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Old 2015-09-24, 06:35 PM   #52
Cellar Door
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It is and it isn't; larger Marketplace sellers often have their shops set to "match lowest price" and often set up something to pick up any additions to either the catalogue or Amazon's insane chart. They'll have an upper limit set and the insane price is probably what it is; as yet as something so newly published there probably aren't any genuine used listings on Amazon, just auto-setups, so there's no competition for a low price.

If I was to log into my Marketplace now and list a copy at - say - 30 - within minutes/hours (depending on how quickly Amazon's cache picked it up) their copies would drop to 29.99. But as said there are no genuine used copies out there so no personal sellers are using that field; let's say Dalek sells 1000 copies, chances are for some reason or another a couple of people will move them on in a couple of years and you'll have multiple genuine used listings from people happy to get a fiver for a genuine used book.

So it is chancers from the point of view that Marketplace sellers are happy to provide the 'cheapest' price for an item in multiple condition categories however absurd the actual price is (I guess the logic being that if someone does plump for a 100 used copy they can just source one - and due to the way Amazon's marketplace system works cancel the order if it proves impossible, or if they can't get a copy for significantly less than 100).

But it isn't from the point of view of there being a bloke sat there going "look at that book, I reckon I can get 100 for one of those by setting up my own listing, LOL".

And TBH I'd be surprised if Amazon could be bothered to do anything about the situation, especially as it's their mechanism that effectively sets up the automatic undercutting in favour of big business marketplace sellers. The answer is likely to be to rely on customers doing their research.

It is a system that's open to abuse if you've got the balls, though - find item you want used; set up a listing and undercut lowest price by a significant amount if the lowest prices are by bulk outfits; wait for their prices to drop automatically and buy while hoping they don't realise it's you doing it (not difficult as your seller ID isn't your buying ID) and cross your fingers no-one buys it off you in the meantime.

(Not that I have done this on multiple occasions; though post-checkout there is often someone human pulling the stock out and if you overdo crashing the price on something too obscure the seller will miraculously have no stock to send).
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