Do you support aquarium supply companies over places like Amazon and should you?

Do you think it's important to support aquarium specific businesses within our industry first?

  • YES

    Votes: 486 82.7%
  • NO

    Votes: 58 9.9%
  • Other

    Votes: 44 7.5%

  • Total voters
    588

Dacotahk

Member
View Badges
Joined
Sep 14, 2017
Messages
18
Reaction score
16
I live in a rural area. The closest thing to a pet store would be Walmart. I know of about 2 other tanks nearby. My reefing community is R2R and I’m very thankful for it.
The closest LFS is 3 hours away and not large enough to carry an extensive inventory so my main source is BRS which is my “next door” state so delivery is usually 2 days. They have provided valuable assistance so there is loyalty involved plus knowing the items are backed by them and their assistance. I regularly order through Amazon for other items and occasionally put a minor tank item on the order if I have nothing pending at BRS because of shipping charges.
As others have said, this is an expensive hobby so finding the best price is sometimes essential but I will do the best I can to make purchases from aquarium specialty sites.
Obtaining livestock of any sort is a whole other story when 2 day delivery is the norm.
 
Best reef aquarium LED lighting

ca1ore

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
9,895
Reaction score
13,172
Location
Stamford, CT
When the local store closes so does the local customer support.
Local support generally has been the main argument for the LFS. But the LFS was never a particularly good source for advice though, even if it was the only source for years. Online forums are much better. The LFS may be useful for that 'emergency' supply ... maybe. I haven't needed them for that in a dcade ….. and probably they wouldn't have what i needed even if i did ask.
 

will25u

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 28, 2017
Messages
483
Reaction score
2,633
Location
Georgia
I’ve been a prime member for years. I enjoy Amazon. As mentioned their return policy is exceptional. The things I need immediately, I’ll buy locally. If things are priced the same, I’ll buy locally. Otherwise, it’s Amazon.
 

Mike Porreca

Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 16, 2019
Messages
90
Reaction score
132
Amazon’s delivery always was hit or miss for me. And as of now their shipping is delayed pretty bad. I’ll usually order from brs or go to my lfs before I resort to amazon.
 

Robert D'Amaro

Member
View Badges
Joined
May 27, 2019
Messages
25
Reaction score
36
I voted no because with the literally thousands of dollars I have already invested in my setup, I believe it is wise to find the best deal on anything I purchase. If I can get it cheaper on Amazon I do. It does not happen very often that Amazon is cheaper than BRS.
 

Jimbo662

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 1, 2013
Messages
3,510
Reaction score
1,498
Location
Austin, Tx
I typically buy what I can from BRS or other aquarium specific suppliers. The exception, for me, would be if I need a cheaper item quick in which case I would use Amazon for quick free delivery or go to my LFS. I'd go to my LFS more often, but can't seem to leave without buying at least a frag so I try not to tempt myself too much.
Pretty much the exact same for me.
 

Salemsoul

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 11, 2019
Messages
246
Reaction score
253
When i set up my freshwater tanks, 90% was bought on amazon or petco. I saved a TON of money. After I got back into reefing I choose to buy from MD, BRS or ALA because my investment into their company means they can continue to grow. BRS and MD provide blogs and video content that can help reefers experiencing issues. If you look on Facebook the number 1 suggestion when someone asks, "I want to start a saltwater tank, what do i need to know?" is the 52 weeks of reefing series from BRS. Their contribution to our community is important so I buy my supplies from them and others.
 

Nolanmf1209

Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 20, 2020
Messages
18
Reaction score
38
I personally prefer shopping from aquarium specific stores whether it’s physical stores or online. This is mostly because I want to make sure I am talking to people that know what they’re talking about. When you get into hobbies that are a little for (for lack of a better word) obscure or less popular maybe it can be hard to find exactly what you’re looking for on a website that sells every mainstream item you could think of. When i look on amazon i see products that are very affordable but when I’m dealing with an ecosystem that is living (and expensive) I want to make sure I’m not compromising its integrity by using a cheap product.
 

Living Reef Orlando

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 16, 2013
Messages
480
Reaction score
460
Location
Orlando, FL
I always try to support the LFS first (currently travelling down to @Living Reef Orlando) before buying online.

If I have to go online, I always try to use BRS/Marine Depot before shopping Amazon.
Thank you for the love and continued support!! It means more than I could ever explain. Sure big box stores are convenient, but supporting local helps in more ways than I could explain. As a retail store owner, we strive to provide the best customer service and stand behind our products. If you buy a Radion from us and can't figure out how to get it programmed, or have warranty issues, we are not going to leave you high and dry. If you need help with identifying a fish disease, we are here to help! If you need your water tested, we are here to help!! There is just so much more value in developing a solid relationship with a reputable LFS.
 

Mark Bradley

Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 27, 2019
Messages
64
Reaction score
48
Location
London, UK
I buy from a LFS. Seems only fair as they provide good advice. Charter house Aquatics not only provide a first class service but are equally competitive on price.
 

Mr Fishface

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Feb 11, 2018
Messages
690
Reaction score
3,844
Personally i try to go local when i can. Usually it's for smaller items that only cost a dollar or two more compared to online. I like to support places like BRS when possible next. If i don't need something right away or, especially, if i need a very specific product for aquariums like a bulkhead I always use BRS. I like how they put out helpful videos for free to simply help others in the hobby. I want to support that if I can. Amazon might get used for the most expensive items if they are the cheapest unfortunately. I do try to avoid but sometimes the savings just simply can't be beat.
 

Reefnoobz90

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 11, 2018
Messages
207
Reaction score
129
i would totally support local or small online shops if they are comparable in terms of price and return policy. If shops are insisting high markup, impossible return policies, etc., they will keep losing business. One of the ridiculous things i read was "if the product has a problem, contact manufacturer. we are not responsible for the failure of the product" well, retailers, this is the reason why you exist and if you dont take care of consumers, manufacturers do not need you to sell their products if they choose to market on their own.
Thats common in the industry so I assume the manufacturer isn't working with the seller on returns so they are forced to push the customer to them
 

Indytraveler83

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Apr 21, 2019
Messages
532
Reaction score
601
Location
Northwest Indiana
I promise this isn't about R2R and sponsors but read on....

One thing we should all consider is the value that we get, for FREE, from companies that not only provide education via videos and articles but the fact that they support platforms like Reef2Reef. We're all a part of this big working wheel!

How do you feel about that?
I'll try to see if I can form an answer:

And let me first say that I have neither watched their videos or bought their products, so my answer is not at all regarding first hand experience with THIS particular company.

I will err on supporting someone who has given me free advice or free support. It's the reason that 80% of my money goes to a particular lfs.

But if that source is asking an unreasonable price for something, suddenly "good customer service" becomes something you are paying extra for in the price of the product.

In the case of my lfs, I'll pay an extra dollar for fish food, or $5 for a fish I want. But when he quoted me $300.00 for a wavemaker and I could find one on Amazon for $90 that met my needs, I went to Amazon.

There's a line to be drawn when you start paying too much for customer service that's "free."
 

murphys_aquatics

Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
75
Reaction score
118
I personally buy as much as possible on amazon. Where I live we get some items same day. I have been a prime member for years. Amazon’s return policy is amazing
If I buy something and it doesn’t work out it can just send it back. I been able to buy salt/sand/rocks/power heads/lights/food very cheap and delivered to my home.

My local LFS only sells ecotech lights and eco tech pumps/ those lights and pumps are too expensive for my taste.
I really dont see how buying on Amazon is taking away from them. I've seen stuff for sale on there from above mentioned vendors. The question is irrelevant if you ask me IMO.
 

murphys_aquatics

Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
75
Reaction score
118
I really dont see how buying on Amazon is taking away from them. I've seen stuff for sale on there from above mentioned vendors. The question is irrelevant if you ask me IMO.
Also during this time I have ordered from one of the vendors in the above description. They said they had the product in stock so I ordered it. Did not get a confirmation email or anything. Finally called Aquarium S. And they said it was back ordered. Now why would it still be in stock of its sold out???????? Guess what I'm waiting at least another 2 weeks for the product and I ordered the same thing on Amazon and it's already here..... soooooooooo... irrelevant like I said
 

robbyg

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Sep 8, 2019
Messages
984
Reaction score
1,092
amazon is a ripppppofffffff!!!! you can find just about anything cheaper then amazon, even after you add in shipping costs lots of items are still cheaper than amazon prices.
That very much depends on what your ordering. If you have Prime it's a no brainer to get small orders off of Amazon. The shipping alone on the other sites costs more than the item. Also Amazon is one of the few places that you can just return items without any questions or expenses.

For orders over $29 I typically buy from Marine Depot as they almost always have the lowest price.
I buy from BRS from time to time just to support their video work and support of the community.
 

Are you still ordering livestock or are you going to wait it out?

  • I'm still ordering and not worried

    Votes: 313 33.7%
  • I'm ordering but being cautious about delivery

    Votes: 178 19.2%
  • No I am not ordering right now

    Votes: 396 42.7%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 41 4.4%

Online statistics

Members online
640
Guests online
3,062
Total visitors
3,702
https://amongthereef.com/
Top