I owed a friend a pretty good bottle of Scotch for a favor, and knew he liked Oban Scotch. Unfortunately I had not checked the local price which is consistently $69.95. Not bad, but I was shooting for a $50 “thank you” gift. Enter the internet shopping thingie at Google which offered up Turnpike spirits way out east as having the best price by far on Oban – $42 plus shipping. Unfortunately the website showed “not available” so I called them and got excellent help. He had some bottles and I managed to order 4 of them. With shipping I’m going to be under $50, and have a few more nice gifts to give. Hey Dad – don’t read this post!
Shopping for scotch shows that the internet has not stabilized pricing at all – at least for Oban Scotch. This single product has dozens of different online prices, which is especially interesting given that locally the price seems almost “fixed”. I’m guessing few people buy liquor online – perhaps it is an impulse or very-close-to-Christmas purchase usually and therefore people go local? However it would seem this price inefficiency could be monetized somehow by matching low online pricing to high priced areas. I’m guessing that our local liquore store paid more for the bottle they are selling at $69.95 than I just paid Turnpike, so somewhere in here there is a business.