The Spotlight website is quite basic. It tells you generally what products they have and displays their catalogues and sale offers. For what it is, it works fine.
This review is for the Shop@Home service, which is basically a mail order service. You can order by telephone, fax, mail or online form. The online form is just a form - you have to type in what you want. You cannot select items and add them to a basket like on an ecommerce site.
As Spotlight was having a "three for $10" offer on patterns, and my local shop is not easy to get to (I live in the country), I thought I would give it a go. It was actually a fair bit of work entering the pattern information - my PR wishlist came in handy of course. Then I submitted the online form and waited to hear back.
Your order is sent to the nearest store, and someone phones you to confirm the order and arrange payment (e.g. credit card over the phone).
I don't think I would bother doing this again. Because your order is sent to a store to be fulfilled, the items you want - in my case patterns - could well be out of stock, especially if there has been a sale on, and they don't offer to order them in for you. I hadn't thought this through :-) Even though I ordered a long list of patterns, only about half were available, making the $6.95 postage less economical.
Also, it took a few days for them to get back to me, even discounting the public holidays. A friend will be driving me into the town where Spotlight is next week sometime to pick up my sewing machine from servicing, so I could have just gone in there then. Oh well.
On the plus side, the person who called me to fulfil the order was helpful, but did sound rushed off her feet. She made several calls and checked on extra patterns to add to my order. I was able to add some elastic as well.
Next time I want commercial patterns, I will go down to Melbourne and buy them from Clegs when they are having a sale, or email a friend a list and ask her to go in and get them for me.
To sum up: if what you want is in stock, and paying $6.95 is cheaper/easier than getting to a store, this is a good service. If not, you'd be better off phoning the nearest independent store and asking them post you what you want.
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