ShopDisney is still the biggest hurdle Disney has yet to clear

If May the Fourth proved one thing to Disney fanatics, it is that Disney still neglects to properly setup their online merchandising. While limited release items always draw in more shoppers than normal, this has been an issue beyond limited release events.

A quick Google search of “shop disney issues” pulls up a plethora of issues that shoppers have faced over the years. A company with a market cap of $100 billion (for perspective that is the same as Cuba or Ecuadors GDP) should not have issues with online shopping. Especially when their retail segment topped $1.59 billion in revenue in 2018.

In 2019, Amazon held their 5th “Amazon Prime Day” shopping event, loaded with discounts and special items for sale. This specific Prime Day lasted 48 hours and they sold 175 million products. In all of their Prime day events, they have never had as many hiccups as Disney has had in a normal day.

ShopDisney error message on May the Fourth, 2020
The screen message I got when trying to access ShopDisney at 11:45 A.M. on May 4, 2020

Is the issue with ShopDisney a technical issue or a customer service issue? That is the question I found myself asking this morning as I waited to buy limited edition Hoth, Bespin, and Dagobah coffee mugs that are part of the Starbucks “Been There” collection. If Han Solo can make the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs, there has to be a better way to purchase items from Disney’s online marketplace.

I understand that limited release items are hard to get, but the Run Disney website experiences similar bursts of traffic for similar situations. A website crashing every time you have an influx of traffic is no way to provide customer service. Especially during an impending recession and loyal customers are trying to give you the limited money they might have to spare.

Of course, the internet world is unhappy over this situation as shop bots already have the Ahsoka Tano and Joe Rohde ears on Ebay for insane markups:

Limited Edition Ahsoka Tano Ears for Sale on Ebay by bot shoppers
Limited Edition Joe Rohde Ears for sale on Ebay by bot shoppers

I struggle to understand how a company that operates a theme park division that brings in 430k visitors a day across 6 resort locations, hosts 50 million users on its Disney+ digital media server, and owns the largest movie and tv studios in the world cannot properly run an e-commerce website.

In 2020, we can no longer chalk it up to inexperience in the digital world or an unprecedented demand. It is crossing into neglect and terrible customer service territory.

Your Thoughts

I love Disney, and will always give them the benefit of the doubt. But at some point, we as consumers must hold them accountable for their repeated shortcomings in this space. Have you had difficulty buying items off the ShopDisney website? Let us know how things were handled in the aftermath!

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Mitchell Tomczak

Mitchell Tomczak

I'm 26 years old and I've been to Disney over 10 times in my life. 3 of those have been as an adult and twice with Megan! I love learning about the mystery behind the magic, Walt's life, and what's coming to Disney down the line! If I can share that with you, I'm doing my job!

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