Monday, January 02, 2023

Five Numbers (Two Actual, One Assumed, Two Calculated)

First Actual Number: 110
Second Actual Number: $139
Assumed Number: $5

The first actual number is how many Amazon orders my household placed in 2022.

The second actual number is the cost of an annual Amazon Prime membership (which comes with "free" two-day shipping on most items).

The third number is a Scientific Wild-Ass Guess as to average shipping cost per order without a Prime membership. Most of the stuff I order is small, and my impression is that most of it would run $3.99 to $5.99 for standard  (not two-day) shipping. A small (very small, but I'm not going to try to track them down to find out how small) number of orders were from third-party sellers without Prime shipping. Probably three or four orders, of books at $3.99 a pop for shipping.

First Calculated Number (Total Shipping Without Prime at Assumed Average Rate): $550
Second Calculated Number (Savings on Shipping After Paying for Prime Membership): $411

Of course, maybe we wouldn't have ordered as much stuff from Amazon if we didn't pay for a Prime membership. But if that was the case, I would expect us to have spent, rather than saved, even more money. Most of the stuff we order from Amazon is stuff we'd have bought anyway. Most of it is cheaper via Amazon than locally (or we'd have picked it up locally). And ordering it from Amazon means fewer special trips to stores with attendant gas expenses and so forth.

So even absent the video and music benefits, I have to call Prime a pretty damn good deal.

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