Scandal!

Customers are being lulled into believing they are getting the best deal from retailers on Amazon when the product can often be bought cheaper elsewhere online — including on the retailers’ own websites.

A Sunday Times investigation has found a number of cases where rival independent retailers who sell on the Amazon Marketplace platform are offering the same product at the same lowest price on Amazon, suggesting fierce competition and a bargain for the shopper.

In fact, the products can often be bought more cheaply at other online stores. In some cases, the retailers offer the same product at a cheaper price on their own websites.

Prices vary?

16 thoughts on “Scandal!”

  1. If only there were some way shoppers could compare prices online. What will people who don’t read the Sunday Times do?

  2. Its almost as if there couldn’t be any value to the customer in having all those retailers together under a one click purchase environment. Once you have an Amazon account they have all your details, you can send gifts to friends and family with stored delivery addresses, pay with a card stored with a trusted online company. Purchasing from hundreds of different online stores, having to have log ins for all of them, inputting your details for every purchase, thats all worth a few more pennies on the product.

  3. Whenever I go on Amazon to buy something there is always a note if it is available from other sellers. It even mentions if it is cheaper — though annoyingly it doesn’t include delivery when calculating prices (unlike eBay).

  4. “a number of cases”

    I’m sure if you look hard enough at anything you can find anomalies.

    It’s just that most of us can’t be bothered and aren’t bothered.

    If I can find something quickly and easily on Amazon and don’t have to set up another account with another website and enter all my details again, well, maybe it doesn’t bother me that I pay a couple of quid more than I could if I went elsewhere.

    Meanwhile, shock horror, the corner shop is more expensive than the out of town hypermarket.

  5. Bloke in North Dorset

    What Jim says – convenience and time have value, who knew?

    Next they’ll be telling us that you can get the same goods cheaper that Oxford Street if you shop around.

  6. The reason some prices are cheaper on the retailers on website rather than amazon’s market place is the fact that Amazon charge fees – the retailer doesn’t have to factor them in to own site sales… It’s not rocket science!

  7. What Jim says. I use Amazon because my details are already entered and they can be trusted to deliver stuff properly, having done it many times before. If this costs me an extra few quid, so be it. Plus, Amazon delivers fast. Can the others?

  8. Often the price difference is because the Amazon offer is priced to include delivery whilst the own site version separates the delivery charge. If you only want one item from that supplier then the price you actually pay is much the same; an no need to create a one-off account and give a lot of details.
    Also Amazon prices are very dynamic, the price comparison may vary significantly from one day to the next.

  9. My big reason for going elsewhere isn’t so much price as service. I shop for memory at Crucial because they have a memory detector. You run it on your PC and it tells you what’s compatible. And their service is excellent. You can ask them detailed questions about memory or an accessory and they know the answer.

    John Lewis are the same. I send amateurs there for a laptop. I can’t be bothered helping some co-worker to pick a laptop. John Lewis are honest and well-informed.

  10. Selling on amazon I have fees of 15%, selling on my own website the fees are under 5%. Can I sell cheaper on my own website? Course I can.

    This is so not a story.

    There are amazon sellers who buy stuff cheap from other sites and stores and sell on amazon for a profit. Buying retail and selling retail.
    There are always going to be places where I can get a bargain. That’s the beauty of the internet, if I look I can find the cheapest place selling a product.
    Delivery and service may be an issue but can find the cheapest price. Which may be amazon, may be another site.
    What next?
    A newspaper reporting that people can buy newspapers cheap but that some newspapers are cheaper than others?

  11. That’s all very funny. I knew this years ago. You know how? I typed in what I wanted into the Google search bar and then selected the ‘shopping’ tab to see who was offering it where for how much.

    Not guaranteed to get you the lowest price, by will let you know the price spread including by the top retailers – like Amazon and Ebay.

    Now, how long before the call for government intervention to fix that which the consumer already has the tools to deal with?

  12. Bloke in Costa Rica

    If there’s a better example of a deep, wide and efficient market than online retailing I can’t think what it might be.

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