Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
azurekep
Posts: 1179
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:16 pm

Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by azurekep » Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:48 pm

Most everything, especially add-ons, have doubled or tripled in price since I last bought them a year or so ago. When I do find a bargain, it's for Prime only or it's not fulfilled through Amazon. I'm finding it hard these days to find enough to meet the $25 limit for Amazon's free shipping without adding things that seem overpriced.

Are any of you finding bargains at Amazon? If so, what items, types or categories?

runner3081
Posts: 1618
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by runner3081 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:25 pm

No issues, but we have Prime and an Echo Dot. Free shipping on add-ons and most everything else that way.

davidlhanson
Posts: 40
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2007 9:53 pm
Location: Southeast USA

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by davidlhanson » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:36 pm

You have to shop carefully but there are still plenty of bargains sold by Amazon or their third party partners. I have ordered 218 times on Amazon in 2017 and 399 times in 2016 (and have been a customer since 1996 according to Amazon's order records). We buy electronics, garden supplies, some food items, toys for grandkids, clothes gifts for adult children, and books (usually used) from Amazon (and other things also including dragon fruit cuttings a few years ago). When our grandchildren lived in Scotland for a few years (our son was working on a PhD at St. Andrews University), we ordered gifts for them through Amazon UK.

I am retired and these are for personal use.

Most items I check against other online vendors - big items against local vendors also.

Keys to me being happy with Amazon
1. Amazon Prime
2. Amazon Store Card or Amazon Visa which offer 5% rebates on purchases (we have both).
3. CamelCamelcamel.com - a free service where you can set a desired price for an item and when it hits your price level, you are notified. They get a fee from Amazon when you use their links (but it doesn't cost you any more).

123
Posts: 3703
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:55 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by 123 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:50 pm

Don't often find a good value but with Prime Amazon saves us a lot of time and is very convenient. They seem to have pretty much anything I might want (I recently got a replacement part for our dishwasher). There's an Amazon Locker that's very convenient for most of our deliveries so no one has to be home. For stuff that's too big for the locker I'll usually divert it, depending on the shipper, to a local UPS or Fedex store. Most stuff is not needed immediately so a 2 day wait is more convenient that putting a run to the mall or a non-grocery retail store in our schedule. A benefit of Amazon is that we're not likely to buy any other stuff that we might see on a visit to the mall. For standard clothing the availability of sizes on Amazon is better then many local stores. Less is more.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

User avatar
arcticpineapplecorp.
Posts: 3198
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:22 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:26 pm

I and Clark Howard agree with your findings. They used to be a loss leader (would undercut all competitors) but it seems that's not the case anymore and the model is you pay for convenience, which is not a smack at Amazon. It's true of most things in life. I go to Amazon first but on several occasions then go to the website of the company that makes the product and found better deals going direct rather than through Amazon. But that's only for a few things. I'm not a huge shopper so I can't say in the main. Some items I get through Amazon and others elsewhere.

You really do have to shop around if you want the best price. In fact some on Amazon who subscribe (get regular shipments at regularly scheduled intervals) assumed they were getting a deal because they were guaranteeing a purchase every X number of weeks/months or whatever. Ordinarily it would work that way. It should be an incentive (savings) to entice the shopper to sign up for auto-purchase. However, because Amazon is using market pricing based on supply and demand, it's possible to pay more (sometimes much more) on a subsequent purchase than before (because there may be less of a supply next time than last time). Yes, Amazon gives you the option to cancel that before it places the order but again, it's not a given that you're getting the best price. Some might say, "But even though it's more next time, that's the best price available at that time". Maybe, you've got to check other sites to know for sure. Just because Amazon has a low supply and is charging more, doesn't mean that's true everywhere.

You've got to know what current prices are, where deals exist, etc. The last time I made a purchase I actually went to three or four different websites to get the best price and the prices were more different than I imagined. I also use the web browser add on called "invisible hand". That is what showed me where the item I was purchasing was offered in 4-5 different places and what the best price was. Consider that add on to your web browser (I use firefox). If you use Chrome (google) you can try the add on "wikibuy".
"Invest we must." -- Jack Bogle | “The purpose of investing is not to simply optimise returns and make yourself rich. The purpose is not to die poor.” -- William Bernstein

FraggleRock
Posts: 362
Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:50 pm

good values?, yes

Post by FraggleRock » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:40 pm

Good value?
Yes.
Selection + price + ease of ordering + delivery.
Best price? No. Don't care. I am not going to shop around to save $2 on an item.

SrGrumpy
Posts: 703
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2015 3:21 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by SrGrumpy » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:59 pm

I let stuff sit in my shopping basket and watch the frequent price movements, and I buy when I've got a good feel for things.

davebo
Posts: 784
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by davebo » Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:18 pm

Generally speaking, if something is a name brand, you're more likely to find a good deal if it's Shipped/Sold by Amazon themselves. Most of the 3rd party sellers are not getting the merchandise from distributors, so they are finding products at clearance at local stores. Even if they are finding it through a distributor, they are forced to increase their price to account for Amazon's fee plus the fulfillment cost of having Amazon ship the product. In general, anything you can find in a retail store is kind of a crap shoot when it comes to buying it on amazon.

Where Amazon shines is giving 3rd party sellers direct access to the selling platform and then cutting out the distributors, or should I say the expensive distributors. It used to be that you'd buy Apple Peelers for like $35 at niche retailers. Now, Amazon sellers just go direct to China and basically get the same apple peeler, private label the product, and sell them on Amazon for $20. They make money, Amazon makes money, and the customer is happy because they have essentially the same apple peeler at a fraction of the cost.

\

jebmke
Posts: 8361
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by jebmke » Mon Jul 03, 2017 11:16 pm

Mainly only Kindle books. Maybe 2-3 times a year for other things. The prices are just average. But I don't buy much "stuff" to begin with. If it is something I can find locally, I will usually just wait until I am out of the house for some other reason.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

mpsz
Posts: 299
Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2016 7:11 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by mpsz » Mon Jul 03, 2017 11:31 pm

Besides groceries, I buy nearly everything online. I still make most of my purchases on Amazon, but I've switched to Target.com for nearly all household supplies. Target.com's billing system is an absolute nightmare (a single $100 purchase will be broken apart into $18, $31, $5, $46 on your card, corresponding to when things shipped even if everything ships the same day) but their prices are largely the same as in-store.

I tried Amazon groceries and the USPS is just too pathetic for that to be a viable option. But there were some VERY good deals here.... I may sign up for another month and stock up on some more nonperishables.

And another reminder to use camelcamelcamel.com for large purchases.

azurekep
Posts: 1179
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:16 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by azurekep » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:10 am

davidlhanson wrote:
3. CamelCamelcamel.com - a free service where you can set a desired price for an item and when it hits your price level, you are notified. They get a fee from Amazon when you use their links (but it doesn't cost you any more).
I tried CamelCamelCamel a couple of times, and while the reported prices were lower, they were from third-party sellers. Once you added in the shipping, they were pretty expensive. I never followed up on this but now am curious: Is there a way to get alerts only when the product is sold/fulfilled by Amazon?

nalor511
Posts: 242
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:00 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by nalor511 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:14 am

camelcamelcamel price watch, you can tell it to ignore 3rd party and only use Amazon.com direct sold items.

HAL 9000
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 10:23 pm
Location: Colorado

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by HAL 9000 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:21 am

Now that they own the market the prices seem to be rising. I would say, no great deals any more. I also feel that some of the things I get have been returned and resold alot which is annoying. That being said, love the customer service and return policy. I have never had a problem. Also the AI is so good now if you don't buy the first time you look at an item, the price goes up and never comes back down, they know...
By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. - Ben Franklin

Vanguard Fan 1367
Posts: 757
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:09 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Vanguard Fan 1367 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:25 am

I sure appreciate Amazon and their quick shipping. I had trouble finding an air conditioning filter and was grateful for Amazon having it and sending it quickly. As other posters have said, if you want the best deal you need to imitate my late mother who liked to shop several grocery stores on the same day.

onourway
Posts: 1178
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by onourway » Tue Jul 04, 2017 5:45 am

Prices haven't been rock-bottom for years, and are extremely variable - seemingly more-so after you browse to an item or put it in your cart. I don't assume Amazon has the absolute best price, but what they do have is an awfully good selection at decent prices - and when you factor in the 'free' shipping with Prime, they often are difficult to beat.

nukewerker
Posts: 234
Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:46 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by nukewerker » Tue Jul 04, 2017 6:02 am

You are not alone. I have started going in stores again during heavy shopping times such as the holidays. Much better deals to be had out there.

Jags4186
Posts: 2457
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Jags4186 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 6:06 am

Buy on Amazon for free shipping/no sales tax, then use your credit cards price match feature to get the best pricing.

jebmke
Posts: 8361
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by jebmke » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:05 am

AMZ collects sales tax in many states now. We always filed use tax before they started in our state so there has never been a tax reason to buy from AMZ. There is a huge warehouse about 1.5 hours away so delivery is sometimes scarily fast.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

tech_arch
Posts: 253
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 11:47 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by tech_arch » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:17 am

We use Amazon and CamelCamelCamel a lot. We also have Prime, though, and do cursory price comparisons.
mpsz wrote:Besides groceries, I buy nearly everything online. I still make most of my purchases on Amazon, but I've switched to Target.com for nearly all household supplies. Target.com's billing system is an absolute nightmare (a single $100 purchase will be broken apart into $18, $31, $5, $46 on your card, corresponding to when things shipped even if everything ships the same day)
Amazon does this with Subscribe and Save, too. But they give you a discount if you have at least 5 things in the bundle.
jebmke wrote:AMZ collects sales tax in many states now. We always filed use tax before they started in our state so there has never been a tax reason to buy from AMZ.
They collect sales tax in every state now (http://money.cnn.com/2017/03/29/technol ... index.html)

carolinaman
Posts: 3247
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 9:56 am
Location: North Carolina

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by carolinaman » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:20 am

I do not buy a lot of stuff from Amazon but recently purchased a shaver head for my electric razor at $44 cost. Last year purchased same thing at $32 on Amazon. After I ordered it this year, I checked other suppliers and could have bought it much cheaper at Bed Bath and Beyond using a 20% coupon. This caught me by surprise but I will definitely comparison shop in future.

I buy books more than anything else on Amazon. I have noticed that books do not seem to be discounted as much and I can usually do as well if not better on Barnes and Noble.

Thanks for the post. It reinforces what I have been seeing.

mouses
Posts: 3719
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by mouses » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:49 am

I tend to look first at Jet, then check the prices at amazon. Jet has an advantage in that they ship like the wind, while amazon free shipping takes literally weeks, presumably also because I didn't shell out for prime.

I buy ebooks at amazon because b&n is somehow broken for me and does not download books. Their customer service has not been able to fix this.

sambb
Posts: 2144
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:31 pm

Re: good values?, yes

Post by sambb » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:53 am

FraggleRock wrote:Good value?
Yes.
Selection + price + ease of ordering + delivery.
Best price? No. Don't care. I am not going to shop around to save $2 on an item.

+ 1000
ROI, not cost, is what matters
The time I would have to invest in external shopping is worth so much more than a couple of bucks.
I would gladly pay 2x the cost of prime

kjvmartin
Posts: 1235
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2015 8:57 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by kjvmartin » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:56 am

Diaper's can't be beat.

For value shopping, I find myself using "subscribe and save" even though I don't want a subscription.

wilked
Posts: 1315
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:50 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by wilked » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:24 am

Two significant advantages with Amazon

1. Ratings - this is worth a lot to me. It isn't foolproof, but it puts you at a significant advantage as a customer / consumer.

2. Buying only what you intend to buy. If I need a gold glove for instance, I don't make the trek to a sports store or Target or wherever and end up buying more than a golf glove. There is a flip side to this (with purchasing a couple clicks away you can potentially buy more than you need) to be fair

runner3081
Posts: 1618
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by runner3081 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:33 am

tech_arch wrote:
They collect sales tax in every state now (http://money.cnn.com/2017/03/29/technol ... index.html)
Amazon does, yes, however many 3rd party sellers do not.

User avatar
Kenkat
Posts: 4277
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Cincinnati, OH

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Kenkat » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:44 am

I still buy quite a bit at Amazon but where Amazon used to always be lower, I am now sometimes finding better prices elsewhere. For electronics, I have been buying from Best Buy as they have been at or cheaper than Amazon on many things. For small items, I can often do better on eBay - often from the exact same seller on the Amazon marketplace. Amazon is still a great option however for many things.

danaht
Posts: 512
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 11:28 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by danaht » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:47 am

Amazon is definitely not as cheap as it was 2 years ago. I still use Amazon to purchase hard to find items that I may not be able to purchase locally. I definitely check Walmart now (online) - before making purchases at Amazon. I am also noticing that Walmart tends to ship quicker - if you are not an Amazon prime member (like myself).

User avatar
AAA
Posts: 1040
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 8:56 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by AAA » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:55 am

I know they recently reduced the amount you have to spend for free shipping, but before that and to some extent even now for small items I often go to eBay and find it at a relatively low price and often with free shipping. I've ordered a lot of (mostly used) books that way also, including textbooks.

User avatar
Kenkat
Posts: 4277
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Cincinnati, OH

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Kenkat » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:57 am

danaht wrote:Amazon is definitely not as cheap as it was 2 years ago. I still use Amazon to purchase hard to find items that I may not be able to purchase locally. I definitely check Walmart now (online) - before making purchases at Amazon. I am also noticing that Walmart tends to ship quicker - if you are not an Amazon prime member (like myself).
My son claims Amazon sits on orders for non-prime members for a few days to try to push more people to prime. Based on my last order (I am not prime), I think he may be right.

JoeJohnson
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 2:34 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by JoeJohnson » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:07 am

My non-Prime orders tend to arrive rather quickly. It's almost always on the quick end of their estimate rather than taking "weeks" :sharebeer

User avatar
Kenkat
Posts: 4277
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Cincinnati, OH

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Kenkat » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:14 am

JoeJohnson wrote:My non-Prime orders tend to arrive rather quickly. It's almost always on the quick end of their estimate rather than taking "weeks" :sharebeer
That used to be my experience also but lately not so much.

Dottie57
Posts: 4462
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Dottie57 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:30 am

I use amazon for things I cannot find locally. Tranmitter for a wireless mouse. Earpad for a pair of traveling headphones. Lots of silly inexpensive replacement items which make other items usable.

Also out of print books. Some kindle books.

sketchy9
Posts: 167
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 2:10 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by sketchy9 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:49 am

I find Newegg to be very competitive for electronics, especially components that might be a bit niche.

Loik098
Posts: 643
Joined: Mon May 30, 2016 9:29 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Loik098 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:55 am

Jags4186 wrote:Buy on Amazon for free shipping/no sales tax, then use your credit cards price match feature to get the best pricing.
This.

There's no way anyone here knows whether all of the prices on Amazon are going up, all of the prices are going down, some are up, or some are down, or whether "good values" are really good. We each live in our own little microcosm and only buy a minuscule percentage of all of the items sold on Amazon....so it's rather silly to speculate how "competitive" the company generally is or isn't.

However, credit card companies have access to vast amounts of data, and can be your friend when it comes to finding the best price after your purchase. Simply register your purchase, and some will even do the work for you. Even a 90-day window on price drops can be extremely beneficial (think holiday shopping).

Jags4186
Posts: 2457
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Jags4186 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:09 am

Kenkat wrote:
danaht wrote:Amazon is definitely not as cheap as it was 2 years ago. I still use Amazon to purchase hard to find items that I may not be able to purchase locally. I definitely check Walmart now (online) - before making purchases at Amazon. I am also noticing that Walmart tends to ship quicker - if you are not an Amazon prime member (like myself).
My son claims Amazon sits on orders for non-prime members for a few days to try to push more people to prime. Based on my last order (I am not prime), I think he may be right.
100% true. Their entire delivery chain is built around 2 day shipping. They simply sit on orders for a week then ship them 2 day if you do regular free shipping.

I don't know how Amazon makes money on prime (reality is, amazon doesn't make money so they don't know how to make money with it either) and I suspect it will go away or go up in price at some point, but for $99 you get 2 day shipping, video and music? It's just probably the greatest deal out their IMO.

lhl12
Posts: 612
Joined: Mon May 27, 2013 8:24 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by lhl12 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:47 am

wilked wrote:Two significant advantages with Amazon

1. Ratings - this is worth a lot to me. It isn't foolproof, but it puts you at a significant advantage as a customer / consumer.
Agreed! For example, I would never have had the confidence to purchase my Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer without reading the reviews first:

https://www.amazon.com/Hutzler-571-Bana ... B0047E0EII

User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 36637
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by nisiprius » Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:54 am

I've never regarded Amazon as a way to get bargains, not even at the beginning (when I used the character-oriented Lynx browser to place my first order, and phoned in the credit card because I didn't want to send a credit card number over the Internet).

I've always regarded as a way to get access to a couple-of-orders-of-magnitude bigger selection than anything I can get in brick-and-mortar stores. Generally speaking, the shipping-and-or-Prime-membership costs, combined with the slightly-discounted Amazon pricing, are sort of a wash; for years I've felt, not that I pay less at Amazon, but that I don't pay more at Amazon, so if I can wait two days, why not? If it's something I think I "should be able to find easily" at the local hardware store, or Sears oops-I-mean Target, or the drugstore, yes, I'll go there first. If I can't find it, though, I no longer set out on half-day-long hunter-gatherer safaris going from store to store, I just shrug and order it online, Amazon first.

Sometimes I save money at Amazon because of being able to get something matched to my modest needs instead of something that costs more and is more than I need.

Mostly, it's selection.

I don't know what the price of eBooks is or should be any more, but I definitely buy a lot of $1.99 Kindle books lately--at last, what had been hanging fire for a decade or so is starting to happen: very good books from the "backlist," titles from the 50s, 60s, and 70s that are in copyright, are starting to become available and what seem like appropriate prices. A lot of SF from RosettaBooks. Kurt Vonnegut. Something like half of the Donald Hamilton Matt Helm thrillers. Something like half of the Ed McBain 87th Precinct series. Lately there seemed to be a good handful of Nevil Shute's novels. Gavin Lyall. Desmond Bagley.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 36637
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by nisiprius » Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:07 am

Jags4186 wrote:...I don't know how Amazon makes money on prime (reality is, amazon doesn't make money so they don't know how to make money with it either) and I suspect it will go away or go up in price at some point, but for $99 you get 2 day shipping, video and music? It's just probably the greatest deal out their IMO...
It's pretty good. I hate myself for it, but I'm always taken aback and disappointed when I buy stuff online from other places (e.g. REI) and realizing at checkout that I'm not going to get free 2-day shipping.

Amazon does the best Faustian bargains. They're brilliant. I felt guilty for busting my first Kindle Fire, didn't feel I deserved to buy a full-price ad-free replacement, so I bought one with "special offers" for $20. I figured, come my birthday, I'd treat myself to the $20 fee to remove the ads. By the time my birthday same, was shocked to realized... I like the ads. They are so cleverly non-intrusive, and Amazon is so creepily good at know what would interest me that... I decided to keep them.

You sell your soul to Amazon, and they keep their end of the deal. Microsoft, in contrast, doesn't.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 6015
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Pajamas » Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:11 am

jebmke wrote:AMZ collects sales tax in many states now. We always filed use tax before they started in our state so there has never been a tax reason to buy from AMZ.
Amazon now collects sales taxes in every single state that has sales taxes. The only states in which Amazon does NOT collect sales taxes don't have any sales taxes.

Consumers were always responsible for paying sales taxes, anyway, at least in most states, but-of-state retailers were not required to collect and remit them.

DetroitRick
Posts: 586
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2016 9:28 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by DetroitRick » Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:12 am

Although Amazon is still my go-to source for products other than food and clothing (which could change with their new programs in these 2 areas), I do find values more sporadically now than 5 years ago. I'm a Prime member and an avid Kindle reader. With patience, I can capture amazing deals on Kindle books. With electronics, software, pet supplies, personal care items, kitchen products - I can find great deals in all these areas as needed at Amazon. But not as consistently as in the past. So I do much more comparison shopping now than I used to. For electronics over the past 2 years, BHPhoto is running about 50/50 as a price leader on the products I've bought (same great delivery too). Same with a couple of other online pet supply sources.

The other thing about Amazon - I can find almost anything I need FAST. I've recently done some home repair projects and gotten hard-to-find materials delivered in two days, much cheaper than local sources. Heck, I've even bought low-ticket items like caulk from them and saved both time and money. Another example - my 15-year-old garage door clicker broke - a bear to find locally - got it 2 days later for a mere $15. I think their overall product breadth rules.

So I'm still real happy with Amazon overall. I just make sure to compare prices a bit more before buying. Selection and delivery are often tie-breakers for me. Plus there's the whole ecosystem thing - KIndle, Alexa, Prime. Their plot to capture and hold market share is working with me. :happy

jlawrence01
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:34 am
Location: Southern AZ

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by jlawrence01 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 12:17 pm

Kenkat wrote:I still buy quite a bit at Amazon but where Amazon used to always be lower, I am now sometimes finding better prices elsewhere. For electronics, I have been buying from Best Buy as they have been at or cheaper than Amazon on many things. For small items, I can often do better on eBay - often from the exact same seller on the Amazon marketplace. Amazon is still a great option however for many things.

I would agree with you. There are many things that I used to buy at Amazon on subscription that I can buy directly from the manufacturer or producer at a lower price WITH FREE SHIPPING. Also, since many of the suppliers do NOT have tax nexus in Arizona, they do NOT charge tax like Amazon does.

Unfortunately, I am sitting on about $300-400 in Amazon gift certificates that some of my clients have given me. I will have to use those up eventually.

Traveler
Posts: 634
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:07 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Traveler » Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:32 pm

davidlhanson wrote:You have to shop carefully but there are still plenty of bargains sold by Amazon or their third party partners. I have ordered 218 times on Amazon in 2017 and 399 times in 2016 (and have been a customer since 1996 according to Amazon's order records). We buy electronics, garden supplies, some food items, toys for grandkids, clothes gifts for adult children, and books (usually used) from Amazon (and other things also including dragon fruit cuttings a few years ago). When our grandchildren lived in Scotland for a few years (our son was working on a PhD at St. Andrews University), we ordered gifts for them through Amazon UK.

I am retired and these are for personal use.

Most items I check against other online vendors - big items against local vendors also.

Keys to me being happy with Amazon
1. Amazon Prime
2. Amazon Store Card or Amazon Visa which offer 5% rebates on purchases (we have both).
3. CamelCamelcamel.com - a free service where you can set a desired price for an item and when it hits your price level, you are notified. They get a fee from Amazon when you use their links (but it doesn't cost you any more).
Wow, I'm impressed that you place more than one AMZN order each day and have for the last 18+ months. I can't imagine needing or even wanting that much stuff. Do you separate your to-buy list by item where each item gets its own order? For the heck of it, I just added up how many non-grocery and non-service transactions I've done this year (in theory, all of these purchases could have been made on AMZN and include clothes, household items, toiletries, books, etc and in some cases included multiple items). They totaled 49 transactions through June and accounted for 8% of my total spend. I guess I just don't buy that much "stuff".

User avatar
watchnerd
Posts: 1417
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2007 11:18 am
Location: Seattle, WA, USA

Re: good values?, yes

Post by watchnerd » Tue Jul 04, 2017 4:11 pm

FraggleRock wrote:Good value?
Yes.
Selection + price + ease of ordering + delivery.
Best price? No. Don't care. I am not going to shop around to save $2 on an item.
Ditto.

Not to mention that if "shopping around" involves brick and mortar stores, there is the time and gas involved. We cancelled our CostCo because I hated the 2+ hour time suck it took every trip.
Tax Sheltered: 35% US Stock | 35% ex-US Stock | 30% TTM || Taxable: 35% US Stock | 35% ex-US Stock | 15% TTM | 15% Munis

User avatar
ClevrChico
Posts: 1279
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:24 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by ClevrChico » Tue Jul 04, 2017 4:36 pm

My last order was three months ago for electronics. It was a good deal.

I used to order MUCH more for Amazon, but now use Wal-Mart online and Boxed for everyday household items.

Valuethinker
Posts: 35958
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by Valuethinker » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:11 am

nisiprius wrote:I've never regarded Amazon as a way to get bargains, not even at the beginning (when I used the character-oriented Lynx browser to place my first order, and phoned in the credit card because I didn't want to send a credit card number over the Internet).

I've always regarded as a way to get access to a couple-of-orders-of-magnitude bigger selection than anything I can get in brick-and-mortar stores. Generally speaking, the shipping-and-or-Prime-membership costs, combined with the slightly-discounted Amazon pricing, are sort of a wash; for years I've felt, not that I pay less at Amazon, but that I don't pay more at Amazon, so if I can wait two days, why not? If it's something I think I "should be able to find easily" at the local hardware store, or Sears oops-I-mean Target, or the drugstore, yes, I'll go there first. If I can't find it, though, I no longer set out on half-day-long hunter-gatherer safaris going from store to store, I just shrug and order it online, Amazon first.

Sometimes I save money at Amazon because of being able to get something matched to my modest needs instead of something that costs more and is more than I need.

Mostly, it's selection.

I don't know what the price of eBooks is or should be any more, but I definitely buy a lot of $1.99 Kindle books lately--at last, what had been hanging fire for a decade or so is starting to happen: very good books from the "backlist," titles from the 50s, 60s, and 70s that are in copyright, are starting to become available and what seem like appropriate prices. A lot of SF from RosettaBooks. Kurt Vonnegut. Something like half of the Donald Hamilton Matt Helm thrillers. Something like half of the Ed McBain 87th Precinct series. Lately there seemed to be a good handful of Nevil Shute's novels. Gavin Lyall. Desmond Bagley.
If you like those then Eric Ambler.

Mask for Demetrius, journey into fear. First and foremost.

Alan first uses the same settings and style. His earlier ones especially.

Len Deighton.

User avatar
El Greco
Posts: 300
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:21 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by El Greco » Wed Jul 05, 2017 8:59 am

Though I use Amazon occasionally, I'm not as enamored of it as some. I find that I usually get better prices on Ebay, usually with free or low cost shipping and most times no sales tax charged. Since I am also an Ebay seller, I have a pool of money in my Paypal account to draw from, so transactions are "one-click easy" and I don't have to pony up $100 a year to be a Prime member. Also, I don't use the online video options from Amazon , so I don't see the point. I've also been finding some terrific bargains on Walmart.com with Free 2-day shipping. Just bought a very nice quality backyard swing, delivered free for under $150. Weighed about 70 lbs. Amazon couldn't touch that deal.

User avatar
F150HD
Posts: 1596
Joined: Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:49 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by F150HD » Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:16 am

Traveler wrote: Wow, I'm impressed that you place more than one AMZN order each day and have for the last 18+ months. I can't imagine needing or even wanting that much stuff .
lol.

azurekep wrote:I'm finding it hard these days to find enough to meet the $25 limit for Amazon's free shipping without adding things that seem overpriced.
if there's something I need but I haven't reached the free shipping limit, I put it on my (private) wish list (only I can see it). Inevitably, over the course of X months, I'll accumulate a few items there and buy them at once w/ free shipping.

themesrob
Posts: 176
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2016 1:58 pm

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by themesrob » Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:33 am

Valuethinker wrote:
nisiprius wrote:I've never regarded Amazon as a way to get bargains, not even at the beginning (when I used the character-oriented Lynx browser to place my first order, and phoned in the credit card because I didn't want to send a credit card number over the Internet).

I've always regarded as a way to get access to a couple-of-orders-of-magnitude bigger selection than anything I can get in brick-and-mortar stores. Generally speaking, the shipping-and-or-Prime-membership costs, combined with the slightly-discounted Amazon pricing, are sort of a wash; for years I've felt, not that I pay less at Amazon, but that I don't pay more at Amazon, so if I can wait two days, why not? If it's something I think I "should be able to find easily" at the local hardware store, or Sears oops-I-mean Target, or the drugstore, yes, I'll go there first. If I can't find it, though, I no longer set out on half-day-long hunter-gatherer safaris going from store to store, I just shrug and order it online, Amazon first.

Sometimes I save money at Amazon because of being able to get something matched to my modest needs instead of something that costs more and is more than I need.

Mostly, it's selection.

I don't know what the price of eBooks is or should be any more, but I definitely buy a lot of $1.99 Kindle books lately--at last, what had been hanging fire for a decade or so is starting to happen: very good books from the "backlist," titles from the 50s, 60s, and 70s that are in copyright, are starting to become available and what seem like appropriate prices. A lot of SF from RosettaBooks. Kurt Vonnegut. Something like half of the Donald Hamilton Matt Helm thrillers. Something like half of the Ed McBain 87th Precinct series. Lately there seemed to be a good handful of Nevil Shute's novels. Gavin Lyall. Desmond Bagley.
If you like those then Eric Ambler.

Mask for Demetrius, journey into fear. First and foremost.

Alan first uses the same settings and style. His earlier ones especially.

Len Deighton.
you and I have similar tastes! viewtopic.php?f=11&t=220402&p=3395816#p3395816

Re Prime: I find good deals all the time on Amazon: electronics, clothing, *some* household items, and, obviously, books. It's the cheapest place to buy our dog food, and I get a 30 lb bag delivered to me for free. Certain items I've noticed recently have been far more expensive than, say, Target online (laundry detergent, for example), but they are still the exception than the norm.

vshun
Posts: 87
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by vshun » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:02 am

Like others, shopping at Amazon less and less nowadays. Part of it my desire for a vibrant marketplace and no single monopoly in online marketplace exists so they can jack the prices even more (when others stated they pay a bit more but who cares since its a convenience). Having single vendor, and the one who is very aggressive and ruthless to a point, reminds me of bleak days of Microsoft and software stagnation 15 years ago and I would like to avoid it.
Part of it is because I find that their prices even when on sale is still more expensive that Costco, and buying at Costco I support local workforce.
Also irrinated by product giveways and fake reviews posted to pump product star value, so have to use fakespot more often than not to filter out fake reviews, and it kind of removes convenience of buying.
We have prime because my son is a student and he pays half price, and being in the military he does not have luxury of shopping around Costco store, but otherwise I would not entertain Prime.

invst65
Posts: 644
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 11:04 am

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Post by invst65 » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:32 am

I still find good deals but one thing I've been noticing as a Prime Member is that "free shipping" isn't as free as it pretends to be. This becomes obvious when I can buy the same item at Walmart for the same price minus the cost of shipping. I think what "free shipping" really means is that shipping is included in the price.

Post Reply