Thursday, March 13, 2014

Prime numbers

Amazon just informed me that when my Amazon Prime membership comes up for renewal in October, the price will jump from $79 per year to $99 - a 25% increase.

They explain their reasoning - first price increase in nine years, 20 times the numbers of items eligible for free shipping, the added video and Kindle lending library. And yet...

I've noticed more over the last six months or so that the price differential between an item covered by Amazon Prime and the same item - offered by Amazon but direct from the manufacturer and not covered by Prime - is growing. In some cases, even though you have to pay the shipping on non-Prime items, the overall cost is lower than it is if you take advantage of Amazon's program.

Time to evaluate my participation. Amazon provides handy dandy order history reports. It's a simple matter to run my purchase history for the last year, download to excel, sort out and delete digital content orders (movie rentals and Kindle book purchases) to leave just the physical goods. How much did I really buy that I would have paid shipping on, had I not been signed up for Prime?

Then, of course, there is the convenience factor to consider. It's been well over a year since I last set foot in Target, my usual household shopping venue. Most of what I need I can get through Amazon, or, depending on what it is (and if there is a sale), Peapod. I'm willing to pay a bit more for personal laziness.

We'll see if it is worth it to continue.

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