Amazon, Why Won’t You Let Me Buy From You?

Last year in October Amazon came up with something new.  They call it Add-On.  I noticed it, but I rarely order just one low dollar item from Amazon and it’s never really been that big of a deal, until recently.   “Add-On” is now tagged on some products and you can only order them if you order at least $25 worth of product being shipped from Amazon.

I assume Amazon came up with this option because I can see they would be losing out on shipping if people were regularly ordering items under $5 with their PRIME account.

Sometimes I can really understand how they might be losing out on shipping when these gigantic boxes filled with bubble packs arrive with one lone bottle of vitamins at the bottom.

I invested in my own PRIME account last year.  Previously my son and I shared his PRIME account (that is my Amazon affiliate link in case you want to check it out) but he moved out.  I really feel that having Amazon PRIME saves me money.  If I lived in the city, right next to stores and malls, it might not be worth it to me.  But I live in a rural area and the nearest grocery store is 15 miles away.  The nearest health food store is over 25.  I belong to a food coop but I have to drive almost 40 miles to pick up my order – when I do order!

In fact, the coop manager and I were just talking about Amazon PRIME a couple of weeks ago.  We’re both in the same situation where we have to drive many miles to get to stores and we were comparing notes on how it was actually saving us money and time to order some things from Amazon.

But back to the Add-On deal.  Last month when I was getting ready for my 50th birthday party I was doing some shopping on Amazon and some of the things I was ordering just so happened to be those silly little Add-On items.

I felt like I was back to having a regular account and trying to get free shipping by ordering $25 worth of stuff.  I read at one site that the items that are “Add-On” used to be available only in case sizes.  I don’t believe that explanation since I happen to have ordered one of the “Add-On” products back in January 2012 by itself, with no problem.

The thing that I don’t understand is why I can’t buy the product at all, unless I order more items and get my cart up to $25.  I think Amazon should give us the option to pay for shipping if that one item is all we want.

English: Post-it notes

English: Post-it notes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today I was placing an order for my mother who is currently housebound.  She doesn’t have a computer and she needed a few things.  Well, three of those things that she wanted cost under $5 each but were all Add-On products.  So there was no way for us to get those items shipped unless we continued to fill her cart to meet the required amount.  At one point I thought we had enough in the cart but when I checked out I discovered that we were still short by $1.04.  Instead of going through the hassle of trying to figure out what my mom would like for $1, I just found some post it notes and stuck those in the cart. Then  I could finally move forward and place the order.

I think Amazon should give us the option to pay for shipping when we really want these items.  I guess they want us to buy more stuff.  As an example if there were no restrictions on the items I was buying for my mother today, we would have stopped when the cart was around $15.00.  To ship those few items in a Priority USPS box it would have cost less than $6.  But instead we had to keep finding things until we had $25 worth of products shipping from Amazon.  By that time the total was $38 ($4 of that was individual shipping from one of the items we ordered that was not being shipped from Amazon).

UPDATE: I just received an email from Amazon which said in part, “We thought you’d like to know that we shipped your item, and that this completes your order.”

You’ll never guess what just shipped all by its lonesome… the post it notes that I put in the cart to bring the order up to meet the required $25! Oh the irony!!

Has the Add-On feature bothered you at all?

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OUT OF DEBT AGAIN is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. OUT OF DEBT AGAIN is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. This post may contain affiliate links.

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7 comments to Amazon, Why Won’t You Let Me Buy From You?

  • I purchased Amazon prime lastyear and it did end up saving me some money. The option to have most products shipped withing two days is a very nice feature. There are also tons of shows and movies that I can watch on my computer. They have finally made Amazon Prime available to affiliates who now get $2 per free trail signup.
    zimmy recently posted..My experience refinancing with Pentagon Federal Mortgage: The Good, the Bad, and the TruthMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Oh, I never knew how much the affiliate earnings were on Prime. Now I know. I am sure I save money by using Prime. I have a Kindle but it kind of bugs me that they only let us borrow one book each month, they always say free borrowing of books like we can do it all the time or repeatedly. I read a lot more than one book a month so I forget to even use that option. Thanks for your comment, Zimmy!

    [Reply]

  • Jackie

    I just discovered the add-on issue this morning went I went to order more henna for my hair. I had already planned to buy a few other things but it was not enough to allow me to buy the item. So I bought a book that I did not really need. Very frustrating. I’ll start shopping for a new place to buy my henna.

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Jackie, just out of curiosity would you use your henna as often as every month, or every two or three months? Did you happen to notice if your henna is eligible for the subscription program? I am not sure how that works but I wonder if a person orders something every month (it will also allow you to order 2, 3, 4 and 5 months) if you would be able to get it without the silly Add On issue. ?? If you look into it and find that you can subscribe and get your item delivered, even though it’s Add On, I’d be very interested to know. None of the things I wanted to order that were Add On were something I’d buy every single month or even once a year so I couldn’t test it. Thanks for your comment!

    [Reply]

    Jackie Reply:

    @Mrs. Accountability, It is eligible. I’ll check and let you know if that works

    [Reply]

  • […] Accountability has a funny tale and some grutching about Amazon’s marketing […]

  • […] Amazon, Why Won’t You Let Me Buy From You? […]

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