item, a mem stick, comes in the mail. All items could have fit in the cookie/card box. And I'm only able to use one hand - so opening boxes isn't exactly easy.

Okay, off-topic rant over - we now return you to your scheduled rant. :)
 

tinkerdan

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#17
I want to take a moment to explain that in my OP I am coming at this as a Non-Prime customer.
I haven't had to do prime because I always order enough to have it shipped free. However that means that it has to be a 5 to 8 day free shipping.

My concern was that apparently it works best for them to just hold the package until some time after the 5 day period so that it doesn't arrive too early. However the logistics of such a practice in process have never instilled in me any confidence that their system for Prime customers won't be rife with failures--so I've decided I can wait and save the 120 US per year or whatever it is; for actual products.

However that aside, I find it fascinating that it's more efficient to wait and send things almost overnight.
They definitely should never promise overnight; stick with two day and only providing that it's contingent upon the time it takes to assemble the order.

It seems to me the entire process is geared to be a nightmare for their shipping department.
 
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tinkerdan

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#19
Curious new item in the saga.
I ordered two used book from two separate amazon affiliates.
While checking the tracking of each I found the were both sent first to Ohio.
The next time I checked, both are now in Kentucky which is straight south and away from where I am; so thy are both lost.
Curious how they could both be lost I checked closer and noticed that the two books from two separate places are using the same tracking number.

And now that they have been in Kentucky for two days-if they ever get here they will be quite a bit late.

Needless; I contacted both sellers to ask why my package is going in the wrong direction and sent them a screen shot of the tracking.

Maybe they will have answers.
 

tinkerdan

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#20
So the mystery is unfolding.
The books apparently went first to Discoverbooks; a place that is a USPS partner and has a shipping arrangement much like amazon has as a USPS partner.

Apparently some part of that partnership model creates this somewhat convoluted approach to shipping.

There is even an article about the subject that looked promising until I found out that it was protected by part of the US Code in regards to the Postal Services.
https://www.uspsoig.gov/sites/default/files/document-library-files/2018/RARC-WP-18-010.pdf
39 USC 410(c)(2).
39 U.S. Code § 410 - Application of other laws

(2)information of a commercial nature, including trade secrets, whether or not obtained from a person outside the Postal Service, which under good business practice would not be publicly disclosed

So they conveniently avoided answering anything that might tell me what the logic of the shipping model might be--because its a trade secret.

So all we need to know is that the package will get to you on time(Maybe-since they have lost at least two previous orders in the past; for which they gracefully refunded my money) in whatever manner it is.

So it's settled; its a trade secret business model that makes use of a partnership with the USPS.

Note:
A Trade Secret pertaining to shipping efficiently by holding packages until the last minute or shipping them in the opposite direction to get them there more efficiently.
 
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