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Blogiversary IV: INTERLUDE!

Posted on Saturday, April 28th, 2007

Dave!Tonight the last of the Blogiversary IV contests are ending, so tomorrow I can take all the entries to somebody not affiliated with Blogography and have them draw the winners. That will bring the week-long celebration to a close, and I can move on to another year of big blogging fun.

In the meanwhile, I am still trying to get the Artificial Duck Co. store ready for its grand re-opening on Monday afternoon. It's been a long-time coming, and a really difficult road to get here. I thought the hardships were over once I moved to Yahoo! Merchant Solutions, but it turns out my problems are just beginning.

One of the major reasons I decided to go with Yahoo! was that they had inventory control. This was really important to me, because I didn't want people to order something that was out-of-stock and be disappointed when I had to tell them they wouldn't be getting it. With inventory control, I would finally have a way to let people know if they could order an item or not. I would use Yahoo! tags to access the inventory status of an item/size, then use the yes/no result to display a graphic to let people know if they could order a particular size...

Duckavailability-1

Except Yahoo! doesn't allow you to do that with their "store tags." In order for a customer to know whether or not something is in-stock, they have to add it to their cart. If it ends up in your cart, congratulations, you can order it! Otherwise you get this ugly stupid-ass error message...

Yahooavailability

What the fuck?!?

What sense does it make to have inventory control if you can't tell your customers what the inventory level is BEFORE they add something to their cart? This is pretty stupid, and basically cuts the usefulness of this feature in half.

So now I'm going to have to MANUALLY adjust the inventory indicators every time something changes, which sucks ass. Heaven forbid that I actually go on vacation or something.

Why is it that somebody can't build a reasonably-priced merchant solution for small businesses that doesn't suck? Is it really so incredibly difficult? I can only hope that Google jumps into the game and fixes this shit like they seem to be doing with everything else.


Categories: Blogging 2007Click To It: Permalink
   

Comments

  1. Laurel says:

    Surprisingly I ran into a similar situation with Borders when I special-ordered a book. A day after I ordered, I got an e-mail telling me that “Sorry, we can’t order this for you for whatever stupid reason…”. At least yours gives you somewhat immediate info…
    Kudos to you for even undertaking this enterprise!

  2. franky says:

    I know they aren’t problem free either, but why didn’t you go with shopify? (just quick and short question, I’ve worked on many shops with shopify and am totally aware of their probs, but they still seem the easiest option to me for a ‘non-professionally all day store)

  3. Oh come on dude, you could take that on as another project! It’s not like you’re doing anything else with your time, right? *wink wink, nudge nudge*

  4. bogup says:

    I would have suggested PayPal but after reading your experience with them I’d have to duck (pardon the expression).
    Congrats on a wonderful Blogography anniversary week! I just know I’m gonna win a big prize, as in XL or even 2XL.

  5. Chag says:

    Good point. It’s a wonder Google hasn’t set up an ecommerce solution yet.

  6. Dan says:

    Uhhh… I don’t understand all this commerce mumbo-jumbo! :-)

  7. Juli says:

    I’m sure it’ll be easier to buy a shirt from one of the very cool stores in DaveLand.

  8. SJ says:

    At least customers will be able to find out an item’s out of stock while they’re still on the site and can choose a replacement. That’s better than not finding out until your order arrives without it.

  9. Avitable says:

    Are you positive about that? When I experimented with it, I thought I was able to get it to show that things were out of stock on the product page.

  10. Dave2 says:

    They show up… and that’s what I want. But I also want to be able to say whether or not there’s any of them in-stock, which you cannot do.

  11. Bre says:

    Other than Flickr, most of the Yahoo options always fall short for me! hope it works out on your end…

  12. Is it really over? I’m so sad now.

    I don’t understand the yahoo cart thing. I don’t understand any of those online dealer cart things. EY R STOPUD.

  13. NYC Watchdog says:

    While being totally off base about your cart troubles… what happened to 3XL??? Or is this a sign I need to take dieting seriously again???

    Damn.

  14. Karl says:

    Sounds like crap to me. What you’re asking for doesn’t seem at all unreasonable. Bitch to customer service.

  15. Hilly says:

    God, how frustrating for you. It’s not fair that karma isn’t giving you the smooth moves after all that you do for everyone else :(.

    I know you have hundreds of people you’d ask before me, but if you ever need help, I am always here for ya.

  16. MRKisThatKid says:

    Google do have a merchant affair, Google Checkout. Or is it just for larger scale operations? Hey watch me dance! I can do a jig!

  17. Dave2 says:

    Unfortunately, Google Checkout doesn’t have inventory control at all (even a bad one), and you can’t offer coupons or gift certificates. YET! Here’s hoping the get on that! :-)

    NYC Watchdog… Shirts are available up to 5X, so we’ve got you covered. :-)

    The problem is that it is very difficult to get color shirts past 2X… so I usually end up having to print 3X-5X on white. :-(

  18. RW says:

    Well, there’s your million-dollar idea just waiting for you!

  19. Ruth says:

    Hey Dave

    Sounds like a really frustrating time for you… here’s hoping that it gets better! If I knew anything about website design and stuff, I’d try and help, but at current my knowledge is rather limited. Maybe one day? Who knows!

    I’m looking forward to seeing who has won the prizes… it’s so cool that you’ve had this thing going for four years! Congratz on lasting. :)

  20. NYC Watchdog says:

    Phew. White is good… although it doesn’t hide spaghetti sauce as well as black… but it’s the message that matters. Thanks!

  21. sizzle says:

    i nominate you to build such a site! fame and glory and a workable site- everyone wins! :)

  22. Laurence says:

    What a pity !!! Nobody help small businesses ! It is horrible !

  23. Tina says:

    This has been fun. I can’t wait for the store to open!

  24. It looks really nice though.

    I’ll be back for a “little geeky” shirt and maybe some buttons…

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