ML Purchasing Conundrum

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Squigiman
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ML Purchasing Conundrum

Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:26 pm

Hey Fwooshers,
I had a quick question to toss out for feedback. I'm considering pre-ordering the whole Bad Guys wave, as I like most of them, and so I might as well go all-in for Xemnu. I've looked at a few of the main online toy sites I go to (BBTS, EE, etc.), and then also Amazon.

Now, Amazon has them at MSRP and I get free shipping as a Prime member. Money-wise, it seems like the best bet for me, where the others are bumped up a bit and there are obviously shipping charges. All the same, in a situation like this, where I could get the same products at any of these options, or even from Pulse itself (if still available), I am not sure I want to pump more money into Bezo's pockets.

What do you think of something like this? Thanks for any potential feedback, in advance!


-Zach
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Blackagar Boltagon
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:32 pm

Dorkside would be a good choice or Target for your big box toy shopping.
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tatooinesandworm
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:32 pm

Dorkside - if your order is over $100 you get free shipping. And you are supporting a small business.

https://dorksidetoys.com/collections/ma ... -pre-order
maverick10126
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:39 pm

If I'm buying a whole wave, DS is my number one stop. As others have said, free shipping over $100 and they typically have items listed at retail ($20 per fig).

If I'm buying individuals, I usually go with BBTS because of the pile of loot function. I like that I can let a figure sit in there and if I happen to come across the figure in the wild before I'm ready to ship then I can just cancel and get store credit or a refund. That convenience is why I'm okay with paying a couple extra bucks to them.
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Benn Roe
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 12:03 am

Here's the thing. The margin on Marvel Legends (and most toys, to be honest) is absolute garbage. The wholesale cost combined with the cost of shipping a single figure exceeds the $19.99 MSRP. It's not only impossible for a small retailer to make money on a single figure at MSRP with free shipping, they will actually lose money. The math is a little more encouraging with an entire wave shipping together, but you're still looking at paying $140 for an entire wave, and having as much as $124 of that get swallowed up by Hasbro and the USPS. $16 profit on a $140 sale isn't a sustainable business model, unless you're operating on a massive scale. So, it really comes down to what your priorities are. There's no doubt Amazon will be cheaper. They're likely able to negotiate better wholesale rates, and their scale and ability to control their own shipping operations means they can survive on much slimmer margins. But if you'd rather support small businesses, and you want businesses like Dorkside, BBTS, and your local brick and mortar to exist, you just have to accept that they literally can't survive without charging a little more. In some ways, it's easier for brick and mortar, because shipping is less of an issue. They still make some money without having to eat shipping costs that will completely erode their margins. At my shop, we charge $21.50 per figure, and will likely have to raise prices to $25 when the MSRP goes up to $22.99 (even without eating shipping charges), and it's still arguably stupid for us to carry the line at those prices, since we could buy literally anything else we carry for the same amount of money and get a better return. It's a tough industry.
Squigiman
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 12:27 am

Thanks for the input! Yeah, it sounds like it kind of sucks all around. I basically only have the local Target and Wal-Mart options, and both are also major chains AND don't often have the best selection. Wal-Mart's figure aisle sometimes has completely bare sections. Target can be better, but sometimes, you just can't tell. I NEVER saw Gambit or Rogue, for instance, but even non-exclusives can be sparse. I'll take everything into consideration in making my decision. Thanks, again!


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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 1:23 am

BBTS is a slightly higher price but pile of loot and $4 shipping in the lower 48 is great. If you are a patient person and don't mind the cost....

Then, Amazon, Yes it is MSRP and free prime shipping. The bad even if you order the wave all at once....Amazon ships your figures out in one- zees and two-zees and sometimes in an envelop with no packing. And even if you are one of the first to pre-order yours may not be the first to ship.

Target. If you can time it right. They have their BOGO sales or just ridiculously low prices like this weekend, some people got Storm at $5 or Neca Kong at $9.

I try to avoid Walmart and have not done business with Dorkside yet.
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Akatsuki
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 2:31 am

I love Dorkside! That’s my suggestion. They are my go-to for Legends because I always go for full waves.


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VeganDiet
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 2:32 am

Dorkside or BBTS are both my go to options.

I only buy from Amazon if I literally can't find a figure anywhere else. Bezos deserves the guillotine, not my hard-earned cash
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 2:36 am

I pretty much stick with Amazon since I have prime and do a lot of shopping with them besides action figures. Entertainment Earth does get stuff early because they tend to break street dates. Shipping can get expensive if you don't do their cheapest shipping option. Big Bad Toy Store usually gets stuff later than others but their pile of loot option is good to save on shipping.

Dorkside is cool and the fact that they have a rep who posts on the fwoosh is pretty neat. They have solid customer service. Hasbro Pulse tends to get stuff later than most retailers and IMO they're only good for Pulse exclusives/SDCC exclusives and restocks before anyone else.

Target's website is hit or miss, especially when it comes to store exclusives. Walmart's website is a joke and wouldn't recommend preordering from them for anything.

I also get stuff from cmdstore.com which is based in Canada. A lot of times they get figures sooner than others but their shipping charges are atrocious. If you order from them I recommend getting a lot of stuff so shipping doesn't hurt too bad.

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JTMarsh
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Re: ML Purchasing Conundrum

Wed Mar 03, 2021 2:47 am

Target has seasonal sales of "Spend $100 get $25 off." As thus far the only figure I've seen "sell out" already is Deathstrike and that's on Hasbro Pulse, you may want to wait and just do that, effectively getting a figure for free in addition to the one you're already getting as a BAF.

That or Dorkside given that it's a small business and has superior customer service. Plus they too do sales on stuff that is aging.

Amazon is fine if you don't care about what the packaging looks like. They're the only ones I know who ship carded figures to you in a bubble mailer and then you open it up to reveal the cardboard taco they've sent you.

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