Now that you know a bit about what Amazon is and how it works, and you’ve learned about how safe the marketplace is to use in the previous tutorial, you may be ready to dive into some online shopping with Amazon. Hold your horses, there… you should know some of the website's strong and weak points before you take the plunge. But don't worry! We've got them all outlined below for you.
Buy anything, including the kitchen sink — Amazon has all kinds of merchandise available for purchase. While they started out with just books, they now have food, clothing, appliances, jewellery, electronics… and the company even has its own line-up of high-tech gadgets! In addition, some items (such as movies and music) can be downloaded right onto your computer… no delivery required!
I wish I had that! — If there are certain items that you have your eye on, or that you buy all the time, you can keep track of them with "Wish Lists". You can even share Wish Lists with friends and family over social media or email, which can be really useful if you're looking for gift ideas for a birthday or holiday!
Is it here yet? — Want to know how close you are to getting your new stuff? Amazon allows you to track your package, so you'll be able to know what stage it's at on its journey to your front door.
Clean house and cash in — Got some junk lying around that's just taking up space? One person's trash is another person's treasure, so see if someone on Amazon wants it. Ship it to Amazon, and they'll pass it on… and you'll get store credit to buy stuff that you actually want!
Here to serve you — Amazon has one of the highest-rated customer service departments among today's big Internet-based companies. If you ever have a problem with one of your orders, the platform has a comprehensive guided customer service contact process that you can use to give Amazon as much information as possible about your problem in a short amount of time. This means less time spent explaining and dealing with red tape, and more time spent making things right for you!
Waiting is the hardest part — Delivery times for merchandise can be a bit iffy, even if you pay extra money for higher-priority shipping. This is especially true when buying from third-party sellers, since they sometimes make arrangements with a courier service on their own, and not through Amazon. It also usually takes them about two days between you ordering the item and them shipping it.
Convenience comes at a cost — While there are some items that you'll be able to get deals on, the additional taxes, fees, and shipping costs applied to delivered goods can make them somewhat expensive. But sometimes, the convenience can make this worth it.
The Bottom Line: 8.5/10
There are really only a few major flaws with Amazon. Merchandise can be a little expensive once you factor in fees, taxes, and shipping costs, and the speed at which you actually get your items can be a bit of a toss-up (though this is usually more of an issue with a courier service and/or a third-party seller, not Amazon itself). But the trade-off is that you get to use one of the largest and most convenient general goods dealers on the Internet today.
Amazon has a huge selection of items from several different product categories, including some things that are difficult or impossible to find anywhere else. And if they don't have it, someone else who's selling their wares on the platform might be able to get it for you. You can organize your favourite products, or ones that you're looking to get soon, by using "Wish Lists", and you can also trade things you no longer want to other sellers in exchange for store credit. Finally, Amazon's customer service is some of the best in the business, so if anything ever goes wrong with an order, you can bet that someone from Amazon will be doing everything they can to make it right!
After reading the review, if you’re ready to start using Amazon, be sure to check out some of the other tutorials in our Amazon course, including how to sign up, how to start making purchases, and how to get free shipping on your orders. We’re here to help you every step of the way!