Watch Out For Cyber Monday Non-Deals

Just as Black Friday has its sleazy underside meant to make you pay more than you should to buy stuff you don’t need, so does Cyber Monday.

Take this Amazon Marketplace “sale” on the Apple Magic Mouse. Someone is selling the device for $129, but you can find it at the Apple Store for a little more than half that price.

There are loads of good deals to be had today, but use discretion and compare prices before clicking your money away.

(Thanks, Nick!)

Comments

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  1. OrtizDupri says:

    “Ships from and sold by PCMONDE.”

    Amazon themselves do not apparently stock the Apple Magic Mouse. All of the listings for it are through third-party vendors.

  2. alduin says:

    That’s not an Amazon price. Three lines below the price and also right above the big “Add to cart” button, it clearly says it’s sold by some company called PCMONDE. Amazon’s price on the mouse is $68.95.

  3. talax says:

    that’s a third party seller, not amazon. If you notice, Amazon doesn’t have it in stock, and if you click on the right, you can see that amazon’s “normal” price is $68 or so.

  4. talax says:

    that’s a third party seller, not amazon. If you notice, Amazon doesn’t have it in stock, and if you click on the right, you can see that amazon’s “normal” price is $68 or so.

  5. hlpimfalling says:

    Yup, just like everyone else is saying, that’s a bad link. Amazon is actually selling it for $68.95, which is not a bad deal when you don’t pay tax, and you get free shipping.

    • Rectilinear Propagation says:

      It’s not a ‘bad link’, just a different seller. That makes it sound like it’s a phishing site or something instead of being a legitimate part of the Amazon site.

  6. freshyill says:

    I didn’t even have to click over there to know it was being sold by some awful third party. But I did anyway… “Ships from and sold by PCMONDE.”

    Out of curiosity, I took a trip over to pcmonde.com. Some really great deals there…

    Sony MVCCD500, a camera from 2003, selling for $349
    30GB iPod 5G refurbished, selling for $299 (I bought one of these new in 2005 for this price)

    I could go on, but I think a trip to their iPod page speaks for itself. http://pcmonde.com/index.php?option=com_virtuemart&page=shop.browse&category_id=15&Itemid=1

    Just because something is selling for a certain price, doesn’t mean it’s a sale. And just because it’s on Amazon, doesn’t mean Amazon is selling it.

    This is common knowledge any day of the week, not just today.

  7. DrStarkweather says:

    Actually, the $129 price is from a 3rd party merchant PCMONDE. Amazon sells the mouse themselves for $68.95.

    Really, the lesson here is to watch out for shady merchants on the Amazon platform trying to rip you off.

  8. SkuldChan says:

    Amazon told me (at some convention 2 years ago) their buy box was supposed to be controlled by whoever had the lowest price. So Amazon is still contributing to this scam – even though its not their product.

    • hlpimfalling says:

      It is the lowest available price. Amazon is out of stock.

    • ben says:

      I’m not sure what you mean by “buy box.” The link in the article goes to PCMONDE’s page for that item, so it’s going to show that company’s price. If you click the “more buying choices” link, you can see the other vendors that are selling the same item — one of which is Amazon. You have to add the item to your cart to see the actual price, though, because it has one of the “too low to show” prices.

  9. Aesteval says:

    Have to love the free market and the third party marketplace on Amazon. Got a hard to find item burning a hole in your pocket? Take it to Amazon instead of eBay.

    I had a text book that I needed to get back in September that had a ridiculous number of supply issues tied to it. The book was hard to find and a third party on Amazon was selling it for the $50 for the book, plus a $1,115.65 “sourcing” fee. The sourcing fee, not surprisingly, vanished shortly after the book was in stock again.

    It’s just people trying to take advantage of market economics. I can’t help but wonder how many people shopped Black Friday sales for stuff to resell.

  10. [MG]LooseCannon says:

    I don’t see where this is being advertised as a “CYBER MONDAY DOORBUSTER INCREDIBLE SALE DEAL!” anywhere. The title of the article makes it sound like this is a terrible deal on a sale item, but the comments make it sound like it’s just like any other day, and you can, in fact, find bad deals out there if you look.

  11. alduin says:

    The real lesson here is to fact-check your articles before hitting that big “Post” button. =)

  12. tbax929 says:

    I only buy items on Amazon.com that are sold by Amazon. I’m sure there are fine third-party vendors on Amazon, but I’m not comfortable buying from companies I don’t know. Also, since I have Amazon Prime, the only way to get free shipping is to buy Amazon-sold items, not third-party items.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      I’ve only purchased from one or two companies that sold on Amazon. I generally trust only Amazon.com as a seller, or places that use Amazon as a fulfillment center. Also, official companies like Fossil that operate an Amazon store along with their own website store.

  13. Hogan1 says:

    Yet another article posted by Villareal without any fact checking. Please, Please fact check.

    • Trai_Dep says:

      Bullsh*t.
      Many online shoppers DO go to Amazon, and many of those WILL buy from a third-party vendor thinking, “I’m buying from Amazon”.
      We know better, but then again we read a consumer-activist blog for kicks. (Well, and the ladies, d’accord)
      Don’t be a shrill, whining whiner.

      • ben says:

        If the article was written to say “Be aware that Amazon also sells items for third parties, so you might not actually be ordering directly from Amazon when at amazon.com” that would be different. And it’s not like it’s guaranteed that you’re automatically going to get the best price on any given item even if you’re buying it directly from Amazon, so anyone who just randomly goes to Amazon and buys an item from them without shopping around shouldn’t expect to get the cheapest price.

        The article claims that this is a “cyber monday sale from Amazon.” It’s not a sale at all. It’s the regular price from a third party company who sells through Amazon.

        The article’s conclusion about discretion and price comparison is valid, but the initial premises are completely wrong.

        • Trai_Dep says:

          I admire the amount of credit you give the average shopper, but this isn’t a situation where someone went to http://www.PCMONDE.com (or technointelligence, in my find, below) then found glaring mistakes or (perhaps) scams.
          If Amazon is lending their name to 3rd-party sellers, they need to meet the same standards as if they were directly selling them.
          Especially because I’d bet more than half the shoppers think they’re buying from Amazon in these instances, or that Amazon’s reputation applies to these subcontractors.

          So you’re right, for those of us that know better. But Phil’s right, for the unwashed masses who’ll probably be victimized by these guys.

          Amazon should do better. It can’t be good business in the long run for this to continue.

          • lotussix says:

            phil’s article isn’t for the masses. it’s for consumerist readers, so i don’t see your logic.

            phil’s articles are not as good when comparing them to the other editor’s articles. i think that fact checking should be a requirement before posting. i’ve seen other editors use strikethroughs and/or make additional notes to their postings to correct errors and this is not usually the case with phil’s articles.

            • Hogan1 says:

              This is exactly my point. The other authors actually do a bit of fact checking and research on what they post. If an inaccuracy is found or pointed out later; they’ll post an update. Phill Villareal’s modus operandi seems more along the lines of “post and forget”. The verbiage he uses is often poor and misleading, the claims are rarely even investigated (Sometimes a quick look at the business in questions website can make or break the credibility of a story). This lack of quality detracts from all the hard work done by the other authors.

    • thompson says:

      Agreed. This post, and the post about the newegg dead-pixel policy are ridiculous. I’ve been a loyal consumerist reader for awhile, mostly because of the power that this site gives to consumers. However, if posts aren’t fact-checked and accusations end up being false, this site loses credibility and thus loses its power to shame companies into providing the proper service. Newegg didn’t do anything wrong, neither did Amazon.

      Please, for the sake of the site, edit both posts!

  14. Trai_Dep says:

    Amazon’s a mess. Their listings, for instance, all iMacs is a mix-and-match, jumbled shame. Searching for key items returns unexpected results.
    It’s probably less that they’re trying to pull a scam on Magic Mice and more that their automated system for filling out item descriptions is wonky, and whoever their Mac product manager is, is sipping the sauce.
    That said, beware – you click it, you bought it!

    • Trai_Dep says:

      Whee!
      Search for “imac 27 i5″ (for an iMac Quad-core) and it returns one hit. Yay!
      …That’s $900 over Apple’s list price, and is actually a much slower Dual-core. So it’s $1,200 over buying direct from Apple.

      Really. Seriously. They either need to hire an Apple PM, or fire the one they’ve got.
      It’s a third-party fraudster, but still, someone at Amazon thinks it’s a great idea to allow scamsters to run rampant under the Amazon banner.

      This one (Techno Intelligence) has a history of bait-and-switching (or more charitably, sending out the wrong stuff), yet still has a 4.8/5.0 star rating. Yeesh.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      You can sort the results by seller, though. That makes it much easier.

  15. C4 says:

    The Kmart near my house was having a Thanksgiving Day sale. I got a sweatshirt for $11 at 40% off. Two days later I was at the same Kmart and the same sweatshirts were marked 50% off. Not that much of a difference but come on! The deals in the paper either were sold out or not marked as such in store. I felt jipped, but that shows that the deals are going to be on the less traffic laden days, not the big advertised days.

    • fantomesq says:

      KMart has a price protection policy… 7 days isn’t much but you qualified for the lower price. Seems you jipped yourself out of the better price by not asking.

  16. OutofStock says:

    Keep in mind, if it’s NOT sold directly by Amazon, you WILL be paying more for that same product. It’s better just to watch Amazon for THEIR stock inventory of the item, and then buy it. My site helps to monitor that for you. Fast and FREE.

    • Aesteval says:

      Not always the case. Sure, it’s rare but it’s been known to happen that a seller has a better price than Amazon. And not only does the seller have a better price, it’s also stocked and shipped through Amazon. I’ve seen it once.

      • pinkpetunia says:

        I agree. Amazon prices have gone up to the point that I’ve gotten used to shopping around. With Prime it still makes sense for a lot of people to pay the few bucks extra, but there have definitely been times when I can find an item cheaper elsewhere.

  17. DustoMan says:

    OMG! Do you people even both to click on links people send in to your tip box? Or do you just blindly post everything that will get you clicks? Wait, don’t answer that. We know that’s how it works.

  18. pinkpetunia says:

    There are plenty of sleazy sites that claim huge bargains on a regular basis as well. One that comes to mind is PetCareRx, which sends out $10 coupons in the mail and constantly advertises guaranteed low prices. $10 off sounds great at first. Unfortunately I learned my lesson the hard way when a box of Frontline cost $99 on PetCareRx and $58 on Amazon and I took the $10 off bait because I didn’t check around first. Usually the prices on the same product don’t vary THAT much from site to site, but geez – $40 is kind of a steep difference.

  19. mawaru says:

    If you find that third parties are marking up the prices on Amazon because Amazon doesn’t have the item in stock, just add your item to watchmyitems.com and be alerted when Amazon restocks and get it at retail price. I’m watching http://www.watchmyitems.com?item=B002TLTGM6 for my magic mouse.

  20. banmojo says:

    a quick search for Lego sets on Amazon leads to some laughable prices on sets that are no longer produced. I mean, I realize that those sets will be ‘antiques’ in a few years, but if I can find the same thing in TJMax for around 25% of the original price, and some jackal is trying to sell it on Amazon at a 500% markup – well, all I can say is “people, do your research!”

  21. Evan Elias says:

    Why is Amazon not offering the Magic Mouse directly?

  22. tigress says:

    Not just apple. Albeebaby.com listed a sale price on a carseat that is their EVERYDAY price. pisses me off! don’t be dumb, compare prices.