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That’s not how it works

The ‘Express’ Lane

I ordered from a companies website the other day for pick-up. They open at 9:00 am, and I placed my order around 9:15 am, arriving around 10:15 am. I walk-in, and use the ‘Express Order‘ line to gather my goods. At this point, I’m in no rush, as I could simply walk into the same place, use the regular line, and go in to buy my goods in a similar amount of time. Express = Your stuff is bagged, and you might cut 1 person in line saving 3-4 minutes. The place was completely dead either way with zero customers.

The woman remarks “I don’t get here until 10 am so if you order before that time the stuff won’t be ready. Also, all of these products are sold out”

Me: “I’m just using the website the way it was designed

She replies “Well, this is for NEXT TIME so you know what to do. This time I will help you by going to grab the stuff that you want”

Me: Thanks, but couldn’t you just send me through the regular line where I’d already be gone by now? There are two other cashiers, with zero customers. Couldn’t you set the website so it doesn’t take any express orders before 10 am when the person handling these arrives? Could you folks do inventory every night so people in the morning don’t order sold out products?


Listen, I’m not one to sit around and argue with people in public places. The problem is there are those out there who will project the inefficiencies of business on YOU as the customer. Does this lady plan on ‘training’ all of her customers one-by-one to deal with this website ordering mishap? I don’t think she has any plans on fixing it because then she wouldn’t have anything to complain about.

If people aren’t “getting” something about a rule, or workflow at your business, maybe you need to make it more clear. Add a sign, or change the existing one. Publish the rules to a website, or make them clear in the lobby. Program your tools to follow your workflows. i.e., Prevent impossible orders at times you’re not open. Any more suggestions and I’ll need to send over a bill for consulting hours.

Want to improve the customer experience at your business? Don’t blame external people for your internal confusion. That’s not how it works!

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