About a year ago I found a great way to easily track everything I order online – whether it’s from Amazon, eBay, or really any online vendor. As long as they provide a tracking number for their shipment to you, you can follow the progress and be notified for delivery of anything you order. And you don’t have to open all the vendor emails either.
Here’s the problem: when you order something online, it is most commonly sent by one of three carriers: UPS, Federal Express, or the US Mail. For UPS and Fedex, there is always a tracking number. The US Mail also has a tracking number if it is specifically sent that way.
So, when the vendor ships out your item, it usually means that you get an email with a notification that the item has been sent. I do the same thing when I sell a laptop to someone and ship it out – it’s nice to be able to track where your item is, and know what day it is supposed to arrive.
The difficulty lies in the fact that those emails are all laid out differently, with a mix of fonts and formats, and you have to go and hunt down the tracking number that’s buried somewhere in the text of the email message.
Then, once you know the tracking number, you need to go to the carrier’s website (UPS, Fedex or USPS) and enter the tracking number in order to get information on the shipment.
That’s a time-consuming hassle even if you’re only expecting one delivery. What if you order stuff all the time, or you have 8 – 10 items ordered at the same time? You could spend half the day just trying to figure out when your stuff will arrive.
Fortunately, a while back I discovered a better way. It’s called Tracky. Like a lot of the great tools on the internet, it’s free. It also does not require you to install anything on your computer.
First step: enter your email address in the form on the front page (Trackyapp.com). That’s it!
Using it is incredibly easy. Whenever you get an email notifying you that a product has been shipped, you just forward that email to firstname.lastname@example.org. From that point on, you don’t have to do anything.
You will get an email confirming that Tracky is following the progress of your package. Then you will get an email saying “Your package from _____ is arriving today!” That way, you can know to expect it and even make sure you or someone else is there if a signature is required.
You can also go to the Tracky site and see about the estimated arrival date of everything they are tracking for you. At the moment, I am not expecting anything, but I can still see the most recent ones that I was following:
There are also Tracky apps available for your smartphone (Android, iPhone, or Windows phone). Personally I don’t use the mobile app – all of the notifications come to me by email, and I get that on my phone anyway.