The difficulties of starting up an e-commerce site with Christmas looming were highlighted this week when software and music Web venture Jungle.com was thrown out of the Consumer Association's Which? magazine Web Trader Scheme following 90 complaints from customers.
The site has, however, agreed terms with The Consumer Association under which it can be readmitted to the program. A spokeswoman says, "Jungle.com and the Consumers' Association held a meeting this morning [Thursday] to agree on the re-instatement of Jungle.com into the Association's Which? Web Trader Scheme with the utmost urgency."
This spokeswoman says that the problems were largely caused by the phenomenal success of Jungle.com. "While Jungle.com accepts its rapid success did put pressure on its systems in the first two months of operation, the company's recent expansion of customer service operations now exceed the conditions of the Which? Web Trader Code of Practice." Customers originally complained to the Consumer Association about failing to receive orders, the lack of telephone customer support and inaccessibility of the Web site itself.
Jungle.com says it has overhauled its internal computer network and hired staff to provide a 24-hour hotline. It promisses that its new serices will be "state of the art".
Jungle.com is not the only site to have underestimated demand in the run up to Christmas. Up-market supermarket Fortnum and Mason today also admitted that it has suspended its Internet ordering facility after overwhelmed demand.