Why do people buy from Amazon?

open source

Sparrow
Gold Member
Amazon reviews used to be a legit and helpful way to find out more info about the product.

Now it's a bunch of fake/paid reviews.

I bought a waterpik with good reviews last month and a few weeks later this came in the mail.



$20 giftcard if I give a 5 star review and email them the proof. I didn't do it this time but I've done it before for a different product and they actually email you the giftcard. Both times it was from a Chinese seller.

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What i've learned:
You can check for fake reviews using Fakespot - also supports ebay, walmart, etc.
 
Ebay is great for books. It’s surpassed Amazon by quite a bit for availability and pricing of books
Albris too.

I have also noticed Amazon getting 'junkier' - it's difficult to look at reader recommendations -more and more 'sponsored content' - as others have noted higher prices.

Like many I was lulled into amazon by cheap prices, convenience but what is going on is a massive bait and switch and market dumping.
Amazon was able to operate at a loss for years when other competitors could not- because they had Wall Street play money. Then phase two they start getting tax and other breaks from the government - tax breaks with competitors and consumers have to pay for.

Now that they think we're locked in or lulled in, the vise grip comes - aggressive social justice - a sure sign you're not worried about competition - banning and suppressing anything that disagrees with global-homo, and, higher prices, after all where else are you going to go?

I have made several aborted attempts to break my Amazon 'addiction', its hard but it's possible (I am not 100% off yet but about 70%):
a. Plan your buying - think of yourself as a pioneer having to make trips to the general store - if you can do without something, put it on a list then buy all at once.
b. Cancel prime -great de-motivator to spontaneous buy small items.
c. remove the app from your phone. Too tempting. Like the 'buy later' list? just use a simple note app.
d. often if you go directly to the producer of something you like, they have 'free' shipping over a certain amount. I found several products I liked on amazon and found I could go directly to the producer's site and order for about the same price.
e. buy in bulk
 

R.G.Camara

Woodpecker
Somebody has to be pumping money into this company and I am not sure who it is. Back in the mid 2000's, Amazon prices were lower and selection was good. Now the prices are not lower but even more than local retailers. Selection is not thorough either. You will not find things on Amazon that you can't find anywhere else.
The last purchase I made on Amazon was a couple years ago when I bought a book. Does anybody here have a bead on who and what is driving this behemoth?
They became a monopoly. And during this pandemic, their revenues have jumped enormously as no one went shopping in stores. Jeff Bezos should be investigated: he owns both Amazon and The Washington Post, and the Post has been pushing lockdowns and panic, which has only helped Bezos's Amazon sales.
 
They became a monopoly. And during this pandemic, their revenues have jumped enormously as no one went shopping in stores. Jeff Bezos should be investigated: he owns both Amazon and The Washington Post, and the Post has been pushing lockdowns and panic, which has only helped Bezos's Amazon sales.
Agree 100% but when was the last time there was anti-trust anything? Big companies figured out - all they have to do is wave the flag of sodomy and put some BLM stickers , and maybe a LEED here and there and they can do whatever they want, in fact, outsourcing and HB! visa are actually fighting white supremacy and increasing diversity! :)

I have noticed that once lean companies get lazy, arrogant and sloppy- one of the few exceptions were : pre-affirmative action US post office, which was excellent, and Ma Bell - they might have had high prices, but those phones could survive an atom bomb (and probably were made to) but notice Amazon no longer has helpful recommendations or 'what users like you bought' but sponsored and placed content -and politically massaged content.

Same with youtube -the ads are as intrusive as TV was.

And again, the woke behavior is a sure sign they don't worry about competition.
 
A few scams on Amazon:

1. Someone buys something, then returns an old worn out item. Amazon puts it back on the shelf and delivers it to the next customer. This happened to my father when he bought a portable metal cutting bandsaw--the thing was not only clearly worn, but worn out. He returned it and bought it elsewhere. Have heard stories that someone will buy a high-dollar rifle scope, then return a cheap made-in-China clone for a refund. Then the next sucker gets it and wonders why it does not live up to its reputation. Amazon probably did the math and it saved money not to inspect returns.

2. You are looking for a nice paper copy of an old book, something out of copyright. Guess what, people are downloading books from Project Gutenberg, etc., then uploading them straight to an Amazon print-on-demand book with absolutely no formatting. So you buy a paper back book of a classic at a good price, but it turns out to basically have no formatting, poor OCR spelling, and cheap binding.

3. See an interesting book and there is a fairly good new price from a third party. So you buy it. And wait, and wait, and it never comes. People will advertise things they do not have, then try to source it. If they can have the publisher drop ship it to you while they take the normal 40% book seller discount, then great. While they try to hook up with the publisher, they just keep you waiting.

4. Alternate of #3: sell something they do not have, but they print out the postage for it. They put the tracking number in the Amazon system, and then you can not cancel the order, because theoretically it has already shipped, even though they do not have it and could take weeks to find it.

Moral of the story: buy somewhere else. Amazon could put a stop to these scams, but so long as they get their cut, what do they care? I have had luck going straight to the manufacturer in some cases. Wife wanted a good blender last birthday, and I found a model I wanted, I think the last one at least mostly made in the USA. Shopped around, and the manufacturer sold it direct for no more than anyone else. It has worked great, but if not, there would have only been one place to deal with.
 

SlickyBoy

Ostrich
I've moved most of my Amazon shopping to eBay, a lesser evil. They have just about the same products, and also have a wide selection of used books.
Amazon tried to challenge Ebay on the same business model - people selling their old stuff - and flopped. How it went down was detailed in the book The Everything Store, also an interesting work which will probably make you hate Bezos even more.

If you want to buy a book you've been meaning to read but would rather not leave an imprint of your purchasing history for marketers to push similar titles at you, Ebay is a better choice. True, you probably won't find new books there, but Amazon screws authors out of 30% of the price anyway, in between summarily banning some of them altogether.

There are other things Amazon isn't so hot at. Car parts are frequently incorrectly listed or incomplete - sites like Rock Auto are far better, but I prefer to shop local for parts anyway. In the event something needs to be returned, it's just easier. Computer parts and accessories are another hit or miss item on Amazon - Newegg is a lot better with a wider and more consistent variety of products with reviews about the actual item, not fakes.

Speaking of fakes, that brings up another major problem with Amazon, commingling of inventory. Amazon runs away from the responsibility of retailers by claiming they are legally not a retailer, but a middleman, and therefore are not liable for torts brought about by defective products that injure people. So far they've gotten away with this bullshit with help from seriously high powered lawyers, but until they are held responsible for their nonexistent quality control I would avoid any type of consumable product sold by them. That includes medicines, personal care products, baby items, drink powders, etc.

You just don't know when some seller using Amazon (Fulfilled by Amazon) is going to pull a fast one and swap out the genuine product with an outright fake. That's why you see so many highly reviewed products with a cluster of terrible reviews in the same batch - often times talking about a completely different product that the seller swapped out once he had enough positive reviews to look good. Most people don't look past the first page or two of reviews, they figure.

The situation might not be so bad with items bought from Whole Foods, since Amazon controls the entire outfit, but for all others go to CVS for your drugs and WalMart for your toothpaste or whatever else - it just isn't worth the convenience.

It's bad - here's a sample of what people are experiencing from Amazon's chicanery.

But if the question is who uses Amazon, the answer is - probably all of us. Just by being on this forum, we likely make use of AWS, and you'd have a difficult time touching any part of the web nowadays that is not in some way shape or form supported by that suite of products or hosted on one of their data centers somewhere.
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
b. Cancel prime -great de-motivator to spontaneous buy small items.
Sounds familiar ;)
 
Sounds familiar ;)
Great post! and some great resources -two recs :
iherb for supplments
alibris for books - it includes better world books and a ton of other indy sellers.


it would be great if someone would put a sticky together of alternatives to:
amazon
big banks
google/big tech

We - definitely need more few tangible action recommendations to at least unplug from globalhomo.

Its good to see for example a lot of indy websites and forums popping up again now that big tech is so censorous.

I was just thinking the centralization of commerce, farming, banking, medicine - it's really no surprise that political power is centralized too.
 

SlickyBoy

Ostrich
Sounds familiar ;)
I read your original post - went to check that link where Cernovich claimed Amazon was censoring his Gorilla Mindset book reviews. Page is missing. As bad as Amazon is, can't help wondering if that was a marketing gimmick he put out as an attention stunt.
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
I read your original post - went to check that link where Cernovich claimed Amazon was censoring his Gorilla Mindset book reviews. Page is missing. As bad as Amazon is, can't help wondering if that was a marketing gimmick he put out as an attention stunt.
Could be. But, Mike took down ALL of D&P, so no way to be sure.
 

SlickyBoy

Ostrich
Could be. But, Mike took down ALL of D&P, so no way to be sure.
Did he say why he did that or was it just another ADD "career" transition? wannabe law blogger, manosphere/pickup guy, political journalist, "film maker," professional tweeter, etc. Hard to keep up.
 

Hypno

Crow
If you are looking for books, go to bookfinder.com

It links to about 100 different book sites, including Amazon, eBay, Amazon Canada, Amazon UK, eBay Canada, eBay UK, Allibirs, Biblio, and a bunch of more obsure ones.

It gives you the best price including shipping for used and for new.

So for example, you could use it to see that Amazon is the cheapest, but eBay is only 5 cents more.

If you are buying obscure books (that are sometimes expensive) or textbooks, you can save lots of money.

The one thing it does poorly though is that it doesn't bunch similar books. For example, the same book might have multiple editions, and the same edition might have multiple listings on these various sites if some entered only part of the title, entered the authors full name or just his last name, et.c All that means is you need to click through a couple of similar entries to make sure you have the best price.

Walmart.com has good prices on a lot of things. They are coming out with a competitor to prime that doesn't include movies or tv shows.

Walmart also has third party sellers.

Right now, their product offering is narrower and shipping more expensive that Amazon in most situations, but with their new flat rate shipping that is likely to change.
 
Was looking for a brake bleeder tool just now (like to do it fast and without a helper, so looking for one that hooks up an air compressor to suck the brake fluid out of the bleeders via a venturi valve) Amazon had a particular one for $85. An outfit named ToolTopia had the very same one for $75, and for that site, any purchases over $50 got free shipping.

Was also looking for a better tire inflator (the kind with the built-in tire pressure indicator). Amazon had one for $37 and ToolTopia had the very same thing for $29.

Not trying to endorse ToolTopia--I just did a quick web search (using DuckDuckGo) of what I was after and that site came up. Could be other such tool stores out there. The point is, do not assume that Amazon has the best prices. Those two items alone would save me $18 over Amazon.
 

redbeard

Hummingbird
Moderator
Was looking for a brake bleeder tool just now (like to do it fast and without a helper, so looking for one that hooks up an air compressor to suck the brake fluid out of the bleeders via a venturi valve) Amazon had a particular one for $85. An outfit named ToolTopia had the very same one for $75, and for that site, any purchases over $50 got free shipping.

Was also looking for a better tire inflator (the kind with the built-in tire pressure indicator). Amazon had one for $37 and ToolTopia had the very same thing for $29.

Not trying to endorse ToolTopia--I just did a quick web search (using DuckDuckGo) of what I was after and that site came up. Could be other such tool stores out there. The point is, do not assume that Amazon has the best prices. Those two items alone would save me $18 over Amazon.
Good tip. You can also do reverse image search to find the exact product on another website. Even if it's the same price, you know more money will go to the vendor that would've gone to Amazon.
 

Athanasius

Kingfisher
I absolutely refuse to use Amazon for anything. Amazon had a 600 million dollar contract with the master of money laundering and front companies CIA and in case anyone is unclear about what that means I'll sum it up by saying: Amazon=C.I.A

Amazon is deep state to the bone, just like Google
Cancelled Prime last year and I've decided to stop using them altogether except as a last resort. So far it's been two months. It's easy to find stuff like personal products on other sites, even directly from the manufacturer. One thing that helped is that I don't trust the products they do sell. A lot of it is cheap Chinese junk with loads of suspicious reviews. Even some of the brand-labelled stuff has reviews with people saying they received fakes. I just trust other stores more, plus I don't like how Amazon forces globohomo on communities it enters.

It just feels better not using them and Google.
 

Athanasius

Kingfisher
Does anyone have a Eufy doorbell? I want to replace the Amazon Ring and it's $3/mon cloud storage as the final part of "de-Amazoning." The Eufy has one that hooks in with doorbell wiring and all the storage is local so it's not going up into the cloud for Amazon to parse. The only concern / downside is that someone could theoretically rip off the doorbell in a crime and then you lose your video before you can watch it and record it. (It sounds like the smartphone software offers a way to record the video so you have more permanent storage, but you have to be able to see the video long enough to record it.) I saw a comment on the Eufy that said they are working on some type of wireless backup to a separate unit you can get inside the house.
 

rapaz12

Woodpecker
I like Amazon. I will say that I place orders through third party sellers much less these days.

Don't want to risk buying fake, low quality stuff and going through the return process.
 
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