Disparities in online and store prices highlighted

16 Jun 2008

A survey by eBay.ie has shown up huge discrepancies between the prices of the same products online and in retail outlets.

The auction site compared prices of a range of products retailing in high-street stores and the same products selling as new in the ‘Buy it now’ section of eBay.ie.

The price disparities ranged from 14pc to 72pc, eBay said. A1GB Sandisk Pro Duo gaming memory card for Sony PSP and PS3 retailing in Argos for €44.99 was available on eBay.ie for €12.41, a 72pc difference. A Canon IXY 2000 12-megapixel digital camera available from the same retailer for €479.49 could be obtained from eBay.ie for €288.70, a 40pc difference in price.

“In response to recent claims that UK retailers are overcharging by as much as 50pc, Dermot Jewell, CEO of the Consumers’ Association of Ireland, suggested that buyers should vote with their feet. I would suggest that Irish buyers, who our survey shows are suffering as a result of overcharging, should check online pricing before parting with their hard-earned cash,” said Eamonn Galvin, head of product, eBay Ireland.

“With a slowing economy, we all need to start counting the pennies and you can save more shopping online than through more conventional retail outlets,” he added.

“The eBay.ie value survey shows that even stores which are typically perceived as great value for money do not stand up to the savings which shopping online delivers,” said Felicity McCarthy, head of marketing, eBay Ireland.

By Niall Byrne