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Study shows Amazon pricier than Wal-Mart

WASHINGTON – Think buying from Amazon is cheaper than shopping at the store? Think again.

Researchers at Kantar Retail found that Wal-Mart prices were on average 20 percent cheaper than prices at Amazon.com, Bloomberg reports.

The study tested products including food and non-food items and beauty products.

Wal-Mart has been in the business and building buying power for 50 years, while Amazon is newer and must sometimes rely on third-party suppliers, which drives up prices in some cases.

However, according to another Kantar survey, Wal-Mart should still be concerned. Five years ago, 25 percent of Wal-Mart customers shopped at Amazon, but the number is now 50 percent.

Consumers “trust Amazon will have a low price,” study co-author Anne Zybowski told Bloomberg. “On many items, they do have competitive prices. That’s how Amazon has won millions of customers one shopper at a time”

Another advantage Amazon has is supply.

Amazon had all of the 36 products that were price-tested in stock. Three percent of items tested at a Walmart Supercenter were out of stock, while 14 percent of tested items on Walmart.com were not available.

The prices don’t include shipping costs, Bloomberg says, because both companies offer a variety of options that can differ widely in cost.

WTOP intern Will Friedman contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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