Want to fire up a bunch of PC users? Sell them a slim,14-inch computer, and when you realize you’ve screwed up your ordering system, try to sell them on a bulky 15-inch computer.
Congratulations are in order for Dell, which employed this tactic and managed to cause its fair share of outrage. It all happened when the clock struck Black Friday, and users flocked to the Dell website to purchase the Inspiron 14z, which was marked down from $599 to $299.
The Huffington Post
describes what happened next:
“… the problem originated with the high volume of traffic to the website and server issues on Black Friday that allowed the site to continue to receive orders, even after the computers had sold out.
“[Dell spokeswoman Jennifer Davis] Dell was impacted by the fact that the company already had a limited quantity of the units, and then by the site's delay. ‘When servers began operating again, those orders went through,' she said.”
Three days later, customers received an email saying that Dell was replacing the unavailable Inspiron 14z with the Inspiron 15—deemed by many to be an “inferior product. Emphatic no thank yous followed.
Dell, meanwhile, is adding customer service representatives to handle the spike in calls.