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Pricemaker.co.nz - A new way to buy big ticket items?

There's a new shopping website on the scene, and while not strictly a daily deal site, there should be plenty of bargains to be had - if you are willing to put in a little effort. Pricemaker.co.nz is a kiwi website that works using reverse auctions.

Now, Pricemaker is not another auction site for you to sell your old couch on. The site works as a place where NZ retailers and consumers can meet, to agree on a price for a brand new item such as an appliance like a Plasma TV, or a fridge. The site currently has 100% Appliances, and Magness Benrow trialling the website.

In effect, Price Maker operates in reverse to a traditional auction like one on TradeMe. Instead of a seller listing their fridge, you the buyer place a "wanted ad" for a 42" Panasonic Plasma TV, with the price you would like to pay. If you can specify exactly the model number you are after this makes the process a lot easier. Big retailers log on to the site to browse the newly created "wanted ads". If they can supply the product, they bid on your wanted ad, and compete against each other to give you the lowest price.

Say Retailer 1 can supply the TV you are after, they bid a price they can sell it for. Retailer 2 sees the auction and knows they can sell it cheaper so they enter a lower bid. The bidding period continues until 5.00pm. In this time, the price drops depending on how many retailers have placed lower bids. From 5pm til 10 am the next morning you can decide whether you want to accept the lowest bid, or ignore the auction and try again for a better price by running another ad.

All this does sound a little complicated, but if you just think of it as a "reverse auction", it's a lot easier to remember how it works. You place a wanted ad, and retailers try to underbid each other to give you the lowest price. You then decide if the price is low enough for you, and select a retailer and organise the deal.

Pricemaker is a relatively new concept to the New Zealand market and it may take a little for people to get their heads around. But if you are looking to make a larger purchase, and like getting cheap deals then go ahead and give the site a go. There is no legal contract made when you create your "wanted ad" or even when you choose a bid from a retailer. You are not obligated to buy anything, the site is just a place to help retailers clear stock and savvy consumer to get a bargain.

The main downside I can see is that you cannot search or browse the website to see examples of how it works. The best idea is to place a free wanted ad yourself, even if just to test how it works. There is no legal obligation to buy if you end up selecting a retailers lowest price, and nothing to lose. No money changes hands. If you accept a retailers price, you get their details and can go to their store to get your discounted product.

So why not check out the site and create a wanted ad as a test for a popular model of TV. Who knows, a retailer could come back with a price that is to hard to refuse!


Learn more about how it works.

Posted: Mon 05 Nov 2012


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