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Amazon - Third party sellers are killing the deals!


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In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2012 3:04:22 PM PDT
edfan says:
Richard, I'm not objecting to people asking a zillion dollars for some fashionable toy. I'm objecting to the liars and frauds who've infested Amazon.com and do not have the items they're supposedly offering for sale or who advertise falsely in other ways. I've seen the problem increase over time. I think amazon.com should take more steps to restrict access to its customer base by sellers who lie and defraud. Sharp practice should not feel at home here.

Amazon.com did not always restrict Christmas toy sales to those who passed muster. Now they do. I'd like them to go a bit further and insist that sellers who advertise a thing be able to ship the item when they're paid (for one). This request doesn't have anything to do with pricing.

This thread sure has gone on for a long time. It seems it touched a nerve.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2012 3:48:09 PM PDT
Edfan,

Again, how do you determine if someone truly does not have an item or is false advertising?

Yes, fraud is bad. However, in your prior post, you equate a high price with "not in stock". So, is your assumption that any time a price that you do not personally like exists, then that seller clearly does not have the item in stock? Obviously, when you create an allegation such as that, you must have some concrete proof, no?

The notion that a high price equals fraud or false advertising is not only a ridiculous assumption to be making from the start, but is virtually unprovable. What evidence or facts do you have in support of the allegations you create? DO you have any actual proof?

Also, for the second part of your post, marking the item as "shipped" would initiate the transaction of payment from the buyer's credit card to the seller's account, which also requires that you post the ship date (today or earlier) and the method of shipping.

Posted on Jun 5, 2012 9:50:53 PM PDT
All of you on the side of "stop complaining" are obviously scalpers and will do anything to make a buck... YOUR the problem with America. All of you on the side of "the prices are ridiculous"... are right, but it is not illegal. They are free to buy and sell for all they want, you have no obligation to buy, but I also have children, who want that "hot toy" and well, when the jack asses are out their buying all of them, it leaves us honest folk empty handed. I refuse to pay anybody any amount over retail, because they bought out all the stock. Yes, my daughter has gone without... but it's also safe to say that the scalpers are all morons... and it's easy to beat their tricks... it amazes me that anyone would think its ok for one person to buy everything and sell it for a higher price... this is why I don't buy anything from a corner store... because I watch them come in and buy 50+ gallons of milk on sale at the big box stores and take them to their stores and charge double. It's a shame what this country has come to.

Posted on Jun 6, 2012 4:32:08 AM PDT
DisplacedMic says:
Stop complaining is not the position. Stop consuming is. If people stopped buying items at "ridiculous" prices, scalpers would stop selling.

I am always wary of people who point fingers at the source of the nation's single problem. I am quite certain people have been saying that since July 5, 1776.

But if you insist, spending above our means is the "problem with America"
You can have it RIGHT NOW but you're going to have to pay. Or, you can wait. Or buy something else.

People waited in line for hours (in some cases days) to pay $500 for the first iPhone. And after they sold out, people were happily paying 4 digits for them on ebay. Now you can have a far superior model - not to mention any one of a dozen competing brands - for less than $100, with no wait whatsoever.

It's a lack of discipline and common sense that keeps these scalpers going. We're talking about toys here - not food and water.
Very few people are "buying everything" just to deprive you of owning it- they intend to sell. And since a sale only happens if the buyer would rather have the good in question than his "ridiculous amount of money" your quarrel is with the buyer. If he didn't exist, the scalper would have to lower his prices.
How does one go about "buying everything" anyway? Especially on the internet.

also, 'your' is a pronoun.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 9:15:49 AM PDT
Additionally, once again, will someone please offer some kind of solid proof that "everyone is buying up everything to resell"?

How is it that one person, or group of people possess the resources to completely manipulate the global stock of a mass produced item so as to make it "completely unavailable" to "regular people"?

Displaced included it in his second to last sentence, but this is the kind of point that warrants a much larger space than a "throwaway" at the end of a different point.

There is simply no way that someone, anyone, has the kind of resources to "buy up all" of a mass produced item globally "just to make it unavailable at retail". Sales is not a team effort. Best Buy does not shop at Wal-Mart, and Wal-Mart doesn't shop at Target. Vendors on websites such as this are not going to go en masse to retailers just to "deprive" someone of a mass produced, readily available item.

This is especially true of a popular item. No one can ever think, "gee, I guess someone else wanted this thing as much as I!". Because of the victim mentality that permeates this and similar forums, the victim feels the need to lash out in an attempt to gain sympathy for themselves in order to make them feel better for their inability to competitively shop (either online or in person), and what better place than an anonymous internet forum, where they can fabricate a story about "that guy" with the U-Haul who backed it up to the store and had the entire warehouse team helping him load all the store's inventory into it, while you helplessly stood by, begging for one thing, as the evil reseller gleefully cackled to you that you were welcome to buy the $19.95 item for $1,995 on ebay tomorrow, taking great pride in breaking the hearts of Little Jimmys across the world, who would forever more be deprived of that mass produced item, because nowhere else in the world can that mass produced item be found.

Now, you go online with your story of how you work 215 hours per week, 27 hours a day across 5 jobs to make ends meet for your humble family of 17, and the evil price gaugers (sic) have deprived you of the one thing that would have made Little Jimmy's eyes light up, and that he would keep it and hug it and love it and squeeze it, and he will call it George, and that on your budget, it's impossible to find that item, and as a result, the light in Little Jimmy's eyes would forever be lost, so we must all ban (sic) together to make price gauging (sic) illegal, so the immoral, scummy, America-hating, terrorist supporting resellers will be stuck with their junk, and you only need 10,000 more signatures on your petition to send to Amazon, so that they can acquiesce to your wishes to insure that the company name is changed to Amazon Dollar Store, so that you can afford to buy mass produced items.

After that, Amazon clearly sees the wisdom you post, and hires you permanently to be their pricing coordinator, where you monitor the interwebs to insure any price on any good meets with your personal approval.

That Weber grill is just way to much money at $300. Poor families that want to grill on the upcoming July 4 holiday can't due to the evil nature of anyone that would price something so high that it can't be bought freely by everyone, so the new price is now $5, and no shipping or tax! The government makes enough money!

Within 1 year, Amazon is bankrupt, as their stock plummets due to mass sales of stock in the company as a result of the company's failures to make money. The company owes massive amounts of money to everyone they have bought goods from, as they cannot afford to pay their bills with the new pricing structure of "everything is $1" and "Amazon- Earth's Biggest Deals".

So, once again, you find yourself out of work, and all because those scummy, evil, price gaugers (sic) put you out of a job because they re-sold things!

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 9:35:10 AM PDT
shiloh sales says:
One thing that most buyers don't seem to grasp is: In most postings, They seem to talk about Amazon sellers like that they were the only source for the product, if they think Amazon sellers are too high priced, why don't they simply go to the manufacturers website and buy it from them, many manufacturers have a website to purchase products or they will direct customers to an online reseller?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 9:50:58 AM PDT
Shiloh,

That's one of the points we've been harping on over and over. It seems like most people believe that there are only two places in the whole wide world to shop: ebay and Amazon. If it's not on ebay or Amazon, then it just doesn't exist anywhere else.

Displaced likes to talk about "economic illiteracy". We'll say he's half right. Either illiterate or just really ignorant.

Sometimes, we think the internet has made people dumb. With the rise of the internet, not only do people truly believe that everything is free (like music and movies, from YouTube and Napster and Pirate Bay. among others), but also, many forget that there is a door in their house. It leads outside. "The World Is Your Oyster". There's tons of businesses outside of the internet, just waiting on someone to find their way outside their front door, away from the internet.

Besides that, while admittedly speculative buying is risky, no matter HOW it is done, the notion of someone buying products at retail price (while still available!) just to sell online sounds suspicious at best, and really, really dumb at worst. If you're going to buy something still commercially available at retail price in the hopes of making money from it, then lose the thing for about 5 years and THEN try to sell it. Otherwise, it makes no sense...

Of course, the whole "back the truck up" notion has been proven false a long time ago, just because of the completely unrealistic nature of it.

It would seem as if people see ONE person buying something and MAYBE making a comment about reselling, and then they automatically extrapolate this ALLEGEDLY overheard comment to mean that the item is DEFINITELY going to be resold, and that this person is combing stores across the nation, like a band going on a world tour, to deprive people of something at retail, which is a price that fluctuates regionally, anyway.

That's what is really scary: that people can make Grand Canyon-sized leaps of "logic" to make the broad determination of not only what "everyone is doing", but also that "it's obvious to everyone", and "that's what's wrong with America".

What's even more scary: that people have such vitriol for something as insignificant as a TOY. We're all for being passionate about something, but this kind of thing might be taking it a bit too far...

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 9:52:13 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 6, 2012 9:55:34 AM PDT
shiloh sales says:
The only way I know of that somebody could possibly control the market of an item and make it "completely unavailable for customers" is to know what is on order at the Chinese factories and what is in transit. Lead time for most companies in the US to get inventory in their warehouse is approx. 4-6 months from the time they place the order if that item is not currently in production at the Chinese factory. Manufacturers anticipating their Christmas season inventory start ordering from the Chinese factories in the March/April Timeframe, The shipments start to arrive by ship at the Docks in Los Angeles or Long Beach around August/September and start arriving at some retailers 2-3 weeks after arriving at the docks. Shipping containers by train from coast to coast takes about 3-5 days. Some containers are trucked directly to major big box distributors once they are off-loaded from the ship. FYI: It is not a good idea for anybody/company to order less than a full container from Chinese factories, it is not cost effective.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 10:02:29 AM PDT
But think of the money involved in completely making something unavailable globally.

Sellers don't work in teams...even big box stores compete with one another...(as in Best Buy Long Island is going to compete with Best Buy Manhattan).

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 10:55:41 AM PDT
Eric Donald says:
Shiloh I feel the blame falls on the buyers, if Amazon and there sellers are overpriced then the product is available somewhere for less. It's the buyer's who should shop around to get that lower price. If the buyers didn't pay for the high priced products Amazon would be forced to lower the price or quit selling those products.

There are a few other things that contribute to their profits. Some people like the convenience of shopping in one location even if it is just a web site. They spend a few more dollars on a few more items to avoid surfing to several other sites looking for a deal and/or to avoid paying multiple shipping charges. The Super Saver Shipping is another, I've bought secondary items from Amazon just to reach the $25 minimum if the product I came to buy didn't. There's also the issue of trust, some buyers trust Amazon more than other retailers and will pay a little extra to feel secure.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 11:16:45 AM PDT
First of all, if people are buying products that are "overpriced", then clearly, they must not be "overpriced". Were they "overpriced", then they wouldn't be bought.

Second, "overpriced" is something that can only be determined by the individual. There's no "universal" definition of such that can be applied evenly across the board.

Third, if people don't look around when shopping, then you are correct, Mr. Donald, it is indeed the buyer's fault. In that case, then, people need to look to themselves and not play the victim card, as you did earlier, or others have. It also could NEVER possibly be the fault of anyone else, reseller or no. There should be no reason for posts such as this or other similar ones.

Perhaps a post of, "I paid more at Amazon because I didn't shop around, and now that I have buyer's remorse, I need someone to blame, so I can feel like a victim"

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2012 11:22:24 AM PDT
DisplacedMic says:
That's exactly right, Eric. It's all about opportunity cost. Not everything is about money - but every decision you make has a price. if you buy something for a few dollar more on Amazon over a vendor you don't know/trust then you are gaining that security at the cost of the extra money.

Likewise if you spend 3 weeks researching the item, going to 15 different shops, checking every online vendor you can think of and then end up buying it at 15% less than retail you have done so at the cost of your time and effort.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 15, 2012 11:57:39 AM PDT
Comix says:
Most toys that go for the higher prices sit firmly in the "collectibles" category and only go up in value over time. The other "hot toys" are priced based on a little thing called supply and demand which the last time I checked was a fundamental rule of any healthy, capitalist economy. Oh, I forgot, we live in an age where capitalism is a bad word. That's funny considering how it has propelled us to the greatest economy in the history of the world. If more people understood how the economy worked ( as most people on this thread clearly do not ) we wouldn't support the current socialist agenda that is only making things worse.

Posted on Jun 24, 2012 3:19:23 PM PDT
It is the old story, "Let the buyer Beware"

Posted on Jun 26, 2012 10:28:45 AM PDT
It seems to me that if an item was truly overpriced, then it would not sell. Just because you are not willing to pay $10 for a MSRP $5 item, doesn't mean someone else isn't willing to pay $10, or more for said item, period.

And this whole argument of "but walmart has it for less money" holds no weight. Either walmart doesn't have said item, and what they post it's value as is not relevant. Or, walmart does have said item, and you could just buy it from them instead. Remember, walmart has site to store, which ships it for free to your local store, unless it's truly to much for you to get out of the house and pick the item up(and if that's the case, you have bigger problems than the availability of an item at the price you wish to pay)

It's a free market. You can make the choice to buy, or not to buy, and who to buy from. And if someone can sell an item for more money to someone else, then they are by no means obligated to sell it for less to you.

Besides, Amazon (and other stores) constantly get new stock in. If they are out today, check tomorrow. In fact, Amazon will even list if they have plans to get more in (though I'm sure that's not absolute) Also, Amazon does clearly list when an item is being sold by them, or by a third party through them, so there is no excuse for ignorance....and if an item is no longer being made, well, see the last paragraph.

Anyhow, guess what I'm trying to say is, don't complain about price. You (the buyer) are the one who ultimately chooses weather you buy, or don't. If your not willing to pay what others are, then crying about it will not help.

Posted on Jul 10, 2012 8:25:30 AM PDT
Gnomes Rule says:
How about the third party vendors that post confusing info. Box of five - is that five boxes? or five to the box? And they charge what would amount to five times the normal cost which implies its five boxes. Its hard to believe that they knowingly would charge five to ten times the market rate.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 8:59:31 AM PDT
m_massie says:
Hey, when you say they buy it from Amazon at retail and then re-sell it higher, you are completely off the mark. In fact, Amazon's "fulfilled by Amazon" service is indeed simply a wharehousing and shipping service. In fact, if you sell on ebay, you can still use FBA to fulfill your orders. Its simply much easier for sellers to store their inventory at FBA and have Amazon handle the order and ship it. A seller can handle a lot more orders that way. So I am not sure what you mean by the sellers get their inventory from Amazon and resell it higher.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 9:04:33 AM PDT
m_massie says:
lol well said

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 9:49:27 AM PDT
Gnomes,

If you're confused, you can always email the vendor to clarify. You go to the screen with the vendor's information, click on their feedback and scroll until you see the link to contact the vendor.

If you're unsure, you can email Amazon to assist you in contacting a vendor for clarification.

As far as the "market rate", if they sell it, then it's the market rate. As has been stated multiple times, any vendor is free to sell their merchandise at any price they see fit. If you think it's "five to ten times the market rate", then buy it elsewhere.

This really isn't a difficult concept...

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 9:59:45 AM PDT
duckles says:
I have never tried it but I suppose it might be possible for someone to actually purchase an item from Amazon and have them just put it into the sellers stock. Amazon might not care as it actually makes them more money because they don't actually need to ship it anywhere. Once in a while Amazon puts popular items on sale very cheaply at prices that are lower than my cost to procure the item and ship it to Amazon so it might make sense to buy it from them at that time.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 10:21:14 AM PDT
thesingleone says:
Agreed. There is no reason for third party assosiation on online shopping or anything else that has to do with computer issues. You might as well hand them a percentage just for watching a transaction. That is how I percieve it.

Posted on Jul 10, 2012 11:54:09 AM PDT
Kerry says:
I thought I was the only one who looks at some prices & laughs, literally out loud, as an item that originally cost about $12 is listed for $999. I giggled when you compared it to sleazeBay (eBay) as I cannot tell you how many nightmares as both a buyer & seller that flippin' place has caused me. I also just LOVE when some ding-a-ling offers you some other item, such as the most recent offer of an iPad 2 or an iPhone 4 (of which I have & loathe) for the $1200 icecream machine they "won" instead of the money, like it's some sort of game show & eBay/PayPal (being 1 & the same entity) penalizes a seller, believing all the nonsense these liars tell them & it's up to a seller to prove their innocence by showing copies of emails & text messages & lists of phone calls between you & the buyer/seller to show that you are not what doing or agreeing to their cockamamie claims. As for the flip-flappin' jackholes who are PROUD to shaft buyers by way of buying low & selling high: it's not "American, " it's not honest, it's not fair, it's just disgusting & people look at you for what you are; basically a SPONGE in a scum bucket! I hope that there are more honest folks out there who will see these comments & decide against selling wanted items at an outrageous price just because they can. I refuse to fall for the supply & demand price gouging, even if it's to make someone you love happy. I'm lucky to have people in my family that know that they CAN live, quite blissfully, without that "want" & instead of breaking the bank, they'll choose something they need or something with a much less inflated cost. Amazon has lots of great sellers with wonderful deals & I hope they consider weeding out the parasites to keep it that way.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 12:15:43 PM PDT
Kerry says:
Shadow Fire Prods, Inc., have you never had a child, family member, or friend want the "flavor of the day" gift; for example circa 1984 when Cabbage Patch Kids exploded onto the scene & people were literally beating each other up to get their hands on one to give as a Christmas/Hanukkah gift to the little girls who cried how they couldn't live if Santa didn't bring them one, or the craze to get a "Tickle Me Elmo" that led to black market prices of upwards of $1000 for one so the little rug rats could ignore it or be horribly frightened of them during Christmas/Hanukkah of 1996? There's always something that "everyone" wants, be it a certain toy, designer clothing, perfume/cologne, shoes/sneakers, cookware/kitchen appliance & so on that certain people will help create more of a demand than there is a supply of. C'mon, there must be something that you had been suckered into paying WAY too much for to make that special person happy for their birthday or holiday that you can understand where the disgust for price gouging, 3rd party sellers is something you can relate to.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 12:19:52 PM PDT
m_massie,

Just as an aside, it's not necessarily true that as seller can handle a lot more orders using Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) (it's not necessarily untrue, either!). For us, maintaining our own warehouse is the better option. It's every bit as cost efficient as FBA to use our own warehouse, and we can include our own marketing materials and catalogues specific to the item ordered.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 12:41:10 PM PDT
Kerry,

First, "price gouging", as it relates to your post is as fictional a concept as Batman floating from a rooftop and having a happy landing using only his cape to glide.

No one here has ever been "suckered" into paying WAY too much for to make that special person happy". If money is spent, that is because whomever spent it made A CHOICE to spend that money. The notion that you had a gun pointed to your head and were absolutely FORCED to spend money is a ridiculous, nonsense notion that, to be quite honest, makes you look quite ignorant.

You see, there is this little thing we have here called "choice". If a Cabbage Patch or Tickle Me Elmo or whatever it be was priced beyond what anyone here was willing to pay, then they simply wouldn't buy it.

Everyone makes the ridiculous notion that you have absolutely no choice in the matter when it comes to "buying power", and that the "power" is in the hands of the seller. That's as nonsense of a notion as yelling, "Shazam!" and expecting magic lightning to change you. There's a reason it's called "buying power". There's a reason for expressions such as, "vote with your wallet". All the power is in the hands of the buyer. If you felt somehow pressured to pay more than you wanted, well, we feel awful sorry for you that you have absolutely no ability to say no to anyone and succumb so easily to peer pressure and advertising.

If people are, as you say, "beating each other up to get their hands on one", that sounds like a personal problem. There are few things in the world worth delivering a physical beating for, and a TOY does not fall into that category, despite what you might personally hold out as true.

As far as demand exceeding supply...that's why there is such as thing as desire. There will always be an excess of that. Whether it be more things you want than you have money for at the time, or whether it be the finite supply of a certain "hot" item on the market. You pick your battles in the marketplace. You can now find those silly toys everywhere, and at a fraction of the original retail price. Everyone thought Beanie Babies would be a huge "hit" in the marketplace. One of the girls in our office learned differently when she found out her Beanie Baby Collection had little value in the marketplace and were all readily available and not at all scarce.

The power of the internet has enabled every person capable of using a computer (or, failing that, to use a telephone to call someone who IS capable) to search the world (quite literally) for what they want.

In 1987, the World Wrestling Federation held their "WrestleMania III" card, and later sold the video for $39.95. Over 20 years later, the tape for that is still holding at about the same price. You can use the internet to find the tape, quite easily.

If you truly want to have "disgust" for someone, try looking in the mirror. Have "disgust" for someone who falls prey so easily to a fictional concept and is simply unable to say "no" to a price beyond their reach. Reserve your praise for the third party sellers, who have spent THEIR time and THEIR money to locate (for you, by the way) something and, rather than keep it for themselves, they are now offering it for sale to the world, via the internet, so that another may have the opportunity to either reclaim something they had in their youth (nostalgia), or purchase something they couldn't get when it first came out.

These wonderful vendors/people have contributed to the economy by making their living (in some cases) enabling others to shop one-stop and hassle free, having items delivered right to their door without having to beat up anyone. These people are now able to make a living for themselves and their families.
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