U.S. Mint to use waiting room for product launches
- Published: Mar 2, 2023, 9 AM
The U.S. Mint planned to introduce a virtual waiting room to its online catalog March 2 with the stated goal of keeping the website from being overloaded or crashing during peak demand.
The waiting room addition was in conjunction with the public sale launch of the individual Proof 2023-W American Eagle silver dollar and the 2023 Congratulations set, two limited products that incorporate the same coin in different packaging.
“The Waitroom will ensure the best possible user experience when we release our most popular products,” according to the Mint’s Office of Corporate Communications. “We will deploy the Waitroom whenever we expect site traffic to exceed its capacity so that the site can effectively take and process orders.
“If you have ever purchased high-demand concert tickets or a highly anticipated video game console, then you have probably experienced a virtual waiting room,” according to the U.S. Mint.
Here’s what customers were to experience with the debut of the Waitroom:
➤ Just before the noon Eastern Time release, all customers on the site would be moved into the Waitroom and assigned a random position in line. Each visitor on the site at that time would have an equal chance of being either first or last in line.
➤ At noon Eastern Time, the Waitroom would begin letting site visitors onto the catalog website as quickly as possible while simultaneously ensuring the site’s traffic would not exceed capacity.
➤ Customers who would arrive on the site after the noon Eastern Time release time would be added to the end of the line in the order in which they arrived.
➤ The Waitroom would remain active until site traffic would return to normal levels.
Those seeking to place orders while the Waitroom was initiated would notice the following:
➤ It does not benefit a customer to “camp out” on the site by arriving hours early on a release day.
➤ Regardless of the time a customer’s session started, everyone on the site just prior to the noon Eastern Time release would be given equal treatment by receiving a randomly generated position in line.
➤ Once a customer was placed in the Waitroom, the customer would be given an estimated wait time based on that position in line.
➤ Customers were advised not to refresh the Waitroom page or close their browser. Either event would cause a session to refresh, causing the customer to re-enter the Waitroom at the back of the line.
➤ Customers were asked to complete their transaction as quickly as possible.
➤ To prevent inactive sessions from taking up places in line, a limit is placed on a customer’s time on the catalog site after exiting the waiting room. A customer who has not placed items in the cart and started checking out within 10 minutes will be moved back to the Waitroom, at the back of the line. Nearly all transactions on popular release days take less than five minutes.
➤ Product availability is not guaranteed to customers who enter the waiting room.
To better insure receipt of product, Mint officials strongly suggest that customers place orders via the subscription option when the option becomes available.
The subscription option for order placements was made available in advance of the public sale for both Proof 2023-W American Eagle silver dollar products at the product window on the bureau’s website at www.usmint.gov.
Several popular, limited-edition numismatic products offered by subscription have sold out to Mint customers via the subscription option before being released through a public sales launch.
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