After months of planning and saving, my company (Duke Networks) was finally able to spring for a much-needed new Pro Canon camcorder. I finally had the budget for it last week, but there was a huge problem. All of the usual online retailers I tried were either out of stock, or they were charging a premium. The two I usually purchase my photography and videography equipment from (B&H Photo, and Amazon) were out of stock. Even eBay was dry. I found a few on Craigslist, but I’m a bit skeptical about sending some guy on the opposite end of the coast thousands of dollars with the hope that what I get in return is anywhere close to what I wanted, if anything at all.
Then there was this one retailer that kept on coming up every day in Google search results and other price comparison sites with the lowest price of the rest. About $250 lower than the lowest price from a known retailer. I kept on dismissing it because I didn’t find any reviews about this retailer. Most of these that I find with super-low prices are too good to be true, and usually located in Brooklyn, NY. Avoid them like the plague! So I turned to my trusty friend who’s usually a good gauge of real customer feedback, ResellerRatings.com. This, by the way, is my biggest tip for dealing with an online retailer you’ve never heard of. Bookmark this site! If you have never heard of a retailer, see the lowest price ever, before you give them your credit card number, do some research at this site first! And that’s exactly what I did with Worldwide Broadcast (www.wwbroadcast.com).
I looked them up at the Reseller Ratings website. I Googled them. I found nothing. It’s as if they just started doing business yesterday. I brushed them off as being another shady Brooklyn retailer, just aching to get my phone # and credit card # so they could do some damage. Nightmares of dealing with fraud departments and lawyers ensued.
Another week went by. I called and checked the websites of the normal retailers I shop at. I checked Craigslist again for a local deal. Nothing. Frustrated that I was losing time (we need this camcorder!), I decided to give Worldwide Broadcast a call–only because they weren’t showing any signs of shadyness — my retailer scammer radar wasn’t going off as much anymore (purely out of desperation). My call was immediately forwarded to Scott who, surprisingly, spoke English. Unlike other retailers, he even offered me an explanation as to why the camera was in short supply. There was a problem with a part supplier, so Canon’s shipments of the unit to the U.S. was slow. That, compiled with the fact that it is highly in demand, means trouble for retailers. No wonder so few have them in stock, and those that do are charging full retail!
Scott explained to me that had I called him last Friday, he had one in stock and could have shipped it to me but they were sold out immediately. He offered to put me on their waiting list, and he did. I was #3 in the new list for the next batch. A few days later he informed me that Canon had shipped him a few new units and one had my name on it. It finally arrived at their offices in Florida and he shipped it out to me the same day he received it.
Still skeptical, like most people would be, I waited with excitement for the big box to arrive with the shiny new camcorder at my office. Would it be what I actually ordered, or a different camcorder entirely… or worse… a box of bricks? I had the piece of mind that my credit card company would refund me the full amount if it had turned out to be a scam.
I’m happy to say that it was exactly the model I had ordered, and brand new in the manufacturer’s box. There was nothing wrong with it. I learned that I now have a new retailer that I can go to, that offers products at extremely competitive prices. Worldwide Broadcast saved me $850 off MSRP, and $250 off the lowest price I could find online from a reputable retailer.
So why did I post this? I don’t have anything to do with Worldwide Broadcast. I don’t know Scott beyond the context of this sale. I made no money in posting this; in fact as you can see from the length of this post it cost me quite a bit of time I could have been editing video or improving my own business.
I posted this because I couldn’t find any online testimonials about this company and I know there are others out there like me who are desperate to purchase from them, but they are smart shoppers like me and can’t find any reviews about them. So here you go. I’m picky when it comes to who I give a ton of cash to, especially when they are on opposite ends of the coast and I’ve never heard from them. You can trust these guys. I did, and now that I have the camcorder and saved a ton I can move forward with my business and spend the money that I saved on other accessories I need.