Yahoo Merchants Toasted By Monday Outage

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Customers with credit cards to burn found some of Yahoo’s merchants unable to process orders due to problems with the underlying technology.

Yahoo Merchants Toasted By Monday Outage
Yahoo Merchants Toasted By Monday Outage

Heavy holiday traffic crushed Yahoo’s Merchant Solutions service on the mythical Cyber Monday, leaving merchants angry and customers frustrated. Many merchants expecting to see transactions merrily rolling through the system found themselves watching an error message from Yahoo.

"Some merchants are reporting that shoppers are receiving an error message indicating ‘system unavailable’ during the checkout process. We are aware of this issue and are currently investigating," Yahoo advised merchants, according to MarketWatch.

One merchant cited in the report had to post a telephone number for customers to call to place orders. Others waited fruitlessly for the situation to be corrected.

Even worse, sites impacted by the lengthy service outage will likely suffer the brunt of consumer anger, rather than Yahoo. CNBC said the error messages encountered by visitors did not make it clear Yahoo, not the merchant, was responsible for the problem.

Despite the lousy performance by Yahoo, merchants should take heart. Cyber Monday is a marketing creation dreamed up by Shop.org two years ago. The heaviest shopping tends to take place much closer to the middle of December than the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Perhaps a prudent merchant can turn the outage to an advantage. Acknowledging and apologizing for the irritation consumers endured, and offering some sort of mild incentive to return, may help bring those visitors back for another go at making a purchase.

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Yahoo Merchants Toasted By Monday Outage
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  • http://blog.sandiegomedia.com Tim McGuiness

    I don’t understand why large merchants stay on something like Yahoo.

    Can you imagine how many phone calls are generated by 20,000 sites being down? Talk about stress.

    I think it will be really hard for merchants to come up to recover the business they lost. But I guess it makes sense to try.

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