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Show HN: Above-average products selling for below-average prices (goodcheapandfast.com)
183 points by john_w 4 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 65 comments

You're using articles or blog UI/UX, this doesn't suite the point of the site, it's really hard and annoying to navigate, too much white space and elegant text style.

I mean it's simple and clean and everything... but doesn't fit the subject of the site nor the use case or the targeted user base

I really like the design.

- The index is just a back-button away at any time.

- No giant hovering menu's with subcategories.

- I can easily search the index with ctrl-f.

- Not distracted with "similar products" etc

And overall the design lends itself to the "curated" feel and adds an element of trust that you dont get from browsing a generic-ecomm site.

I'm not saying it's bad design, I'm saying it doesn't go well with the goal and target, for example, products taking too much space for no reason, prices(the core) are not highlighted and written in the same size, color, and location as the description, an example product image with more compact text area would've made it even simpler and easier to use :)

In my opinion it’s brilliant.

He spent very little time on this experiment.

Assuming that the creator really is a data scientist - or even if not - this is practically the default hypothesis to test. Do people click through, given these claims? Pictures and a better layout might even confound it.

> I mean it's simple and clean and everything... but doesn't fit the subject of the site nor the use case or the targeted user base

I believe it does; the targeted user base is the group of people who're tired of the on-line shopping experience being rotten to the core. Also, this site is pretty much a collection of articles, that happen to be shopping recommendations.

I agree. While I appreciate the lack of "tacky business" looks, it also is a site about shopping, so I would make it a store like interface, but less overload as we usually get.

You really found this website "hard to navigate"?

This is, I'm guessing, a side project / early version. White space and font choices can come later.

Yea one or two pics would be nice, otherwise well done ! Good idea

You have to activate the affiliate link to get pics :D.

Most of the products are cheap Private Label stuff. "Good" is very, very questionable here. PL'ing cheap Chinese stuff is the "git rich quick" of the 2010's. They have paid courses to teach prospective PL'ers how to game the review system.

All in all I have ditched Amazon and if I want cheap Chinese stuff I go directly to the source for a LOT cheaper.

Can you prove you actually tested the things?

And it doesn't work at all for me actually. E.g. I'm looking for cheap earbuds and happily find https://www.goodcheapandfast.com/articles/best-earbuds

- If looks are not the deciding factor, why are there two headbuds recommended that both are priced the same? Tell me which is best and maybe runner-up.

- The least I care about the the china-brand and the rest of the long SEO-titles don't do any good either. Only valuable piece of information here: has mic or not

- most important to me: (your) rating and price/value rating. This can only be gathered by reading your text, the latter doesn't get mentioned at all.

- most anything is a fashion-statement, I can't be buying pink or golden earphones, show me pictures!

- not sure how your reviews work, but the model you threw out won most of the hands-on reviews I found on the net

I also feel how amazon limits you. The best budget robot vacuums are both a bit above 250 and from what I read below that you still have to vacuum yourself in the end. Meta-Review winners: https://www.gearbest.com/robot-vacuum/pp_009217978560.html?w... and one of the roborocks https://www.gearbest.com/robot-vacuum/pp_009168125546.html?w...

You should check out The Wire Cutter and Consumer Reports. Both of them test things to provide you with best bang for your buck and it seems like they both really care that they do a good job. Consumer Reports even takes it to the next level buy I think buying things themselves secretly so they don't get specially tweaked items or take ad money from the organizations whose stuff they test. Really valuable when researching a purchase!

> I can't be buying pink or golden earphones

I understand the sentiment here, but - sure you can, if you like them :)


Let me rephrase the one sentence for you to make up for my "limited attention span" (so sorry to have bothered you here) that you seem to think makes my all of my post "dumb":

- "Unless you can prove you actually tested the things in comparison I don't see much value in the reviews."

That is not even close to what you wrote, in fact there is no way someone would have read your post and thought of it this way.

Yes, I made i small mistake: I did not see there was no way he made a manual review. This I corrected.

The core of my sentence however, that I would want these reviews and nothing else will make up for it, remains. As does the rest of my message.

It's probably worth waiting for Black Friday if you're gonna be picking up any of the expensive items here. Lots of stuff usually goes on sale, even if the discounts aren't very big.

For tape measures, if you just need something for occasional home use I'd consider the IKEA FIXA [0], which costs $0.99. It's only 10ft long instead of their suggested 25ft, but that might be enough for home users. I've had mine for around 5 years now and so far it hasn't let me down.

I'd consider adding a digital microscope under cheap STEM toys, since the one linked isn't very powerful and it's kinda overpriced. You can find lots of options for under $20, there's some that can even hook up to your phone or tablet. Although I might be a bit biased since I was fortunate enough to have one when I was growing up. I still think they're a super cool toy.

[0] https://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40237557/

I find the layout for results hard to read - the italicized titles don't help and complete separation makes it hard to compare the products in any way.

A simple table with some basic facts about each product and sort functionality would be a lot better. For example "AirPod Alternatives" list things like battery life - but don't offer an easy way to compare it.

Additionally, the single-minded focus on Amazon and cheap leads to Chinese items that are far marked up in price dominating. These can be obtained from more direct Chinese sellers for much cheaper than on Amazon. For example, many of the OBD2 dongles listed are a rebrand of Chinese dongles available for $3-5.

Would highly recommend photos. Browsing gaming chairs, for instance, I immediately bounced from the page because I couldn’t visually browse the content.

Amazon has an affiliate program that allows you to generate banners with embedded images.

This seems like an appropriate license since he's linking to amazon anyways.

Maybe rights issues?

He probably just wants you to click to activate the affiliate link.

EDIT: Doesn't seem like the Amazon links are affiliate links, even though he makes a statement on the page that he's trying to make money.

Showing photos would fall under fair use.

Citation needed.

Any case, fair use is a defense, not a license or permission.

Clearly a fair use situation.

"the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright."

This is commerce, though.

And again, Fair Use is a defense. It only kicks in after you have been sued and are in court.

Agree that this is essentially an affiliate site, even if the intention is not.

The incremental value add is basically a query made on top of amazon reviews. But in some ways, one can do it on amazon themselves as this content and rating will change over time.

And amazon reviews aren't always the best... so... meh. I'd rather go to a site that has self tested these products w/youtube videos and such and give them the affiliate money.

How is this not garbage in garbage out? Reviews are being dramatically gamed on amazon these days.

Garbage in, affiliate marketing out.

There's still Consumer Reports, which actually buys products at retail and tests them. They're good for things like refrigerators, where price and value are not strongly correlated.

All link to Amazon - but for me for a lot of the products on the page AliExpress is cheaper/better.

And even AliExpress seems to be the "second tier" to Taobao - but you'll need an agent to get things from Taobao internationally.

I wish I could draw up a hierarchy of stores. Safe to say, a lot of the marketplace listings on Amazon US are coming from (the same suppliers as) AliExpress.

Is it really cheaper including shipping and however much the agent charges?

And where does one get an agent?

And can you get it in two days?

Have you ever gotten something that's not actually in the Amazon warehouse in 2 days?

In Australia, 2 day shipping (from Amazon) doesn't really exist, anyway.

Do you need it in two days?

AliExpress isn't for everything - it's for when you can wait two months and don't care about quality.

Not to be a rude, but this just feels like an affiliate micro site...

There's no affiliate links on the website.

So? If it solves the user's problem for free, who cares?

Perverse incentives leading to poor quality content. Inclines author to recommended what's profitable, not best.

Only if the author prioritizes short-term profits over long-term UX, which they haven't done so far.

Bit like the old JustBuyThisOne.com before it vanished, which told you the best tech product in any given category and offered to take care of returns and replacement if you didn't like it.


(Doesn't exist now though, it's a redirect to Revoo)

The UI/UX is good, IMHO, but there is one thing that is very annoying (per general, and it's the same here): when your web-framework does some wonky stuff to my clicks and interferes with default behavior.

I cannot ⌘ + click on the Amazon link buttons to open them in new tabs. It will open the link in-place, i.e. as if I had done a normal click on the button.

I like the condensed meta reviews. As others have mentioned, only showing Amazon is a bit of a drawback. I'd love to see what categories are coming soon -- right now the list is small.

I was hoping to see a coffee pot category!

"Remove the fake reviews" ? Is it that easy ?

I have the same question -- there's a great episode of the ReplyAll podcast where they dive into the murky waters of fake Amazon reviews. It's actual humans doing it, so I imagine tough to spot.

No affiliate links and he says he makes money. How is he making money?

I see, it is a bit like a cut down Whole Earth Catalogue, without the hippies or the concept of society being involved.

Is there an RSS feed or associated twitter etc that can alert me of new articles?

Wish you could only pick 2

I like the idea but directories are web 1.0

How is this problem supposed to be solved in the modern web?

People tried to crowdsource curation, and this is how we ended up with Amazon reviews being gamed to death.

Real people having a real opinion backed by their own reputation may be "web 1.0", but it works.

That might work, but it's not what this is; this is just a distillation of (gamed) Amazon reviews.

So an affiliate site that claims to have no bandwidth intensive images but sends you to amazon to see said images. What is the point?

Yeah there aren’t any affiliate links yet. There will be. I used to build sites like this - the trick is to provide value for free upfront and gain and audience, then replace all the links with affiliate links when the traffic ramps.

Needless to say I quit because my “reviews” were bs and I never used any of the products I wrote reviews for...so I have a tough time these days trusting any site like this.

Affiliate links don't cost any more, so as a consumer why do I care if they use affiliate links or not?

only because if there is a better option available at a website which pays less or no affiliate money the reviewer is incentivised to recommend the one which earns money (but costs more/is a worse product).

Consumers don't care if affiliate links are used, they care if affiliate links are disclosed. People should be told when they're being potentially advertised to.

None of the links I checked on the site are affiliate links.

The site looks like a fun, and well polished, side project. Someone wanted to see if they could make a useful product aggregator.

They may have plans to monetise it, but I wouldn't be surprised if it remained a hobby.

It says on their page "I created this site to help people, but also to make money by doing so"...

They have a code after /dp/ - what is that for? Looks like an affiliate code to me.

Edit: doh!

Not an affiliate code. After the "dp" (detail product) is Amazon's product code. You can delete the rest of the URL except for dp/thecode and it will still go to the same product page.

It's not. Search the same product on Google and the URL will be the same.

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