Thursday, April 13, 2006

Ship to billing address only

For some incomprehensible reason, certain on-line retailers appear to have started to only ship to the billing address. This is supposedly due to some security concerns. To me, this makes on-line shipping worse than useless. If I have to take a day off work, hypothetically speaking, to sit and wait for a delivery specified as 'between 8am and 6pm' the cost to me can easily double, and negates the convenience of on-line shopping. If I can't take the time off, I have to go to some central depot to collect the item myself.

If that's the case, I'd rather take the day off, go to town and visit actual shops, handle the merchandise and shop the traditional way. The attraction of on-line shopping is that one can have the product sent to wherever one happens to be.

Look, eXpansys, Dabs, Watford Electronics etc etc -- can you really afford to reject custom like this?


Anonymous said...

Hi, I read your blog comment on shipping to billing address only. I am a merchant and have been considering this policy. The main reason is that fraud is easily committed by having an order shipped to another address. Usually only the billing address can be verified. Neither the credit card company or the card holder will be responsible - but the merchant will have to pay for everything. We lose money on products, shipping and also have a chargeback for the complete amount. An order for $50 will end up costing me about $150 in chargebacks, products and fees. The card company recommends only shipping to billing or authorized addresses. If you as a customer frequently have products shipped to work because you aren't home during the day, all you have to do is call the card company and add an authorized address. Its that simple and it protects the customer and the merchant from fraud. I don't think many customers know that its the innocent merchant that pays for identity theft - not the card holder or the card company.

Karma Police said...

As far as I am concerned, as the customer, I want to be able to ship to wherever I happen to be - that's the killer advantage of on-line shopping, the products come to you.

The securing of the transaction is just a matter of engineering. I'm happy to do whatever, say fax through a copy of the card, type in the pin, whatever, apart from registering temporary addresses with my credit card company, which I DO consider a security risk.

The whole fraud thing should not be a problem for the customer. I am an honest person, paying for goods that I want using my credit card and my money. The fact that plenty of CC numbers have been swiped from on-line stores is due to poor security at their end.

I vote with my dollars, and the 'net lets me do so. When I bought this laptop I went through four different retailers until I found one prepared to ship to where I shop. Out of curiosity I contacted some of the shops to hear if they really were so blaze about rejecting good money, and I was gobsmacked to find that they really don't care that much. Me saying "here, $2500", them saying "sorry, policy".

Business must be good indeed to be able to treat your customers such.

I will never shop on-line from a company that insist on shipping to billing address only.