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Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

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Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Old 12-01-22, 05:58 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Alan Smithee
Seems it can only keep going down at this point. Retail support is at an all-time low right now, and we just had what was likely the worst Black Friday in history also. I can’t even count on finding all mainstream titles in local stores anymore, leaving online the only way to shop which drastically cuts down impulse buys and such. Since I’m too cheap to pay for shipping I have to order enough to get that for free, so that may help marginal titles when ordering one I really want but otherwise I may just wait to order ones I don’t care so much about.
I think Black Friday as all of us knew it is dead and not coming back. Most retail now is dominated by a small handful of corporations who are using their de facto cartel control to finish off the profit-killing Black Friday experience.

Historians will say it was the COVID pandemic and lockdown which killed it off but many retailers wanted off the Black Friday ride before they had ever heard of COVID.

I'm guessing media will be completely phased out of Target and Best Buy by July/August. Walmart may keep it around since they aren't as concerned with selling metrics and serve a much different clientele.
Old 12-07-22, 03:00 PM
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Old 12-09-22, 09:13 AM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

No significant bump for Black Friday, but that shouldn't be surprising since the big stores (Best Buy, Target, Walmart, et al) didn't really have any kind of Black Friday sales at all this year. And I don't just mean movies; I mean no big lines or events or anything, just a slightly busier than usual Friday at most places.

Kind of weird that, now that we're more or less out of the pandemic -- concerts and sporting events have resumed and everything is back to normal -- all of the big retailers have collectively canceled Black Friday. Right before the pandemic it started to get ridiculous with stores opening Thanksgiving evening, so I'm really surprised that they've killed it this year.
Old 12-09-22, 11:48 AM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

No more surplus inventory littering warehouses ?
Old 12-09-22, 12:29 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
No significant bump for Black Friday, but that shouldn't be surprising since the big stores (Best Buy, Target, Walmart, et al) didn't really have any kind of Black Friday sales at all this year. And I don't just mean movies; I mean no big lines or events or anything, just a slightly busier than usual Friday at most places.

Kind of weird that, now that we're more or less out of the pandemic -- concerts and sporting events have resumed and everything is back to normal -- all of the big retailers have collectively canceled Black Friday. Right before the pandemic it started to get ridiculous with stores opening Thanksgiving evening, so I'm really surprised that they've killed it this year.
Maybe all those job losses, rising rents, high food prices cut into peoples Holiday budgets.
Old 12-09-22, 12:34 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Online, plain and simple. Shopping habits have changed (which in terms of the pandemonium of Black Friday's past, is absolutely a good thing). And a lot of distributors/manufacturers are probably increasingly less dependent on needing their product in big box stores at all (especially the Blu-ray/DVD companies) when they can just set up their own online stores on extremely reliable platforms. Black Friday hasn't been canceled; it's just that people expecting some kind of crazy legacy version of it in physical stores are looking in the wrong place, and probably wasting a lot of time better spent staying nice and cozy at home. I haven't gone 'out' to a Black Friday sale in well over a decade (US or Canada), and I haven't missed squirming through unkempt hordes of people to maybe find a deal that hadn't already sold out. Online, I've always gotten the deals that have appealed to me. If anything, I've ended up spending MORE each year -- particularly on physical media -- than I ever did in BF in-store sales back in the day, the few times I even bothered.

Black Friday Sales Numbers Hit Record Highs Despite Fears Of Recession
https://www.forbes.com/sites/qai/202...h=4edb294666c1

What Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sales Reveal About Consumer Spending:

Black Friday and Cyber Monday spending reached record numbers last week – both in sales and number of shoppers.
https://investorplace.com/market360/...umer-spending/

Shopify reports 17 per cent increase in Black Friday sales:
https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/shopify-...ales-1.1851885

Shopify shares rise after Black Friday sales break record:
https://financialpost.com/news/retai...s-break-record

Black Friday online sales top $9 billion in new record
https://www.cnbc.com/2022/11/26/blac...ew-record.html

Last edited by Brian T; 12-09-22 at 12:43 PM.
Old 12-11-22, 06:28 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Retail simply doesn't think running Black Friday anymore is good for the bottom line. It was becoming more trouble than it was worth and retailers used the pandemic as an excuse to shut it down. The Black Friday experience as we knew it is dead.
Old 12-11-22, 08:07 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger
Retail simply doesn't think running Black Friday anymore is good for the bottom line.
Just wait until the "next-day-free-shipping-to-your-door!!" model becomes financially unsustainable for retailers as wages and transportation become more expensive. Eventually consumers are going to start having to pay the true cost of "Amazon-style" convenience.
Old 12-12-22, 09:35 AM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
Just wait until the "next-day-free-shipping-to-your-door!!" model becomes financially unsustainable for retailers as wages and transportation become more expensive. Eventually consumers are going to start having to pay the true cost of "Amazon-style" convenience.
I always choose free shipping with Amazon and any other retailers I use (particularly in the US, where most of my online orders are placed, but also in Canada), but never any kind of 'next-day' version. In my experience, there's often a charge for that (unless you have Prime or something like that?), so I just get it when I get it. I can't imagine I'm alone in that. I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of smaller companies -- like the boutique labels folks here often buy from -- must have some way of baking that into the costs of products, even during sales (or by making you spend $50 or $100, etc.)?

Originally Posted by PhantomStranger
The Black Friday experience as we knew it is dead.
As I knew it, that 'experience' increasingly became less worthwhile with every passing year, as the online version was so much simpler. Guess I don't understand all the pining for the 'good old days' of ornery crowds, long outdoor lines in sub-zero temperatures (depending on where you live, or course), in-store stock running out, and the sad dashes and clashes that -- in the US, at least -- often seemed to end up on the nightly news. It's pretty clear that "retail" did alright on Black Friday and Cyber Monday this year. Only the 'experience' has changed, really. It's gotten easier.

Last edited by Brian T; 12-12-22 at 09:44 AM.
Old 12-12-22, 10:28 AM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

I haven't done an early Black Friday shopping trip since Nintendo released the special GameCube with the Legend of Zelda greatest hits disc. And before that I used to work a mall McDonald's for Black Fridays and that was a nightmare.

I have gone later in the day after the crowds died down and still found a few things I wanted, so I will be fine doing that or online shopping.
Old 12-12-22, 03:08 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Brian T
I always choose free shipping with Amazon and any other retailers I use (particularly in the US, where most of my online orders are placed, but also in Canada), but never any kind of 'next-day' version. In my experience, there's often a charge for that (unless you have Prime or something like that?), so I just get it when I get it. I can't imagine I'm alone in that. I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of smaller companies -- like the boutique labels folks here often buy from -- must have some way of baking that into the costs of products, even during sales (or by making you spend $50 or $100, etc.)?
I have a hard time believing the "free shipping" model is really sustainable, even with a minimum purchase of $50 or $100. I inquired with Canada Post to send a DVD in a padded envelope (2cm in height) via Canada Post Parcel Express (cheapest w/ tracking, 8-business day service) and was quoted $26.33 from Vancouver to Montreal. My feeling is that someone is losing (or in the process of losing) a lot of money on "free shipping" be it consumers, retailers or couriers.

The current model of cheap door-to-door convenience isn't going to last too much longer unless there is some unpleasant economic trade-off to compensate for it.

Last edited by orangerunner; 12-12-22 at 03:14 PM.
Old 12-12-22, 08:27 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
I have a hard time believing the "free shipping" model is really sustainable, even with a minimum purchase of $50 or $100. I inquired with Canada Post to send a DVD in a padded envelope (2cm in height) via Canada Post Parcel Express (cheapest w/ tracking, 8-business day service) and was quoted $26.33 from Vancouver to Montreal. My feeling is that someone is losing (or in the process of losing) a lot of money on "free shipping" be it consumers, retailers or couriers.

The current model of cheap door-to-door convenience isn't going to last too much longer unless there is some unpleasant economic trade-off to compensate for it.
I think there's must be some kind of better rate being made negotiated for big companies like Amazon, Walmart, maybe even some smaller brands. Canada Post is prohibitively expensive for the individual user sending anything bigger than lettermail (which DVDs count as, so I'm assuming yours was a wider case?), especially when compared to shipping similar parcels in the US. I suspect all the 'free' shipping is offset, at least somewhat, by all the buyers that do pay for shipping because they just can't find enough items to meet the threshold, or can't wait, or support little boutique retailers, etc.

I sell a lot of my DVDs and Blu-rays on Amazon's Canadian Marketplace. Standard cases can ship for between $2.50 and $3.50 as lettermail, so by buying discs cheaper in the US sales just to watch them, I can usually flip them up here for an ok profit, even after paying the shipping (which the buyer also pays). But several months back, Amazon tried to force Marketplace sellers into adding tracking to everything they sold, even people selling little paper trinket-y things or branded notepads, etc. In principle, it made sense, because everybody wants tracking these days, apparently. However, thanks to usurious Canada Post rates, this meant for a lot of sellers who eke out a living on Amazon would've gone out of business. I'm not that kind of seller, thankfully, but as an example, I would've needed to pay an additional $10.75 (!) for tracking on a single DVD (surely in that ballpark for other, similar items). Had I not temporarily suspended my own listings due to elder care out of town, I would've actually ended up PAYING to have someone buy many of my discs that were around $15 or less to begin with. They buyer may have only been charged $3.49, but I'd have to pay over $14 to ship the movie. Crazy. Apparently Amazon suspended a bunch of accounts (or threatened to) because sellers didn't just bend over and lose their livelihoods. A lot of those sellers pushed back hard and attracted mainstream media attention in the Globe And Mail and on TV, so Amazon adjusted the rules to state that only items sold for $29.99 and up (including shipping), required tracking. For me, this was ok, because most of my 'inventory' is priced around $26 or less (so basic lettermail rates apply). Discs in the $30 - 40 range either went down to $26-ish (because the take-home percentage is actually larger this way compared to paying for tracking) or up to more 'collectible' pricing, like $50 or beyond, which is where a lot of my stuff is priced anyway because I sell off a lot of boutique and OOP titles, so having to pay for the tracking isn't so painful in the price range.

All of this stuff is so much easier and cheaper in the US. While it may not be sustainable there either, it probably stands a better chance thanks to their larger, more dense population.
Old 12-12-22, 09:44 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

I remember posting on this thread in 2020, speculating that 2021 would be a big up year for physical media just due to the pandemic fall in sales as stores closed. But 2021 sales were worse than 2020 so, I thought, the pandemic is still on and 2022 will be the real up year. But this year was a lot worse than 2021! The decline is accelerating.

I’m also noticing that a lot of the new release stuff I watch via streaming just never get a disc release, especially tv shows but movies too.

People are buying giant $500 4K Smart TVs with a bunch of streaming apps built in. They subscribe to 3 or 4 of these services and are happy with the tens of thousands of tv shows and movies they have access to. No need for discs I guess.
Old 12-12-22, 10:53 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Speaking of free shipping, doesn't Amazon have its own delivery service? I see Amazon vans driving around all over the place.

I've never actually seen who delivers my Amazon packages, though I could probably check on my Ring next time I get one.
Old 12-12-22, 11:06 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
Speaking of free shipping, doesn't Amazon have its own delivery service? I see Amazon vans driving around all over the place.

I've never actually seen who delivers my Amazon packages, though I could probably check on my Ring next time I get one.

Yes, they do. They've had it for a few years now.
Old 12-13-22, 02:16 AM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
Speaking of free shipping, doesn't Amazon have its own delivery service? I see Amazon vans driving around all over the place.

I've never actually seen who delivers my Amazon packages, though I could probably check on my Ring next time I get one.
They have their own fleet of cargo planes, When the packages get to their destination, they have their own sorting center that then facilitates the last mile delivery. That could be Amazon Flex, which is their gig economy delivery drivers; it could be USPS, where they pay very low rates for dropping the package at the local distribution center; it could be drone delivery.

Their economy of scale is why they can undercut competitors in pricing, free shipping, and fulfillment costs.
Old 12-13-22, 12:22 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Brian T
I think there's must be some kind of better rate being made negotiated for big companies like Amazon, Walmart, maybe even some smaller brands.
There definitely is. A vendor that we use at work is so large, that they are able to offer us fedex 2-day and next day rates that are insane. Freight charges that are under $1 for 2-day and under $5 for overnight.
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Old 12-13-22, 02:19 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Brian T
Canada Post is prohibitively expensive for the individual user sending anything bigger than lettermail (which DVDs count as, so I'm assuming yours was a wider case?)
This particular item would have been $3.35 for Canada Post Lettermail, no tracking - standard DVD case dimensions. Once it becomes a Parcel with an 8 business-day service and tracking, it's $23.88. That price was the minimum of the Parcel delivery options. Of course the $3.35 Lettermail service seems to arrive in 5-8 business days anyway.

Originally Posted by Brian T
I sell a lot of my DVDs and Blu-rays on Amazon's Canadian Marketplace. Standard cases can ship for between $2.50 and $3.50 as lettermail, so by buying discs cheaper in the US sales just to watch them, I can usually flip them up here for an ok profit, even after paying the shipping (which the buyer also pays).
A seller always pays for shipping regardless of how much spin you apply. If a $10 DVD is only worth $10 in the open market, how much you charge for shipping is irrelevant; $10 + free shipping is no different than $5 + $5 shipping as it still amounts to the exact same sale.

If tracking becomes mandatory then any items under $30 will simply be not worth the cost of shipping for anyone in Canada. I think tracking causes more headache than it solves. Tracking does not prevent lost or stolen mail and as a seller, you're still responsible for a buyer not receiving their goods. It's a lot of extra charge for very little piece-of-mind.

Originally Posted by Brian T
All of this stuff is so much easier and cheaper in the US. While it may not be sustainable there either, it probably stands a better chance thanks to their larger, more dense population.
This is true. Sending a DVD to the middle-of-nowhere, Northwest Territories is the same $3.35 as it costs to send it to your next door neighbour in a major city. By its geographical nature, Canada has a lot of middle-of-nowhere communities it has to serve.

The US Postal Service debt is apparently in the $160 billion-ish range. Sorry, but there is really no such thing as "free" shipping in the big picture. Someone always pays ... unless you are Amazon, of course.

Last edited by orangerunner; 12-13-22 at 10:28 PM.
Old 12-14-22, 03:00 PM
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Old 12-14-22, 05:34 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
A seller always pays for shipping regardless of how much spin you apply. If a $10 DVD is only worth $10 in the open market, how much you charge for shipping is irrelevant; $10 + free shipping is no different than $5 + $5 shipping as it still amounts to the exact same sale.
Not sure what you mean. I wasn't spinning it. I always pay approximately $3.49 for shipping, and the buyer always pays the standard $3.49 shipping fee (since my stuff can't be included in a larger order to qualify for 'free' shipping). I know some sellers charge more for shipping discs (in part because they're in other countries; Canadians who do it are gougers), but you have to be registered as a business on their Marketplace for those privileges, and I won't do that as long as the ACTUAL cost of shipping a disc, for me, is around $3.49, which it is (including the bubble envelopes, which I buy in bulk from the US and pick up when I'm over the border). Here's Amazon's breakdown of a recent sale:
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Price: CDN $26.40
Tax: CDN $3.43
Shipping: CDN $3.49
Shipping Tax: CDN $0.45
Amazon Fees: (CDN $6.49)
Your Earnings: $26.80
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
So, after I paid to ship that disc, which was actually under 100 g and therefore cost about $2.60 or so), I was left with +/- $24.20 'in pocket', on a movie for which I paid about $8 CDN (factoring the exchange rate) from Hamilton Books in the states. One thing to note: Amazon used to issue a 'shipping credit' of $3.49 with every sale (from them to me; essentially giving me the buyer's shipping fee to go out and ship the item); now, I think they still do, but it's not listed in the breakdown above. Not sure. Either way It's not a bad way to keep my hobby from totally overwhelming my living space, which it would easily do otherwise. And thanks to buying mostly in the US, yet still pricing competitively here in Canada, my shipping costs are outweighed by the profits on each disc overall. Mind you, if Amazon doubles down again on this tracking bullshit and I can't use them anymore, it might be time for a big donation to the library here.

Originally Posted by orangerunner
If tracking becomes mandatory then any items under $30 will simply be not worth the cost of shipping for anyone in Canada. I think tracking causes more headache than it solves. Tracking does not prevent lost or stolen mail and as a seller, you're still responsible for a buyer not receiving their goods. It's a lot of extra charge for very little piece-of-mind.
Absolutely true. And this is precisely why Amazon backed down when so many small-item Marketplace sellers rallied against their attempt to institute tracking on every single item sold, even if you could mail it in a letter envelope. Just insane. If you're selling big-dollar items, you can better work the cost of tracking into your listing price to compensate. Not so on a $12 Blu-ray. If everyone else is in that range, you'd have to bump your price to around $25 to 'cover' the tracking fee, but no one would buy your disc then!. I rarely visit the seller forums for Amazon Marketplace since most of the people there are 'Fulfillment by Amazon' types (a whole other mess of headaches, if you ask me) and I just sell discs from my apartment,. But for this issue, I couldn't help but chime in to the relevant threads because Amazon reps were participating (sort of). Imposing across-the-board tracking would've instantly put most of the little guys out of business. For me, it would've just meant switching off my listings and getting nowhere near the sales via Kijiji, eBay, etc.

Last edited by Brian T; 12-14-22 at 05:41 PM.
Old 12-14-22, 06:33 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Brian T
Not sure what you mean. I wasn't spinning it.
Sorry, "spin" was a poor choice of words. I just meant it in a general sense, not based on the details in your post.

I look at some of the ads on eBay.ca and see someone selling DVDs for $2.99 with free shipping and I have to wonder after eBay takes their 18% share, this leaves the seller with a $2.53 "profit". Shipping within Canada is either $2.05 (100g or less) or $3.35 (100g - 249g). This leaves the seller with a maximum net profit of $.48 CAD or they are paying the buyer $.82 CAD to take it off their hands.

This does not include ones time to take photos, list the ad, buying a secure envelope, traveling to the Post Office and assuming the risk of return due to damage or lost in the mail.

I guess it's a money-maker so long as you don't do the math.
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Old 12-15-22, 07:26 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
I look at some of the ads on eBay.ca and see someone selling DVDs for $2.99 with free shipping and I have to wonder after eBay takes their 18% share, this leaves the seller with a $2.53 "profit". Shipping within Canada is either $2.05 (100g or less) or $3.35 (100g - 249g). This leaves the seller with a maximum net profit of $.48 CAD or they are paying the buyer $.82 CAD to take it off their hands.

This does not include ones time to take photos, list the ad, buying a secure envelope, traveling to the Post Office and assuming the risk of return due to damage or lost in the mail.
I guess it's a money-maker so long as you don't do the math.
If you take care to sell things at a profit that more than covers the relatively low 'lettermail' shipping costs, there's less math to do.

On Amazon Marketplace, for example (and this is just in regards to selling movies):
- You don't need to take photos. They're already on the listings.
- Listing an item takes seconds (see below)
- A bubble mailer is all you need for 'security'. These can be bought in bulk. I buy a 250-count box that lasts me for well over a year, which severely reduces the cost per envelope to about 15-20 cents (vs over $1 each in stores, even in packs).
- Most people probably have a Shoppers Drug Mart postal outlet between their home and their workplace, so stopping to mail a couple of days worth or orders (which in my case might be one or two discs! ) takes little time.
- Losses and returns happen, but rarely in my experience as a passive, personal seller (and not a business). More below.

The things you mentioned are exact reasons why I chose Amazon Marketplace to sell off DVDs and Blu-rays that I wasn't interested in keeping in my 'permanent collection', but bought so I could finally see them or enjoy the supplements. I still recommend it to folks wanting to unload stuff, and who aren't in any particular rush. Set your listings and forget them. Many people seem to think it's the same as eBay, or Kijiji, or whatever, and it's not. Most of the work is done for you because Amazon's listings already contain the relevant info that shoppers need, and all of the sellers are tethered to that listing, rather than hundreds or thousands of individual, invariably aging listings on eBay or Kijiji.

I spend very little time to list any particular title like I would on eBay or elsewhere, under 30 seconds once I'm on the listing page. When I first started listing stuff in 2009, I realized it made sense of to have a 'form letter' product description, of sorts. So I typed one out that I could simply cut-and-paste each time, and then make necessary alterations if needed (i.e. mentioning stuff like multiple discs, slipcovers, security stickers still in place, etc.). Then I realized I could just duplicate that description and make a bunch of them for nearly all contingencies, all kept in one document. So now, I search the title on Amazon, click 'Sell Yours', select a 'condition', enter a competitive price, cut/paste my pre-written text (which is quite lengthy compared to other sellers, which buyers find more reassuring), and it's done. I also wait until I've got a modest stack of 'watched' discs piled up, so I can just blow through listing all of them in a few minutes, rather than logging for each individual disc.

According to my Seller account, since I started selling my discs on Amazon in 2009 I've had 3,125 transactions (which is a pittance compared to most media sellers). Of those, I've had six 'problem' orders and all but one (a real dick) were amicably resolved through the channels Amazon provides buyers for resolution: they returned the product, I refunded their money. Easy. Refunding that handful of orders in fourteen years was more than offset by the profits made on the successful transactions.

So it can be a money-maker if you can sell your discs for more than you paid. Which I do, routinely. I price things competitively but usually undercut most sellers on the majority of my listings -- albeit not severely -- and still make a profit (sometimes a big one) after paying for shipping. It's all in what you list. Cheap, widely available, common 'Studio' stuff (like Walmart or Big Lots bin movies) usually get donated to the library or charity shops if I don't add them to my collection. But with every passing year, I skim through my stacks and discover more and more stuff that has increased in value, especially in Canada where buyer's options are far more limited to compared to our US pals. Might take a while to sell a title after I list it, but I'm in no rush as this isn't a business for me. I'm sure things are different for American sellers on the Amazon's US Marketplace because of the sheer size of their population. It's just different up here, I guess.

If I was a business, making my living buying up wholesale mountains of old crap DVDs and Blu-rays and dumping them in Amazon's warehouses for fulfillment, I'd probably go nuts with all of their ever-changing rules and fees, and the general 'Wild West' nature of the Marketplace. But as a private collector, selling my private purchases in a tiny little corner of the Canadian site with little effort, it's by far the easiest and potentially the most profitable option in Canada.
Old 12-16-22, 03:09 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by Brian T
On Amazon Marketplace, for example (and this is just in regards to selling movies):
- You don't need to take photos. They're already on the listings.
I agree with all of your points except this one. I find taking the time to take an actual photo of what the client will receive is very beneficial. Some buyers are very particular about condition, which version of the artwork is actually on the case and/or disc or want the proper tech-specs (ie. 16:9 widescreen vs. 4:3 letterbox vs. 4:3 full screen). Stock photos may also raise suspicion of a scam or some form of misrepresentation of the item.

As a seller it protects you too. "What you saw in the photo is exactly what you received in the mail."
Old 12-16-22, 03:37 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
I agree with all of your points except this one. I find taking the time to take an actual photo of what the client will receive is very beneficial. Some buyers are very particular about condition, which version of the artwork is actually on the case and/or disc or want the proper tech-specs (ie. 16:9 widescreen vs. 4:3 letterbox vs. 4:3 full screen). Stock photos may also raise suspicion of a scam or some form of misrepresentation of the item.

As a seller it protects you too. "What you saw in the photo is exactly what you received in the mail."
I buy a lot of CDs and CD box sets on ebay and if the seller uses a stock photo I won't even bother no matter the price. I like to see the actual item I am getting. I have ordered CD/BDs from third party sellers from amazon a few times in the past and gotten bootlegs.
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Old 12-16-22, 05:00 PM
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Re: Blu-ray and DVD sales - We're number 2, but we try harder

Originally Posted by orangerunner
I agree with all of your points except this one. I find taking the time to take an actual photo of what the client will receive is very beneficial. Some buyers are very particular about condition, which version of the artwork is actually on the case and/or disc or want the proper tech-specs (ie. 16:9 widescreen vs. 4:3 letterbox vs. 4:3 full screen). Stock photos may also raise suspicion of a scam or some form of misrepresentation of the item.

As a seller it protects you too. "What you saw in the photo is exactly what you received in the mail."
On Amazon Marketplace, from my experience, that's only necessary once in a rare while, especially with DVDs and Blu-rays. On eBay it's presumably still a necessity for the seller to upload their own images. Kijiji, too.

But out of over 3,100 listings sold via the Marketplace, and another 1,000 or so that I have active right now, I've taken pictures for maybe 50-75 discs in total over all of those years, and that's only been when the Amazon image is someone else's crappier photo (rather than a studio-produced picture, which is extremely rare), or because mine was a store exclusive or something like that, or because it has some added little bonus insert that later editions didn't have. Otherwise, a fully transparent item description does the trick every time. The relevant photos are already there. Remember, this isn't eBay.

All I can say is my 'sales' numbers speak for themselves (and I certainly have no reason to make them up), and the buying experience is different between the two sites. None of those transactions for items without photos came back to haunt them because my physical item matched the Amazon image, and my product descriptions – unlike the vast majority of Marketplace sellers, are extremely detailed (but also largely pre-written, so no time wasted). So far, the only 'problem' orders – the handful I mentioned above – were not related to that. They were either not received (and thus refunded even if they're bullshitting me; just easier that way), or received damaged thanks to Canada Post (refunded upon return), or, in one case, received the incorrect items because I switched two discs into the wrong envelopes by mistake (discs were returned in both cases, reshipped correctly, and I refunded their return shipping costs to me -- again, a minor amount compared to the profit margins on both discs)

If folks prefer to sell on eBay, where multiple pictures are the norm and all sorts of other considerations, that's fine too. Probably better for larger items and old collectibles. But it IS way more work there, and I say that from a couple of years experience selling my own old collectibles before I moved to Toronto many years ago. Made good money, but certainly had to find ways to streamline the listing process on my own. With Amazon, a lot of the work is already done.

Originally Posted by stvn1974
I buy a lot of CDs and CD box sets on ebay and if the seller uses a stock photo I won't even bother no matter the price. I like to see the actual item I am getting. I have ordered CD/BDs from third party sellers from amazon a few times in the past and gotten bootlegs.
But I'm not talking about eBay in my posts. The buyer and seller experiences are similar but different between eBay and Amazon Marketplace, and buyers at the latter are more willing (and conditioned, perhaps?) to trust the imagery that already accompanies the product page. And virtually ALL Amazon listings already have a photo, or multiple photos. Why add more unless (as I noted above) there are specific extenuating circumstances? Amazon isn't eBay; they're similar selling platforms but not identical, and on one you honestly don't need to upload photos because it's already been done. If I had personal photos on all of my Amazon listings my sales would not increase. IF someone in Canada wants a particular title badly enough, and I have the lowest price, in the best condition, with an accurate and detailed item description, chances are they'll go with me (unless they can add Amazon's copy to a larger cart for free shipping). When I sold on eBay in the past, yes, absolutely, I uploaded multiple photos of my own. And when I buy on eBay, yes, I absolutely expect to see multiple photos of the item.

But surely you guys have both purchased movies or CDs from Amazon Marketplace before, no? Then presumably you had to trust the images that were already there on the main product pages? If you've never ordered from Marketplace sellers (and I suspect stvn1974 may not have), fair enough. But if you did, did you only buy from sellers who had personal images beside their listings, regardless of price? Because sellers who do that are virtually non-existent on Amazon's Marketplaces despite having the option to add pics. I made enough Amazon Marketplace purchases over the years (Canada, US and UK) that the experience was positive enough to convince me to try it when I decided to sell off a lot of the movies I purchase, even on as small a scale as I do. So far, smooth sailing.

Last edited by Brian T; 12-16-22 at 05:42 PM.

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