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Senator wants Amazon to stop their Price Check app promotion

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 09 Dec 2011 22:52 User comments (12)

Senator wants Amazon to stop their Price Check app promotion Maine senator Olympia Snowe has said today that Amazon should end its Price App promotion.
In an effort to bring awareness to their mobile app, Amazon is offering consumers up to $5 worth of free credit if they compare a product in-store and decide instead to buy it from the e-tailer.

You must use Amazon's Price Check app on Android or iOS, which gives users the chance to scan a bar code, take a pic of the item, or use a traditional text search to find the item, price, details and reviews of products.

When you walk in stores, Amazon is asking that users submit prices of items via the app, so that the company can confirm they have the lowest prices. The promotion is good for 5 percent off, up to $5, for up to three items.

Snowe says:

Amazon's promotion -- paying consumers to visit small businesses and leave empty-handed -- is an attack on Main Street businesses that employ workers in our communities. Small businesses are fighting everyday to compete with giant retailers, such as Amazon, and incentivizing consumers to spy on local shops is a bridge too far.


Amazon says the app is just that, a price comparison method, and that the app gives comparisons to brick-and-mortar and e-tailers that aren't Amazon.

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12 user comments

19.12.2011 23:35

Way I see it, if main street stores want to compete with corporations then they have to adapt their business models with today's technology. Do similar back at Amazon, and set a cap as well, people will go local rather than shop online as lets face it, if it's in stock it beats waiting for the courier. Especially if the couriers are in the habit of tossing a "wait to be signed for" package at your front door for anyone to come by and steal or just get weather damage. In this economy sink or swim, but don't put the blame on your competition for coming up with a clever way to draw in consumers.. Wal-mart, Target, Best-buy and more they all do it. Just usually with flyers.

29.12.2011 23:53

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Way I see it, if main street stores want to compete with corporations then they have to adapt their business models with today's technology. Do similar back at Amazon, and set a cap as well, people will go local rather than shop online as lets face it, if it's in stock it beats waiting for the courier. Especially if the couriers are in the habit of tossing a "wait to be signed for" package at your front door for anyone to come by and steal or just get weather damage. In this economy sink or swim, but don't put the blame on your competition for coming up with a clever way to draw in consumers.. Wal-mart, Target, Best-buy and more they all do it. Just usually with flyers.
+1

310.12.2011 0:22

Thanks for the +1; I also forgot to mention that it's a measly 5%, that different doesn't even cover the cost it takes to ship the item to you from amazon in most cases; so maybe stores should focus on better relating to consumers, true you get that 5% off 100, that's a saving of $5, but then you pay for shipping it = to $15, on so you pay $10+ more at amazon still. blah.. stupid retailers.

410.12.2011 1:39

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Thanks for the +1; I also forgot to mention that it's a measly 5%, that different doesn't even cover the cost it takes to ship the item to you from amazon in most cases; so maybe stores should focus on better relating to consumers, true you get that 5% off 100, that's a saving of $5, but then you pay for shipping it = to $15, on so you pay $10+ more at amazon still. blah.. stupid retailers.
Amazon has free shipping on most things, but generally the 5% isn't worth the waiting time/UPS bothers. I recently bought a 40" TV at bestbuy because it was only 10% more than the amazon price. Amazon has free shipping and great return policies, but it was still worth the 10% to get it the same day and not have to worry about shipping damage, returns, etc.

HOWEVER...I passed up buying a few blurays, a couple of CDs, a USB drive, some speakers, an HDMI cable, and a new toaster oven because Amazon just spanked their *** on the prices for all those things.


510.12.2011 1:48

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Way I see it, if main street stores want to compete with corporations then they have to adapt their business models with today's technology. Do similar back at Amazon, and set a cap as well, people will go local rather than shop online as lets face it, if it's in stock it beats waiting for the courier. Especially if the couriers are in the habit of tossing a "wait to be signed for" package at your front door for anyone to come by and steal or just get weather damage. In this economy sink or swim, but don't put the blame on your competition for coming up with a clever way to draw in consumers.. Wal-mart, Target, Best-buy and more they all do it. Just usually with flyers.
+1 as well, you can't stop them from doing what the technology now days, I see something i like i take a picture from google goggle and search for cheaper price, who doesn't want to save money on these days the way economy is ? yea, retailers are making money EITHER way, regardless if you get it locally or online, it is all depends what the customers prefer, you can't just stop them from doing a smart decision on how to attract customers. Is just smart business.

Being nice always has its own consequences

610.12.2011 7:50

Originally posted by Mysttic:
Way I see it, if main street stores want to compete with corporations then they have to adapt their business models with today's technology. Do similar back at Amazon, and set a cap as well, people will go local rather than shop online as lets face it, if it's in stock it beats waiting for the courier. Especially if the couriers are in the habit of tossing a "wait to be signed for" package at your front door for anyone to come by and steal or just get weather damage. In this economy sink or swim, but don't put the blame on your competition for coming up with a clever way to draw in consumers.. Wal-mart, Target, Best-buy and more they all do it. Just usually with flyers.
+1 As well. It's part of that same mentality that people get of not wanting to change. There are so many examples of that in our society today. I also took a moment to look up the senator. She is 64 and most likely has that same mentality. Now I'm not sayin all old farts are the same. I've just seen too many in that same age group with the same type of never adapting thought process.

Originally posted by KillerBug:
HOWEVER...I passed up buying a few blurays, a couple of CDs, a USB drive, some speakers, an HDMI cable, and a new toaster oven because Amazon just spanked their *** on the prices for all those things.
These kind of things are what I normally get online. You just can't beat the prices. These kind of things also have a high improbability of shipping damage and I can wait a few extra days for most small things.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 10 Dec 2011 @ 9:01

710.12.2011 10:42

Quote:
Amazon has free shipping on most things, but generally the 5% isn't worth the waiting time/UPS bothers. I recently bought a 40" TV at bestbuy because it was only 10% more than the amazon price. Amazon has free shipping and great return policies, but it was still worth the 10% to get it the same day and not have to worry about shipping damage, returns, etc.
Yea that's likely true for the states. Amazon doesn't do that as much in Canada. They have instead a set of group items each week that "may qualify" for free shipping if you spend over X amount.

So +1 to everyone as well, if for nothing else being a smart consumer.

810.12.2011 12:44

The main problem this senator has is that Amazon's promotion is quite legal. She needs to get off her duff and change the law, or shut her trap. She's merely grandstanding for her corporate owners.

910.12.2011 13:56

LOL she's named after a beer...good old Oly!
Yeah I am suprised WalMart doesn't have signs up saying they will beat the apps price. I buy tons of stuff online but only if there's a substantial savings over the local price (including shipping!) or the item isn't readily available locally.

The worst? Ever see what Best Buy wants for a USB cable? ROFL!!!


Just my $0.02,

dEwMe

1010.12.2011 14:06

While I agree with most of these comments, I must play a little devil's advocate. She specifically mentions small businesses, which cannot compete with huge companies like Wally World, Target, Amazon, and etc. because they do not buy in large enough quantities for lower retailer costs. If Wally buys 1 million of something for $10, that same item when purchased in a lower volume by a small business costs a certain percentage more. This and their is far less inventory or products sold by small businesses so what they sell is their only bread and butter, unlike major retailers, they can slash profit margins on one product and make it up over several others. Big business does have a significant advantage

However

This Senator's motivations are more than likely not to help small/local businesses. It is more than likely the result of large corperate lobbying because they are tired of having their asses handed to them by Amazon's agressive pricing.

1110.12.2011 15:08

Quote:
While I agree with most of these comments, I must play a little devil's advocate. She specifically mentions small businesses, which cannot compete with huge companies like Wally World, Target, Amazon, and etc. because they do not buy in large enough quantities for lower retailer costs. If Wally buys 1 million of something for $10, that same item when purchased in a lower volume by a small business costs a certain percentage more. This and their is far less inventory or products sold by small businesses so what they sell is their only bread and butter, unlike major retailers, they can slash profit margins on one product and make it up over several others. Big business does have a significant advantage

However

This Senator's motivations are more than likely not to help small/local businesses. It is more than likely the result of large corperate lobbying because they are tired of having their asses handed to them by Amazon's agressive pricing.

While I see your point here it doesn't change the fact that it puts more pressure on small retailers to change their business model. Adapt or close. Learn your audience, and do your research. Take the time to survey those customers that walk buy your shop and ask them what will it take for them to do business with you.

Although money is tight due to financial restrictions and recession like period; clients still appreciate quality and extra mile service. There are many small business who learn by this and do very very well; small tier store fronts and restaurants that manage to find that right amount of creativity that is so good, that it doesn't matter what their big corporations counterparts do. So I still stand by sink or swim, but don't whine that you can't compete amongst big corporations. Of course you can't, you didn't go starting your business thinking one day you gonna be the next Wal-Mart over night, so be realistic about it. Last, commit to your business outside of standard business hours; sure you are entitled to your break, but doing that extra research, doing the creative thinking outside your open business hours will be that difference between a chance to succeed and your time to close shop.

1215.12.2011 17:01

You can't "spy" on open information like public prices.

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