csa1776 wrote:A couple comments on deals.woot from a black-box wooter
First deals.woot order I placed was for Dilleyo sheets. Never could get the button to work for ordering one at the Woot price. Eventually noticed that it said "expired" but I was able to order at the non-Woot price about $1 more. So first, why did it show up in the top five at right of screen if not available at woot price?
Second the price differential was too small for the hassle of signing up at a new site. I trust Woot's deals so much I no longer bother to comparison shop anymore (340 woots and counting!). But I am not yet convinced that the deals.woot site has the same quality of discounts. Without the great price, the 3-clicks to order, and the known great service from Woot, I am less attracted to the alternate sales. For example, I am already deluged with offers of free shipping at Overstock and don't need to see this again at woot.
I'd prefer some integration with my Woot account since I hate tracking passwords and retyping account info ad infinitum. And then I like to be able to see my purchases listed all in one place too.
Is there a page to explain the layout and options of the deals.woot site? I'm confused by the red pentagons everywhere, by being redirected to other sites, by whatever difference there is between promo and sponsored, etc.
Finally, I trust that woot will straighten all of this out since the woot.com (and wine.woot) have gotten better and better over time.
PS - I really enjoy the woot text - I even save some to show my kids how to write short stories.
Excellent post - you've nailed quite a few feedback elements we've heard separately.
Certainly a high level confusion here is reflective of our lack of announcement on the intent/direction of this site to anyone - certainly it was a very raw introduction process to the concept - the current explanation on the "beta update" message and the text of the email invites will be adjusted as we expand. Also, we definitely plan to make much more in the way of training/explanatory content on the site itself. Admittedly, it's somewhat a mismatch that we had our highest valued black-box wooters callously introduced to semi-broken versions of a site, but I'm still pleased that we followed that plan - it feels like a bold & progressive move to me. Hopefully by the time we're done, the evolution of the site based on feedback will be impressive and it's different-from-woot value proposition understood. In all honesty though, the site may be less about what black-box users wanted to see and more about the inverse of that. i.e. highlighting the best deals on the internet that woot does NOT offer is not exactly a match for our most loyal supporters needs
some other more specific responses:
1. Sponsor deal logistics/accuracy: There have been some glitches in the sponsored section as staff simultaneously started contacting sponsor candidates when the private beta opened. I wasn't aware of one with the sheets, but I'll follow up on it to see what happened. As sites featured in this section figure out how to deal with the sponsored section timing and specs we should be able to avoid most. With 150 spots here a month, many sponsors will have repeated offerings win a spot and with that repetition things will go a lot smoother for all.
2. I'd offer two responses on your value proposition comment - one is full agreement that the hurdle is high since the store needs to compel you to sign up on their site in this current phase of operation. Stores must give wooters a deal worth this hassle or they will fail and the sponsored section will be boring.
Second response is that we've released the site to about 0.1% of our active audience - leverage and competition for deals spots is very low in this phase. We're giving away these spots free and training (and learning with) sponsors what works and what doesn't - value should improve as they understand and we bring a critical mass audience to the table. Also, I should admit that the Overstock free shipping deal was an outright mistake - a miss-communication within the staff occurred on that being up there and not down in the promo tab area.
3. Regarding a more integrated site, and generally other improvements: there are definitely short term and long term goals already identified here on deals.woot - fuller integration with other retailers is something we'll study closely. It does have its pros and cons - for instance, in some cases a retailer may be more willing to feature something at an incredible price with the expectation that Wooters will join up in a direct fashion and become a customer of that store. Obviously a direct sign up process puts that value proposition right up front for the retailer to benefit from and ideally the discount/opportunity must compel you to take the leap. We'll also be considering the customer service implications of supporting Wooters and providing a safety net when dealing with sponsor stores.
Anyways, it's easy for me to ramble there, but I wanted to offer up some of our thought process and say that your commentary is right on target and appreciated.