Warning, anti-bargains: an example of how prices are used to deceive people

You should always shop around, that hardly needs to be mentioned. Still, there may be times, especially during peak bargain season, that you aren’t looking so critically at the price when savings of 10% or more are promised.

CHIP also regularly reports on the offers – and of course checks the competitive prices. The following vendor “marketplace” on Amazon shows that such control is important.

Electricity generator in the Amazon offer more expensive than the standard price

Of the power generator MXR3500 from maXpeedingrods is up to date on Amazon 1st place on the bestseller list in the generators area and is marked as an offer. According to the last lowest price, which was 919 euros, the savings should be 13%. Customers get the generator set for 798.99 euros. It looks like a fair economy (see on amazon).

The first glance confirms the good offer, because another store that also offers the generator as an offer asks for 827.99 euros, which here suggests an even higher saving, since the original price would have been €1,195.99.

However, it turns out that Amazon’s price has been undercut again: the same generator should be on eBay has an RRP of 925 euros and is offered here for 772.93 euros (see on eBay). This seems understandable at first glance. After all, Amazon doesn’t have to be the cheapest provider, even if a decent discount is promised there. What is suspicious, however, is that in both cases, i.e. both on Amazon and on eBay, the manufacturer itself is listed as the seller.
So we decide to take a closer look at the manufacturer’s website. We are not a little surprised to see a standard price of 688.24 euros, well below the alleged bargains of other shops. The generator is even available for 670.60 euros. So you save here another 14 percent in relation to the supposed Amazon case.

A manufacturer is of course free to set prices on other sites, as long as he has them in his hands, as he pleases. However, playing around with different standard prices on each page and suggesting corresponding savings, even if the customer pays a lot more in all the other checked shops, is not the best way.

Not only does this example show that comparison is important, but it also suggests that some manufacturers are not only very aware of where customers want to buy, but also at what price they are willing to shop there.

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