Let’s imagine that I visit a physical bookshop and pick up a book I’m very interested in. The next step is going to the cashpoint and paying for it. The transaction most often ends after I hand over my card or cash. No customer registration or de-registration, quick and easy.
Now let’s imagine that I go to an online store to buy that book and head to the checkout. Then a “light” exchange takes place, whereby I am asked to give my:
- Zip Code
- Password (why do have to choose a password? Who said that I want to register in your website? I just want to buy a book).
- Gender (WHY? Are you sending me a present with the book? Are you trying to chat me up?)
- Date of birth (WTF? Either you want to give me a discount for my birthday or I’ll get upset if you don’t congratulate me on Facebook)
- ID card number (That’s a good one. WTH? What about foreigners? Don’t you want to sell abroad? Are you phishing me?)
- Family members in the home and their dates of birth (.. seriously, why?)
- And so on: many more weird fields which make you mutter: “What the f… do they want this for?”
After all this, you have a shopping experience which, among other things, includes resignation for having had to provide even the size of your underpants. But the worst is still to come – that wonderful moment when you feel all-powerful and say: “I’m going to close my account, I don’t want to have my data hovering around”. You go to your profile and… no….NO!!! No link or form to close your account in this online store! NOOOOOOOOO! :-(.
However, browsing through the website, you find a FAQ or Help section which describes how to close your account. It says “….send a FAX including a photocopy of your ID card to the number….”
What the HELL are you talking about?
Please, readers: if you have an online store and you allow your users to make purchases without previously registering, don’t ask for any more than is required. You will only make your customers frustrated and unlikely to buy again – and there’s no way they will become loyal customers. Easy’s the word.
And that’s today’s complaint