July 2, 2006

Amazon: Babies WERE Us

Amazon sent a notice today--the 2nd--saying that as of July 1st--um, yesterday--Amazon and Babies R Us/Toys R Us would no longer be in partnership together, and that "as a result of the improvements we'll be making to the site, some products that you specifically feature may be out-of-stock." [Finally, an end to those annoying "in-stock" messages!]

Never mind the hundreds of Amazon/BRU/TRU product links that I combed through all day to see if they were still valid; after all, that's why I get the big Amazon bucks [all ten of them]. But now I notice that because of the switch in Amazon's co-branding partners, almost none of the baby products or toys I saw were eligible for either Amazon's free shipping or Amazon Prime offers. [Amazon Prime members, is this nothing new?]

Also, a lot of the prices are much closer to the MSRP; at least a dozen times, it boasts about how "you save: $0.01"! and "you save: 0.95"! Big whoop. For some items, I've added links to babystyle, which has great service, but is also not a price leader.

So I'm feeling a bit stuck: what are some alternatives for comprehensive, easy-to-use, high-value online shopping that I can link to from daddytypes? I'd like to keep daddytypes as interesting and useful as possible; if I can sock a little away for the kid's college in the process, great, but commissions and affililate programs are not the deciding factor. And while I can't add twenty links to twenty indie baby shops, I don't find Target's site or offerings so great that I want to make them an automatic choice, either. Don't even mention Wal-Mart.

So what's left? Where do you shop online for baby stuff, and should I point other folks there on a regular basis?

[Interestingly, they both took about 4 months to finalize the divorce] 03/06: first Nick & Jessica, now Amazon & Toys R Us

13 Comments

Lately I've been very happy with Creative Brains (http://www.creativebrainsonline.com/). They have free shipping over $30; I love free shipping. I ordered some chairs for the kid table and one was defective and they replaced it with no questions asked and without asking me to return the original.

I've also had positive experiences ordering from www.niftycool.com , but their stock isn't as extensive.

I've always been happy with the selection and prices at buybuybaby.com

Amazon Prime has been turning up its nose at Babies R Us stuff for a while now. It's annoying. Same with the free super-saver shipping.

I've been having good luck with BabyCenter's online shopping - their customer reviews are relevant and helpful (one of the main reasons I liked Amazon for stuff like that) and their shipping is reasonably priced and prompt to arrive.

kidsurplus.com - toys, clothes, and lots of other stuff for infants and kids. their website could use a redesign (too much scrolling), but they have tons of things and sometimes at huge savings. playmobil has its own section. thank me later.

I second John's comments on Kid Surplus. They have good prices. The shipping costs are low and frequently your order arrives within a day or two.

I second CrankyMama. The BabyCenter.com store has good discounts and a better selection than the old Amazon/BRU, including nicer brands like Ouef and Bugaboo, and even some WAHM-made stuff. They have reviews, too, which is more important to me than free shipping. But since "BabyCenter" is one of the main insults on UrbanBaby, I don't know if this really hits your target demographic...

I've used Babycenter (store.babycenter.com) and Baby Universe (www.babyuniverse.com). Both sites usually have very low shipping fees and frequent sales.

- m

babyage.com is a favorite. They have flat rate shipping of $5.95 no matter what you order (including furniture). Selection is very good, and prices are competitive (although I think they bake in some extra $$ on heavy items to offset the flat rate shipping policy)

They ship very quickly. If you're in NY, their warehouses are in eastern PA so items usually arrive 1-2 days later.

I've also ordered from babycenter.com. Comments on their site are useful but they're in California so shipping time is longer. babyuniverse.com is in florida.

I use babycenter.com - mostly for the free shipping. No complaints.

we use babystyle and ecobaby.com, for all sorts of organic cotton clothes and bedding, and even these crazy organic mattresses. we also have done some old navy online for clothes.

Second the Babyage vote. Also gotta say we use ebay for most NWT clothing from lines that we otherwise could not afford.

We shop at onestepahead.com for baby stuff, and etsy.com for baby clothes and accessories. For the more standard gear we like babycenter.com

I usually buy our 7th Gen diapers, First Years take-n-toss stuff, and Burt's Bees baby line at drugstore.com Shipping is free if you spend $29 or $49 depending on the promotion. They also have frequent sales and a cool "your list" feature.

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