Book Review: Online Shopping: Secrets Revealed To Buy Successfully

Online Shopping:  Secrets Revealed To Buy Successfully:  Your Tactic To Become A Smart Online Buyer, by Mark Millery

[Note:  This book was provided free of charge by Books Go Social.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.]

It is fairly obvious from the title and through the book that the author is not a native speaker of English, which means that this book, like many other guides of this kind [1] is not ideal for readers of native English who may fancy themselves (correctly) to know more than the author.  This is especially true given that the author appears unaware that the United States (unlike many countries) has no federal sales tax when discussing the purchase of items in one state from sellers in another state, besides his more usual idiosyncratic use of English.  It is certainly true that there is worthwhile information contained in this book if one is charitable enough to overlook the author’s dialect, but at the same time it is something that has to be overlooked and there are likely going to be many readers who take this guide and put it aside simply because it makes a few errors of fact and because the author’s word usage is odd and sometimes improper.

That said, the real test of a book is its content, and this book is a short volume of less than 150 pages that does not really waste time in getting to its point.  The book begins on the ominous note of having the author promote his other works, some of whose material seeps into this volume as well as tends to happen.  After some introductory material the author gives nine tips to shopping successfully (1) as well as instructs the reader in various online shopping methods (2).  He encourages readers to shop in customer to customer networks for lower prices (3), while also examining the best times during the year to shop online for various items (4).  He provides some strategies for buying software in particular–which seems counterproductive in that his tips tend to increase the amount of money that someone would spend (5) and also comments on how best to obtain support for what one has purchased (6), as well as comments on how to best return what one has bought (7), and purchase digital services through services like groupon (8).  Throughout the book the author urges people to always negotiate prices, and appears to take a very international look at purchases.

Indeed, some of the advice of the author is really striking, including pondering the desirability of having international warehouse space for one’s purchases, something one would only do if close to the border and if one’s purchases are of an expensive or a very sensitive nature.  One wonders what sort of important and exporting the author is involved in, given that this would not appear to be a viable way for people to purchase consumer goods for the most part.  At times the author appears to be a shill for his own books (which is a lamentably common fault among writers) as well as for companies like Microsoft which are always trying to milk money from their customers through unnecessary and costly upgrades.  So while the quirky English of the author and his imperfect knowledge of American sales tax practices are mildly humorous, the fact that the author appears engaged in some deeper game than would be common for most online purchases makes this book are more dubious and far more questionable.  If you are involved in a shady import-export business where avoiding customs fees is a matter of considerable importance, this is probably a good book for you.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
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