Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Online Outlet Store

From time to time on my blog, I will do reviews of websites I've been asked to look at, sort of like a survey where I share the results with people. I receive compensation for doing these reviews, but they don't tell me what I have to say, or even that I have to say nice things. All the opinions contained herein are entirely my own.

Today I took a look at a website called http://www.bedbathstore.com. This is an online outlet store that concentrates, as you might have guessed from the name, mostly on items for the bedroom and bathroom. This works for me, as I have many needs regarding beds and bathrooms. A certain member of the household who shall remain nameless peed through four outfits today (and on the changing table!), so the first and most important place to look was crib bedding. A waterproof sheet just ain't gonna cut it sometimes! ;) 

Bedbathstore.com seems to specialize in crib bedding sets, and some of the sets are very cute indeed! I liked that there were unit prices for the sets and individual prices for the items as well. I was always frustrated when I was working on my layette because I didn't want things like a comforter or a crib bumper, which are dangerous for babies, but every set seemed to have both, and charge for them! I would much rather be able to pick and choose my pieces. They have things divided up into girl sets and boy sets, which I don't think is optimal since sometimes people want gender neutral sets they can use from child to child, but the pictures were clear and the menu easy to follow. 

The site also had plenty of mattress pads, including waterproof pads, though I couldn't find anything I wanted because I couldn't find a way to sort by bed size, and there was no separate listing for waterproof crib pads. The selection was good, and most items seemed to come in common adult bed prices. While I was on my quest for mattress pads, I ventured over into kids' bedding, but didn't find any there either. There were lots of kids' bedding sets, and even some clearance items, mostly fleece blankets. The sets were neat looking, and there were more categories for kids' bedding than for babies, which was nice. 

I did a little research on prices, which I always do when I'm thinking about buying something. The prices at bedbathstore.com are similar to those at Amazon, and I didn't find anything that really screamed "super-good bargain." I was intrigued by the personalized coupons the site offered me when I signed on. At first it offered me 10% off, but when I clicked to get the offer, it took me to a broken page, so that was no good. Then it offered me a discount for being an Indiana shopper, but I'm not in Indiana, so I don't know that that would apply to me either. Finally, it offered me free shipping for a $49.00 purchase instead of the typical 89, and asked me to put in my email address. I did, but when I went to look at my shopping cart, it told me that the coupon code was expired. For those of you playing along at home, that was three offers in a row that didn't work, and none that did. 

Overall, I think Bedbathstore.com is a site with potential that needs to work out its interface problems. The coupons are what have the potential to push it into the category of a site I'd like to shop at, but none of them work on my common browser. Having a better interface that makes it easier to find things would be really nice too. I may check back some other time with Internet Explorer to see if it makes any of the coupon problems go away, but I'm just not a real fan of sites that make it so hard for me to shop. 

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