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Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2006 at 5:12 pm

Late Stages in the Buying Process of Purchasing a Video iPod

By Melissa Burdon
October 3rd, 2006

Last week, I had the unfortunate experience of having my car broken into and let me just skip to the most horrific part of this story… my video ipod was stolen!

With the time I spend wandering around airports and getting restless in airplanes, you can imagine my panic attack when I realized that my Podcasts, audiobooks, movies, tv shows and music would no longer be accompanying me on my travels.

I’m scheduled to leave on my next trip on October 18th. That gives me three weeks minus a few days to purchase my video ipod, have it shipped to me and transfer all of my entertainment files onto my new best friend!

My quick solution was to hop onto Google, search for ‘video ipod’ and make my purchase. I am specifically interested in finding out one critical piece of information before making my purchase this time. My old video ipod was lacking substantially in battery life when watching any video. It would die after only 1 ½ hours of playing video and I wanted to find out if this feature had been improved and how much battery life I could expect with a new video ipod.


I clicked on the paid advertisement at the top which is the Canadian store. The keyword ‘video ipod’ is not found anywhere in the description or title but I assumed that I would find what I’m looking for simply because I was going right to the source.



There was a long description of the 80GB video ipod. I know that I previously purchased the 30GB and I truly didn’t need anymore storage. My only concern was whether the 30GB battery life had been improved.

The copy on this page clearly describes the features of the 80GB and we can see that this model is expected to have 6 ½ hours of battery life for video. I clicked on ‘Compare Specs’ to try and find out the answer to my question for the 30GB.


Once I scrolled down the page to see the comparison, I was offered a price comparison, the storage space available for songs and the expected battery life in hours when playing music. There is no spec comparison on battery life in hours for video play time. I still needed to find this out so I clicked on the ‘select’ button under the 30GB to see if I could find the answer to my question.


There are no features listed here at all! I didn’t care about engraving my ipod! I simply needed to find out if the new battery life of the 30GB video ipod would meet my needs.

I was in the late stages of my buying process and I simply needed one small piece of information to click the buy button! Why couldn’t they answer my question?!

I attempted one last thing and I clicked on add to cart just to see if the features would be listed once in my cart.


Nope, they failed to answer my question! They are just trying to sell me accessories on this page.

Although it was very difficult to find contact info, I finally found the phone number and was able to find out the answer to my question through speaking with a customer service rep. I made the purchase over the phone and was told that I should expect to see my ipod in 8 days. The confirmation email I was sent upon purchasing said that delivery could take up to 12 days. It’s unfortunate that the info that the rep told me was not consistent with the confirmation email information regarding delivery time but at least the purchase has been made and I will get my video ipod in time for my travels!

Wouldn’t it have been more efficient to just have me purchase online? Perhaps you have customers who weren’t ready to call in an order but who were ready to purchase online. I had my credit card in hand and wouldn’t have had to speak with a customer service rep. All I needed was a point of resolution link somewhere in my buying process that would bring me to the information that would answer my question!

You likely have visitors who are in the late stages of their buying process and they probably have some specific buying decision questions. You must provide these potential customers points of resolution to bring the visitor to the information they are searching for in order for them to complete the sale.

What questions are people asking your customer service reps? Are you tracking this information? Are you updating your content online with the points of resolution to the answers to these questions?

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Comments (5)

  1. Melissa,

    Thanks for the nice post!

    Have you considered getting the 80 gigabyte version just for the battery life? I realize you don’t need the storage but because the 80 gig is slightly thicker, my understanding is that it has significantly better battery life than the 30 gig.


    Dan Wilson

    Apple, Ipod & Roy Williams Fan

  2. I guess after all this, was the battery life improved?

  3. I reccommend getting an iPod touch, its a video ipod and music and photos and also comes with wifi connection if its in your area, very handy for travelling alo,t it also has a increaed battery life.

  4. How unfortunate, some retailers don’t focus on the in-depth information that really ads value and sets their store apart from the competition. In this case, it sounds like it was a detrimental mistake.

  5. Thanks for some invaluable advice!

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Melissa is a Senior Persuasion Analyst at FutureNow.

More articles from Melissa Burdon

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