About two weeks ago, I was checking my Amazon wishlist for something (the slow and annoying way because they recently disabled the built-in search box), and came across a Mitutoyo vernier caliper-style depth gauge.
When I came across it, the price was $75 or so. I added it to my cart, and “saved it for later.” The next day, it dropped in price again.
And then again.
I kept watching it, and the price kept dropping, once a day or sometimes every other day. It kept inching lower and lower.
The inventory was reported as “2 in stock (more on the way).”
Yesterday, the price shot back up to $190. I checked the product page, and it now says “only 1 left in stock (more on the way).”
Amazon does this on occasion. I’m guessing that if the algorithm knows a product is being watched, and they want to move old stock off the shelf, they drop the price systematically like this.
From the price tracker, it seems they’ve done this for this product before.
I have a Mitutoyo depth gauge micrometer, with quick-switch depth rods, and so this caliper-style gauge isn’t something I needed. I figured that I’d order one or both of them if the price got down to $25.
I guess that someone else was watching it too, or came across it as part of an immediate search. After they ordered their one tool, Amazon’s computers reset the price to MSRP.
That was a heck of a deal the person got, saving nearly $155 off the $190 price. Maybe I should have ordered one at that lowest-ever price, but I was more curious about how low the price could get.
Product Page(via Amazon)
About Our Discount Finder
This might also be a good time to remind you about our Amazon Deal Finder. It’s a simple widget that sorts through Amazon’s search results to filter out the highest discounted items. It doesn’t work as well as it used to, or rather Amazon’s search results and product data has changed over the years, becoming more cluttered.
Still, our Amazon Deal Finder still turns up deals every now and then when I check it.
Not “deals,” exactly, it might be more appropriate to describe them as pricing anomalies.
For instance, these Knipex Circlip pliers are currently $12.31 on Amazon, but $25+ elsewhere. A price tracker shows that it lives around this price but goes up and down. Tracking info only goes back 3 weeks, and shows a low price of $7.66 in March.
This Wera Phillips #1 screwdriver is $2.63 as of the time of this posting. It’s nearly $14 at KC Tool and other Wera dealers. This pack of Torx Plus TX20 bits are around 1/3 the price they’re going for elsewhere. (Too bad they’re not plain Torx.)
This Williams 3/8″ socket set appears to be a lot less expensive than it’s selling for anywhere else. So is this Williams (imported) 1/4″ socket and drive tool set.
You can save a bunch on this Gedore hex key set.
What do you think? Potentially useful, right?
I’ve saved a bit of money using this widget, but it can be frustrating to use. I only use it every now and then these days. While it requires a bit more legwork these days, it’s fun to play around with. Some of the deals I found quickly just now are very good. There’s nothing I’m interested in ordering immediately, but I’m motivated to want to revisit the widget later today when I have some more time.
Sometimes things are very grey. Is this Felo Inox screwdriver set a good deal? It looks like it is, but it’s hard to be certain since a Google search doesn’t turn up any familiar distributors.
You can access our deal finder through the links here, but it’s also linked-to at the bottom of every page. It’s in the bottom-most menu.