Amazon Con?


I’m a heavy user of Amazon. It’s not that I like them, but I find them invaluable – the combination of nearly everything I ever want at decent prices with “free” shipping just makes it the most convenient way for me to shop.  

But this right here is bad. The big, powerful, 14-cup Cuisinart food processor has a list price, per Cuisinart, of $279. Amazon is selling it for $254 – okay, fine, you’re not going to get a better deal than that. But they claim the list price is $500, so you think you’re saving almost 50 percent – and you’re not.  

This follows on the heels of Virginia Heffernan’s musings about whether Amazon displays different prices to different customers.  

Not that we should expect any more of Amazon than of any other retailer, which is to say they’ll get away with whatever they think they can get away with. I’m just saying: Heads up.

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Posted in Behind The Scenes


  1. ettingerpdx said...

    If we all shop Amazon perhaps we’ll see all those local shops close, leaving us Walmart or Amazon. Shop local Mark, it’s good for all of us.

  2. emartinie said...

    Williams Sonoma is doing pretty much the same thing with all its food processors. So even people who are willing to spend $500 can get a deal!

  3. Anonymous said...

    Overstock….$247 (+$2.95 shipping), or $260 for the Die Cast metal version at with free shipping. But keep in mind, Amazon DOES actually have local merchants, it’s a marketplace as much as a discount retailer. Click on the "# others available new and used" link, and see who’s got them. I’ve bought things on Amazon from Target and Macy’s as well as small companies in the tri-state area.

  4. Anonymous said...

    Macy’s is selling the die-cast version for $429 versus Amazon’s $246 which is like a 40%-ish difference. I’m going to give Amazon a pass on this one.

  5. burk said...

    "List Price" is typically provided by the manufacturer to the reseller, so Amazon is just repeating the number it was given by Cuisinart. A quick search shows that other online retailers have the same $500 "list" or "regular" price, while offering a comparable deal to Amazon’s.

  6. erniebufflo said...

    I’d totally believe Amazon jacks around with pricing. If you use Firefox, this extension can tell you if Amazon has the lowest price: It gives you a popup letting you know if another retailer is selling the same item for less.

  7. hungryone said...

    That Cuisinart is actually sold by 6ave, through Amazon – that may have something to do with the inaccuracy. I love Amazon as well – love the reviews on everything but recently they have been selling products through so many vendors that products and pricing are all over the place and it has become very confusing.

  8. hungryone said...

    Whoops – I was wrong, but just proved my point. I was looking at the same exact model selling for $243.33 sold by 6ave vs. the $252.92 if bought directly through Amazon. Same msrp of $500 for both.

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