Businesses which run exclusively online, like Snorestore, have to work extra hard to keep their customers happy. Unlike a bricks and mortar store, we can’t just re-dress the shop window, or put posters up in uncompromisingly garish colours proclaiming that we have a sale on. Online stores have to work harder to keep people informed, and we have stricter codes to adhere to when it comes to customer service.
Returns, for examples, are bound by the Distance Selling Regulations. These are an unwieldy set of legally-binding rules which mean, for example, that you can return an item or cancel an order without any penalty to you, the customer (well, pretty much anyway*). Just recently, the UK advertising code was extended to cover websites, meaning that the promotion of products online must conform to Advertising Standards Authority rules. Snorestore’s website and Twitter feed already do. Of course.
Similarly, paying by credit card online puts the onus for keeping your details safe firmly on the shoulders of the website you are buying from. After all, you can’t simply cover the keypad to obstruct the view of prying eyes, as you would in a shop or at a cash machine. So online businesses like Snorestore have to prove that they aren’t putting your sensitive financial details at risk – even if we use a secure third party to process our card payments. Which we do, naturally. Penalties for allowing hackers to get at your information run into the tens of thousands of pounds.
As you might have read in our last post, Snorestore suffered a few hours of mayhem a couple of weeks ago when our hosting provider made ahem a mistake when they “upgraded” their hardware. Or software. We’re not sure – they never told us. Anyway, we decided we should look at alternatives as it’s not great if a shop has to put up a “Sorry we’re closed” sign through no fault of their own.
The outcome of our online house move will not be immediately obvious to anyone. But to us and to you it makes all the difference in the world. It’s like moving from a nondescript complex housing dozens of shops, to a standalone building on the smartest High Street. Yes, we are now proudly in “dedicated server” country.
You should find that Snorestore’s website is faster to navigate, that the pictures load more quickly, and that your progress through the checkout is faster. This is because you’re not competing with other online shops for online space and time. When you visit Snorestore, you’re in a pipe which leads only to us, with no blind alleys to other stores who you’ve never heard of and wouldn’t want to visit even if you knew they were there.
One of the other benefits of being in our own little corner of cyberspace, is that we can validate the security of our online presence much more easily. Ever since it became an industry requirement a few years ago, we’ve made sure that we have done more than was required to keep you safe online. We’ve had an SSL certificate on our checkout for years, even though you’re only putting your name and address details in at this point. We’ve also had regular scans of our business network, to ensure hackers are kept out. Our firewall is set up to repel all unfriendly boarders.
Now, though, we can go one step further still. Even though we never see your credit card details (and wouldn’t want to), we pay a renowned security scanning company to check the physical piece of kit – the server – where Snorestore’s website is hosted. Pleasingly, the scans show that Snorestore is as safe as it can be when it comes to processing your details. As a result, we’re allowed to display a discreet banner on the website proving this:
We hope we have helped you feel more comfortable about buying from Snorestore online. If you have any questions, use our Contact page to get in touch. We promise we won’t ask you for your PIN number
*There are time limits for returning items and while there are very few products which are exempt from the DSRs, most earplugs are exempt. Just as you wouldn’t return a pair of used knickers to M&S, you can’t return a set of earplugs unless they are faulty. And can be proven to be faulty