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Newegg Premier Is Like Amazon Prime for DIY Geeks

Newegg has debuted an expedited shipping service with added perks, private customer service, and free returns for $50/year. But casual users should stay away for the time being.
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Newegg Premier

In a move that should make Amazon think twice about its rumored Prime price hike, Newegg announced it will begin testing a Prime-like delivery service. In addition to expedited shipping, the $49.99 annual cost of Newegg Premier will also offer perks like exclusive deals, free returns, and waived restocking fees. But is Newegg's cheaper service an instant win for the DIY tech crowd or are you better off keeping that 50 bucks in your pocket?

Newegg Premier Has Few Perks, No Streaming Video

Like Amazon Prime, Newegg Premier comes with a few extra perks. So in addition to guaranteed delivery in three days or less (Amazon Prime offers 2-day delivery), membership also brings discounts on 2-day and 1-day shipping, early bird notifications of upcoming sales, free returns, waived restocking fees, member-only deals, 100 Egg Point rewards (equivalent to $1), and a private customer service line for those times you need extra help.

Unfortunately, when compared to Amazon's Prime service, Newegg Premier fall short: it lacks a number of perks many customers care about, like select access to Amazon Instant Video and dozens of eBook freebies. And while Newegg might be a must-shop site for the PC crowd, the extent of merchandise it offers pales in comparison to Amazon's catalog, which includes everything from hard drives to groceries. So despite the added bonuses, Newegg's Premier service really boils down to shipping discounts and waived restocking fees.

The End of Free Shipping?

Scoring a deal with free shipping at Newegg isn't difficult. In fact, since the start of the month, 86% of the Newegg deals we've posted have included free shipping via Super Eggsaver service, which takes 4 to 7 days for delivery. While that timeframe isn't the same as Newegg Premier's guaranteed 3 days or less promise, for the average consumer it might be good enough to forgo purchasing a $50 subscription.

At the time of this writing, it was still relatively easy to find Newegg products with free shipping, from $100 dollar motherboards to cheap $8 flash drives. The few times we did encounter shipping charges, it was usually a mere 99 cents. However, we wonder if the testing of this new subscription means that the Newegg store will eventually scale back on its generous free shipping policy. In that case, heavy Newegg customers may benefit from the new delivery service, assuming they spend at least $4 or more per month on shipping fees.

Readers, what do you think about the Newegg Premier service? Is a $50 annual payment for free shipping and restocking a reasonable price to pay? Or do you think Newegg will have to throw in a few more extras to get you to sign up? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.


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Senior Features Writer

With over a decade of experience covering technology, Louis Ramirez has written for CNET, Laptop, Gizmodo, and various other publications. Follow him on Twitter at @louisramirez.
Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).
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8 comments
acemanx
@syco54645 They are having a sale right now on the newegg premier using a promo code, normally $50 down to $30, I signed up and got a free 30 day trial, $30 bux for free returns and all the perks is totally worth it, plus they wave the rush order processing for premier members, I had an issue with an order and was in Queue 1 for an agent, they're stepping it up, im sure we will see more perks come as time goes by, right now at 29.99 for a whole year, its a steal
syco54645
I have a Newegg premier 30 day trial and will be canceling it. Their 3 day shipping ended up taking 4 business days. I ordered Wednesday they didn't ship till Thursday evening. It could have been delievered Saturday but they stress business days. The items I was ordering all had $6-$9 shipping costs so I saved around $20 and another $11 for the rma that I need to send in. Still Newegg's prices and customer service have gone down hill and fast. A few years ago I would order from them and my orders would be shipped the same day and at my house in two days. This was with their free 3 day shipping. Their prices are not great anymore either.
They also brought back their "rush" processing but only for premier members. It still costs $2.99. All they did was break out the features that made them good and charge for them...

They have taken a lifelong customer and tossed that all away.
mirrormirror
None of these services offer a solid value to me. I don’t purchase enough at any one online store per month, and hold orders until I can snag free shipping. I usually plan my purchases ahead of time. So, expedited shipping isn’t a big draw. I rarely find technical support people that can solve my problem faster than I can. I almost never return items unless they are defective or they deliver the wrong item (which hasn’t happened with Newegg yet — unlike The Nerds).

So, the only lure would be getting deal announcements ahead of time. Then I would have to save much more than $50 over the year to make pre-announced sales notification worth it.

As far as Amazon goes, I don’t consider their catalog compelling enough when I already have Hulu+ and Redbox, and I mp3s are non-starters if you care about music quality and have a trained ear.

I’m probably in the minority, but neither is a compelling product.
dealnews-Lindsay
@dwyerk @mixter1245 Very good point, guys!
wlau89
I agree with ski522, when I did frequently shop at NewEgg in the past...my orders are typically received within 3 business days as well.

Sucks that everyone is jumping on the whole Prime/ShopRunner bandwagon. Luckily I have both :) Don't plan on purchasing any other service.
mixter1245
I already get 2 day shipping with ShopRunner. A call to customer service usually gets you free return shipping, depending on reason for return. The only thing I see is is getting a "jump" on special deals.
dwyerk
The problem for Newegg in making their Premier service work is that they already participate in Shoprunner which gives you free 2 day shipping (and Shoprunner membership is currently free if you have an AMEX card). Unless they stop participating in Shoprunner, I just don't see sufficient value in the rest of Premier "perks" to justify paying a yearly fee for it.
ski522
I've never had a problem with fast shipping from Newegg and is THE primary reason I used them for most of my electronics. If they were change that now because I opted not to get their Premier program, I would certainly shop around at other electronic suppliers...I suspect many others would do the same! Newegg needs to be careful about shaking up what made them a top choice for many of us DYI people!
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