At risk of sounding churlish and/or hyperbolic, we’ve had one bad experience with an online company, and now we want to set a new standard in online businesses.
Our story was pretty simple – we tried to buy some games, the company cancelled the order, but won’t (or can’t) refund us for 28 days. We don’t think that’s ok, so we make sure everyone knows that we process refunds within 1 working day.
But that set in motion a thought:
What else do online companies do, that your friendly local game store would never even dream of?
So we did a little market research, thanks to the lovely people over on Board Game Trade and Chat UK. And the number one complaint was companies that hold on to your money for preorders or restocks, sometimes for months, and sometimes you get nothing in return.
Now – in fairness – we used to do this too. Because it’s easy. You pay for a game upfront, and as soon as it comes in we ship it to you. This also subsidises our cashflow. Your money actually buys this month’s new releases. Then, next month, someone else gives us the money for your game*. This piggy-backing is great – until the money runs out. Or until a business goes bust, and you’re unlikely to get a refund.
Few FLGS would do that – they wouldn’t usually take your money and expect you to wait forever (except, perhaps, a deposit). So we did some digging with our website. Could we create a system that means we have the certainty of payment so we don’t over-order and create a ton of waste, but we don’t hold your money for ages? Surely, if it was that easy, someone would already be doing this?
24 hours later we produced a solution.
It’s really simple.
- You click the ‘preorder now’ button
- You input your details
- We don’t charge your card until the game is with us – usually about 7 days before the official release date.
One small note – you can only preorder 1 game at a time, and you cannot add ‘in stock’ games at the same time. Sorry, at the moment, our payment system would be unable to differentiate between the games to be sent now, and those sent at different times, and it would risk being charged for the whole order twice – so the website simply won’t allow it. It’ll kick other things out of your cart when you add a preorder item.
Now, there is an increased cost to us in running this system – just like there is with the subscription service we offer. So at the moment we’re trialling it to see if this is a system people really want. And there’s so many 1000s of products we could put on our website it would take an age to list them all, so if there’s anything you’d like to preorder you don’t see, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org – we’ll get it online asap.
What if your card changes, or your address changes, or something else? Anything to do with deliveries, you can email us and we’ll make the changes for you. Anything to do with the card – don’t worry. When we come to take payment, you’ll get an automatic email saying the card was declined and please input a new one. It takes 2 minutes.
So, do let us know what you think, and let us know what you’d like us to make available for preorder!
*Just to address the elephant in the room – what if you’ve already preordered something with us and paid in advance? We’d politely ask, if possible, please don’t cancel and reorder – because we incur fees 🙂