Something Fishy at eToys?

Happy Hump Day!

Talk on the boards seems to have shifted to eToys.com. As a supposed "retail store", they do currently have Zhu Zhu Pets™ in stock....at more than twice the retail price! Interestingly enough, the accessories are all priced at average retail, while the hamsters are $19.99 each. What gives?!

According to this link , eToys is owned by Toys R Us. Individuals state that packing slips from eToys orders (as recently as yesterday), have the Toys R Us/Babies R Us logo on them. So, it becomes apparent that they share the same warehouse.

What's the big deal? According to Zoolert.com, Toysrus.com has not had any hamsters in stock since 10-9, nearly 2 weeks ago. (Incidentally, at that time they were selling the hamster 3-packs for 34.99... $5 over their own seperate hamsters retail of $9.99). Now Toysrus.com is bone dry, yet eToys has had ample stock for days.

It is appearing to many of us that Toys R Us.com must be rerouting their inventory to eToys and charging double-retail by doing so. Makes sense because it would be very contradictory if they charged twice as much online at Toysrus.com as they do in their brick-and-mortar stores. At $19.99, I dare say they wouldn't have anyone waiting in line at the store.

It's a free country, and Toys R Us has the right to do whatever it feels, right? True. But it certainly puts a bad taste in many people's mouths regarding the company in general. On one hand, in stores they are limiting to 1 hamster/person/day (or sometimes 1 per household, as I mentioned in an earlier post)...in an effort to spread the wealth and discourage 3rd-party hoarders. But on the other hand, if they are using their alias store, eToys, as a tool to cash in on the craze and charge more than twice the retail... not cool. Not at all. Especially since the average completed price on eBay today is $20/hamster, they are no better than the hoarders they are supposedly trying to discourage.


FortuneSeeker said...

I was trying to figure out the actual retail price on these. It seems that in the past that toys don't have a standard retail price. It's more competition related and what Walmart is selling them for.

On walmart.com the pets are $8, some playsets $10 or $15, and the funhouse $20. My local Target has pets for $7.99 and smaller playsets for $11.99 that eToys has for $10.99. Are the Walmart prices the standard retail price, or are they putting these with their $10 toy promotion?

SquishyCuteStuff said...

Currently, they are not part of the Walmart $10 promotion. However, I could see the potential for them advertising them as part of some "Hot Toys for $10 or less" promotion, not that the Zhu Zhu Pets™ need much promotion at this point!

From what I have seen, the retail range for the hamsters seems to be a low of 7.99/8.00 at Target/Walmart up to 11.99 at Shopko (which is a Target-like store we have here in the Midwest). The average retail on the playsets seems to be around the $10 and $15 dollar marks, with some stores being $1-2 higher than that. The beds/carriers are $5 each at Walmart... I think they might be closer to $8 at TRU.

You pose a very good question, though, that I will have to look into. Does Cepia have a MSRP for the products, or are the stores just setting their prices according to demand and competition...hmmmm...

SquishyCuteStuff said...

I forgot to add that the Patches starter set retails for 19.99 to 24.99 from what I have seen. Though I was able to get mine for 15.99 on sale, as I posted a couple weeks back ☺

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