Amazon.com is an enormous online bookstore that carries many Java related books. If you visit them by clicking on the logo, I get a 5% commission on any books, tapes or CDs (Compact Discs) you buy. The main disadvantages of shopping this way, is, if you elect standard ground shipping, you can wait 4 to 10 weeks for delivery and you can’t peruse the entire books. The main advantage is the huge selection. If you click the logo, you will be taken to the store. Amazon also sells electronics, DVD (Digital Video Disc) s, food and magazine subscriptions.
The thing they do that drives me insane with rage is sell the same product under half a dozen or more different ASIN numbers, each with a different price and each with a different availability.
This means it takes six times longer to make a purchase trying to track down the best deal. For me, the problem is magnified a hundredfold, since I have to do this for every product I refer on my website.
Often, each country store uses a different ASIN number. This means, for my website, I have to to look up ASIN numbers separately for each country.
If you ask they have products in stock, they tell you about the stock only under that ASIN number. If it is out of stock, they will not tell you about the stock under alternate ASIN numbers.I wrote them twice about this trying to make a business case for desisting. The first item the ignored me, the second time they said it was more convenient for them to do it this way. I agree, but there are win-win ways to handle it. Because they have so many partner resellers who actually ship the item and because they negotiate different deals with each one they need to keep track of all the different prices and availability. However, nearly always this detail is of no interest whatsoever to customers. They just want one part number, one price, one story about availability and one set of features. The Amazon databases should merge the information to provide customers with the same simple view that smaller retailers offer. At the very least, you should be able to find all this trivia with a single unique unchanging ASIN number.
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