I first used Thorntons.co.uk last year for a friends birthday, I was looking for a unique chocolate gift and like the look of the alphabet truffles.
The website itself is very well laid out. At the top of the page is a selector for you to choose from the full range, the type of gift, the type of chocolate, wedding favours or the sale items. When you click on one of the above you get several options in a drop down menu. On the homepage is a selection of the latest offers available.
As I stated above the first item I ordered was a selection of alphabet truffles, when you order these you get the option of some pictures as well as letters. The chocolates are actually laid out on the screen so you can also view what they would look like.
The chocolate is reasonably priced. It is a little more expensive than you would find in say the supermarket but you do get the uniqueness from Thorntons.
The alphabet truffles were £20, the only problem is you have to pay for the delivery, it's £3.95 for a normal weekday delivery or £5.95 for a saturday or next day delivery. I paid for next day delivery to be sure I was in, the items came well packaged and you can also add a personalised message in the form of a gift card for free.
I had almost forgotten about how good the service was until this Easter when I recieved an email stating that Easter items were 3 for 2. I ordered 3 Easter eggs, a white chocolate, a milk chocolate and a chocolate shaped bunny. The offer is automatically applied. When you get to the checkout you are given the option to ice your gifts, it states how many letters you have available and allows you to preview your message.
With my easter eggs I used the normal delivery service which they advise can take 3 working days. The items arrived in 2 working days, very well packaged in a big brown Thorntons box with the protective 'air packets' between the items, attached to the inside of the box was my gift card with my personalised message.
The service from the Thorntons website is great if you don't have the time to go into the shop, it gives you the full product range online and allows you to personalise items. If you don't take advantage of an offer such as 3 for 2 the checkout page advises you that you are missing out. It also makes recommendations based on what you have ordered.
Once you have used the website once you can also log in easily and access your address book to choose where the chocolates go.
I would use this website again, my only slight complaint is the delivery charge as a lot of companies offer this for free now!
Thorntons.co.uk is a very attractive site, which is regularly updated, easy to navigate and a thing of beauty, in the eyes of a chocoholic.
I tend to buy a large order every Christmas and luckily, there is usually a special offer on, when you spend a certain amount of money. Last Christmas I recieved a box of Continental Letterbox chocolates worth £10.99 absolutely free. I believe I had to spend £30, but with a husband and 3 kids, who all love Thorntons, this was very easy to do. They are also very generous with codes for a percentage off the total cost, or free delivery.
The website is very well laid out, with headings along the top. At the moment you are pointed in the direction of:
Delicious Gifts, which has many sub-headings including gifts for him, gifts for her, gifts for kids, gifts for diabetics, hampers & gift boxes, gifts for toffee & fudge lovers and many more.
Treats To Share, sub-headings here include dinner party treats, cosy night in, Kid's party, hen party and a few others.
Our Ranges, which shows Thornton's wide range of products including chocolate blocks, continental, organic, classic, diary free, toffee, fudge, flowers and a great deal more besides.
Mother's Day gives you some ideas on what to buy that special person in your life. I imagine this heading will constantly be changing to the next forthcoming celebration.
Weddings is where you find favours to give to your guests, also chocolate trays, stationery and the champagne range.
Corporate Gifts offer you gift ideas, personalised and branded goods and even more.
The pages on this site are very clear and uncluttered. Each product, has a very nice colour picture, showing very clearly what it looks like, including packaging and contents. You are given lots of information and advice on allergies and whether it is suitable for vegetarians etc. The price is shown beside each item and you are given a option of gift wrapping your item, at an extra cost. If you wish to make a purchase, you just press 'Buy Me'.
After you have finished spending all your hard earned cash on delicious, but fattening goodies, you go through checkout. This is when you either have to sign into your account or register. Registration is quick and easy, with you providing your name, address and email, you will also need a password.
There is a choice of payments options, which include VISA, Master Card, American Express, Maestro and Paypal.
There is also a choice of either standard delivery, which takes 3 - 5 days, for £3.95 or the Premium, next day or named day option which costs £6.95.
I have always chosen the standard delivery and have never known them to take longer than the 5 days, which is great.
Thorntons.co.uk has plenty of 'help' pages, just incase you don't understand something or your order goes wrong. I have never had any problems, so have never dealt with customer service.
It is quite an expensive site, but you are paying for a quality brand. If you are buying a gift for someone special, it's worth paying that bit extra for Thorntons. The product tastes great and the packaging is of high quality and I've no doubt the gift receiver will be delighted!
Thorntons.co.uk must have been busy recently as I have just read another review from a fellow member over their website and online shop. Similar to anwar7's review I placed an order online just the other day as there was an offer through Quidco where if you spent £15.00 on the site you received a £12.00 box of chocolates free. Too tempting to miss, and a great way to get a couple of extra Christmas presents I had to take up the offer.
The website itself is well set out and easy to use. Focusing on Christmas at the moment there are plenty of 3 for 2 offers on and I took full advantage ordering two boxes of chocolates at £7.50 each thereby qualifying for a 3rd item which I chose a chocolate snowman for a relative which should have cost £5.99 and on top of that I also qualified for the free 670 gram box of chocolates which should have been £12.00. Delivery charges are £3.95 so for a total of £18.95 I received just under £33.00's worth of chocolate, got to be a bargain!
If you are considering using the website to place an order you do have to register, this is simply a case of providing your contact details, email address and telephone number. You then have the option to pay via the website using a credit or debit card or through PayPal. As I had funds in my PayPal this was the option I chose and I was taken to the PayPal login page and followed the instructions from there. It was very easy, hassle free and quick to register, select my items and checkout and far easier than going into one of their shops on the high street which I always find to be too small and too busy especially this time of the year.
The website as I said is easy to navigate, there are different tabs at the top of the site that you can click on to take you to the various sections and the front page is dedicated to the offers that they currently have on. Delivery of my order was quicker than I was informed; I received an email with my parcel tracking number on and a clickable link to the couriers' website to track my order. It was supposed to be delivered today, the 8th but actually arrived yesterday, this I thought was fabulous because I was in, had I been out I would have been a bit upset at missing the delivery but it worked out fine for me.
This was my first experience of using thorntons.co.uk and I would definitely go back and use them again especially for special occasions or birthdays. It is a good idea to keep an eye on Quidco as they do have exclusive member offers on like I dropped on for and at the moment are offering 15% cashback on all orders.
I was delighted with my order, speed of delivery and the website itself and so for that reason it rates a perfect 5/5 Dooyoo stars, I have sorted out 3 more Christmas presents for the family and have got a free box of chocolates for doing so, cant grumble at that can I?
I hate battling my way around busy shopping centres at this time of year and have been doing a lot of my Christmas shopping on the Internet. I recently discovered Thornton's web site and was impressed with the range of yummy chocolate gifts on offer so thought I would share my shopping experience with you.
For those of you who don't know, Thorntons have been making and selling chocolate for over 100 years. Their chocolate is truly delicious and comes beautifully wrapped so makes a lovely gift for any chocolate lover. There is a lot of information about the company on their web site so I'm not going to tell you something you can read for yourself!
The web site is a very glittering affair at the moment and to be honest looks a bit cluttered. There is a Christmas advent calendar for you to open with a different special offer for each day in December. The offer is for one day only so if you are ordering don't forget to check!
Although the site is a bit cluttered I really enjoy browsing the site as there is a lot on offer and some good ideas for presents. There are helpful suggestions for different people e.g.-presents for your auntie or sister. There are special offers to be had although these are not always easy to find!
When you have made your selection checking out is easy and secure. You will need to give a few basic details plus choose a password and you are ready to order. The delivery charge is steep and there is no way of getting free delivery even for large orders. Standard delivery costs £3.95 with gold delivery (named day or next day) costing a very expensive £6.95.
There is an extra charge for gift wrapping and it is possible to have your order sent to different addresses although you will have to pay extra delivery.
If you have any problems then the customer service phone number is clearly displayed on the home page, something I wish all online retailers would do!
If you are planning to buy from Thornton's on line then it is worth knowing that if you click through via the cash back site Quidco then you can earn 15% cash back at the moment! At least that helps to pay that delivery charge. In addition I was also given a code that entitled me to a £12 box of chocolates for free when I ordered over £15 worth of goods.
My order did take longer than I would have liked to arrive but I was kept informed of progress via emails. When my order did arrive everything was well packed and in good order.
Thornton's are not the cheapest chocolate seller around but the chocolates are delicious and make lovely presents! Overall I would recommend Thornton's online as at least I didn't have to battle my way through a busy shop!
I've bought from Thorntons online a few times, mainly to send gifts to people who live far away. This time I have had chocolates delivered to myself for Christmas Presents.
Please note that this is a review on the website, not on the taste of the chocolates themselves.
The prices of the chocolates are the same as in store as far as I can tell, although you sometimes get some deals online that you don't get in store. The postage is fairly hefty at £3.95, especially if you're only spending £10, so I waited for a voucher to come along and used the one that gave you a free letter box size of Continental Chocolates on a £20 spend - yum :)
For those of you signed up to Quidco - don't forget to use it. At time of writing it's 10% cashback.
My box came by courier and was well packed and everything looked perfect.
The website has been revamped recently. It's not perfect as sometimes I find the drop down menu's go behind the picture banner! I'm using Firefox on Ubuntu (incase a Thorntons Web Developer is reading this!)
The website is easy to use, and you can specify a different delivery address to the card address meaning you can send as a present to someone.
I emailed to ask about best before dates (as I was buying in October for Christmas presents). I had a reply within 24 hours which was good. But unfortunately they couldn't comment on Best Before dates.
I think at the very least when it gets within a few months of Christmas/Mothers Day/Valentines Day etc, they should be able to guarantee that the Best Before dates will be at least a month after these days. Surely I can't be the only one wanting to get Christmas Presents sorted early?
For the benefit of others, the chocolates I received were dated at least 31st January, most were nearer April 2010.
Thorntons.co.uk is the online store for the hugely popular chocolate retailer who offers fine chocolates at a reasonable price on our high streets but how does their online offering workout?
This website is simple to use and offers a huge variety of products and many offers which are website exclusives which is one of the things that I recently took advantage of as I was online shopping for an easter egg for one of my colleagues and discovered an egg along with a box of chocolates for £15 rather than the £45 that it should have been which I was delighted with.
I have used thorntons.co.uk though for more than the normal ordering of chocolate and actually used them as my supplier for my wedding favours and was over the moon with the purchase. My chocolates all arrived beautifully packaged and at the agreed time which was brilliant as at a time of increased pressure and stress something like this is of huge help.
- Great products
- Good value for excellent produce
- Excellent delivery timescales
- Online only offers
- A simple to use website
- A good looking website
- You end up ordering more than you would purchase in-store due to the fact you are having a delivery charge so you want to feel more justified in paying this
All in I love using the website and would happily use this again even for products which are of importance to me following the excellent experience with my wedding order and also the easter egg purchase. Highly recommended.
Perhaps ironically, one of the traditions in our family, is that with every present a member of the family recieves, a huge box of chocolates, or sweets comes with it. Around summer time, the majority of the birthdays in our family, happen and usually my mum takes charge of buying the confectionary to go alongside the presents.
However, the beginning of July brought my mums birthday itself, and I knew that along with her present I wanted to get her a special little something edible, and so I turned to "www.thorntons.co.uk".
I heard about the thorntons website through a friend who had previously ordered a huge chocolate selection from the site and had sung its praises ever since. I decided it would be worth a look, if not to order, I could simply take some ideas, however in the end I did end up using the site to purchase some goodies for my mums!
Jabbing in the website in to the address bar at the top of my internet explorer I was quite surprised at what came up. I had been expecting the background of the site to be golden and full with swirls of brown and images of chocolates and toffees, however what I discovered was totally different.
When your internet first takes you to the homepage, you may be surprised at what you find. The top part of the webpage is brown, and has a chocolate effect to it. On this part of the site, the Thorntons logo is placed, along with a search bar, and various tabs including "contact us", "store loacations" and other basic shop information. The bar down the left hand side of the page is the where all the tabs are. Among the tabs, are "toffee and fudge", "flowers and chocolates" and "Hampers and Gift boxes". There does seem to be at first glance, many pages to browse through, and when I reached this part of the site I was really quite excited.
The rest of the page is pretty dull, yet bright! The main colour is white, with brown chocolate coloured writing. The top quarter or so of the page is filled with a colourful image, at the moment, this image is of a creamy looking icecream, however this changes every couple of days.
Underneath the main picture, are around three other pictures, which are infact a link to some other pages, suggesting birthday gifts and special limited products.
First impressions are vital, and to be honest, I didn't find the front page to overly attractive, and I don't think the minimilisticness (is that a word?) of the front page was pulled off. None the less, I carried on browing through the site.
Like I mentioned, the tabs are all down the left hand side of the webpage. You can easily get to these pages by clicking on the link, and if you want to be specific in what you are looking for, the four boxes at the top of the links can help you. You can expand your search by stating what type of product, the price, the occasion and which person you are looking to buy for.
Before I decided on what I wanted to buy for my mum, I decided to take a skim through each of the pages and see what was on offer...
The first link on the list was "personalised gifts". Clicking on this leads you to the first page of goodies. Each page, has another set of tabs down the side, so it is really easy to find what you are looking for. THe links on this particular page were "Create your own chocolate box", "Alphabet truffles", and "Master chocolatier selection". I took a quick skim through each of the pages are was pleasently surprised by what I found. There were plenty of chocolates and chocolate selection box type things you could personalise for yourself or for another person. There were plenty of choice, and you could do everything to make it personal, form choosing the box, and gift wrap down to the specific chocolates you wanted, and how and when you wanted it delivered. The personalised gifts section was really impressive and I think i'll go back and use it again in the future.
Create your own hamper
The next link on the homepage list was "create your own hamper". Clicking on this, I was taken to another well laid out page. A thorntons hamper is a pretty box, or special bag filled with lots of treats including wines, and different things to eat! It is done in 3 stages, first of all you choose your box, then choose what you'd like in your hamper, and then if you have chosen chocolate or any fudges or toffees you choose which exact chocolates you'd like. I think this is a really good idea, and could make a fantastic present for somebody. Things like this don't come cheap though, and for every extra you add, it costs a 'little' extra too! I did have a little play about with this, and my hamper ended up at almost £50!
Ice cream is the next link on the list, and once I clicked on it, I was taken to a single page filled with lots of images of ice creams, with there flavours and prices printed underneath. The flavours range from regular vanillas, toffees and strawberrys to "button moon" and honeycomb caramel cup. On the site there are a choice of 6 different luxury ice creams. The website does make it clear however that ordering ice cream online means you have to be in at the exact time of delivery or your order will be cancelled. Luckily though the website gives information about delivery times etc. Each ice cream picture is given a mouthwatering description underneath along with the price. Thorntons make the descriptions mouth watering, making you want to buy the whole shop! The ice creams are bought in 3.5 litres and cost around £25.
The next link on the main homepage is 'summer sale'. Obviously, all year round, it wont be 'summer sale' but there is usually some offers on. Clicking on summer sale takes you to yet another page, filled with mouth watering pictures and plenty of offers and information. The products on offer are given clearly with plenty of information. A picture is given with each product, and again, a product description is written underneath. Thortons are very clever in making the descriptions sound as delicious as possible making you just want too tuck in!
The Chocolate collections page is probably the most exciting, and the most viewed of the whole website. Clicking on the link, you are taken to a page filled with goodies! Once on the page you are given another list down the side, on where you would like to visit. The options are "Continental", "Desert gallery", "summer collection", "moments", "Eden", "Thorntons classics", "Thorntons organic chocolate", "single origin", "Revelations" and "The diabetic collection". The "continental section" is home to various dark, white and milk chocolates, in loads of different types, including truffles, creams and solid chocolates. There are lots of different choices of boxes and chocolate boxes you can buy, and each is joined to a picture or the chocolates. The prices in this section can go up to £100 and beyond!
"Desert gallery" is the next part to click on. The dessert section is home to a variety of different wines, patisserie and chocolates. There are also flowers avaiable to order here too!
The next link you can choose is "summer collection". The summer collection again is subject to the time of year. The summer collection provides chocolates with summery twists to them, including various "fruit" chocolates such as strawberry and peaches! The summer section also sells various boquets of flowers and some pretty plants too!
"Moments", is the next link that can be choosen. Moments chocolates are wrapped individual chocolates, in there own boxes. Coming in two sizes; 250g and a mini 43g. These cost between 99p and £5.
The next link on the website will take you too "Eden". Before clicking on this I was quite interested and very intrueged as to what it would be. However, the website gives a great description of what the chocolates are and they informed me the Eden collection was fruit chocolates. Again with most other pages, the chocolates and there descriptions come with a mouth watering picture.
"Thorntons Classics" was one of the pages I was really looking forward to visiting. The picture at the top of the page is mouthwatering and provides us with pictures of various milk, dark and white chocolates. The thorntons classics page gives you the chance to buy the classic Thorntons chocolates.
"Thorntons organic chocolates" is the next link possible to click on. I was quite interested as to what the organic selection would be "about". Again the webpage gives a great description along with various scrumptious looking pictures of the products. Among them, organic chocolate truffles.
"Single origin" was the next link to click on. The website describes the single origin section as, each of the chocolates being blended together with cocoa from one single region. This section doesn't have many options for buying, however it does look like there are some scrumptious ones there.
"Revelations" is home to the most sublime chocolates which Thortons sell. The chocolates in this section are very expensive, and a single 95g pack will set you back almost £5.
The last link in this section is the "Diabetic chocolates", and this section is simply as it sounds, each chocolate or box of chocolates are suitable for diabetics.
Toffee and Fudge
The next main link on the homepage is for the toffees and fudges. Arriving at this page you are presented with a scrumptious looking picture of some delicious looking toffee. Once you arrive at the Toffee and Fudge page, you are then asked wheather you'd like to visit the fudge section, or the toffee section.
Clicking on the toffee section, or "special toffee" as the site claims, you are taken to another page filled with various different products. The range of toffees are huge, ranging from regular Thorntons special toffee, to fruit and nut toffee, brazil nut toffee, and chocolate toffee. There are also various more, unusal types of toffee.
Clicking on the Fudge section, you are presented with an absolutely scrumptious looking picture of various types of fudge. Underneath the header, the various different fudge products on offer are displayed. These range from special vanilla fudge, to chocolate fudge, nut fudge and even a special strawberry fudge. Again there is plenty of information given about the products.
Thorntons specialities is split into a further three sections; "classic treats", "party favours" and "treats to share". Clicking on "classic treats" takes you too a whole new page. The classic treats section is filled full of special chocolates, fudges, truffles and jellie sweeties.
The next section "party favours" is home to various different chocolates and sweets which are perfect for parties. They include "posh" sweets, some wrapped, some not. They all look gorgeous and along with the pictures a fantastic, mouth watering description is given.
The last section in the Thorntons Specialities is "treats to share". As the name suggests, this section is home to various treats that are suitable for more than one person. The products here include chocolate fountains, huge toffee tins and large multipacks of different chocolates and fudges.
The Thorntons specialities section does seem really special, and would be the place to go if you were looking for birthday presents or things to eat at a party and put in "party-bags".
Hampers and Gift Boxes
As with all other pages, this page is split into various sub sections. This time there are 3 different sections, "champagne and wine hampers", "Chocolate and toffee hampers", and "gift boxes".
Clicking on the "champagne and wine hampers" takes you to a page dominated by tempting (not for me.....) looking pictures of wine bottles and glasses of champagne. Along with the wine and champagne hampers, there are also some chocolate boxes etc thrown into the hampers. Most of these products are quite expensive!
"Chocolate and toffee hampers" is the next sub section. The idea is the same as the champagne and wine section, however the only difference is, the main products are chocolates and toffees. There are mixed toffee and chocolate hampers aswell as hampers filled with only fudge, or filled with only cream chocolates eg- strawberry creams. These all look tempting and delcious but come at a very high cost!
The last hamper section is "Gift boxes". The gift box section includes hampers such as a picnic hamper, aswell as an "indulgance hamper". These would be a great choice for a special birthday present.
Flowers and Chocolates
When I clicked on this section, I was really tempted and thought perhaps I could buy my mum a flower and chocolate duo, however looking at the prices I was shocked and decided perhaps not too. This section again was set into two sub sections "Seasonal" and "Any occasion bouquets".
Clicking on the Seasonal link takes you to a page filled with glorius pictures of brightly coloured flowers. Each bouquet of flowers comes with there own box or 2 (or 3, or 4...) of chocolates. The seasonal section is home to some really brightly coloured flowers. There are also "diabetic duos" on offer too.
The "Any occasion bouquets" would be perfect for birthdays, christmases , anniversaries etc. There are also dedicated bouquets and chocolates for new born babies etc which come with a soft toy rabbit.
The flowers and chocolates were really tempting for a meaningful birthday present for my mum, however the extortionate prices put me off big time!!
Thorntons are really clever, and aswell as selling chocolates, fudges etc, flowers and alchoholic drinks, they also sell greetings cards. The greetings cards section is set into different sections, being; Birthdays, just because cards...., wedding and anniversary cards and Congratulations and good luck cards. The cards are all gorgeous and very pretty cards, and sell from £3 and upwards. Personally though, I wouldn't buy cards off this site as I feel there are plenty other cards around which can be bought for lots cheaper.
I remember when I was little, Thorntons used to be one of my favourite shops, so discovering this section on the website brought back so many memories. The childrens treats page isnt set into different catogries, but instead the prodcuts are all listed over 4 pages. The Thorntons childrens range provide various small bags of chocolate and fudge, as well as the occasional bag of jelly sweets. The prices online are quite expensive and although the chocolate is of a high quality, i'd recommend buying cheaper sweets in newsagents as children probably wont be able to tell the difference.
Exam success is the next link on the homepage and as with the childrens treats range, these aren't set into different subtopics but again the products are all listed along with pictures and descriptions over 5 pages. The exam success section sells, individual chocolate bars, aswell as hampers containing flowers, greetings cards, wines and chocolates. These are all quite expensive and again the prices can be way up nearing £100+.
The wedding service part is subtopiced into various different sections including, ''Wedding range", "Wedding favours and stationary", "Chocolate trays", "Champagne range", "Thankyou presents" and "Wedding and anniversary cards". Each page sports pictures of weddings, and wedding receptions. The wedding section sells various different products including fantastic, beautiful cards and wedding invitations, reception chocolates, wedding favours and various different wines and alchoholic drinks. Most of these products are really expensive, but if your blowing everything out for your wedding, i'd say it was definitly worth it!
The Art Of The Chocolatier
This section is home to various different links you can click on you. Here, you can view the full range of Thorntons products, how to really taste a chocolate and instructions and guides, questions and answers, the origins of chocolate and the art of chocolate making. I took a really long time looking at this part of the site and as it was so informative and full of loads of useful information I learnt alot and came away from the site feeling my time hadn't been wasted. The Thorntons site, really shines through at this point in the site, and I felt it was a really strong point to the site!
**Delivery information is the final link on the tab list**
While browsing through the site, you can pop things into your basket as you go along. You do not need to sign up before you start shopping, this can all be done afterwards. When you come across a product you like the look of, underneath it will ask if you would like to add to your basket, and when you have a product you like you simply click on it and then you will be re-directed back to the page you have been viewing. If you are unsure or forget what is in your basket, this can always be viewed at the top of the site and you will always be able to have a glance to see how many products are in your basket. Once you are finished shopping its now time to ask for delivery.
Once finished and ready to purchase you simply click the "go" button next to your basket. You will then be taken to a page where you are are able to order. If you are already a member, you simply insert your email address and password, however if you are a new member, you simply click on the "new member" button. You will then be taken to a page where you are required to sign up. You will be asked for your full name, address, telephone number, email address and password. Once you have done this you will be taken to the page where you will be asked how you wish to pay. There are various options, as with most sites but I decided to enter my card numer. It is a very easy process and you are assured your details will be kept confidential, you can also read terms and conditions at this point too if you have any concerns. Once you have entered your payment details you will be asked how you wish it too be delivered and when. Again, this is a fairly easy process. Finally you will be asked to confirm your order and tick a box stating you have read terms and conditions etc. Once you have done this, you are all ready, and you simply have to wait for your order. You will recieve an email soon after confirming your order.
*The search bar was really easy to use and everything I searched for had various different things I could choose from.
*The navigation of the site was really easy to use and it was simple to find anything and everything.
*The catogries were set up very well making it easy to find what you wanted.
*The easiness of signing up etc was fantastic
*The site seems to be updated very often, providing all new information and offers
*The website was very fast and took no time at all to load up and find new products
*Appearence of site- 6/10- I did feel the website lacked a little in appearence and was actually quite boring. However there were plenty of lovely pictures which added to the delicious 'atmosphere of the site'.
*Variety of products- 10/10 - there were a huge range of products and something for everybody. Definitly a 10/10 as I don't think there were any products they missed out.
*Delivery process- 8/10- it wasn't perfect as my parcel wasn't delivered exactly when I wanted it to be however when it did arrive the delivery woman was very friendly.
*Condition after delivery- 10/10- the box was in perfect condition aswell as the chocolates, not melted at all.
*Overall - 7/10- taking everything into account i'd give the site a 7/10!
Well as you will all be aware it's that time again when the easter bunny will be filling up his basket and hopefully Delivering his gorgeous chocolatey goodies to children everywhere. (old and young alike I hasten to add). I don't only have an over-excited chocaholic son to contend with I always try and send a small treat or two to my sweet-toothed mother. (She will of course deny her chocolate addiction - don't worry I haven't spotted the half-eaten boxes of chocs in your kitchen bureau honestly)!! Anyway as we will be unable to visit and deliver her easter surprises personally this year I decided to order some goodies instead from the Thorntons website. So heres how I found my online experience with them.
Very briefly for those of you who don't know Thorntons is a company which specialises in selling fine chocolates and gifts. It tastes absolutely scrummy and is very addictive!!! (in my opinion only of course). It was established in 1911 by Joseph William Thornton a master chocolatier. From it's rather humble beginnings the company today has 379 shops and cafes and 250 franchises, in addition it has internet, mail order and commercial services. All in all a striving company which will be celebrating 100 years in the business shortly so testiment to its success.
When you first log on to thorntons.co.uk website you are greeted with a rather pleasant homepage featuring pictures of rather yummy looking chocolate. As you would expect with easter in the not too distant future the main focus is on its special offers and deals in relation to this celebration. There is a large 3 for 2 offer which features its cracking easter deals promotion predominantly featured. Childrens easter deals from 75p and easter bouquets from £20 which grab your attention immediately. There is a drop-down menu on the left hand side which displays the products and options available on the site to include, easter range, special offers, personalised gifts, chocolate collections, toffee and fudge, hampers and gift boxes, flowers and chocolates and a variety of other services offered by the company. I would advise logging onto the site to have a look as there are really too many features to mention and after spending several minutes searching you are sure to find something of interest. In addition the homepage also has a handy tool in which you can enter the price you wish to spend on products, who you are shopping for, the occasion and a list of products so you are sure to find something suitable for the person you are buying a gift for.
As I was buying easter treats I clicked onto the appropriate icon. There were some absolute delights to choose from and certain best selling products had been reduced to half price. There was also a good selection of 3 for 2 items. This included their moments egg (mums favourite) and fair trade chocolate eggs and the item that had caught my eye initially the set of two gorgeous bunny pals. Very cute white and milk choc varieties reduced down to only £1.99 bargain. Well unfortunately it seems like half of the rest of the population of Thorntons shoppers thought so too as it was sold out. This sadly was the case for most of the items that I was intending to buy. Very disappointing I have to say and I would not be surprised if they have missed out on lots of sales as a result of there seemingly lack of Easter items. (that were actually available to buy). Don't get me wrong there were still lots of their traditional items available however I like to give fun gifts at Easter. Unfortunately I ended up not buying a thing from their website and ended up popping into John Lewis instead.
Creating an account was a simple process with Thorntons. You simply provide your email address and a password. You then add your name and house number and postcode, they have a handy address finder too which saves further time. That is pretty much it really a confirmation email is then sent confirming your details. Although I didn't buy this time I have done so in the past. Delivery charges are £4.95 for standard royal mail delivery and £6.95 for gold delivery or named day delivery. I actually think that today this is extortion particularly as most companies tend to offer free delivery on their standard sevice. They offer you options of where you would like the item left if you are not going to be available to accept the parcel for example, in a shed or at a neighbours. You then get the option to add a personalised message to your parcel up to 250 characters. After this you simply add your card details and check and confirm your order and that's you done. An email will be sent to your registered address with your order details. In the past delivery has been relatively swift, the packaging secure and the items have all been received in one piece. I have never had cause to complain about the services offered by Thorntons.
All in all the Thorntons experience has always been relatively positive one. I have to admit I was disappointed this time as I had an idea of what I wanted to buy and thought that purchasing two weeks before Easter would be ample time to ensure that my items were available and would be delivered in plenty of time. Alas this was not to be the case, still maybe next year. I otherwise cant fault this company. I will just have to be quicker off the mark in future. 4 out of 5 stars as the chocolate is delicious, the service is generally great. Just the out of stocks and the delivery charge that lets this company down slightly.
Thorntons is one of our country's most popular chocolatiers. With hundreds of stores throughout the UK, chocaholics nationwide are getting their fix! Their online shopping allows for you to any of their range without worrying it will be sold out - as it could be in a shop.
Thorntons provides a wide range of chocolates to fit to any budget. There is a childrens range and also a range for Diabetics. Some stores also sell Thorntons Ice Cream. If you are buying chocolate for loved ones, you can pay a small price to have your purchase gift wrapped. Some products may have a personalised messaged scribed upon them for free.
With Thorntons offering such a wide, delicious range of Chocolate, it is easy to see why they are still as popular today, as they were when they first opened in 1911!! And with their website for online shopping - they are moving well into the 21st century.
Most of us are familiar with the Thorntons name as there seems to be a branch in most towns and concessions within some branches of Birthdays nationwide. I registered with Thorntons Online a couple of years ago when I heard rumours that they sent out free samples of new ranges to people on their mailing list. That turned out to be just an urban myth, unfortunately, as all I've ever had through the post from Thorntons has been the odd leaflet tempting me with gorgeous (and often expensive) sounding chocolates and the occasional discount code - usually for free p&p after spending an extortionate amount on chocolates!
Eventually, I succumbed to temptation and actually placed an order online just before last Christmas. Thorntons had a couple of their chocolation collections on offer at half-price and it just seemed too much of a bargain to resist. (The same range is on offer this year too. The Christmas Collection at £7.78 and the Mint Collection at £6.80.) I had tried my local Thorntons shop and they were out of stock so I turned to the internet and placed an order. At the time, I'd been sent a discount code offering me free delivery if I spent over £25 in one order. That clinched it, as delivery is usually a hefty £4.95, regardless of the size of order. If you need the order quickly, you'll be stung with £6.95 for named or next day delivery!
I very quickly managed to reach the £25 needed and purchased several of the boxes on offer as Christmas presents for friends and family, as well as some of the cute Christmas range for the kids. (These include novelty items like Advent calenders, Chocolate santas, even tree decorations!) Some people might think that Thorntons chocolate is wasted on children but I think it's worth shelling out more for quality chocolate once in a while.
The chocolates ordered arrived within a couple of days, even though I'd only used the standard delivery service. When the big box arrived, though, two of the chocolate boxes had been damaged during transit. All that had happened was that the seals had split on one side of the box. If they had been for me, I would probably have been too busy scoffing to really notice but, as these were bought as gifts for other people, I felt reluctant to give them just in case it looked like they'd been tampered with or opened! I gave the customer services telephone number a call and explained that the seals on two of the boxes had split open and that I was giving them as presents. The helpful customer services advisor wasn't at all defensive or unpleasant. She just apologised for the damage and asked whether all the other items in my order were okay. She then offered to replace the damaged boxes and told me that these would be sent by courier using the next day delivery service. True to her word, two replacement boxes arrived within 24 hours. I had offered to return the two boxes that had been damaged but I was told to keep them by way of apology! Of course, as they were unsealed we were obliged to scoff both boxes within a matter of days and neither of the boxes lasted until Christmas! I have to say that I felt very pleased with the customer service that I received and would certainly recommend Thorntons in that respect.
Likewise, in terms of product quality, I have yet to try any Thorntons products that I haven't enjoyed. My personal favourites are the Dessert Gallery. (Just in case anybody who knows me is reading this and at a loss as to what to get me for Christmas!)
As far as the site itself goes, naviagation and ease of use is excellent. It has a reliable search bar, which is handy if you already have an item in mind. Otherwise, there are options to browse by either price, person, occasion or product. Alternatively, you can just browse the whole site, but that's probably not the most economical approach if you're on a budget and have a sweet tooth!
Unfortunately, I haven't placed an order at Thorntons Online this year. Whilst the chocolates themselves are quite expensive, compared to the standard Christmas fare of Roses and Quality Street, this in itself doesn't put me off. I am dissuaded by the high p&p charges though. Paying the best part of a fiver for delivery seems a bit steep to me, particularly when I have a local Thorntons branch in town. The latest discount code, sent by Thorntons this week, only gives me free p&p if I spend over £40 in one order! Much as I love chocolate, I won't be spending that much. (If you are, the code is X8ET and is valid until 31/12/08.) Me, I'll be shopping instore until they rethink their delivery charges!
I found out about Thorntons online when browsing Dooyoo (it has its uses!). I was unable to attend a friend's wedding and I was initially meant to be a bridesmaid so I wanted to send chocolates for her to indulge in when getting ready on the morning. Thorntons are by far the nicest and poshest chocolates you can give as a gift so I thought i would use Thorntons online, as I live quite a long way from her.
I found the site to be very clear and straight forward to use. The search facility is particularly good, enabling you to search by occasion, price, type of chocolate etc. The results that came back were all the sort of thing I was looking for. This is a real bonus because quite often with search facilities there is the odd red herring amongst the search results. Not so with Thorntons. All the returned results fitted my criteria and gave me a good selection to choose from. It gave me ideas that I had not considered.
You must register to order, which means that if you go back, it is far easier to order again. I like this feature. The site and service were so good, I will definitely be using it again.
The one downside is the ridiculously high delivery charges. £5 for standard or £7 if you want to specify a day. Imagine what £7 of chocolates looks like - gutting that you don't get £7 of chocolates added to your order!
A great site and great selection. Docking a star for silly postage costs.
Recently I had a friendly bet going with a colleague at work for a box of chocolates. I lost and had to buy her a box of Thornton's chocolates. I have shopped online with Thornton's on the past but not very often as I find their delivery charges to be quite high.
On this occasion I didn't have the time or the inclination to drive into down to go to the Thornton's shop so online was going to have to do.
The site is very clear and concise with easy to follow links. You can search by price, type of chocolate, occasion, person etc. I knew I was going to spend approximately £10 (I was hoping to include delivery in this as well), so I shopped by price this time.
As your search result comes back you can then see the ranges of chocolate on screen, with the option to look closer at selections to see what they included.
The good feature on Thornton's is that you can view the selection card online so you can see what is included in your chocolates before you buy them. I like this feature as very often there will be that chocolate embedded in the box that no-one likes.
You can also see dietary information for your chosen products in the form of suitable for vegetarians and whether they are gluten free etc. This information can be paramount to some people when shopping for chocolate so a really good touch by Thornton's.
Adding to your basket is an easy task, and remains easy until it comes to paying for your order. If you're a returning customer the site will ask you to log in, but if you've never shopped here before, the site has the annoying feature of asking you to register. Now I knew that I will have to provide my name, address, phone number, email and card details to actually buy something, but I don't feel the need to give the site extra methods to snoop into my life and target me for marketing purposes when they feel like it because I forgot to tick that all important box on ordering.
Delivery charges come in quite high against other online shops at Thornton's. Standard delivery is £4.95, and if you want it next day or on a specialised day (Gold as they call it); it's going to cost you £6.95.
I find these charges quite ridiculous as it was going to nearly double my order.
I am a frugal shopper in the sense that I like to know what I'm getting before I pay and also I like to know that I can't get it cheaper elsewhere. Obviously this time I couldn't get Thornton's anywhere else so I needed to try and find a discount code from somewhere.
I chose a box of classic chocolate at £6.50. I would have been very happy to pay this in store, but with standard delivery the price rose to £11.45. Not good enough for me for one box of chocolate. I did manage to find a discount code and brought some money back off that total.
I usually weigh up the postage cost against my time, petrol and parking costs as to wether it was worth me ordering online or not, and in this case it really wasn't. I would have rather gone into the shop myself if I hadn't found that discount code.
You can also gift wrap for £1 extra. I think not in this case, but if you're buying for a special present then it is a cheap price for gift wrap compared to other stores.
Delivery was actually very impressive from Thornton's. I chose to have it delivered to my work address and directly to my colleague. This was easily done on the same page as me entering all my critical details.
I ordered on Wednesday pm and the ordered arrived at work Friday pm. This was very quick for a 3-5 day delivery slot, so well impressed.
The ordered was packaged well and you could tell it was from Thornton's, despite being packaged in plain brown cardboard. The chocolates were nestled safely inside the box and were delivered by a courier rather than Royal Mail so it probably stayed a bit safer that way.
Overall my ordering process was stress free and my colleague was very happy with her chocolates. I would order from the site again as I found the communication throughout was good, and also the site was easy to read with not too many graphics. It was fast to load with lots of details that you needed to know. I would always recommend going in armed with a discount voucher however.
My daughter has returned to the UK after living for several years in Nepal. She still hasn't got over the novelty of being able to walk into Tesco and buy what she wants. Less enchanting is the fact that the whole family (there's five of them) are susceptible to every bug that's doing the rounds, so when my husband chatted to my daughter just a couple of days before her birthday in October he wasn't surprised to find that she was a bit down. "What are we getting her for her birthday" he asked. I explained about the rather worthy gift we'd given her. "Can't we get her some chocolate or something a bit frivolous just to cheer her up" Now chocolate and particularly good chocolate had been in short supply in Nepal so this seemed like a good idea. Off I went to www.thorntons.co.uk. Appropriately it's a chocolatey-brown website, which loads reasonably quickly despite the fact that there's rather a lot of graphics on the home page. Navigation is very simple and you never seem to be more than a click or two away from what you're looking for. I rapidly passed over the idea of a bouquet of flowers with some chocolates because the prices did seem a bit on the high side and the selection of wines was reasonable, but limited. There's an uninspiring selection of other gifts and at various prices. Currently there's a chocolate sportscar for £4.59 or a Rosewater Hatbox plus Continental chocolates mug for £35 (both plus a delivery charge). On the chocolate front there's all the usual favourites with boxes of their most famous selection - Continental - starting at £3 for 100gr and going up to £37 for 1350gr. If you were feeling particularly generous you could buy "A Year of Chocolate" for £99 with a gift of chocolates being sent each month for a year. I'd seen what I wanted though - the "I love chocolate" hamper at £25. There are fourteen different
boxes or bars of chocolate in the hamper - just the thing for a busy Mum to give herself a treat, I thought. Registration wasn't difficult and there's a secure server for payment so away we went. Delivery is £3.99 for standard delivery or £4.99 for next-day delivery. It was Wednesday evening when I placed the order and I wanted the hamper to be delivered on the Friday so it didn't seem unreasonable to pay the £4.99 for Premium Delivery. I had an email to confirm the order within a reassuringly short time. Feeling generous I sat back to wait for Helen's reaction. When we rang on her birthday to do all the usual singing of "Happy Birthday" in silly voices there was no mention of a package, but we'd rung at lunch-time. Undoubtedly the hamper would be delivered in the afternoon. We didn't even worry unduly when we heard nothing over the weekend as we knew they had guests. By Monday I was beginning to feel slightly peeved. My friend and I walked the dogs in the afternoon and commented on how naturally ungrateful children can be. "Don't ring when you're cross" said my husband. "If it's gone this long you might as well leave it until tomorrow night and ring when you've calmed down." I left it. On Tuesday afternoon (four days after the promised date of delivery and nearly a week after I'd placed the order) I had a phone call from my daughter. She'd just had a hamper of chocolates delivered. She thanked me. I know my daughter well. Something was wrong. I asked if I'd upset her. She reassured me that I hadn't. You may recollect that in mid October all the news, particularly from the USA, was of the white-van sniper shootings. The man who made the delivery was driving a white van. He made what my daughter described as a tasteless joke about this. Helen ignored it, but the joke was repeated, rather insistently. When she rang me after unpacking the h
amper it was obviously still in her mind. I certainly felt that the circumstances took something away from my gift. I know that such behaviour is not directly attributable to Thornton's but nevertheless it is the courier firm that they employ and they are responsible for the service given to their customers. I emailed Thorntons to complain, firstly about the late delivery and secondly about the conduct of the courier. There are good links on the site to the email function (and you're recognised when returning to the site from the same computer), although there is sometimes a notice to the effect that there might be a delay in answering emails. I suffered no delay though and had a reply within the hour. An apology was given and I was told that the courier firm used would be told that the conduct described was unacceptable. I was offered a refund of the £4.99 delivery charge that I had paid and asked if this was acceptable. I didn't feel that it was generous, but my complaint had been dealt with quickly and efficiently and there was nothing that could be done to get a hamper of chocolates to my daughter on her birthday at this stage. I emailed immediately accepting the offer and thanking the writer for dealing with the complaint so efficiently. The expected refund of £4.99 was noted in my credit card records and I forgot about the matter. When my credit card statement arrived no refund had been made. I emailed once again asking when the credit could be expected. The response was "I am so sorry I have been out of the office for a while" and I was told that I could expect the refund to appear in my account within five days, which it did. So, would I use them again? Well, I'd be happy to use them provided that it didn't matter when the gift arrived. I wouldn't be happy though to use them to send anything to my daughter because if the refund was forgotten, I have no confidence that anything was said to
the courier firm. It's beginning to get just a little bit limited, isn't it?
I'm the world's worst planner. So I was particularly smug that I had remembered my mother's birthday some two weeks in advance, and was carefully working out what to get. Simple? Not really, since my mother lives in the wilds of the Scottish Highlands, and I live near London, there is a certain element of planning involved in presents. Nothing too heavy, nothing too fragile, you get the picture. Fortunately, she is at home during the day so daytime deliveries are not a problem. Interflora has been a wonderful lifesaver these past years, but there are only so many flowers one can take. I thought it was time for a change, so started looking around. Unfortunately, I was incredibly busy and didn't have a chance to get round to things. Before I knew it, it was 6pm on a Saturday night and her birthday was on Tuesday. Yikes. I live near Lakeside, and under normal circumstances I could have grabbed something quickly and put it in the post on Monday morning, but I was on a course and would not be able to get to the Post Office... Time to rethink. OK, first started off at the Lush website. We'd had good experiences with their delivery before, only to find that what I wanted to get would be expensive to post and they couldn't guarantee anything for delivery that quickly for less than about £15. Then inspiration struck. I'd joined thorntons.com through mypoints some months earlier, and had received numerous emails about their latest offers but never done anything about it. So I went to their site, and was suitably impressed. Expecting their usual selection of boxed chocolates, what was this? Gift packages, with bears, hampers, china, flowers, wine? Oh my word, I was suddenly spoilt for choice. OK, let's check out the delivery then... I was amazed to see that I could order up to 25kg of chocolate (and that's a LOT!) for the one delivery cost of £3.99, and not only that they could send it
39;next day delivery' for only £4.99. OK, if I'd been able to buy a box of chocs and send them by Parcelforce it may have been cheaper, but I really didn't have much choice on this occasion. Anything ordered after 1.30pm on a Friday gets actioned on a Monday, which was perfect for me as it needed to be delivered on Tuesday, but watch out if you're after a Monday delivery. The site also warns it cannot 'next day' to the Scottish Highlands & Islands and Northern Ireland, but I think this works hand in hand with the Parcelforce zones. Although my dear mother's house is in the Highlands, her postcode puts her in standard UK zone 1, so I knew there would be no problem. So what to choose? As I said there is a wealth of delights to choose from, from the 100g Continental box at £3 up to a small fortune, for example a Year of Chocolate at £99. I chose the 'I Love Chocolate' hamper, which was £25 and had a selection including some of the every day bags and bars you can buy in the shop. And that really would be my main complaint. It's lovely for me living near a Thorntons store in Lakeside, and there's one where I work too. But I would like to see selections of the smaller items (and have told them so!) on the website. I'm sure lots of people would like access to the less frivolous items. The site itself I found very easy to navigate, very intuitive and the design was nice and fresh too. I had every confidence in ordering online on the site, they made it very easy compared with some online ordering services. And if you really don't like ordering online, they have a local rate number you can call although I'm not sure it's open on Saturday evening! As a follow up to my order, I now have an offer for a free box of chocolates, which I'm sure is just to tempt me to spend even more, but after all Christmas is coming up, isn't it? And what about delivery? Well I
checked with mum at the first opportunity, and the delivery man had found the remote house with no problems at all. The product was lovely and she was very pleased. Only the one complaint, and that was that the delivery man left the gate open and the dog tried to escape. Well, nothing's perfect is it?! You may find errors accessing thorntons.com - if so, try www.thorntons.co.uk Oh and my address for you to send me lovely things and hampers is... :o)
You would be forgiven for thinking that thorntons.co.uk was just an online shopping site stocking a bundle of luscious looking chocolates but you may be surprised to find that there is far more to it than meets the eye. Choosing gifts for certain people can oftentimes be a difficult task (esp. if you have awkward family and friends who never know exactly what they want). Finding myself in such a predicament not so long ago, Thorntons came to my rescue. I needed a nice gift and I needed it quickly because, as usual, I had left it to the last minute, having neither the chance nor inclination to go shopping. So, it being a Friday and the item needing to be delivered the next day, my options were severely limited to say the least. Quite why I thought of Thorntons I have no idea ? I remember seeing one of their ads once and thought I?d give them a go. Thorntons promise next day delivery and even deliver on Saturdays (though this does cost more). As long as I placed my order by 1pm that day then the order would be despatched in time. The site itself is very user-friendly and despite chocolate overload, the site by no means looks cluttered. In fact, it seems to have been designed quite well. Having not visited the site that much too recently, I have noticed a couple of changes here and there ? but more with the content than anything else. The homepage usually focuses around a certain theme or offer that is concurrent with the time of year. For example, at Easter there were Easter Eggs and bunny gifts aplenty adorning the page, and more recently, a summer sale was on (this is now listed as a subcategory). There was also a main feature of the latest addition to the Thorntons range, ?Cool Fruits? which are a new idea (apparently) ? a selection of small fruit mousses in chocolate ?cups? which you put in the freezer then serve to dinner guests (assuming you actually have such a social life). Pah. Anyway, probably due to the lack of summery weather lately, these are n
o longer a central element to the home-page. In saying that though, the general focal point is that of summer ? users of the site will not be able to escape the images of the Summer Collection 2002; the Midsummer Bouquets or the Summer Gift Ideas. The pictures adorning the home page are well placed and of high quality ? I think the professional look of the photos serve to create the impression that the service will be of a similar quality. Anybody who has been in Thorntons will know that presentation is a key factor in their production of high quality chocolate treats and the website is no different. It has been designed with the utmost ease of use in mind, and with an underlying bid to tempt you into ordering more than what you wanted. The photos and descriptions are there to entice and appeal to the prospective consumer, and if you are looking for a gift then I am pretty sure you would not leave the site without making a purchase. The site is divided into 5 different gift categories so it is not only easier for you to navigate around the site, but easier to find items within specific categories. Whilst five does not seem altogether impressive, each range features sub-categories which in turn offer a plethora of chocolate delights; bath and body treats; hampers; fine wines and bouquets of flowers. ============ Chocolates and Specialities ============ This category features a small selection of boxed delights from four of Thorntons? ranges ? Continental; Tasty Treats; Toffee and Fudge and A Year of Chocolate. To access each range, you simply click on the pull down menu where a quick loading page will present the chosen items. ****Continental**** ? one of their best selling ranges, Continental is a selection of dark, white and milk chocolates with various centres, from mousses to liqueurs and praline. Although not a huge selection, I found there to be different sized and shaped boxes that would suit any occasion and indeed a
ny budget (obviously the bigger the box the higher the price). As far as I can tell, prices are exactly the same as you would expect to pay in the shop. In fact, I would say this goes for all of the *edible* items across the site. ****Tasty Treats**** ? proving once again that they cater to all tastes, Thorntons here present us with chocolates suitable for diabetics; after dinner mints and specialist alcohol filled truffles. ****Toffee and Fudge**** ? fairly self explanatory, a small selection of fudges and toffees. However, as opposed to the small packets that you can purchase from the shop, these are limited to just the boxes so if you are looking to treat yourself to a small bag then you may well be disappointed. ****A Year of Chocolate**** - this is, as far as I can tell, a new addition to the site. It enables you (or the rather generous among you) to choose to send a special somebody a year?s worth of chocolate. Each month a box of themed delights will be sent to said person ? an example would be that in April they?d receive an Easter egg and then in summer a box of Cool Fruits would be sent. This quite unique and generous gift is available at the cost of £50 for 6 months or £99 for a whole year, which I think if you worked it out, would be quite a good offer as it is 12 presents in all and does include delivery. ============ Hampers and Celebrations ============ For special occasions or for an extravagant picnic (hmm), Thorntons hampers look like a tasty alternative to eating sarnies in the local park. Obviously this wouldn?t apply to my local park, not unless I wanted to be run over by some idiot on a moped. I though, am pretty sure that if you attempted to have a champagne hamper or an I Love Chocolate hamper whilst outdoors, then the any wasp living within a four mile radius will be making a speedy beeline (doh) for said alcohol and chocolate. Even Thorntons choccy isn?t worth being stung up the arse by an angry wasp. Ahem, I digre
ss. Once again this feature enables you to select items from the following sub categories: ****Hampers**** ? already covered this really ? you can pick from several gift hampers which are ideal for celebratory occasions (passing exams; moving home; anniversaries and so on). Not a huge choice, but some good ideas nonetheless. ****Café Thorntons**** - for those with caffeine addictions, Thorntons café range is an ideal choice offering coffee makers, espresso cup sets and teapots all in rather snazzy contemporary designs. ****Celebrations**** - not really many celebratory occasions are covered in this section ? it quite disappointingly only features a couple of birthday gift sets; champagne sets and new baby sets. I would have expected to see more ideas geared towards specific occasions, perhaps a special wedding gift set or something. ============ Flowers and Wine ============ For those with perhaps a wee bit more money than most, Thorntons deliver large bouquets of flowers for the sum of between £26 and £52.99. Whilst some include the delivery cost I personally feel this is quite a large amount of money for not a lot of flower. Yes, there is a nice choice but in all honesty, I think people would be better off buying a bunch from the local florist. ****Flowers**** - Whilst there are only summer bouquets available at the present moment, Thorntons usually have specific bouquets for the occasion, for instance there are more available for around Mother?s Day. ****Fine wines**** - consumers may be disappointed to know that Thorntons ?impressive array of exceptional quality wines? actually only consists of a mere five different options, ranging from £30 (for two bottles of red) to £89.99 for a case of 12. I am only assuming that you are paying for quality over quantity, but then I don?t drink wine. ============ Gift Ideas ============ Unlike most Thorntons shops, there is a pretty good selection of gifts available on the onlin
e store. **** Fun Gifts**** are mainly aimed at children, being cuddly toys, character mugs and cute shaped chocolate treats with pretty good prices too. ****Luxurious gift ideas**** are more suited to adults and offer Crabtree and Evelyn and Arran Aromatics bath and body treats alongside boxes of chocolate ? these make all round great gifts and so are worth the higher price tags. These are definitely good choices to ?pamper friends and family? with. ============ Seasonal treats ============ As mentioned previously, Thorntons usually run themes of gift ideas and this section features the Cool Fruits range, Summer Gift Ideas and the Summer Sale. ****Summer Gift Ideas**** - advertised as being a ?wonderful selection of zesty treats and stunning gifts?, I am inclined to disagree somewhat. But then I?m just picky anyway. Yes, there are zesty, fruity treats to be had but I wouldn?t say the selection is that great. Also, the prices are a little steep for some of the ceramic items (mugs; teapot sets et al). ****Cool Fruits**** has just the one box of chocolates thus far and whilst these do look pretty mouth-watering are a tad pricey at £6.15 for a small box. However, if you are buying these for somebody then I think they would make a nice, if not rather unsubstantial, gift. ****Sale**** - anyone who loves shopping probably loves this word just as much for you instantly think of bargains that can be had. I personally thought (or rather, hoped) I?d be able to treat myself to a troughful of choccy for a small fee but alas, there really isn?t much of a reduction in price (they don?t actually tell you how much you save either). Also, the sale is mainly on items that people probably don?t want to buy anyway. As an example, there are hand care treats for cooks; milk frothers (woohoo); a glass decanter and other mugs/cups/saucers/boring things. So then, that pretty much covers the selection of goods on offer, and overall I would say I am
quite impressed by how extensive the range is. Whilst some areas have very few items, other areas do tend to make up for this somewhat. As mentioned earlier, the site is very easy to navigate around. Back at the home page we are given various options in where to direct our mouse. On the left hand side we can, if we choose, do a quick search of the site. I think this is a good idea if you know specifically what you are looking for as it saves time and effort (it is hard work perusing the site knowing full well you won?t be ordering anything for yourself). You can also use the handy ?gift finder? which enables you to choose the person whom you are buying for a few suggestions, and you can also choose your budget. Obviously, the higher your budget, the more items will be available and if you are only looking to spend a fiver you won?t get much at all. Meanwhile on the right hand side, Thorntons have done yet more work for us by selecting five of their own popular gift ideas ? namely three boxes of best-selling chocolates; a bouquet of flowers; a bottle of champagne and the Cool Fruits. If any of these take your interest you can simply pop them into your basket, read more on the product or just carry on browsing elsewhere. Speaking of your basket, this is a large icon in the top right hand corner that keeps a note of exactly what you have added to it throughout your shopping experience and what the total cost is (excluding postage and packaging). Going to the checkout is just as simplistic, with the option there right beneath the icon. To pay for goods, you can use virtually any credit or debit card and for peace of mind, a secure server is used. As with most online shops, Thorntons features areas where you can seek help; find out where your nearest store is with the store locator; request a catalogue (this is unnecessary if you do order anything as they will send you one occasionally anyway); read up on company information and
contact them ? all of these options are on a panel spanning the length of the top of the homepage. Also there is a section on customer information which I think is advisable for consumers to read before making any definite purchases as it contains information on products which may contain nuts; a privacy statement; terms and conditions and delivery information. Whilst Thorntons do deliver overseas, it is best to check this section out to find out exactly where they ship to and at what cost. In the UK, delivery costs £2.99 for standard 3 day dispatch and £4.99 for special Saturday/next day delivery so as you can see is quite pricey. The former price though is for goods up to the weight of 25 kilos so if you order quite a lot then it is definitely worth it. One thing I am not sure about though is that if you are ordering gifts for more than one person, you can only have the one package delivered to one address. I had mine delivered to the recipient but obviously this is not always possible so should be taken into account of when goods are ordered. Overall I have been lucky with Thorntons ? the items were despatched and delivered exactly when I wanted them to be (even though they stressed the package may not have arrived on the Saturday). I was also quite pleased that I could personalise the gift by having a message included on it and have it delivered to the recipient at no extra cost. Since I have had no problems with Thorntons, I am not sure what customer service is like but I was kept informed of my order at all times and was notified when it was sent. I can honestly say that I will probably be ordering again as there is a wide choice of gifts, the site is easy to use and navigate around, and there were no problems whatsoever. I would definitely recommend this site to all and I think it may prove particularly invaluable nearer Christmas time when people are dreading the Christmas crowds. If you have managed to make it this far then
thank you! ©Weeping_Willow.