Monday, May 2, 2011

Blu Ray Media Stores: SuperMediaStore Review

Blu Ray blank media guide : Best Blu Ray media stores
Best Blu Ray Media Online Stores Part 13: SuperMediaStore Review

Like MediaMegaMall, MeritLine and TapeOnline, SuperMediaStore is a specialized electronic media site, with an excellent reputation on the enthusiasts' forums as a trustworthy supplier of CD and DVD media, and with high quality customer service. We felt there was very good potential in this highly usable site, and had high expectations for SuperMediaStore. They all turned out to be true, yet we still were a bit disappointed by one attribute of this excellent retailer.  

Site and usability
Blu Ray media can be found on the SuperMediaStore site under Blank CD/DVD Media -> Blu Ray Media.  Site speed is good, with an average of 2.0 seconds per page to display a right-clicked SKU. Of our wish list of 13 types of sorting and binning, SuperMediaStore provides the second broadest set of capabilities in the category, after RunTechMedia, as 10 of these modes are available:  it is not possible to sort by best rating or by most reviews, and unit price is not displayed on the product pages.   On the other hand, there is a Blu Ray media category,  it is possible to select type (BD-R/ BD-RE), manufacturer, single/ dual layer, speed, quantity and printability, sorting can be done by price and best selling,  user ratings are displayed on the category listing pages, and price per disk is displayed on the product pages. Because SuperMediaStore actually has many customer reviews, we find its sorts and bins  more useful than RunTechMedia's (even though RunTechMedia has more of them), because we can actually use meaningful quantities when selecting "most reviews" and "best rating" criteria.

Inventory and price
SuperMediaStore carries a somewhat small inventory of 47 Blue Ray media. However, it stocks 29% of our 89 Blu Ray test media, slightly better than average. SuperMediaStore prices are on average 32.2% higher than the best price across our surveyed stores for media stocked by multiple stores, which is very high, and ranks second worst in the category, immediately after Provantage. SuperMediaStore matches best price for two SKUs, for a media stocked by more than one store, also very low in the category. We are very disappointed in the pricing offered by SuperMediaStore, in particular because it has a reputation for fair pricing in the CD/DVD arena. We couldn't help noticing that SuperMediaStore prices are, relatively speaking, lower for low-priced products, and higher for high quality products, making the price equation even worse when we consider high quality brands like TDK. SuperMediaStore stocks 5 of the 6 media we selected as the best Blu Ray archival grade media, for an average of 48.1% over the best price across the category for this basket of media - an overprice of a magnitude that we find simply unacceptable.

User reviews
SuperMediaStore uses user reviews well, and has many of them on the site. We found 333 user reviews across all Blu Ray media on the site, third highest in the category after Amazon and NewEgg - nice job!

Customer Service
SuperMediaStore has an excellent reputation for top notch customer service in other optical media. Its track record shows it: it gathers over 9,000 reviews on ResellerRatings, with an outstanding 96% rating. On Google Shopping it gathers another 30,000 reviews, again with an excellent 94% rating. We gave SuperMediaStore an excellent 95% predictive CS rating.

Table: SuperMediaStore Blu Ray media review (see legend below)

SuperMediaStore turns out to be a excellent site with high usability, a large set of  user reviews, and a very good customer service record. Where it falls short is in pricing, being within 0.5% of the worst ranking in the category. This is all the more surprising since its CD and DVD prices are typically very good. We would enthusiastically endorse it if its pricing structure was, on average, 15% lower, and 30% lower on our basket of selected media. As it is, while we consider it a very trustworthy supplier, we feel that SuperMediaStore is simply too pricy to recommend as a primary supplier for ongoing Blu Ray media purchases.

Next we review TapeOnline for Blu Ray media... So come back soon!

<<Previous                                                                                                                Next>> 

Table Legend:
Total inventory: total number of Blu ray media SKUs on the site
Inventory %: percentage of list of 89 Blu Ray media that can be found at the store
Inventory % for selected archival media: % of SKUs that we selected in our Blu Ray Media review for archival grade
Site sorting: how many types of sorts and bins are possible on the site (out of the 13 we listed in our wish list)
Average query speed: the average speed to display a right-clicked SKU  - measures browsing speed
Average overprice: How much % over best price, for all media present in more than one store

Average overprice for selected archival media: specifically how much % over best price for the media we selected for archival grade
# lowest priced SKUs: how many SKUs in the store equal best price (if more than one store carries them)
# user reviews: how many user reviews we found on the site for Blu Ray media
Predictive CS rating: our worst case analysis of the likely Customer Support rating for this store
, explained

No comments:

Post a Comment