Amazon has officially announced the expansion of the Amazon.in into new categories – smartphones, mobile phones, cameras, accessories and the Kindle E-readers. These come additionally to books, music and TV shows. This is certainly good news for the gadget lovers, particularly the deal hunters among them! We checked out the new gadget categories and found that the deals are rather enticing.
It is a market: A congregation of popular sellers
In what is a major coup for Amazon.in, the e-commerce giant has managed to get popular sellers on board. The fact that sellers like UniverCell, Croma Retail and JJ Mehta are on board with their gadgets deals, they also bring their own loyal customers and a well-cultivated reputation with them. This should put most customers at ease, at least as far as “is it a known seller?” apprehensions are concerned. The simple fact is, none of these sellers would want their reputation tarnished by a bad review from the customer.
The more popular the seller, the safer it is to buy from them. Yes, there will always be a lesser known seller maybe offering a slightly lower price or quicker shipping and delivery times, but we would suggest taking the safer option, and the little extra money that you may pay or the extra one or two days that you may have to wait is worth it for the security that the order will be okay.
Ratings: The customer rates the product, and the seller
Transparent and globally rather well-trusted, customer reviews and ratings for the product are great indications about the quality of product. These reviews are shown on the product landing page, and everyone can read them. Here, the customer can also rate the experience of buying from this particular seller. It is always better to read through the product reviews before placing the order, just to get an idea of what other buyers have experienced - both with the product and also possibly with the order fulfillment, good or bad.
Finding the best price: The tricks
On every product page, on the right hand side, you will see a box titled “More Buying Choices”, which lists some other deals the rival sellers may be offering. The prices are mentioned as well, for a quick reference. We have noticed that many times, you might just find a better deal here.
Sorting: Making shortlisting, easier
Once inside a category, straight from the homepage, you see rather helpful and detailed sorting option on the left side of the page, stacked vertically. For example, in the smartphones “Department”, you can sort the listing by operating system, brand, camera resolution, latest arrivals, price and even the sellers. This is a rather neat set of options, and we really like the last option of sorting by sellers. Going back to the earlier point of renowned brands should ideally be preferred, this does make that job easier.
Amazon Fulfilled: Taking charge of the order
Though not all, a lot of products in the store carry the label “Amazon Fulfilled”. This means that irrespective of the seller, Amazon takes charge of your order till it reaches your doorstep. These orders are dispatched from Amazon’s own fulfillment centre, after procurement from the actual seller. Amazon.in says that the delivery in most pin code areas will be done in 2-4 business days, and certain regions may see extended delivery times of 5-10 business days.
As a rule, all orders above Rs. 499 for “Amazon Fulfilled” products get the free shipping benefit, but as a promotional scheme, this has been extended to all “Amazon Fulfilled” products.
For almost every product, you will find listings that are tagged “Amazon Fulfilled” and some that aren’t. We would always recommend going for the former, even though you may find that the price may be lower in the latter. Unless the seller is someone well known, like a Croma, for example. The knowledge that Amazon is going to ensure that the product is delivered to you, as per their standards of quality, is something that is a lot more valuable, in most cases.
The other orders are fulfilled directly by the sellers, and while we are not for one second saying that they cannot be trusted, we personally would feel a lot more assured if the product is shipped from Amazon’s side.
Delivery: Depends on where you stay
Delivery times for Amazon Fulfilled products is pegged at 2-4 business days, for most cities. However, Amazon.in clearly mentions that certain pin codes will witness longer delivery times, somewhere in the 5-10 business days region.
For products shipped by the sellers directly, the customer has the option of selecting between two shipping methods - the first delivers in 2-4 business days, and the second in 4-7 business days. For this category also, certain areas will get the delivery completed in between 5-14 business days.
Shipping costs: Competition dictates the tag
Sellers have the freedom to set shipping and delivery charges for the products, and these are mentioned on the product page before you place the order. As a rule, Amazon Fulfilled products, with orders above Rs 499, are eligible for free shipping. However, for other products shipped directly by the sellers, they have the freedom to set the shipping cost for the orders. There is no need to fret though - the way the market works (competition and all!), no seller can ideally quote ridiculous shipping costs for the products they are selling.
We hope this guide will be useful for you, when shopping on Amazon.in. If you have already purchased something from Amazon.in, we would like to hear about the experience. Tweet us at https://twitter.com/vishalmathur85 to get in touch with the author.