Amazon Has Best Christmas Season Ever

While retailers are drowning in their sorrows over disappointing Christmas sales numbers, Amazon is cheering. It had its best season ever.

I've been touting Amazon as having the best prices since November. It's now the first place I go online when looking to buy anything.

TalkLeft readers must be doing the same. This is the first month I've taken in more than $50 in affiliate sales from Amazon. Please keep them coming, and thanks to all of you who bought from Amazon through our links.

I think the best buys are in DVD's, electronics and books.

Where have you found great deals? (Update below)

Update: In response to some comments below about independent sellers, one of the great things about Amazon is that it lists the prices at third party sellers and provides direct links to get the item from them when their price is cheaper. Just look at the right hand column of any Amazon product page.

By giving consumers a choice -- to either buy from Amazon directly or from third party sellers -- Amazon is helping independent sellers stay in business and maintain employees. Examples of sellers I've bought from through Amazon and been quite pleased with are One Call in Seattle, J&R Electronics in New York and numerous independent booksellers.

In other words, Amazon isn't taking jobs away from other companies but helping those companies find business and keep workers.

< Even the Wealthy Are Shopping for Discounted Goods | Saturday Open Thread >
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    I try to shop at independent bookstores (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Radiowalla on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:27:54 PM EST
    but frequently buy from the Used Book dealers who are affiliated  with  Amazon.   If you prefer to support small businesses, this is a good way to do so.  

    When I come across a review that interests me, I put the book on my Amazon "Wish List."  Then when I am ready to visit my local, independent store, I print it up and take it with me for reference.

    I do buy directly from Amazon when I am in a big hurry.

    Same here. We have lost too many (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Cream City on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 06:57:37 PM EST
    independent bookstores, and I really like my locals that are left.  Amazon is useful for researching a list and for finding out of date books -- because then they often are from indies elsewhere, too.:-)

    And reading below about Amazon's labor practices, I'm even more determined to keep giving business to my local good guys, as I know their employees, and they are treated well.  


    Agree (none / 0) (#7)
    by squeaky on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 01:11:43 PM EST
    Amazon has the power to sell books at a loss and dictate terms to publishers. The plan is to put all independent booksellers out of business and then I assume raise the prices.

    Excellent Idea (none / 0) (#8)
    by MoveThatBus on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 01:14:48 PM EST
    to use the Amazon site for list creation. I use them for researching books, CDs and DVDs, but also don't buy from them.

    There was a time not too many years ago when Wall Street was publishing articles saying that it was time for Jeff Bezos to step down for the good of the company. I haven't paid enough attention to know if he did.


    Here's a orrible tale (none / 0) (#2)
    by Salo on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:35:53 PM EST
    The amazon ware'ouse in Swindon I'm has a record of not letting pickets and packers take sick days wivvowt sackin em the next day. And they are going to be investigated for labour rights abuses.

    Newell and foggo (none / 0) (#3)
    by Salo on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:45:29 PM EST
    Did some investigative journalism and found something like a sweatshop. I can't paste a link on my iPhone but you can find the article at timesonline.

    I hope our "new" economy (none / 0) (#6)
    by MoveThatBus on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:56:06 PM EST
    causes people to change their purchasing habits and support the smaller businesses. Amazon is financially huge, but they have never been a stellar employer. I would rather pay a few dollars more to a company that values their employees.

    If we're going to be more careful in making our spending decisions, pricing is only one piece of how I will choose where my money goes.


    Whatever That Means (none / 0) (#4)
    by SOS on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:50:12 PM EST
    Being a former Tech Industry hot shot I'll clue you in.

    (It means whatever you want it to mean.)

    LOL. Don't lose your sense of humor whatever you do.

    Dr. "Love" (none / 0) (#5)
    by SOS on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 12:52:07 PM EST
    The marketing Guru.



    Thanks to Jeralyn's Amazon tip, (none / 0) (#9)
    by byteb on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 01:29:43 PM EST
    I made some sweet..as in deeply discounted... last minute Christmas gift buys for the family and for my daughter's Christmas Eve birthday too.  I've been going there every day now seeing what new deals they have up.
    Thanks, Jeralyn

    I too am an Amazon junkie (none / 0) (#10)
    by talesoftwokitties on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 02:06:58 PM EST
    No tax, free shipping.  I buy mostly electronics, CDs, and kitchen stuff.  I've saved $100's of dollars, plus I get points on my Amazon.com Visa card, which I can use for more discounts.  

    sales tax (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by TimNCGuy on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 05:26:36 PM EST
    The sales tax "savings" only does a disservice to whatever state you live in.  They just have to make it up somewhere else.  Either by raising other taxes or cutting services.

    It also puts your local businesses at a disadvantage because they don't have the option to not charge the sales tax.

    In NC you are expected to report any "tax free" purchases you made online on your income tax filing and pay the sales tax then.


    Well I guess you put me in my place! (none / 0) (#13)
    by talesoftwokitties on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 05:35:58 PM EST
    Thanks for the lecture, it didn't change my mind - I'm a bad citizen, so shoot me.

    We all enjoy a break on sales tax now & then (none / 0) (#15)
    by MoveThatBus on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 06:36:10 PM EST
    Out of state/country visitors to WA state can be exempt from paying sales tax on their purchases when here if they think to ask for it.

    That might be true across all state lines, actually. I can see why non-residents of WA wouldn't want to pay the nearly 10% sales tax, but, without going into detail, many people keep their out of state driver's licenses just so they can evade the sales tax. It would be interesting to hear what the total amount lost would be if the state decided to audit these people...all their information is recorded at each transaction.


    I'm actually glad they are taxing me (none / 0) (#14)
    by nycstray on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 05:55:00 PM EST
    means I don't have to deal with it as far as records and reporting. It would suck to get audited for a sales tax screw up on my part.

    Some states get taxed :) (none / 0) (#11)
    by nycstray on Sat Dec 27, 2008 at 02:46:21 PM EST
    Like NY, lol!~ I'm a fan of the kitchen stuff myself. Had a bit of fun picking up some deeply discounted wants for my kitchen yesterday  {grin}

    The Amazon Visa card (none / 0) (#18)
    by sander60tx on Sun Dec 28, 2008 at 09:52:08 PM EST
    is really convenient and the cash back/points system is great!  As for Amazon, some things, like certain kid's toys are overpriced and I've had to abort several purchases over the past few holidays due to overly long shipping estimates from affiliated merchants.  However, it is a great place to research products and a convenient way to purchase many things.  I used to be a book junkie, but now I'm more inclined to find on Amazon and then see if I can get it at the library!

    Amazon.com is my (none / 0) (#17)
    by WS on Sun Dec 28, 2008 at 07:54:09 AM EST
    favorite business, and they always have the best deals on books.  

    Amazon also has a cool Seattle headquarters out of an old art deco hospital but I think they're moving to a Seattle neighborhood in a few years to combine all their operations into one address.  I'm sure a new business will move into their old headquarters.  That place is too cool.