The Two Online Retail Leaders?

Discussion in 'Social Place' started by wwkirk, Jul 3, 2020.

  1. wwkirk

    wwkirk Celestial

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    Everyone knows that Amazon has become the preeminent online retailer. When I first encountered them, they were mostly a book store. But now, their range of products is titanic. Often, they have the best prices, and have reasonable delivery rates. If you're into classical music, they offer quite a few massive collections at hilariously low prices. If I have any criticism of them, it's that they sometimes make it difficult to qualify for free shipping. The threshold is $25, which is not bad, but they craftily sell numerous items at $24.99 or a little less, which is irritating.

    As far as my own shopping is concerned, their nearest competitor is eBay. eBay sometimes has better prices than Amazon, and quite frequently free shipping is available for even small sales. They also provide important info about certain items, such as expiration dates for OTC meds. They even allow one to narrow sellers by geographic region. (In the past, this was unimportant, but since the Covid-19 problem emerged, shipping from Asia is problematic.) Interestingly, the protection plans eBay offered for electronic items seem to superior to Amazon's.

    The title indicates only two sellers, but I confess that when I'm ready to buy a new laptop, Best Buy's online store is where I'll go. Their prices are competitive, and their speed of delivery is impressive. But equally importantly, their site makes it easy to search for and identify those laptops that have precisely the specifications I'm interested in.
     
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  2. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Yeah, you forgot the third retail giant, the FaceBook itself.
     
  3. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Facebook isn't retail, its an abomination...:Whistle:

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  4. wwkirk

    wwkirk Celestial

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    I've never spent any money on or through Facebook. I also use an ad-blocker.
     
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  5. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Facebook is an "invisible" retailer and probably almost the same size as Amazon. There are thousands upon thousands of people selling their stuff through Facebook Ads. Facebook's AI is specifically geared to watch the shopping habits of its members and in that field is best in the world.

    People arrive to Amazon's site only once they made the decision to buy something, so Amazon knows relatively little about them (except when Alex is evesdropping on you). But FB knows you far better. FB knows who are your friends, what books and movie you read/watch, what's your politics, where you work, where you move during the day, what products are you inclined to buy, how quickly or slowly you make buying decisions, it can group you with other consumers with similar behavioural patterns etc.

    I am looking to start a business on FB just because of the power of their AI to find customers on auto-pilot.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2020
  6. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    I don't get your drift?

    Are you trying to say that Facebook stock price will crash tomorrow because you block their ads? FB has something like one billion members.

    :)
     
  7. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Facebook does not know anything about me, nothing at all, simply because I never used FB before...:cool8:

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  8. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Oh yeah, but you use Twitter. Twitter has you on the file :). Not to mention Google that is watching every your move. As it is watching mine :)
     
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  9. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    I like eBay, I've been a member since almost the beginning with them, Amazon on the other hand, I have been a member for only a few short years...I don't do a lot of purchases on Amazon though, I'll use them for price comparisons often...I filter out search results in China when using eBay, I was doing that before the coronavirus, to find local items or European made items first, sometimes things are purchased from China and resold in Europe on eBay...

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  10. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Most of consumer goods are made in China. I watched a documentary about one single factory in China that is as big as a town. They produce all household products like washing machines, irons, dishwashers, hairdryers etc. for all of the US and EU brands. Just check the packaging. It'll always say Made in China.
     
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  11. wwkirk

    wwkirk Celestial

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    The explanation for my statement is that prior to your post, I was only dimly aware that Facebook even has ads. Since my ad blocker runs by default, I can't remember the last time I saw a Facebook ad.

    I'm pleased that they don't compel the disabling of ad blockers, though that may eventually come to pass.
     
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  12. Captain Tinkle

    Captain Tinkle Honorable

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    A good trick on Amazon is to use some sort of price scanner website that are available.

    Certainly applies to the UK but maybe useful for the US, in that it scans the prices on the United States and European Amazon pages to find the cheaper price. You then of course order from the cheaper site, for example German Amazon for delivery in the UK which is usually still free.

    Of course custom fees likely may apply if it comes from US but that is part of the risk you take.

    I note that whenever I go to Walmart prices for things like TVs are dirt cheap. A lot are brands I have never heard of but I saw pricing for like a 65 inch 4k TV for like $299. Here they would be closer to £400 (roughly about $600). Just curious but is this $299 example a reasonable price for Americans? In my limited experiance of staying in villas and hotels in the States, they are always the old fat TVs or older HD models instead of 4K versions. Considered buying one myself and shipping it back.
     
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  13. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    There are a lot of items made in America and easy to get here in America, but they cost more and I don't mind paying for quality and that's what you get from an American made product compared to Chinese products, quality...

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  14. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Yeah, I love buying tools. And I got some from US just because they were so well designed and good looking. I wasn't able to resist myself :)
     
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  15. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    Yeah I have some nice tools, American, German, and Italian made...Recently bought a set of Bondhus pivot-head allen wrench set, they're awesome and well made...

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  16. Dejan Corovic

    Dejan Corovic Noble

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    Yeah, you haven't owned a refined engineering tool till you buy a Japanese tool. I think Japs are above even Germans when it comes to tools. Nobody else puts silky satin finish on metal tool parts?
     
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  17. nivek

    nivek As Above So Below

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    I haven't owned any Japanese made tools, interesting...I have some precision measuring devices, such as calipers, but they are American made...

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