There is an annoying repetitive task we are dealing with in our webshop each day. This is a problem that could be solved with a couple of lines of code but would make us this task at least four times smaller.
A customer registers and makes an error or typo in his data. He then places his first order and the wrong data gets copied in three additional places, so we have at least four instances of the very same error:
- in his main account data
- in his saved address data (making sure the error gets repeated in all of his further orders also)
- the current order's billing address
- the order's shipping address
He then receives the notification mail about the placed order, and notices the error. But most of the time we see it when we prepare his order for shipping. In average we have 15-20% of first customers whose data need some editing.
(we have lots of customers with accent characters in their names like á, many type it as à, â, ã, ä, it is easy to mix up these letters on a small on-screen keyboard of a phone. You would think this does not matter, but yes it does, the DHL shipping labels just leave out the character we don't have in our language, just imagine a name instead of the correct 'Újkővágó Péter' when customer entered 'Ůjkôvàgò Pèter' of which the customer think it is OK, looks very similar, and would be no problem for the courier to deliver the package to, but DHL Express shipping system makes it much worse: it makes jkvg Pter out of this, just leaves out invalid characters So we have to definitely correct all these typing errors before shipping.
There are of course other problems, a more apparent typo, like Srteet instead of Street, or in cases of a missing house number, or insufficient numbers in a phone number, etc, we have to contact the customer and correct these errors. Sometimes the customer asks us to correct his address.
...but even worse when many times the customer tries to correct the error himself: He just logs in and corrects the error in his account data and thinks it is enough. But the error keeps coming and coming again at the next orders: 9 of 10 customer forget to edit the same error in their saved address data.
And there is not even a possibility for him to correct the current order's data. Or at least we should get a notification, that the house number just got corrected in the main account data just 5 minutes after he placed the order with the wrong data. This would be a very easy job for the program but a very difficult problem for us to notice now.
The most annoying issue: We have to edit the very same error in at least four different instances.
This could be very easily programmed into the system with the following logic: when editing the main entry just look at these four instances and if they contain the same string before editing, then just make the same update in all these four records.
My second suggestion: When the customer edits his main account data, at least show him a message that he should check all his stored addresses also whether they need the same correction. Much better would be to autocorrect these also with the above simple logic.
My third suggestion: Implement an optional editable replace-invalid-characters-rule to all customer address data. Even a simple 'Ujkovago Peter' (a non-accented version) would be perfectly fine for us, it would not disrupt the connected shipping system we copy the address data to.