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McParts may be sinking

Amazon is getting serious with their automobile parts business and the market takes note

But I’m confused as to how Amazon can make a significant dent in brick and mortar parts stores when most parts bought by the DIY market are for immediate repair and not scheduled maintenance.

Amazon is starting to push same day delivery for some stuff in some markets. Perhaps they are going for that?

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Amazon is setting up regional warehouses that can make same day delivery possible. There is a new one just east of South Baltimore that is a couple minute drive from I-95. It can service the Baltimore-DC metro area easily with one day delivery if the parts are ordered in the morning. With supply on hand, they can beat the heck out of traditional internet sales with parcel post deliveries. This could also compete with local parts stores, even if they provide delivery. Each Advance store probably has one truck and while their market is smaller, they probably can’t stock as much as Amazon can. The Baltimore Amazon warehouse is located at an old GM assembly plant. They can build a huge warehouse on that facility, stock auto parts, and still have a lot of room for their traditional wares.

Maybe because the brick and mortar stores do such a poor job of stocking and delivering those parts in the same day! When the counter guy says “I can get that from the warehouse by tomorrow morning” and then it takes 3 more hours for them to sort the delivery. If I order from Amazon, I can welcome the UPS driver in that same delivery time and not leave the house or work.

I prefer to support local businesses when possible but it is getting more and more difficult. For auto parts there is only the Napa.

Amazon could easily take a lot of business away from the ADAP and Advance Auto stores. The ones near me don’t deliver. But the local parts stores do. And they usually have it in stock. If not their warehouse will and they get parts delivered to them from the warehouse 2-3 times a day. So it’s highly likely you can the part the same day.

I’ve already been buying parts on-line for a while.

Sorry for all you folks that love Amazon but I get a little concerned that they are becoming too much of a monopoly. We were concerned about the Walmartiztion of the country but this is on another level. We don’t allow power companies a monopoly without regulation so maybe it’s time to clip their wings a little for the benefit of general business.

I like it when there is a competition and once Amazon only guy, I have stopped ‘Amazon for everything’ mantra for the same reason as Bing’s, esp if the price is same. Many times, I have noticed, Amazon tries to match price with Walmart’s. Then I go to Walmart and pick up the stuff, instead of waiting for 2 days. And if I have to return an item, don’t need to mess with shipping.

Perhaps you’re viewing the situation from an urban perspective?

Much of the country is rural. I know I am. Recently a part I needed (but, not immediately) was $250 from the local car dealer :scream_cat:, but they don’t stock it.

The part was available as a Doorman after-market item for $239.99 (minus some discounts) at my local Advance :smirk_cat:, but not in stock.

Rock Auto stocks the same identical doorman part (and part number), life-time warranty, in stock. I ordered with basic shipping and got it in my mailbox in 3 days for $107.44 total, including shipping! I installed it the day it arrived. :smile:

More savings… A round trip to town to an auto parts store is 40+ miles, the gas, the wear and tear, and an hour or so of time.

Rock Auto rocks! I use them often. I doubt amazon will set up a distribution center near my middle of nowhere, but hey, who knows? :wink:

The part was not available close to that price on e-bay or Amazon, believe me I checked.

I understand your point, but I’ve bought a great many parts over the internet. Rarely am I not able to plan a repair. And, of course, maintenance. I’ll know my struts are shot, so I’ll order strut parts. I knew I needed to change my valvecover gasket, so I ordered a valvecover gasket. I have no data to back me, but I suspect that most of the DIY parts purchased are for planned repairs. About the only time I buy parts at a parts store is to help a stuck friend who calls. Admittedly, that happens often enough, but as a portion of the total parts I buy it’s probably less than half.

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You guys do know that not everything sold by Amazon comes from an Amazon warehouse? They have many small businesses that supply through the Amazon web site. In some ways they resemble ebay. But then in the old days, if you ordered something from a Sears catalog, it might actually come from a small business partner of Sears who drop ships it to your door or to the nearest Sears outlet.

When I needed a new MAF for my 97 Nissan pickup, I could not get one from and McParts stores, NAPA or even the dealer. The list price was over $500 when they last had them but they were no longer available. I got one from Amazon for $40. It came from a small dealer in Hong Kong and was a Chinese knockoff, but it worked and it is still working several years later.


I ordered some bearings recently and actually the vendor that popped up on Amazon sold them cheaper if you went direct to their web site-and no shipping charge. Plus I was able to look at several manufacturers and grades of the same bearing compared to the meager info on the Amazon site. Plus I could Google the bearing and see ten other suppliers. Amazon doesn’t make anything, they just process orders and of course they want you to be prime to save shipping. Kinda like a buyer’s club.

I order filters and such on the internet from Acura dealers through their E-store, and I use Rock for other items. I really see no reason to use Amazon for car parts, lawn mower parts, etc. since you really cannot be sure about the vendor involved, but I have used Amazon, just depends on the item. I can’t get a parts diagram on Amazon or have someone to call with a parts question. Just saying they are a middle man doing much the same thing as Google but tacking on percentage whether paid by me or the vendor. By the way did you see MS is laying off 1000 global employees to refocus sales to the cloud? Kinda shake up time so the whining proceedeth.

Do not remember if it was ebay or amazon, I bought a video card that came from a supplier in China. Sure it took a couple of weeks to get, a hassle to to return through the post office, paperwork etc., but even though I bought tracking, was told tracking ends once it gets to China, never got a refund.

Of course we know that. Much of it is “drop-shipped”. The question at hand is debating whether an online supplier of parts (specifically Amazon) can take significant business away from brick & mortar parts stores. Both get their NGK plugs from NGK, but the question is can Amazon take much of the B&M stores’ business away.

In truth, Amazon’s decision may not make any difference. I already order most things over the internet anyway, and there are numerous parts stores such as Autpartswarehouse and Carid (and many others) that already do a great deal of their business over the internet. I believe Amazon will simply take some market share away from those already selling over the internet. Many even offer overnight delivery. Parts stores that service repair shop as their main market won’t be touched, and regular parts stores will continue to sell headlight bulbs, brake shoes, and small stuff just as they always have. I’ve noticed over the years that stores like O’Riley’s and Autozone no longer stock things like exhaust systems and large parts. Stores that do repair work, like PepBoys, have slightly more significant parts, but they have a lot shipped in from other places too.

It depends on how complicated & trouble-free it is to use. Some online parts store, you have to figure out which warehouse to ship the parts to optimize the total shipping cost. For my diy’er parts purchases, stuff like that’s too much of a hassle; I’d just as soon pay a little more & use my local parts store than go through all that. I also don’t like having my credit card information in big data bases like Amazon’s. Too easy for hackers to break in and steal that information. If I could easily and without complications purchase a set of one-time-use only credit card numbers, I might be more willing to give Amazon a try.

Were I in the internet parts business I’d team up with Walmart or Target. The parts wouldn’t be shipped to the customer’s home. Instead they be shipped to the nearest store, and customers would pick them up there. And no shipping charges at all. And no reason for Amazon to have your address in their database.

why not buy Visa gift cards for the amount you need? Or purchase gift cards with the amount you need? You can buy both from every grocery store around me

Why use a gift card to buy something for yourself? It doesn’t make sense. I’d want to buy say 10 credit card numbers, each of which could be used anytime for any amount, keeping within my credit card limit of course.

What most people do is have one credit card for online purchases only and nothing else.

If you see something you want, note the price. Then go to the grocery store (or gas stations around here too now that I think about it) and then purchase a gift card with the requisite amount of funds on it. Add it to your account and then you’re good to go. I’ve done that with Google Play Store when I’ve only had cash on hand to add money to my Google account

You don’t buy credit card numbers ( unless you are dishonest and on the dark web ). A credit card is issued and 10 would play havoc with your FICA score. Amazon does not care if the gift card was given to you or you bought it yourself.