An anonymous poster wrote:
> Has anyone had trouble with this outfit? I've got very polite answers and semi-prompt emails but
> their shipping is the slowest I've encountered. I've only ordered twice so my experience is
> limited, but it takes 2-3 days before they ship. I am close enough that UPS ground takes only one
> day (same area code- but too far to drive). They are polite but SLOOOWWW. They take so long I'm
> thinking of refusing the order I'm waiting on now (should have been here 3 days ago) and just
> ordering from someone else out of spite. They were so nice the first time I went ahead and ordered
> from them again. Fool me once shame on you...fool me twice, shame on me I guess!!!
Being in somewhat the same line of work, I'd like to stick up for Cambria a bit, even though they
are a competitor.
Those of us who do a lot of internet shopping are a bit spoiled by the likes of Amazon.com, CDnow,
ClubMac and the like. These very large companies have highly sophisticated, very expensive software
that they are able to amortize because of their high volume.
They are working with highly predictable products, all of similar size and shape, which can be filed
easily in a numerical-based warehousing system. Order filling for this sort of merchandise can be
Bicycle parts, by comparison, come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some of them quite awkward to
inventory and package. They don't generally have SKU numbers and even if they did, it would be very
inefficient in terms of space usage to file them by the SKU numbers, because rims are much bigger
than derailers, and handlebars are bulky.
Selling bicycle parts by mail-order is MUCH more labor-intensive than dealing with simple
rectangular flat products, or even electronic equipment that comes already packaged in
shock-resistant boxes from the manufacturer.
Business is cyclical, there are busy times and slack times. If you have enough hands to provide
instant turnaround in the busy times, you have to lay people off in the slack times. If you follow
this practice, the folks that get hired back are not likely to be as competent as regular employees.
In my experience a 2 or 3 day delay in shipping should not be considered extraordinary, when dealing
with this sort of merchandise, unless special rush service was requested.
Sheldon "Small Business Isn't Easy" Brown +-------------------------------------+
| Natural laws have no pity. | --Robert A. Heinlein |
+-------------------------------------+ Harris Cyclery, West Newton, Massachusetts Phone
617-244-9772 FAX 617-244-1041 http://harriscyclery.com
Hard-to-find parts shipped Worldwide