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Old 06-27-2013, 08:52 PM   #1
AlexBell
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No reasons for linking to Amazon?

A friend directed me to this post

http://www.mhpbooks.com/there-are-ex...ink-to-amazon/

Any comments?
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:26 PM   #2
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a company that breaks down humans, infrastructure, and literacy as we know it.
That's a bit rich.
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:35 PM   #3
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Thank goodness that author of that article didn't have an axe to grind!
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:41 PM   #4
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Keith Smith, owner of Warwick Books and Kenilworth Books, wrote a post
I think that points out his reasons for being against Amazon right there. He's a competitor for business.
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:59 PM   #5
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The point of linking to Amazon is to sell books. Sure, they can sell books through independent book stores. The question is: do they sell more books by linking to Amazon (a recognized brand) or an independent (which the potential buyer probably won't recognize)? Something tells me they will sell more through a recognized brand, like Amazon. That's particularly true for physical products, where you may be left hanging for several days with nothing better to do than wonder if they're a reputable vendor.

Then there is the issue of compatibility with ereaders. From what I've heard, anyone targeting the U.S. market is going to have to sell in a format compatible with Kindle. If the author or their publisher insists upon DRM, that means you're going to have to point them to Amazon.
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Old 06-27-2013, 10:12 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by BWinmill View Post
That's particularly true for physical products, where you may be left hanging for several days with nothing better to do than wonder if they're a reputable vendor.
I've heard that some people have had that experience buying things through ebay as well. I've never had it happen to me, but I've heard some 'vendors' either are dishonest and don't ship the product or it isn't as advertized. In the end it comes down to Caveat emptor "let the buyer beware" whenever you buy something online I think. I've never had a problem but when you can't see the physical product directly you always take a chance however small. Of course there are those who are just plain foolish too. Buying a Kindle (offered at ebay) at lower than the asking price set by Amazon is a case in point.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:11 AM   #7
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In my state Amazon is dropping affiliates so they won't have to pay sales tax, which is something they've already done in several other states. I wonder if that means we don't see 3rd party sellers from these states either.
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Old 06-28-2013, 02:03 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by crich70 View Post
I've heard that some people have had that experience buying things through ebay as well.
I don't use eBay, but my understanding is that feedback is a key indicator of how good or bad a seller is. Good feedback means that the seller is a sure bet, bad feedback means the opposite. As such, eBay is using its reputation to lend to the reputation of sellers who use their service. This is somewhat different from an independent bookstore, because that bookstore has to build a reputation first.

As for the bit about buying a Kindle on eBay below cost: that depends upon the circumstances. Low cost new in box item from a seller with low or negative feedback means that you're taking a risk. Low cost second hand item from a seller with lots of good feedback means that the risk is low.

It's all a reputation game. Amazon has built a reputation. Authors may as well take advantage of that reputation while selling their books.
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Old 06-29-2013, 07:06 AM   #9
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He fails to mention Amazon Associates accounts. If you use Amazon Associates to link to your own book on Amazon, there most definitely is a real benefit, one that could arguably be more beneficial than developing a relationship with a local bookshop.
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Old 06-29-2013, 10:16 AM   #10
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Melville house ought to have the courage of their convictions and set an example for all authors out there; if they think authors should stop linking to Amazon, they ought to stop selling through Amazon. There's still thousands of indies, B&N.com, Rakuten, and all sorts of department stores, supermarkets, and drugstores *eager* to bring culture to the masses.

After all, why should the authors be the only ones to bear the brunt of this quixotic crusade?

As is, I just heard that some authors are apparently making more money off their Amazon links than they get in royalties from their (traditional) publisher.


My first reaction was skepticism but then I remembered the stories of dodgy accounting at some publishers (Harlequin!).

Last edited by fjtorres; 06-29-2013 at 10:25 AM.
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:40 PM   #11
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If independent bookstores (and other businesses of all types that compete with Amazon) want me to take a chance buying from them instead of Amazon, they need to do two things.

First, they need to use a service like Google checkout or something similar so I do not need to open a new account with them. I can't even count the number of stores I have in my passwords file that I've bought from exactly once. I'm not doing this anymore if I can get the product from someplace I already have an account.

Two, they need to have amazingly good customer service and a simple, easy to use, customer-friendly, refund/return policy that they actually stand behind.
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Old 07-05-2013, 06:34 PM   #12
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As a customer, I buy from Amazon for several reasons. The two that are most important are customer service and price. They may not be good for the competition, but their customer service has made me a fan.
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Old 07-05-2013, 09:11 PM   #13
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As a customer, I buy from Amazon for several reasons. The two that are most important are customer service and price. They may not be good for the competition, but their customer service has made me a fan.
One thing that amazes me from some vendors of digital products is their refusal to let customers download the file at a later date. This is a no-brainer in my mind, especially for booksellers since their products are small and the cost of this service is negligible. Amazon gets this, Kobo gets this. Heck even the purveyors of Humble Bundles get this, even though you can buy their stuff for a pittance and can involve quite large downloads (i.e. cost of service is non-negligible). Amazingly there are quite a few companies who don't. Some of those companies sell software, and others sell books.

I also had a good experience when replacing my Kindle 2i with Amazon. I didn't know whether my first defective screen was my fault or their fault. Called them up. They replaced it, no questions asked (at least not of the sort to assign blame). I'm guessing that they realize that it is better to swallow a bit of a loss and replace the device in order to keep customers coming back for ereader and ebook purchases. And they're right. The only reason why I left them for Kobo was because libraries use ePubs (well that, and Kobo's devices are more open).

The opposite case are vendors who refuse to solve even the simplest problem, or even accuse their customers of doing something underhanded. (Ahem, Steam.) Those companies will never see a penny from me again, and I'll continue to use the services I bought without a regard for the costs to them. Ditto for Apple/iTunes, though they seem to have fixed some of their policies in the meantime. Still, I haven't bought digital products from them or through them in a very long time.

So yeah, consumer trust of a vendor is a very important factor here. It may be highly individual, but considered collectively a lot more people seem to trust Amazon than other vendors. So it makes sense for authors to link to Amazon. They'd be foolish not to.
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