I have an addiction and before we go any further, you should know, I don’t plan to give it up. Yes, I am addicted to Amazon.com. They make it so easy. They bend over backwards to keep you happily connected to them, while seemingly oblivious to all the money you’re spending, so that you want to shop there. Again and again. I imagine the folks who work at Amazon gather in a large meeting room with their mugs of Seattle-brewed coffee and put their feet up on the table (people who work in web jobs tend to be über casual) and come up with a slew of ways to make connections with each customer. Well, whatever they do, it works on me. They had me at hello.
Here’s why: Amazon makes me feel like we’re in a relationship, emailing me everyday, noticing what I buy, what I like, complimenting me on the wise shopping decisions they say I make, then making recommendations for me based on past purchases. “As someone who has purchased fiction from Amazon, you might be interested in…” They never ask if I actually had time to read all the books I’ve ordered. No guilt, no making me feel bad about the stacks of books piling up, waiting for me to read. They just want to make sure I buy more. My inbox is filled with emails they send me.
Amazon is also like having an executive assistant: they remind me about birthdays so I can buy Amazon gifts from the recommended list. I don’t have to even think about what to get, Amazon takes care of that for me. This comes in handy, though I do wish they could also remind me about upcoming doctor appointments, when my car’s oil needs to be changed and when I need to make an appointment with my hairdresser because my roots are showing.
Say what you want, but I really enjoy shopping on Amazon, especially since I became a Prime member. Prime means “first in importance” which is what I must be to them now that I’ve plunked down my $79 a year for this service. I’m always guaranteed two-day delivery, except on the weekends, or I can get overnight delivery for an extra $3.99. No sooner do I click to make a purchase that it’s boxed and shipped out in minutes. No fuss, no muss. No chance to change my mind! It’s as if they’ve assigned me one person to be at the ready for when I’m shopping on their web site. Someone who’s never asleep at the wheel, a job I would fail miserably doing. I click and they’re already processing my order and withdrawing the funds from my bank account. Seconds later, the email arrives that my order is ready to be shipped.
The iPhone, makes it’s even easier to buy on Amazon. The other night I was watching The Daily Show and Jon Stewart was interviewing an author whose book seemed intriguing. I picked up my iPhone, went to the Amazon app and found the book. Then I just clicked “Buy Now.” There’s no need to add it to my shopping cart, no need to sign in. Amazon knows me. So I just click “buy now” and voila! The book is on its way!
You can buy just about anything from Amazon. My friends laugh at me because I buy my cereal on Amazon. I’m on the Subscribe and Save plan for my cereal and also my vitamins, which means I get 15% off and I set the terms regarding when they should send me my next shipment (about every two months). And if I need them faster, I can click “Ship Now.” I could explain why I can’t buy my cereal locally, but that’s another story.
I’ve been an Amazon enthusiast (to call me a “customer” doesn’t capture the depths of this relationship, if you ask me) since November 30, 1998. That was when I made my first purchase, some holiday VHS tapes, which clearly dates me and my relationship with Amazon. Since then, Amazon has supplied me with countless books and supported me through my transition to DVD’s. Amazon also sold me a 40-inch HD TV, followed by a blu-ray player, orange sandals, a filter for my air conditioning unit, several pedometers, a Hoover vacuum cleaner guaranteed to pick up pet hair and so much more.
Let it be known: if it exists, you can probably buy it on Amazon. And that’s why I’m sticking with my addiction.