Amazon.com starts charging sales tax in Texas. That won’t hope local retailers much.
Last week I made a purchase on Amazon.com that had a new line item: sales tax.
A week ago Sunday Amazon.com started collecting sales tax in Texas. Local retailers are rejoicing.
To be fair to the retailers, it’s only right that Amazon collect sales tax on purchases made by Texas residents.
But if they’re hoping that this will suddenly send shoppers back to their shops, they’ll be deeply disappointed.
Consider why I made a $300 purchase for my business on Amazon.com rather than in a bricks-and-mortar store:
1. It’s still cheaper — or at least no more expensive — than the bricks and mortar store.
2. I don’t have to leave my office. I saved about 45-60 minutes of calling a store to see if it has the product, driving there, finding a clerk, etc.
3. Amazon.com provides more product information and reviews than any store I’ve ever been to. It sure beats the knowledge of a sales associate at one of these stores.
4. If I have a problem, Amazon.com’s customer service will be better than Best Buy, Office Depot, etc. That’s what history on past purchases tells me.
5. I didn’t have three sales clerks hounding me to by an extended warranty on a $150 product.
People don’t shop on Amazon.com just to save sales tax. The benefits of online commerce are much greater than that.