The majority of calls, inbound to customer service, are from customers asking about the status of their orders. These situations are resolved in only a few ways: the easy, the intermediate, and the ugly way. The easy way: the order just took longer to process or ship, but is now in transit to its destination with tracking available to the customer. The intermediate way: the manufacturer did not have any available stock for the item at the time of the order, thus delaying the shipment of the order; however, they’ve received stock and are shipping the order. Then, of course, there’s the ugly way: the item has been backordered in the supplier’s system, and is not shipping anytime soon.
What does the term backorder mean?
A “backorder” is when a supplier has no available stock for an item. The term backorder comes from the act of a supplier scheduling a stock replenishment of the out-of-stock item. Some backorder periods are relatively brief (1-2 days), while others can take a month or more. A variety of factors influence the availability of products within a supplier’s product line. Beyond the access to materials through supply chain management, there are products that are more popular than others, and some are seasonal, as well.
As a customer faced with a backorder, what are my options?
Though the call from a customer service representative to notify of the backorder may be dreadful to a customer, it does not make their order hopeless. The customer still has options. Our company conducts business with many different suppliers; just because an item may be out of stock, doesn’t mean a competitor is also out of stock. The circumstance of parallel manufacturers is a possibility, where a supplier possesses a similar product line as another, offering an alternative brand to the customer. Alternatives are also present within a single supplier, depending on the variety of colors and sizes of a product offered. An alternative color or size could mean a difference in weeks for the customer to receive an item.
It is the goal of customer service to keep the customer as up to date as possible with their orders. This means making the customer aware of any delay in the shipment of their order, as soon as possible. Not only are there representatives monitoring orders that haven’t shipped, they also communicate daily with the respective suppliers to catch any backorder. However, being a proactive customer is always advisable. If a customer feels their order is taking too long, they should call customer service for an update on their order.
For any questions about past, present or future orders, please contact customer service at (800) 892-3622, for Instawares.com. A customer service representative is available to assist you with any of your order needs.