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Watch out for Amazon !
Old 01-22-2011, 02:04 PM   #1
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Watch out for Amazon !

I have been shopping for my grandson's birthday and I usually do it on Amazon and just have his presents shipped . I found a great gift . It's a big tub of dinosaurs with a play mat cost $41. The same toy is $19.95 at Toys r us . I checked several other toys with similar results . The mark ups were huge . Even with paying for shipping it is cheaper to order from Toys r us or mail it myself . Amazon needs to control the price gouging that some of it's sellers are doing before they lose a lot of customers .
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:36 PM   #2
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It is not necessary for Amazon to control their sellers' price. I think it is the buyers' responsibility that they are getting the best price when shopping. Not just at Amazon but every where else. I don't always assume that the deal from Amazon is the best.

And you did the right thing - you shopped around and found a better price somewhere. You are an educated customer.
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:39 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Moemg View Post
I have been shopping for my grandson's birthday and I usually do it on Amazon and just have his presents shipped . I found a great gift . It's a big tub of dinosaurs with a play mat cost $41. The same toy is $19.95 at Toys r us . I checked several other toys with similar results . The mark ups were huge . Even with paying for shipping it is cheaper to order from Toys r us or mail it myself . Amazon needs to control the price gouging that some of it's sellers are doing before they lose a lot of customers .
Has anyone else noticed this?

A few months ago I seem to recall reading that amazon was using 'flexible pricing' of some sort. I wonder if this may be what happened here?

Just before Christmas, there was a thread here about a Leak Detector meter that measures temperature differential from 'normal'. The day I first checked the price on amazon, it was ~$50, the next time I checked the price (a few days later) it was ~$29!

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Old 01-22-2011, 04:54 PM   #4
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Interesting. I generally use several of the price comparison sites (pricegrabber, bizrate, etc) to compare prices if I am looking for a specific item. I often end up buying from Amazon, as their price is usually very competitive (especially if you can get the free shipping). Their service has always been fast and reliable also.
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:55 PM   #5
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I check local prices and availability before turning to the Net to buy stuff. (some of the things I want, aren't sold in stores around here). Then I compare prices across the Net, factoring in sales tax or lack of sales tax as appropriate. The range of prices on Amazon can be befuddling. Sometimes there is a 100% spread across offers for the same item.

The other thing to watch out for, as I noted on some other thread, is that "free Super Saver Shipping" items sometimes cost as much as the same item from another seller, who charges for shipping. "Free Super Saver Shipping" - trust but verify!

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Old 01-22-2011, 04:59 PM   #6
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For you Firefox users concerned about Amazon pricing "games", here is a neat add-on: The Camelizer

The Camelizer tracks the price history products sold by Amazon, Best Buy, Newegg and others. After installing it, find the product at the online retailer, click on the little camel icon at the lower right of your screen and it will show you the price history of that product going back several months, revealing any recent price shenanigans.

You can also use it to set a price watch and alert you when the price of a product drops to a target level of your choosing.

Neat stuff...
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Old 01-22-2011, 05:03 PM   #7
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With Amazon I think it is the fact that they are using a lot of independent sellers like ebay so the prices really vary . I do not mind a reasonable mark up but everything I was interested in was 100% higher than other merchants .
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Old 01-22-2011, 05:08 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by KingB View Post
It is not necessary for Amazon to control their sellers' price. I think it is the buyers' responsibility that they are getting the best price when shopping. ....
+1

I don't get this from the OP. Why is it Amazon's responsibility to 'do something'? It is up to you to do something - shop carefully and vote with your wallet.

Amazon has dropped a bit in their 'transparency' though. Many sellers have stuff for ridiculously low prices, but add in enough S&H to raise the price above what you can get from others. It makes the 'sort by price' feature pretty useless, unless you specify 'with free shipping' (but you might miss out on a deal).

I still find Amazon to almost always have the best deal though, and I check on almost everything I buy. Prices change all the time, that's nothing new. Brick & Mortar stores change prices all the time too. Oh, and I have their Visa card, you get 3% on Amazon purchases and 1% on all others. I use when I can't use my 2% rewards Fido Amex.

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Old 01-22-2011, 05:14 PM   #9
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For you Firefox users concerned about Amazon pricing "games", here is a neat add-on: The Camelizer
Cool! And here it is for us Chrome/Chromium users:

https://chrome.google.com/extensions...gehppbamfndblo



-ERD50
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Old 01-22-2011, 05:32 PM   #10
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+1

I don't get this from the OP. Why is it Amazon's responsibility to 'do something'? It is up to you to do something - shop carefully and vote with your wallet.



-ERD50

I have sold on Amazon for several years and they always controlled how much you could charge for shipping plus they had a pretty high standards for their sellers . In my opinion they have dropped them and now have a lot of sellers gouging buyers on prices . I read several reviewers of the sellers that were selling the overpriced toys and they were not flattering . In the old days those sellers would not exist on Amazon but things have changed and yes ,I do think Amazon should rein in these sellers before their reputation suffers .
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Old 01-22-2011, 06:09 PM   #11
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Not that this has anything to do with it, but Amazon used to be Toys R Us's Internet source--they had a major falling out and Amazon had to pay big bucks to TRU as a result (TRU was supposed to be the only source for toys on Amazon's site but surprise! Amazon let other retailers also sell toys that supposedly were not available at TRU but still breached the agreement). Details here: Amazon pays $51M to settle lawsuit with Toys R Us - MarketWatch

The dinosaur toys sound adorable, Moe--and admit it, you would have paid twice as much to make that little guy happy!
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Old 01-22-2011, 06:37 PM   #12
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I have sold on Amazon for several years and they always controlled how much you could charge for shipping plus they had a pretty high standards for their sellers . In my opinion they have dropped them and now have a lot of sellers gouging buyers on prices . I read several reviewers of the sellers that were selling the overpriced toys and they were not flattering . In the old days those sellers would not exist on Amazon but things have changed and yes ,I do think Amazon should rein in these sellers before their reputation suffers .
I do agree with you that this makes Amazon look rather 'tacky', and I don't like the 'tricks' either, and wish they would just keep things transparent to the highest degree.

I've also noticed that many of these sellers have really shoddy 'descriptions' of the product. It's hard to tell what is included or not, sometimes you have to rely on the comments to know what's up.

I've been thinking of writing them to express this, but who knows? Many people are attracted by what look like 'deals', and maybe overall Amazon feels they are doing better with this. It's their business, we can just decide to deal with them or not.

I disagree that anyone is being 'gouged' by a listed price. If you don't like the price, don't buy it.

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Old 01-22-2011, 06:43 PM   #13
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Has anyone else noticed this?

A few months ago I seem to recall reading that amazon was using 'flexible pricing' of some sort. I wonder if this may be what happened here?

Just before Christmas, there was a thread here about a Leak Detector meter that measures temperature differential from 'normal'. The day I first checked the price on amazon, it was ~$50, the next time I checked the price (a few days later) it was ~$29!

omni
I think you meant an Infrared Thermometer around Thanksgiving. It's not flexible pricing, they continually adjust their prices based on all kinds of things, matching competitors, or if the quantity is running low, etc. I commented on the price dropping on the Black & Decker model Thermometer. If you plan on shopping any store like Amazon, don't just assume you're getting a good price, like any service, check around and get at least 3 sources (if not more... I check a lot more) to see if the price is good. If you use Amazon, put it in your shopping cart, then select "Save for Later". Keep checking your shopping cart over time and if the price changes, you'll get a note at the top of your shopping cart telling you so. Be forewarned, the price can go up or down! If you don't need it yesterday, it's a nice way to catch a price change. I used this for some video games that I caught at 50% or more off this Christmas and for Birthday presents.
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Old 01-22-2011, 06:51 PM   #14
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Sounds like the airlines, every time I check a flight it's a different price.
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:37 PM   #15
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The dinosaur toys sound adorable, Moe--and admit it, you would have paid twice as much to make that little guy happy!

You are so right . It was the principal of the thing . I did end up buying the bucket of dinosaurs , a stuffed dinosaur that roars , several books , and a dinosaur stamp kit . Plus I am looking for dinosaur Pj's .
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:55 PM   #16
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There might be an innocent explanation of confusion or a mistake, in the case of the bucket of dinosaurs. I've bought quite a bit through Amazon in the last few years, and in the few instances that a transaction went sour, I never thought that Amazon was trying to gyp me. I did find Amazon user reviews for the bucket of dinosaurs which pointed out that Toys 'R Us had a much better price.
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Old 01-22-2011, 08:04 PM   #17
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For you Firefox users concerned about Amazon pricing "games", here is a neat add-on: The Camelizer

.
Oh great, I wonder how many camels were injured (or worse) in the development of the "camelizer...
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Old 01-22-2011, 08:10 PM   #18
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If you have a smart phone, you can use Google Shopper. I use the android version and it lets me scan in bar codes using the phone's camera.
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Old 01-22-2011, 08:15 PM   #19
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Oh great, I wonder how many camels were injured (or worse) in the development of the "camelizer...
I imagine they got a few lumps.
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Old 01-22-2011, 08:17 PM   #20
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I buy a fair amount of vitamins and other bottled things for my body, and while I always find the Amazon price very attractive, I also notice most of the pill vendors have some available described as used.
I'm not sure how that works, but the mental picture I get of the used pill production line is not very pleasant..Anyone else notice that?
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