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Friday, April 15, 2011

I'm alone.

I'm writing to myself.  It helps, but sometimes... I wish I wasn't so alone.  As soon as I decided it's best to resign, of course, I'm called with a couple of orders and someone wants to join AtHome America.  What do you do?  

On one hand, I do have plenty of things - important things, like Ricky Lenn Dyer, Jr. - to do. On the other, I love AHA for ME.  On the other, I really do not understand how a business in company for so many years can first of all, not offer direct shipping period.  May, they will.  Great.  But why does it cost more to send it to so-and-so on River Avenue in West Virginia than to so-and-so on Mountain Street in Nevada?  And let's say they claim it's because they need extra boxes.  Well... what if you lose the sale?  Isn't that sale, with the profit worth it?  Isn't boosting sales even 10% by catering to your market worth a little?

It's not even like they're charging by WEIGHT, they're charging by PRICE.  If something weighs three ounces but costs more than the cheap ten pound item... I don't get it.  I just don't get it. Now, that's something MANY companies do. I"ve seen it many, many times, in fact, the majority of time.  Okay. I can handle that and even come up with clever reasons - like items change too often and it's hard to keep up and change with weight and shipping and boxes, etc.

But to charge EXTRA because you are sending to a different address?  Most companies do NOT do that.  Even Amazon asks, do you want to ship all or part of your order to another address?

It's a home business in party sales.  You want your hostess to invite every single person she can think of, not only for sales, but to encourage them to host a party or to become a consultant, right? 

Until May 2, we have to say, by the way, don't invite anyone who you cannot personally deliver their product to, because you'll have to mail it again, yourself, after you repack it and it will not be free.

In that case, um, it's easier to just go to Wal-Mart. I love my friends, I want to help, but in this economy?  Not at the expense of my kids eating.  Seriously!  Yes, there are beautiful exclusive gifts and HomeWares at AtHome America... but it's not enough to justify ordering from my friend and paying shipping and handling, then having her repack it to ship it to me, there are exclusives everywhere.

What do I always advise in business and life in general? If something isn't working, do what you can to fix it or go elsewhere. I did.  I wrote letter after letter and called to give solutions on how to change this AND why it's good not only for the customer and the independent seller, but also for the business.  It worked; they announced recently that May 2, there's to be direct shipping. Now, you can all invite whomever you want - an aside, those of us in the military are often stuck overseas for YEARS and our friends and family are not only NOT with us, but they are generally scattered, too, so we DEPEND on direct shipping!

But, I found out yesterday, it will be an additional cost. Over and beyond what you ALREADY pay to have it shipped and handled.

And they had the nerve to say this as if it was a favor to my customer and myself!  Even WalMart has direct shipping.  Even World Market.  Even Pier One Imports. Even Pampered Chef.  Even Creative Memories.  Even that place that makes vinyls for your wall!  I've used them all.  I've bought gifts for others, and every single one, charged my shipping like normal and sent it where I needed it to go AND credited, when applicable, the hostess of whatever party it is I ordered from.

Yeah, I'm against an additional cost to ship HomeWares to a customer already paying ample shipping and handling.  I don't know what to do.

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