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Changes to Riding Warehouse shipping prices and minimums?

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    Changes to Riding Warehouse shipping prices and minimums?

    I just went to order something from Riding Warehouse - my go-to online tack store - for the first time since early December and noticed that the minimum for free shipping is now $75 (the same as Smartpak, unless you subscribe to Smartpaks, in which case shipping is always free), and the supplement for 2-day shipping, which used to be an amazing deal at $5, is now a very typical and only-when-absolutely-necessary $15. As far as I know, unless I missed something, this was slipped in without any announcement, which makes me extremely grumpy - I’ve always loved RW for their great customer service, responsiveness, and honest dealings among other things, and the fact that they didn’t make this change in an above-board fashion makes me struggle not to feel a little less kindly inclined toward them.

    Plus I’m just so disappointed. I like buying from them so much; for years I’ve used them almost exclusively except for those few items I needed that they don’t offer,. Hell, I’d probably be willing to buy a “Riding Warehouse Prime” subscription if they offered one, in order to get free fast shipping all the time lol!! But for me there’s much less reason to always order from them now, with such a high free shipping threshold and regular slow shipping speeds (esp on the east coast, since they’re on the west). Sometimes I need things faster than that.

    i guess it was too good to last.

    #2
    I noticed that too, however, they did give me a free return shipping lable and free shipping back on my exchange item.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by js View Post
      I noticed that too, however, they did give me a free return shipping lable and free shipping back on my exchange item.
      It's only free if you're already in California, unless I'm reading the instructions wrong.

      I am also really disappointed in their new free shipping policy. I often ordered more from them because they had a lower minimum. Now I'll shop around.
      http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

      Comment

        Original Poster

        #4
        Originally posted by enjoytheride View Post

        I often ordered more from them because they had a lower minimum. Now I'll shop around.
        Exactly. I used to go straight to them, but no more. I already today bought something elsewhere I’d formerly have gone straight to RW for. And there’s less of a reason for me now not to buy from smarttpak, from which I get free shipping on everything even if it takes forever (though to be fair RW generally has better prices and offers sale prices on more items - we’ll see if that changes too).

        Again, I feel it’s a pretty extensive bunch of changes, and a big alteration to their long-touted business model, to try to slip past and hope no one notices.

        Comment


          #5
          I always felt like Riding warehouse had slow shipping, but given that it was free if above $50 it made up for things.

          That's also a huge jump to go from $5 two day shipping to $15

          Also, Smartpak ships free if you order smartpaks or if you have the barn buddy program.
          http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

          Comment


            #6
            I've literally never seen an announcement from any retail company when they change their shipping policies and prices. Is this actually something people expect?

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by enjoytheride View Post

              It's only free if you're already in California, unless I'm reading the instructions wrong.

              .
              From the Riding Warehouse site:
              Free Return Shipping

              • Free return shipping is available for orders shipped within the 48 contiguous United States. Exceptions include oversized items and drop ship items.

              Comment


                #8
                I will still use them. $75 isn't hard to reach as a minimum, and they always ship fast to me (WA state) so I've never needed to upgrade to faster shipping. If I'm close to that minimum, I can always find something like cookies or salt blocks to bump it up. I'm totally sympathetic to them raising the minimum and the extra as shipping costs have really gone up - I'm trying to sell some things on eBay right now, which I haven't done in over a year, and am SHOCKED at how much the shipping is these days. High enough that my "donate" box is getting way more full than my "sell" box as I'm cleaning out my tack room.

                Comment

                  Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by mmeqcenter View Post
                  I've literally never seen an announcement from any retail company when they change their shipping policies and prices. Is this actually something people expect?
                  Yes I definitely have. Not necessarily for a standard incremental increase in shipping fees, but I can certainly recall instances where a company notified me that due.to increases in their shipping costs or whatever, they were in a position of having to increase the fees they charged customers, sometimes with an explanation that they weren't making a profit on shipping or were only charging actual costs etc etc.
                  ​​​​​​
                  As a other example, Amazon Prime notifies me every year when they increase the cost of Prime membership, which includes other things but whose primary cost to Amazon is "free" 2-day air, from what I understand.

                  In a situation like this, where the shipping policy has been one cornerstone on which it bases its distinction from and superiority to other similar online retailers, yes I do expect some sort of explanation when they eliminate 2 of the 3 fundamental elements of that policy ($75 minimum, $5 upgrade, free returns for a year).

                  And to me it only makes sense, when you eliminate a huge reason for your customers' loyalty (even - or especially! - if you have a good reason for it), to do something to try to maintain the good will you built up, rather than just sneak it in and hope it won't make a difference...

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Sure, a notification of increase to a yearly subscription to active members makes sense. But to just arbitrarily send a message to all past customers to tell them shipping policies have changed isn't something I'd expect or deem necessary.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I just placed an order this week and didn't notice, but even though I was only intending to get a few tubes Ulcergard a few other things found their way into my cart so it was over $75. I'm in CA and got it overnight. I also appreciate that they don't have freight charges for supplements.
                      http://trainingcupid.blogspot.com/

                      Comment

                        Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by mmeqcenter View Post
                        Sure, a notification of increase to a yearly subscription to active members makes sense. But to just arbitrarily send a message to all past customers to tell them shipping policies have changed isn't something I'd expect or deem necessary.
                        How about something on their FB page, or on their shipping policies page? How about a note in one of their periodic emails if you’re on their mailing list? It’s not hard - businesses communicate in all sorts of ways! And I consider this more than just an everyday “change in shipping policies” - these policies have been there, as far as I can recall, since RW started, and are a not-insignificant part of what they’ve built their brand on. The changes are major enough to potentially alter my shopping behavior and loyalties. So once again, yes, I do expect them to offer me the courtesy of an explanation if they want a chance of keeping that loyalty.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by enjoytheride View Post

                          It's only free if you're already in California, unless I'm reading the instructions wrong.

                          I am also really disappointed in their new free shipping policy. I often ordered more from them because they had a lower minimum. Now I'll shop around.
                          That's what my return label said too; however, I'm not in California and I wasn't charged anything. In fact got a $1.94 refund because the exchange item was $1.94 less.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by Amordoro View Post
                            …...As a other example, Amazon Prime notifies me every year when they increase the cost of Prime membership, which includes other things but whose primary cost to Amazon is "free" 2-day air, from what I understand......
                            This is why I initially got an Amazon Prime membership; however, Amazon cannot provide 2-day air delivery where I live. They never mentioned that the 2-day air may not be available to all locations, so I canceled my prime membership. I can get free shipping anyway, just have to accept the 5-7 day delivery, which is what it took to get the prime membership 2 day air delivery.

                            I still use Smart Pak a lot but their shipping has become slow and when multiple items are ordered often they are shipped separately and at different times. I'll get a huge box with a tiny item stuck in the middle of a box full of bubble wrap.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Amordoro View Post
                              I’ve always loved RW for their great customer service, responsiveness, and honest dealings among other things, and the fact that they didn’t make this change in an above-board fashion makes me struggle not to feel a little less kindly inclined toward them.
                              Does this make their customer service any less great? Are they less responsive and more dishonest now due to a change in shipping policy?

                              What in your book is "above-board"? Does every private company you have done business with need to notify you of shipping policy changes? I don't get this "leap" of judgment. Are companies not allowed to make the business decisions needed to stay in the black? I guess they could start cutting customer service staff to keep the free ship minimum at $50...would that satisfy you?

                              FWIW, I am on the east coast and shop at RW because I can generally find a product cheaper (and in my cob sizes I always need) than at most places. I don't shop there for free shipping.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                I always thought their minimum for free shipping was $75? Not that I could ever order and only spend $75 from there lol. I don't think it will change my business any. There aren't many shops that carry stuff for endurance and they are a huge supporter of my sport. Plus they have awesome customer service
                                No mourners, no funerals

                                Comment

                                  Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  I really don’t find it necessary to defend or justify how I’ve reacted to RW’s policy change and communication thereof. I did shop there in part for the free shipping and cheap 2-day air, and I *do* find the way they’ve handled it to be offputting and to make me inclined to shop around rather than to automatically use them as I have in the past. While I continue to recognize their current strong points, I have even less reason than before to believe I can rely on those; I suspect it’s just a matter of time until the unusually good customer service, free returns, etc, all fall victim to “business decisions needed to stay in the black.” Therefore, it is a fact that I will no longer have the same loyalty to RW that I once did.

                                  It’s possible that RW could have mitigated this somewhat, *for me,* by handling the policy changes differently, even if they were unavoidable.

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    I love Riding Warehouse, and have always thought it was a $75 minimum for free shipping. I recently ordered winter riding tights that were out of stock and they were not getting any more back in stock. Not only did they send me an e-mail notification, but they called me to help find a replacement. Then they actually had the gall to get the order to me two days earlier than anticipated.

                                    Riding Warehouse’s customer service, as well as their selection has always been stellar. I will continue to spend copious amounts of money there, much to my husband’s chagrin!
                                    "You can't fix stupid"- Ron White

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      I'm trying to be sympathetic, really. I'm a loyal RW customer and when I went to their website to place an order, I VERY CLEARLY saw the new shipping minimum and change for the 2 day shipping neatly posted on their HOME PAGE, where their shipping costs have always been listed.

                                      You want a shock, go to USPS and check out their upcoming price hike.

                                      It is what it is. Shit's expensive. USPS didn't send out a letter to every single person who has a mailbox that shipping fees are going up.

                                      FWIW, I heard that RW is no longer offering any 20% off coupon codes and their new standard is 15%. More fodder for your panties-in-a-wad rant.

                                      Editing to add: are small businesses supposed to absorb increasing costs, rather than pass them onto their customers? Our favorite small businesses wouldn't stay in business very long that way...
                                      Last edited by Jo; Jan. 20, 2020, 10:41 AM.

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Three years ago it cost me about $75 for the round trip via UPS to send my saddle to the fitter in Connecticut. It's about 200 miles. This year it was about $115. The one benefit to UPS is that most packages in New England are usually delivered the next day except during the holidays. That information came from a UPS driver. It worked a couple of weeks ago from upstate New York.

                                        We have a tack store here in Maine with an excellent online reputation. Their free shipping kicks in at $100. The owner told me that she tried dropping free shipping to $75 but couldn't do it. She would have been out of business within a few months.

                                        "With hardly any other living being can a human connect as closely over so many years as a rider can with her horse." Isabell Werth, Four Legs Move My Soul. 2019

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