The first real test of the United States Mint’s site occurred yesterday with the release of the 2021-W American Eagle silver proof coin. All indications are that the site, along with the new security & automated buying systems (commonly referred to as BOTS), survived the day with little to no interruptions for collectors eager to buy. The new coin is the first to feature the new Type-2 Reverse and demand for the coin was expected to be high.
Sales began at Noon Eastern and in testing of the site at the time of release, I found no issues and was able to quickly add a coin to my shopping cart. The sales transaction was also quick and was verified by the Mint within minutes that the order had been received. Trolling Twitter & Reddit, I found virtually no instances of buyers complaining of the site’s performance beyond a few slow processing moments for some.
The Mint has come under increasingly harsh scrutiny for its website in the past few years, suffering several outages during high traffic times for key purchases by collectors. Here at USCoinNews, I have covered at length the challenges the official Mint website has faced over the past two years.
The Mint in recent months has gone as far as delaying the release of high demand products such as the United States Air Force Silver Medal and the upcoming Morgan and Peace Dollars as it worked to implement back-of-house changes to its website to assure collectors had a fighting change to get the coin they desire. Further, the Mint also changed its Bulk Purchase Program effectively banning automated buying systems.
While one success doesn’t mean all the challenges for the Mint’s site are solved, it does bode well. As of this morning, the 2021-W American Eagle Type-2 is sold out, all 300,000, with hardly any complaints. Take a moment to appreciate the efforts the Mint has made to improve the buying experiences for collectors.