Amazon Thinks Ahead

I like Amazon.com and I’ve never been ashamed to admit that. I buy pretty much everything I can on Amazon, compare prices using the site, and have had nothing but good experiences with the company. I agree with most of the ways they do things and I like using the site. Given all this, I wasn’t surprise when I found out something that Amazon does that’s pretty cool; they think ahead.

I had to have something I bought on Amazon sent to a PO Box. With some companies, this is a painful experience at best. Carriers like FedEx, UPS, and DHL can’t deliver to PO Boxes because they’re run by the US Post Office (obviously, a competitor to the aforementioned companies). Only the US Postal Service (USPS) can deliver to PO boxes. A lot of big product companies use different algorithms to decide which carrier to use based on pricing, distance, delivery time, etc. I believe that Amazon does this, but for customers with a PO box, they do something better.

With Amazon, every customer who puts the words “PO Box” in their shipping address will automatically get their package shipped via USPS. It’s as simple as that. No worrying about returned packages, no lack of delivery guarantees because it’s a PO box, etc.

This isn’t a complicated thing to make work behind the scenes. It might cost Amazon a little bit more than their “optimal” carriers for regular home delivery, but it saves their customers a lot of hassle. Companies that act this way and think ahead about what sort of problems certain types of customers can run into and then work to address those problems quickly and efficiently tend to do well when it comes to customer service and the customer service experience. I thought this was a great example of how Amazon handled the situation.

photo credit: thisisbossi

6 Responses to “Amazon Thinks Ahead”

  1. Sara said:

    Aug 22, 09 at 10:19 pm

    While one of the reasons for not delivering to a PO box is the reason you mentioned..another reason (one that in some cases may be more important) is from a risk perspective – sending to PO boxes is one major sign of credit card fraud. especially with internet orders, 1 fraudulent order can be very detrimental to both the retailer and the credit card companies involved.

  2. Service Untitled» Blog Archive » Simple Returns with Amazon.com said:

    Aug 31, 09 at 12:13 pm

    […] know this is my second pro-Amazon post in a week or so (the first was this one: Amazon Thinks Ahead), but that’s just a coincidence that resulted from me using Amazon a lot over the last three […]

  3. Piedmont repairs said:

    Sep 05, 09 at 2:40 am

    I also like Amazon really well.The thing is if u start using Amazon ,You can never forget that.

  4. RV said:

    Oct 05, 09 at 5:28 pm

    While one of the reasons for not delivering to a PO box is the reason you mentioned..another reason (one that in some cases may be more important) is from a risk perspective – sending to PO boxes is one major sign of credit card fraud. especially with internet orders, 1 fraudulent order can be very detrimental to both the retailer and the credit card companies involved.

  5. Business services said:

    Oct 13, 09 at 11:53 pm

    Great post! I agree 100% and a P.O. Box can make life a little easier. Just remembered, I need to renew my P.O. Box

  6. gregoryshawn484 said:

    Jul 12, 11 at 11:43 am

    Well done. I am floored with the value of the information presented. I hope that you keep up with the good work succesfully done.
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