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When marketing automation goes bad

Friday I attempted to make a purchase online. I go through the selection and checkout process … up through the payment choices. When I pick pay by credit card I get an error message that says “credit card expiration date wrong.” All very strange because I’ve not put in a credit card number or expiration date.

I try and call, but it’s a holiday weekend and no one is around. Fine, I’ll make the purchase Tuesday (Easter monday is a national holiday here) when things are working again or I can call the store and order by phone.

This particular store has some abandoned cart automation. Which means that for the last 3 days I’ve gotten morning reminders that there is something left in my cart. Yes. I know. I’d really like to purchase said items. But I can’t, because your website is currently broken.

No one is really at fault here. I’m pretty sure even the most advanced marketing automation doesn’t have a “pause because payment system broken” button. The daily messages are annoying, but that may be because I went and edited the cart (more stuff!) on Sunday.

Maybe marketing automation does need a pause and an interrupt button. This situation is pretty minor in the grand scheme of things. But sometimes big events that rock our world happen and marketing reminders seem so trivial and unimportant. In any case, set and forget is never the answer.

1 comment

  1. Will Knox says

    Amen to that! This issue recently came up for me over the holidays because I manage a lot of B2B email journeys. I found it amazing how hard it was just to get the emails to not send during those weeks and even then, it didn’t stop the timers on the delays between messages. Such an obvious feature and yet the platform doesn’t have it.

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