What’s in stock at Pier 1 anyway?

Summer means spending time outdoors, so lots of people are shopping for outdoor furniture. There’s nothing quite like wicker, and it was a search for this that brought me to the Pier 1 Imports ecommerce site. I found that browsing for furniture on this site is fine, but buying it? Well, that’s another story. Take a look.

When I first arrived on the home page, I immediately noticed the large “Let’s Shop” tab on the top. Mousing over this opens a huge drop-down menu that provides different ways to shop and categories to choose from. One feature of this menu I found to be really cool was in the Category tab. As you move your mouse over the different main categories, like Dining & Entertaining or Furniture & Living, the product image at the bottom changes to match. There is also a little message at the bottom that highlights a particular offer or product line within that category. Nice touch!

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Within the Furniture & Living category, I selected Papasan & Wicker. On this category page, I found another cool feature. As you mouse over a product image, a small expanded window opens that gives you a little more information about the product, which is pretty nice. However, I noticed that one of the things this window tells you is whether or not the product is in stock. As I scrolled around within this category, I found that many of these items were out of stock or unavailable online. It would be nice to be able to filter these products out… But I can’t. I would suggest Pier 1 add a sorting or filtering option so that shoppers can view only the items that are actually available for purchase online!

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Now, I did click through to the product page of one of these out of stock items. This is where things got even weirder. It told me this papasan chair is not available online, but the Add to Basket button is still there, and it still works. I added it to my cart, even though it would seem that I couldn’t… That’s strange. Also it seems odd that the chair bowl is unavailable but the base is in stock. Not sure how much good that does me!

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As you might imagine, when I viewed my cart, there was a warning in red text telling me that my cart can’t be ordered because some of the products are unavailable. No kidding! Then why was I even allowed to add it to my cart in the first place? It seems like the Add to Basket button should be disabled for products that aren’t available on the site to avoid this confusion.

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I even attempted to select the option to pick this item up at a store location, but it wouldn’t work and I still got this same message. Basically, Pier 1’s ecommerce site has some major kinks to work out. Make it easy to find the items that are actually in stock, and cut down on some of this confusion. I’m on your site to buy, not get the run around!


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