Gorham’s launches internet order service
Hardware store Gorham’s will today launch a new internet express order service.
And the company said that ordering online with goods shipped in using Gorham’s cargo containers was cheaper than air freight.
Rod Farrington, a senior manager at Gorham’s, said: “We do not add mark-up fees for the goods ordered.
“The only fees collected by Gorham’s is for the freight, duty, insurance and a handling fee for large shipments — and because it’s coming in by ocean cargo rather than air, it’s significantly cheaper.”
He added: “We look at this as a great way to get customers into the store and if we don’t have what they’re looking for we can help them find it online.”
Mr Farrington said that the Pembroke store had been “testing the waters” for the new service for two years, with selected customers allowed to ship items in through Gorham’s, which allowed the company to monitor the results and refine the process.
He added: “There has been a long trend in Bermuda with shoppers looking for more variety who go online and order their goods.
“When you talk to any retailer today about internet buying, 99 per cent of the time they want to run in the other direction, but we decided two years ago we wouldn’t stick our heads in the sand about this and instead embrace it by offering shipping services for items clients couldn’t find in Bermuda.”
Mr Farrington said that online shoppers usually found what they wanted on a store’s website, bought it themselves and shipped it to an overseas address.
Using one of the four Express Order Centre terminals, customers can now order at Gorham’s and have the shipping handled by the company.
Mr Farrington said: “We bring in whatever they order on our containers and by law we have to be the ones who finalise the order.
“Most people come in with a clear idea of what they already want, be it from Amazon.com or Wayfair, they print out the items, bring it to us and we will help them order it.
“Others can take their time and browse on one of our computers to find the best deal.
“They pay for the items as usual, but the benefit is we are able to go to another screen which calculates the freight, duty and insurance up front so there are no additional costs or hidden surprises to deal with later.”
Mr Farrington added that the average time for an order to arrive was three weeks, with the firm calling the customer to arrange collection.
And he said: “The Express Order Centre is especially useful for the inexperienced internet customers who aren’t comfortable buying online. They come in and sit down with our staff and leave feeling satisfied with their purchase.
“When they walk out, the product is 100 per cent paid for and all they have to do is collect it once it arrives.
“We’ve seen people order everything from furniture to baby supplies and clothes as well. We don’t restrict it as long as it abides by the laws of Bermuda.”
Orders have a minimum charge of four cubic feet and orders more than 20 cubic feet get a discounted freight cost.
For more information, visit Gorham’s order specialist Wanda Brown at the store or log on to www.gorhams-ltd.com