It struck me around Cyber Monday of 2014 that one of the unsung heroes of online shopping are the shipping companies. They have taken logistics to an almost magical level. Would Amazon be the same without FedEx / UPS? In the days before streaming, Netflix relied heavily on its partnership with the US Postal Service to deliver DVD's and now they are financing award winning shows like "House of Cards."
I personally saw this in action the other day when I ordered a bed from the online mattress company Casper. They include free 3-5 day shipping. And if you live in Manhattan they deliver it in 1-2 days via bicycle messenger.
Their business model avoids reliance on retail spaces and distributors and instead operates mainly from its website and referrals. This allows them to offer a comparable product for a much lower price.
To see how this works, click on my referral link.
The idea is I can send this link to a friend or family member so they will save $50 and I receive the same amount. Not bad for less than a day's work.
Now you might be wondering, how can I possibly buy a bed without trying it first? The nice thing is, you get to try it for 100 days and if you decide you don't like it, they will pick it up for free, give a full refund and dispose of or donate it. They cannot resell them. And the best part is, you don't need to keep the box.
Which reminds me, the packaging is worth mentioning. The bed is a foam and latex hybrid and they suck the air out of it and wrap it tightly in plastic before putting it into a surprisingly compact box. We just cut the plastic wrap and it unfolded to its normal size. My wife loves the new bed so I'm a hero on a budget and what makes it even sweeter is I didn't have to step inside a single store.
EZPZ, rest easy!