The customer is always right, right? Well, there’s probably about as many spins on that as there are zip codes. The truth is that sometimes, for whatever reason, customer requests simply cannot reasonably be fulfilled. Case in point from our recent files: A customer ordered a rather expensive item and in the order notes wrote: Leave on Front Porch.
Now our cost on this item – the amount we stood to loose if we allowed the shipping company to just ‘leave it on the porch’ – was about $620. We know nothing about her porch – we don’t know if it’s hidden away or readily accessible to the neighbor thieves. In fact, we know nothing about the neighborhood or the city she lives in. Bottom line, this request was beyond the level of risk we were willing to take. If the item had been a $20 item, we probably would not have thought twice about it.
So the item was shipped “signature required” and a note to the customer went out explaining in the best way possible, why we could not just ‘leave it on the porch’. As a side note, if you have constraints like that, it’s good to have them documented in your published shipping policy. Something like “if the item value is more than $100, we will need a signature upon delivery”.
Sometimes in the course of running your home-based business, you just have to balance out risk factors with customer requests.