Every once in a while I come across a site that genuinely tries and just can’t quite figure it out, one of those deals where they do indeed do their best, but the best isn’t nearly enough. It instills a rather paternal sense of pity in me and I just sort of want to pat them on the proverbial head and give them a glass of warm milk and one of those ribbons you find at craft stores that say things like “Great Effort” or “I Can Dress Myself” (my favorite was always “Bedtime Champ”). Herbalaxation is very solidly in this camp. They try, they really do, and bless their heart the effort shows, but the effort, though in earnest, still falls short. It’s a good effort, but is it good enough?
I want to like Herbalaxation, I really do, and in some respects they make it easy. Unlike a lot of the other fly by night operations, the layout of Herbalaxation is actually not completely retarded. The layout of the site, usually an obvious Achilles’ heal of the slap dash internet vendor, is less of a problem here than it is on even some of the larger, more established vendor sites. It looks like, in the case of Herbalaxation, that someone actually either had a modicum of computer experience or, you know, bothered to spend the time to read tutorials and how tos to make their site look at least somewhat presentable. Even so, the layout is elementary and very obviously a template, as well as possessed of a few unattended to details, such as the slightly out of whack Twitter plugin.
The product selection, while fleshed out, is nothing to write home about. They carry primarily the Bayou Blaster line and it’s associates like Demon and Green Cobra, and at pretty average prices. They also have a small selection of pills and caps, but the vast majority of shop space appears to be geared toward incense products. The one big hole in the policy, at least as far as I can see, is that there isn’t any overt information about the cost of shipping. They allude to the fact that thy use USPS and try to ship within one business day, but the actual cost of the shipping is, as I said, not obvious or apparent.
Fortunately, much of the rest of their policies ARE delineated in a rather straightforward fashion. Their “mission statement“, to treat customers right and let them come back because they want to, is something that I can get behind, and their policies certainly seem to support their word. They state that if they goof, they will replace or replenish as necessary to make it right. They also provide a means to return products that don’t live up quality wise, however the requirements are a little more stringent and they limit customers to one quality return per product. I mean, that just makes sense. After all, if you don’t like something, then why the hell would you order it again? Paying for said product can be done with a variety of means, including credit card. Unlike some of the other sites out there, Herbalaxation actually appears to have a real, honest to God credit card processor like the big boys do, allowing you to pay with some measure of confidence.
But do you want to? Well, as I stated before, I want to want to. I really do. It’s hard to find a site that even does it half right these days, let alone makes an honest attempt to do so. By the same token, however, if you can’t swim, stay out of the pool, or at least out of the deep end. Herbalaxation is one of those that I would file away under backup. You could use them if you wanted to, and likely with some level of success, at least if their word is to be taken at face value. The problem is the same that we run into with a lot of the vendors in the middle of the pack. There may not be a reason not to use them, but there isn’t a good reason to use them either. They do a great job at going through the motions, true, and have done the “right” things like keep the layout simple and dive into social media, but, like the rest of the site, the attempt is rudimentary, and while it may be the best they can do, they’re essentially showing up to the Indy 500 with a souped up Accord. Should some of the other, more reliable vendors go poof then I could see Herbalaxation serving as a great backup, but until that point there isn’t really any good reason to abandon what are obviously already greener pastures.