Craft Crush:

Normally my Craft Crushes are reserved for products, perhaps even a technique or two, but never have I crushed on a craft store before.  This situation is unusual however and I wanted to share it with my readers.  After all, great prices and great customer service rarely occur in the same place these days.  You know what I mean.  When was the last time you  felt important at Wal-Mart?

My love affair with Blitsy didn’t start out well.  Back in August they had an amazing price on Julie Nutting Doll stamps.  I ordered quite a few with a special project in mind.  Beneath the description for the stamps it stated that it would take 3 to 5 days to ship, so I knew I’d have to cool my jets a bit and wait a few more days than I’m used to. (I’m an Amazon Prime member, so two day shipping is the norm for me.) However when I got to day 8 and the items hadn’t shipped yet I contacted customer service.  They were kind and patient, even though I was a cranky crafter.  They explained that in order to offer the great prices, they acted as a middle man, getting the shipment themselves and then shipping it to the customer. Although I understood the concept, all I could see was that 3 to 5 days shipping announcement I’d read floating in my head.  Grumpily I explained that and added that if this information had been more clearly indicated I would have ordered with it in mind and not based an important project on it.  Again, the response by customer services was understanding and patient, even though I was not. I was assured that Blitsy was working on improving the communication on the website and the customer experience. It took almost 20 days to get my order. I was sure I’d never do business with again, even though I was issued a $5 credit for my long wait.

Yet I kept finding myself browsing the store, taking note of prices that in most cases, just couldn’t be matched elsewhere, even with a coupon. On Cyber Monday I surprised myself and decided to give a second chance.  Tim Holtz Distress Paints were on sale for $2.74 a bottle and if you know anything about the Tim Holtz products you’ll know this was a true deal.  Plus, let’s face it, that $5 credit was burning a hole in my pocket.  I ordered four bottles of paint and two crafter’s workshop stencils.  All items I’ve been wanting to add to my mixed media supplies.

I immediately noted some differences. Of course, my own expectations were more realistic but Blitsy really had worked to make the process more understandable for customers.  The first place I noticed this was on the products themselves. Instead of just saying “Ships in 3 to 5 days” there is now an explanation of the process which also includes a statement that it could take up to 14 days.  This is a big deal because now on each item you want to order you are reminded that this will take time to reach you.  You can then decide whether the cost savings is worth the wait or not.  I knew up front ordering my items that I may not have them for a few weeks, so didn’t plan any projects around using them.

Another HUGE change was in my Account Dashboard in the order section.  When clicking on my latest order there was an eye-catching checklist letting me know where Blitsy was in the shipping process. If I logged in to check, I knew immediately that they were still waiting for item delivery.  I know it sounds silly, but just knowing that made waiting much easier.  By the way, once Blitsy received the items the turn-around time for shipping them out was amazingly fast.

This order didn’t take quite as long to ship as my previous order either, 9 days to ship from Blitsy and was delivered in 15.  Part of that shipping time is a direct result of the FedEx SurePost system in my area, it always takes a couple of extra days because, to be honest, package delivery through my local post office is rather screwed up. No really, they send our packages to a nearby small city first even though the mail trucks have to drive right by our post office on the way there…see? Screwed up.  And I won’t even mention that most of our mailpersons refuse to drive down our private road at all and instead leave those wonderful orange cards instead. Oops, guess I did mention it, didn’t I?

I was so pleased with the changes Blitsy has made I felt it was only right that I contact them and let them know.  How often are we willing to bitch about something but never think to praise in the same way?  I wanted to let them know I had noticed the effort they had made and their patient customer service on my previous order as well.

Overall, my latest Blitsy experience was a huge success. Partly because of the changes they’ve made in communication the shipping process and partly because my expectations were more realistic because of it.  I highly recommend Blitsy if you’re looking for some great deals and have the patience to wait a bit longer for delivery!

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