NowInStock.net's Q&A's

General Q&A

Discussion Q&A

NowInStock.net's General Q&A

  1. What is NowInStock.net?
  2. How do I unsubscribe from Alerts?
  3. Why do I receive alerts when stock is not available?
  4. I am not receiving TEXT messages from NowInStock.net, why not?
  5. I keep receiving TEXT alerts even though I deleted my account?
  6. What can I do to help keep NowInStock.net FREE?
  7. Do you accept donations?
  8. Why did you create NowInStock.net?
  9. Why don't you charge for your service like other sites do?
  10. Why won't you track retailer XXXX?
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1: What is NowInStock.net?

A: NowInStock.net is a FREE web service that tracks the availability of hard-to-find items online and alerts you whenever these items are available for purchase at the retailers we are tracking. To receive our free alerts, you will need to register for an account.

Once your account is created and verified, and after logging in, you can add items to your account by visiting the tracker with the items which you are interested in then clicking one of the "Add/Manage Items" links displayed on each tracker page. We can alert you via email, TEXT/SMS, or from within a browser window using Browser Alerts. All of these alerts delivery options are customizable for each item via the toggle switches next to each item within your account.

You can also be alerted on items without signing up by using the tracker alarm at the top of each tracker, however, when a tracker contains more than one item type, the alarm will sound regardless of which item is in stock. This is when email, TEXT/SMS, and Browser Alerts become essential.

It is imperative to understand that we DO NOT track LOCAL inventory at your local Walmart, Target, Kmart, or other brick and mortar retailer. We only track items that are sold online from these retailers and shipped to your residence. That said, there are times when a retailer we track and who also has a local presence, such as the ones mentioned above, has inventory for sale online that can be bought for local store pickup. If this is the case, make the purchase online, and wait for a confirmation from the retailer that your order is ready for pickup. Do NOT go to the store prior to receiving a pickup order confirmation or you might be wasting gas and time.

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2: How Do I Unsubscribe from Alerts?

A: To unsubscribe from alerts, whether they are email, desktop, or browser, please login to your account and either turn "OFF" the switches for the selected items or DELETE the items from your items list. Either way will discontinue alert delivery.

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3: Why do I receive alerts, but stock is not available?

A: First, it may take more than one alert to get the item you want. Depending how many other people want it (demand) and how much inventory is actually available at the specified retailer (supply) will determine how fast an item sells out. The amount of supply can be very limited or can be a pallet. Sometimes cancelled orders are re-entered into the system which means less than a handful of units are available. Other times you are just too late in visiting the page before what inventory was available and is now sold out. We do not track quantity; we track availability.

Second, not all inventory systems are created equal. Some do an outstanding job ,while others have a tendency to hiccup. But at some level or point in time, they all hiccup.

Third, my job at NowInStock.net is to tell you when we see stock is available for purchase. There are variables we look for at the online stores, check and double check these variables, then make our decision on whether to send or not send alerts.

For example, if we check the product page for an item that says the product is "in stock", but after you click that button to "Add to Cart", it tells you it is "not in stock", well that extra action of adding the item to the cart changes things. The "Add to Cart" action you just kicked off results in the website interfacing with other systems which are not tied to same the one that the product page accesses. If I cannot directly access the same system that the "Add to Cart" action accesses, then we produce what some might perceive as errors, when in reality the retailer's own product page is not correct as it still says "In Stock". How can NowInStock.net be 100% accurate when the retailers sitea are not correct.

Fourth, there are times when inventory, for some unknown reason "floats". One second it shows in stock, the next it shows out of stock. If our program fetches the page when the system decides to show in stock, we then report stock as available with an alert. Sure we could wait a minute or two to double check before sending alerts, but that double checking wastes valuable time, especially on extremely hot items. The best thing to do when you see stock floating, which can be determined by reviewing the history of each of our trackers, is to stay on that product page and keep refreshing your browser page. You might get lucky!

So, yes, there will be times when our alerts are perceived to not be 100% accurate and there are times when certain items will take multiple attempts on your part to finally acquire the item you want. Persistence pays off.

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4: I am not receiving TEXT messages from NowInStock.net, why not?

A: First, TEXT and SMS are synonymous as both are referring to what is popularly known as "text messages". Short Message Service is the technical name, while TEXT can be viewed as the slang name.

Second, NowInStock.net does not truly send TEXT/SMS messages, we send Email-to-TEXT/SMS messages. I know this may be confusing, but in order for us to send true TEXT-to-TEXT messages we would need what is called a short code number, i.e. 'To vote, text YES to 12345'. 12345 is the short code and what you would see in the FROM field of the message you receive. These short code numbers are expensive when coupled with NowInStock.net's usage requirements. To avoid these costs and keep our service FREE, we use Email-to-TEXT to send text alerts to mobile devices. Your Email-to-TEXT address looks something like this your10DigitNumber@carrierAddress.com. Our Email-to-TEXT messages are sent from mobile@nowinstock.net to your Email-to-TEXT address which you will receive on your mobile device.

IMPORTANT: By default, or by user choice, the Email-to-TEXT option can be blocked by users at their respective mobile carrier. In order for you to receive NowInStock.net TEXT alerts, you will need to unblock Email-to-TEXT messaging all together or at a minimum unblock our address mobile@nowinstock.net where TEXT alerts are sent from.

To learn more about this, please refer to your respective mobile carrier for more information:

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5: I keep receiving TEXT alerts even though I deleted my account?

A: More than likely you are subscribed to TEXT alerts via Twitter. This means you need to login to your Twitter account at Twitter.com, and stop following any NowInStock.net Twitter accounts.

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6: What can I do to help keep NowInStock.net FREE?

A: First and foremost, purchase products right after you click on my links. Please note, if you can only buy one product at a time because the store you are purchasing from limits orders to X units per order, please go back and click my link again before starting the next order. Why? Read on...

Some stores end my referral period whenever you make a purchase. For example, if you purchase the first unit by completing your first order, then go back and purchase the second unit without clicking my link again, I lose the commission on the second unit. I am losing this commission even though I am technically the one that referred you on the second unit as well. So, if you have to place more than one order to get your desired quantity, please go back in between orders and click on my link to ensure NowInStock.net receives its proper commission.

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7: Do you accept donations?

A: I have NEVER asked for donations even though many users have wanted to donate. The reason being, as I mentioned above, is that I get a commission from MOST stores I list on the site. However, there are some stores I do NOT receive a single penny from other do NOT pay on the most important items, the video game consoles themselves. The reason I still do not ask for donations is that my costs are currently being covered by the links that do provide a commission.

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8: Why did you create NowInStock.net?

A: I decided in 2005 to create NowInStock.net for a two main reasons.

The first and main reason was to challenge myself. I am an average programmer at best and wanted to test my skills. You can't beat learning and completing a project that has an impact on society. It is very fulfilling. You should check out the testimonials page and see what I mean. Here was one of my most prized comments I received:

"Justin...thanks so much for putting your time and energy in this site. I was able to finally get the Wii bundle from Circuit City. Your site was a constant addiction and a great service during my search. Now I have a Wii on the way to play during my last few months here for the Air Force in Iraq. Thanks! ~Mike"

Second reason was to address a need that was not being filled. I was not the first tracker out there. However, I was the one that introduced the email alerts. I knew that not everyone could sit around and continually refresh a screen while sitting at work, including myself, and I wanted that XBOX 360! So why not just send people and email alert when an item comes in stock? And that is exactly what I did.

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9: Why don't you charge for your service like other sites do?

A: Frankly, I feel this is a service that should be free. I do not need to charge people AND make a commission like these other services out there do. I will just take the commission and be happy. You, the user gets what you want, I get a little compensation on my end, I learn things, I fail at things, and in the end we all get what we want at no cost to anyone. I love working on the site, as I mentioned look at that testimonials page.

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10: Why won't you track retailer XXXX?

A: This can be a complex question to answer, but in trying to keep it as simple as possible, we track retailers that support the site via affiliate commissions. Some retailers do not participate in affiliate compensation or do not pay commissions on particular items. While technically we could still track these retailers, we feel it would be unfair to our supporting retailers to track these non-supporting retailers. We value our supporting retailers as they keep this site free for you the users, and this is one of the ways we show our appreciation to them.

If you still have questions after reading this guide, feel free to contact us directly via our contact form.

 

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NowInStock.net's Discussion Q&A

The following Q&A applies to our Discussions and the rules we enforce. Please keep in mind the main goal of NowInStock.net is to find our users products at MSRP or less.

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Why NO linking to sites selling above MSRP?

A: Many people who are actively involved in arbitrage (scalping) have their own web stores. We do not allow the promotion of these sites. We prefer to list and track only reputable retailers, even if these retailers sometimes sell above MSRP.

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Why NO linking to auction sites, auction listings, or third-party seller listings?

A: The goal of NowInStock.net is to find people items at MSRP or less. While there are times we do list items above MSRP, this is typically on extremely hot items, extremely low inventory, and when major retailers charge more than retail for specific reasons. There is an ebay link at the bottom of each tracker that allows exposure to aucton listing. People who are willing to pay more will traverse that link or head to ebay on their own. Promoting a specific auction possibly means you are the listing owner. This is grossly forbidden.

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Why NO trading of units or NO selling of units?

A: We do not have the systems in place, or know of a system, that is affordable enough, to allow for the trading of items. We do not want receivers to be left stranded without money and no product, nor do we want sellers taking advantage of seekers either or getting taken advantage by seekers who file claims even though said receiver received genuine items. Basically, the internet can be a very shady place and while most people in our discussions can be trusted, we have no way to guarantee this. Plain and simple, we do not want to be associated with anyone getting taken advantage of, period.

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Why NO references of any nature related to participation in the act of scalping or arbitrage?

A: We understand that some of our users participate in arbitrage, however the bulk of our users do not. Frankly, the bulk of our users detest arbitrage. As a result, we do not allow mentions of participation in arbitrage out of respect to our main audience and to avoid confrontation in the discussions. The discussions main purpose is to allow our users a place to share information on where to purchase items at MSRP or below. With that said, there is an ebay link at the bottom of each tracker that gives arbitrage users enough exposure to our audience. Any mentions of participation in artbitrage will result in immediate ban from our discussions.

About Now In Stock

Welcome to NowInStock.NET. We are a web service that monitors online shopping web sites to see when products come in stock. This way you never have to filter through hundreds of pages, subject yourself to tons of notification emails, and so on. NowInStock brings everything together in one tight little package.

We continually add new products, let us know if you have any you would like to see here. If you like our service, let us know! We love to hear from you.

Testimonials

"I just want to say THANK YOU! I just received the alert that Lego Minecraft was back in stock and was able to place my order. You deliver a wonderful service and I really appreciate what you do." -Sheryl