Amazon Australia Launch: A Lot Of The Prices Suck

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This morning, Amazon finally launched its online shopping portal in Australia, putting an end to months of wild speculation and shopper anticipation. Unfortunately, the prices we're seeing aren't nearly as revolutionary as we were hoping. In fact, some of them are downright terrible.

For months, industry analysts have told us that Amazon would be operating at a loss in Australia in a bid to dominate the market. Local retailers were supposed to be shaking in their boots at the prospect of ultra-cheap prices they couldn't possibly hope to compete with. So how do those prices stack up in reality?

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If you were hoping to get your Christmas shopping sorted on a budget, we have some bad news for you: the initial launch offerings aren't nearly as impressive as we were led to believe.

Take, for example, the ever-popular smartphone category. The iPhone 7 Plus (128GB 4G LTE) will set you back $1375. That's actually more expensive than buying from Apple direct, where the AU pricing is $1199. Likewise, the Samsung Galaxy S8 currently commands a price tag of $1570.87 on Amazon. Other Aussie retailers, including Kogan, are selling it for well under $900.

The price of action cams are similarly disappointing. The GoPro HERO5 Black GPCHDHX-501 is selling on Amazon for as much as $699. This is well above the average price in Australia - even Harvey Norman is selling it for $200 less than Amazon.

Laptop pricing is also very hit-and-miss. We spotted a Lenovo ThinkPad P51 (E3-1505M v6) for an eye-watering $5,732.95. The same machine goes for $3799 on Lenovo's Australian website.

And don't get us started on some of the grocery deals: dishwasher tablets are running for $24 while Woolies has the same product for $20. These kinds of products were supposed to be Amazon's killer proposition but it doesn't look like Coles or Woolworths have too much to worry about.

It's worth noting that these are the maximum prices on Amazon for these products. It's possible to find cheaper options if you refine your search and do some hunting around the site.

Much like eBay, the pricing varies considerably for the same exact product. Quality control also appears to be non-existent. We spotted a run-of-the-mill USB-C to USB Adapter for $12,939.95. No, really.

In other words, it has become clear that Amazon isn't the all-conquering, price-beating juggernaut that many were expecting. Some prices are good, some are average and others are flat-out terrible.

With that said, there are still some impressive bargains on offer if you know how to find them. For example, you can snap up a Nintendo Switch for a very reasonable $399. That's a good $50 or $60 cheaper than the average price in Australia.

We'll be gathering up the best Amazon Australia bargains later in the day but if you can't wait, here's some advice to ensure you get the best deal:

  1. Search for full product names under 'relevance'
  2. DON'T CLICK ON THE FIRST RESULT. Scroll down and click through multiple pages to find the best price.
  3. Stick to a budget by using the Refine Price filter on the left-hand side of the site.
  4. Compare the cheapest Amazon price to other outlets via Google Shopping.

Have you seen any killer bargains on the Amazon Australia website? Share the links in the comments section below!

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Comments

    They seem have exclusive Huggies mega boxes of nappies at 25% less per nappy. Books are same price as booktopia at least for many Aussie authors. Lego and board games same price as Kmart. Why no Nike sneakers?

      @ AUshopper. I have done math on 9-14kg boys nappy pants and Amazon is more expensive than one of the major local retailers. There regular price of box of 24 is $17 (can do MUCH better on specials) - that is $0.59 per nappy. Amazon bulk box not including delivery is $65 - $0.625 per nappy. Apparently this product is eligible for "Free delivery" but why would one bother?

    Who would have guessed that, if most of the launch was geared towards the amazon marketplace and not specifically amazon itself, then of course there is going to be stupid pricing.

    Amazon need to ramp up their own retail efforts, although maybe they could wait a couple of weeks so that Gerry Harvey dies of multiple orgasms from reading these kind of articles

    Who would have thought that having to pay Australian wages, Australian logistics costs and Australian taxes would lead to Australian prices?

    Shocking!

    The prices are rubbish! There are the odd item (of things that I searched for) that seem 'competitive' but nothing there that would take me away from the normal methods. Massive disappointment and you'd think that if they want to stay here, they'll need to do better than this. Seems that it isn't actually Amazon that's selling much, but rather local retails using them as a portal. Which basically means that it's the same price as actually visiting the local retailers. Take Kathmandu for example, exactly the same prices as on their own website. Why did Amazon come here again??

    Every single product you've linked to is being sold by Amazon Marketplace aka third party companies who set their own prices, not Amazon itself.
    Once Amazon start listing their own products and prices, that's then the real value will come.
    You won't need to "keep scrolling to find a better price". You click on the item you want and see the price.
    For now, it's good enough for day 1.

    With the huge cut from each sale that Amazon takes I think most sellers will struggle to offer 'cheap' prices through the marketplace. At least in the short term. Sellers with access to discounted wholesale prices, or direct from china prices may fair better.

    Not good enough to tempt me away from my regular purchasing sites, and I buy most things online! I can't think of any B&M store either that should be worrying at this stage, and its not going to knock eBay off its perch. It will evolve over the next few months as more shops sign up, but what they offer is going to have to be far more interesting to stop me using Amazon US and paying for postage, even if I have to get an American postal address.

      What a dumb comment, why wouldn't you shop around and use the site that has the best price for the specific product you want?

    People and articles are commenting like this is all amazon will ammount to.

    Its launched just for the christmas sales, after christmas has finished they will spend 2018 making a name for themselves in australia and adding more warehouses,items,adverts

      Exactly. There's no need to be disappointed with Amazon completely. They will only get better from here.

    This is the worst possible start after the hypetrain. Amazon failed to control the narrative so now people including me will turn on them. I am especially pissed off as I held off Black Friday sales in the hope that Amazon would trump all.

    F U Amazon

      You're turning on them because they don't have better prices within 1 day of launching?

        Yes of course. Why wouldn't I? They have generated no brand loyalty with anyone here in Australia, prices suck and deliver is crap. I can get any product on there cheaper elsewhere. Unless they stop the hemorrhaging of their reputation very quickly they will be a non starter here. Just another online shop.

        Also, Amazon should know about 'under-promise / over deliver' - they ain't stupid.

        Where's the ridiculous loss leader that will get all the PR? Where's the killer category that will keep people coming back. This is a big miss-step.

      Even if they trumped the daily price of others, why would you skip Black Friday for a retailer who also skipped Black Friday? Clearly they didn’t want to offer heavy discounts on brand new inventory.

    Everything I’ve checked has been full RRP, but they’re also not sold by Amazon, they’re sold by marketplace partners.

    Just bought ASRock ab350 pro motherboard on eBay ,$107 same on Amazon $132. Bought and ryzen 5 1600 on eBay $268 on Amazon was $325 have to say very disappointed not worth the wait for them to open What a fizzer

    When i looked at the gaming section i found a great amount of deals. You can can get nintendo switch for 399$ when it cost 469$ in Australia

    Their strategy is to lul the competitors into complacency.
    Also to keep reminding Australians they should be grateful to be overcharged because they are used to paying more and a price reduction would only confuse them.
    And the nebulous “cost of doing business in Oz”.

    Amazon rocks, Aussie buyers have been ripped off for way too long now. Can't wait to see them destroy the ripoff Australian retail industry. Huge fan. Good luck Amazon.

    Pitiful prices on 99.9% of (if not all) items. Factor in delivery and it's another scumbag company jumping in on the "exuberant prices for Australians" bandwagon. Amazon AU poses no threat to Aussie retailers at this stage. Corporate greed will more than likely ensure that they stick to suckering-in fanboys/girls, impulse buyers and kids with their parents cc who are too lazy/ignorant/naive to search google for a better price. Either way, I will not even bother with them on my "To-Check" list. Not until word around the street says otherwise. Woeful start Amazon.

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