Harris Cyclery's normal activities
First thing in the morning,(9AM EST) we answer emails received since yesterday afternoon. At the same time, we review and print all new on-line orders. Our focus is to get all on-line orders picked, packed, and shipped that day. We then work to fill all orders we can, or mark 'backordered' on those items we don't have in stock. If it's an item we won't be able to get for more than 3-4 days, we email the customer to let them know of the delay.
Simultaneous with the order processing, we also will check inventory and place distributor orders for items getting low. Sometimes we have to do some investigating to find a distributor who has what we need.
All of the above usually take the 2 or 3 of us about 4-6 hours to complete. At that point, we can get phone calls as well as answer incoming emails. At 3 PM (East Coast Time) we start putting the day's UPS orders through our UPS software. US Postal orders are usually processed every 2 or 3 days, as each one takes about 10 to 20 minutes to do and requires a trip to the local Post Office.
This takes pretty much all our time till our UPS driver comes (shortly after 5 PM). We usually can't get any phone calls during those hours, as we have to get everything ready for UPS pickup. If we have more people in, we can pickup some of your calls. We pack up around 6 PM and head home.
In between the normal activities, we try to fix web page errors and add items.
We are normally not in on Saturday and Sunday.
Mondays are usually very busy answering all emails and processing orders from the weekend. A large portion of Tuesdays is spent creating the Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) weekly order. We order from QBP each Tuesday and receive on Thursday. So Thursdays, we spend a good portion of the day receiving the QBP order, then packing and shipping the orders that were waiting for QBP items.
Hope This Helps in understanding what we do and why.