Newegg.com keeps getting worse

March 27, 2008

I’ve been a computer user for longer than I can remember, but it wasn’t until about 1999-2000 that I started to build my own computers.  I realized that I could build better systems than the cheap Dells and Gateways I had always purchased, with more flexibility in the component choices.  When I first started this, I found a great little site called NewEgg.com.  They had a wide range of choices and they ALWAYS had the lowest price I could find on the Internet.  The order would almost always be filled and shipped the same day I placed the order, and FedEx would usually end up delivering the package a day BEFORE it was supposed to be delivered!  All in all, great experiences all around.

Lately, however, I’ve noticed more and more things going wrong over at NewEgg.  First off is the prices.  Over the past year or so, I’ve noticed their prices coming more in line with other retailers, and they’re even more expensive on quite a few items.  Now, I’m not sure if this is because they are raising their prices, or if everyone else is lowering theirs to be more competitive, but it doesn’t matter.  The lowest price was one of the biggest reasons I shopped at NewEgg.

Second, the web site.  Now, I don’t know who the hell designs the NewEgg web site, but the thing is ALWAYS giving me errors.  It doesn’t matter if I use Firefox, IE, or Safari on my Mac or my PC.  The site is just not very well tested.  If I’m not getting logged out at odd times, then the pages either won’t load, load very slowly, or I get 3000 cryptic error messages saying that akamai.net returned an invalid response.

Third, the packaging and shipping.  My orders used to be filled the same day I placed them.  Now, it takes two or three days for my order to leave the warehouse.  That is a big annoyance for me.  I know this may simply be the by-product of massive corporate growth, but this used to be a big selling point for NewEgg.  Now, they’re just like everyone else.  And along these same lines, my orders almost always ship from the California warehouse.  I know in the old days of NewEgg, they had at least a couple different warehouses, one in New Jersey and one in California.  My orders were usually sent from the New Jersey warehouse because I live on the East Coast.  That meant that I would get my package in a day or two.  Now, the only time I get anything from the Jersey warehouse is if it is a small single item, like a stick of memory.  Anything bigger than that and it ships from California.  Did NewEgg scale back their Jersey warehouse recently?  Is it just a memory depot now?

Anyway, all of these things just make NewEgg another generic e-retailer.  They no longer have anything to make me stay a loyal customer.  I’m not saying I won’t still shop there (when I can actually access the web site), but I definitely look around much more at other stores before I click on the PURCHASE button.  In fact, just this morning, I wanted to buy several items from NewEgg, but because of repeated problems with their site (AGAIN), I’m now going to buy the things from Amazon.  The items are a little more expensive at Amazon, but at least their site works and they offer free shipping on the order.

I hope NewEgg regains it’s crown, but they need to step up their game to stand out from the crowd again.  They need to get back to basics and focus on the customer again instead of the bottom line.


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