Monday, 29 June 2009

Glastonbury Camping

Well, Glastonbury has been and gone...and I wonder how many of you readers out there enjoyed it, with all those muddy puddles and wellies.

I didn't get to experience it this year, pretty much like last year and the year before, but of course I heard lots about it. Apart from rain on the Thursday and Friday morning - giving you all those wonderful muddy puddles - the rest of the weekend, from what I gather, was dry and sunny, defying all soggy laws of wet Glastonbury festivals.

Every year, almost without fail, it rains on Glastonbury weekend, but it doesn't stop you from pitching your tents and camping out for the entire enjoyable weekend. (I wonder how many of our tents are in this picture) In fact, some people probably rely on the wet weather just so they can splash in the puddles with their brand-new wellie boots. As long as you're prepared for this then the festivals should go `swimmingly`.

There are also numerous more festivals lined up for the rest of the year, and if you've booked tickets already for any of them, don't forget to prepare. We have many tents still in stock - and don't forget our new delivery due in soon - and camping accessories to go with them.

You can never be too prepared for a weekend of festival fun, music, and camping.

D. Ilott

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Multi-Purpose 105 Rucksack

Seeing as we are doing stock-take this week, and after a whole day off, I've come back and have dedicated myself to marketing work.

I've just been taking some new images of one of our rucksacks, the 105, 65l. By doing this, I was able to have a good look at what this rucksack has to offer.

There are pockets galore on this item, perfect for stashing items when hiking about the mountains or the countryside. And there are just as many straps as there are pockets, all adjustable. You needn't worry about being bogged down with gear, as this rucksack can fit it all, and no matter how big or small you are, this bag can be adjusted to fit you perfectly and comfortably whilst giving you support. It's great!

AND, we discovered, if it rains there is also a handy little hood that you can squeeze over your head to keep your hair dry. Okay, so what if this is the actual top of the bag, and your belongings get a tad wet inside. Who cares, right?! Your hair will be dry!

But a word of warning. Despite this bag having handy little loops that you can hook extra things onto - a marvellous little design, enabling you to take much more than your rucksack can physically fit - we, here, take no responsibility if you suddenly turn into the `Junk Lady` from the Labyrinth.

Be warned . . .

D. Ilott

Monday, 22 June 2009

Annual Stock Take

Well, it's that time of year again. This week is our Annual Stock Take week.

I apologise for all those who have wanted to place orders through our website but couldn't, and all those who have pulled their hair out, cursed at the monitor, and thrown their base unit across the room before realising that there is a banner on the top stating what is happening. (Yes, I do that. I miss things. It's easily done, and I'm blonde, which is a recipe for disaster really)

We will be back for business as usual on the 25th of June, so don't run away. Come back then and you'll be able to place your order with no hassle at all.

I know it's annoying, but it is a necessity I'm afraid. And there are a few advantages to it.

The first is that we get on top of what stock we have.

The second is that we usually find long-forgotten products hiding in the darkest corners of our warehouse.

And the third - and most important - I get a day off. As I work with dispatch and we are not shipping anything at the moment, I am unneeded, surplus to requirements, obsolete. So I will be a lady of leisure tomorrow, spending some quality time with my cat, and getting some personal writing done, dragging myself nearer to the end of my novel and closer to the publishers . . . wishful thinking . . .

See? It's not all bad now, is it . . . ?

D. Ilott

Friday, 19 June 2009

Rise of the Cybercheckout Machines...!

I went to the Cinema on Wednesday and saw the Fourth installation of the Terminator films. I'm sorry, but I've always been a big fan of these; good ol` Arnie dressed in leather with dark glasses, and riding a bike while brandishing a gun. It's all-out action from beginning to end, and don't forget how spectacular the second one was when it first came out.

Back then, the special effects in Terminator II was evidence of our technological evolution. Things were on the rise. And today we are even further along with our advances.

Retail can be alluded to in the same way. First things were sold on market stalls; then came shops; now there is the Internet. You don't even have to leave the comforts of your own home to do your weekly shop - or buy a tent. How impressive is that?

But it raises the question of how close to reality these films are? How far can we advance before technology turns around and bites us on the *&!*?

I personally believe it's already begun - right here at Cybercheckout. Our online system is developing a mind of its own, and it's out to sabotage our good name. The affects so far are only small, and you may think me strange (no shocker there) but it's present none-the-less. At the moment it's curled up and laying dormant in our spellchecker on our emails. It's chosen one word so far to use and prove its existence, and all you have to do is spell it wrong.

The chosen word is Inconvenience.

Now, how many of you have spelt this word wrong and spellchecker has automatically corrected it, without you realising, to Incontinence?

I rest my case.

I sincerely apologise for any Incontinence this blog has caused...

But don't worry...I'll be back!!!

D. Ilott

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Our Secret Equestrian Life . . . .

My poor cat got combed to death on Saturday. Being a Persian cat, she needs brushing everyday, but even if you keep up with it, you can still get a build up of dead fur that is prone to matting, especially in those hard-to-reach areas. So once or twice a year, I treat her to a professional groom, and it just so happened to fall on last weekend.

The lady who came round to groom her was very nice, and while my cat was attempting to bite and claw us to death, we were merrily chatting away.

It turned out that she kept horses, and so I brought up the subject of our Equestrian range - trying to do a bit of weekend advertising. She had no idea that we sold horse rugs, and was surprised. She said that by looking at our company name, Cybercheckout, there is nothing there to suggest of our Equestrian range, which got me wondering how many other horsey people in our local area are unaware of us.

Maybe we should get a life-size model of a horse, put one of our rugs on its back, and stand it outside our office. It would also provide us with immense fun, watching and counting to see how many people climb on and attempt to ride off with it . . .

"Get off your horse, and drink your milk...!"

D. Ilott

Monday, 15 June 2009


You either love them or you hate them, but you can't deny that they are funny little critters:

Here at Cybercheckout, we're thinking of expanding our pet range, starting with these cosy looking cat radiator beds. These are great. They hook onto your radiator so your feline friend can curl up nice and warm. And if you want to use your radiator, these ones also come with feet so you can turn it over and use it on the floor, too. Your cat certainly won't get the `hump` with you anymore for taking down their favourite sleeping place.

I had to do some marketing research over the weekend. I got to take one of these beds home to see if my very own feline friend liked it. She did - and it's also great for playing that `hand under the duvet` game, without the worries of clawing your duvet cover to pieces. It was a hit with her, and when she settled down, she looked rather cosy.

But then she is a cat, and cats have a natural ability to make even the strangest of places look comfortable.

See what I mean?

D. Ilott
Cybercheckout Ltd

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

On An Upward Route . . .

For those of you who have frequented our website recently - as in the last few days - you may have noticed something different.

We have a new website!

It's been something that has been worked on for a few months now, and the other day we had our exciting launch! It looks smarter, items are easier to find, and there's a one-page checkout system. All-in-all it's a much better setup than our original website - and what with our new images and improved item descriptions, things are beginning to look up.

This has been such a huge job for us to do - especially for our marketing guru. Bless him, he's worked so hard on this project, I'm surprised he hasn't started pulling his hair out. He dreaded the launch in case it didn't go well, and even tried to put it off. But he's done a grand job.

Yes, there are a few teething problems, but that is only natural when it comes to something like this. Some problems lay hidden until such a moment, and you can never tell that they are there unless you take the leap and make it live. Then you can spot them and fix them.

And that's what we are doing at the moment. There have only been a few so far - touch wood - but it seems as soon as we correct something, our actions have an affect on something else. It's an ongoing process at the moment, but I have faith that we will get there, and soon too.

A big well done to everyone involved on the project.
But despite the problems, I'm still going to partake in some champagne. Anyone care to join me?

D. Ilott
Cybercheckout Ltd

Monday, 8 June 2009

Pamper Yourself . . . Safely

A friend published a comment to my Friday's blog (05-06-09), asking if the picture at the bottom, of the little munchkin sitting on the toadstool, was supposed to be me, and if it was it didn't do me justice - to which I replied`you're too kind!` (Seriously, I love my friends). But this is me all over. When I said I was as blond as they come, I meant that in psychological terms.

I have many blond moments, and I do like to broadcast them for a laugh.

Like this one:

A couple of years back, we were preparing to move house, and I was up in the bedroom packing up some belongings that we had accumulated over the past. One of these happened to be an old Christmas present that I hadn't used. It was a `Pamper Yourself` kit. It had smellies galore, and it also come with a blindfold - you know, the type that you can wear when you sleep to block out the light. I had never used this. So, out of curiosity, as you do, I slipped it on.

Yep, it worked. It was comfy; I could sleep in it; and it blocked out the light.

Then . . . (wait for it)

I wondered to myself what I looked like with this blindfold on, and caught myself turning to face the mirror!


Luckily, we have some `Pamper Yourself` Remington items in stock here that are safe, and won't make you look like an idiot. Take our Remington Bath Spa pillow for example. It's fantastic if all you want to do after a long, stressful day is relax in the bath and soak your troubles away. And, what's more, there's no blindfold included.

Completely blond proof...!

Seriously though, they should stick warning signs on some of these `Pamper Yourself` kits.

`Blonds Proceed with Care! . . .

D. Ilott
Cybercheckout Ltd

Friday, 5 June 2009

Warning! Long Blog Ahead!

I've just realised that I've been nursing this blog for three months now, posting three times a week, and taking pride in what I write. I hope, if you're a regular reader, you have enjoyed them as much as I've enjoyed publishing them. I've tried to keep it professional whilst adding a personal touch and a splash of humour. This idea was intended to show you, our customers, that Cybercheckout Ltd is run by approachable people, and not just a machine that makes you think twice before buying from us or running away.

As a team we work hard to keep this company going, especially in the current climate, and to provide a good, friendly service to our customers. You are, after all, the most important part in our equation. Without you, we would not be here today, so a big thank you to all for your support over the years.

But, how well do you know us? Seeing as I had nothing exciting to blog about today, I thought I'd take this opportunity to introduce you to the team. It's about time we all made ourselves known.

Firstly, we have our wonderful Customer Service Team. Introducing Marsha, Beci and Sarah. These three wonderful people take care of all your calls and queries. Sometimes I honestly wonder how they can do their job so well. However, soon the team will be numbering two. The lovely Sarah is a mum-to-be and will be leaving us for a time over the summer. But don't panic, she will be back, and we'll have her baby answering your phone calls in no time at all.

Then we have our superb marketing team. Introducing Rob the Guru, Alison, Lisa (our equestrian expert) and Kieron the creative. They do a wonderful job looking after our website, advertising our products, and making sure everything runs smoothly. Kieron does most of our website designs and does a great job (although I often wonder what heights he could achieve in his creativity if he were awake and sober more often).

Next we have Marie - someone who would rather be sitting on a toadstool at the bottom of your garden - and Wendy. They deal with our accounts and buying. Brainy pair, they are.

And then we have our Spiritual Guide - AKA Andrew - and the Farva, Pete, our two directors. Just between you and me, I'm actually quite proud to be working for them, but don't tell them that, especially Andrew. I'll never hear the end of it if he finds out.

Lastly, there's me! Short, tubby, as blond as they come, and apparently full of innuendos, so I've been told (Shrugs with confusion, but with a knowing grin) I work behind the scenes here. I'm the one who sends all your orders out every day. I also do a little work for the marketing team, doing the things they don't want to do usually, but I can't moan. They gave me the blog.

So that's us. Hopefully we seem a little more human to you all now - or a little bit more boring, as I've waffled on long enough for someone who hasn't got much to blog about. Ho-hum. I am a woman after all.

I think I'll go and join Marie at the bottom of the garden now. . . .

Keep buying our pools!

D. Ilott

Cybercheckout Ltd.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Oh, what to blog...

I've hit a brick wall. Today I feel totally uninspired as to what I should write.

I've had no more driving lessons since my last one, and everyone in here are just too busy to get up to any worth-while shenanigans that deserve to be blogged about.

People are still buying our pools though. They are swimming out of the door (I'm full of puns today), so that is fantastic! If your considering purchasing one of our pools, I'd get in quick, what with their price-drop and offer of `Free Delivery`. I can see stock levels dwindling.

We also have a shipment of new tents arriving shortly. Brand new, and high quality. It's too early for me to blog about their specifics as of yet, but I will say that they have sewn-in ground sheets, which a lot of people prefer. I can see them going down very well this summer.

So, what with everyone going pool crazy at the moment, I'm sure we'll all be kept very busy and uninteresting for the time being. I'll see if I can pick out some office dirt for Friday's blog.

Watch this space....

D. Ilott
Cybercheckout Ltd

Monday, 1 June 2009

Learning to Splash in the Sun!

Well, it's finally done! My Driving test has been booked.

Thursday July 16th 2009.

I'll let you all know on July 17th whether I pass or not ( or it may have to be Monday 20th. I may call in sick on the Friday, nursing a celebratory hang-over. I've promised the instructor a drink). Fingers crossed. I'm in high spirits, and so is my instructor, but you can never tell when the nerves are going to strike. Horrible things, those nerves - and they usually attack me with a vengeance, blasted things!

But my lesson yesterday went extremely well, I feel. And it was a lovely day for a drive.

It was also a lovely day for enjoying your garden, and splashing around in those pools. And it seems that all those who didn't have a pool now have! Lots of people took a liking to them over the weekend and placed orders.

Well done all of you! I'm sure, as you`re splashing around in the sun, having a whale-of-a-time (whale? Or shark, or what ever you may find lurking the depths of the pool) that you won't be disappointed.

Keep up the good work, and good times will be had by all this summer!

D. Ilott