Saturday, February 18, 2012

Barnes and Noble FAIL

I know, I rarely blog.  I tweet some but otherwise blogging is a challenge - just too many communication tools to keep up with.  :-)  I only login into Facebook about once a month and into LinkedIn about once every 3 months.  And my email inboxes normally have several hundred unread emails.    Well, enough about my communication challenges.   Why am I writing this blog? Because I used to like Barnes & Noble, I still enjoy walking into the store, browsing the shelves of books, picking up a cup of coffee, etc.  I am the owner of many hundreds of books and I have spent more time in bookstores than most people have spent at movie theaters.  The problem is that years ago I started buying almost everything from Amazon, as a Plus member, shipping is free and insanely fast. Furthermore, I am starting to get most of my books directly to the Kindle app on my Android phone or iPad.  

Well, I tried to make an impulse buy/online purchase from today and the stupid checkout process requires a phone number? Which is fine but when I entered my name/address, I skipped over the phone number field - it was not marked as mandatory.  And then I was stuck - I could not return to change my contact information but I also could not move forward to complete the transaction.   Perhaps I am a dumb-user but I hope B&N is tracking failed transactions.   I tend to be a hurried end-user and I like my shopping carts/checkout process to be nearly brain-dead easy - otherwise I will just go find the product on Amazon.

And did I mention that I really hate, contact us HTML forms? Especially ones presented as modal dialogs? Plus, broken image links, especially in your "Contact Customer Service" section really make you look bad.  After all, I have navigated to this section because I have a question or a concern to raise.     And I wrote this blog because the "Send Email" web form failed to accept my gmail address.

I guess I can still go to B&N to get the coffee and sit down and read my Kindle-based books!