There was a time when if you wanted a new TV, you went to whatever electronics store was closest to your home, and chose the TV that matched your decor (remember consoles)? Of course back then, there were maybe 20 different models to pick from, and thates if you went to many stores. Today, if you want a TV, you have your choice of literally hundreds of models. On top of that there are many different television formats, both in their construction and their abilities.
It doesn't stop there, either. From DVD players to toasters, we are bombarded with so many different models, some people take weeks deciding on what to buy. True, you could read online reviews, but how do you know which online review site to trust?
If you're like me and are trying to buy said toaster, you'd try to find a site frequented or even started by toaster aficionados. The been-there-done-that set of the toasterati would certainly know their heating elements, right?
This is what Newegg does for electronics (and toasters now actually). Newegg started out as a computer component site. Its popularity increased among the tech-savvy set who could pinpoint specifically the component they were looking for and see what others thought about it. The difference with Newegg came when you could sort search results not by the review rating but how many reviews were posted. Suddenly you're given an indication of a particular items popularity. Websites will seldom list how many of an item they sell, and Newegg is no exception. Being able to sort by how many good things people say about something is actually better, because chances are a product that's just so-so won't warrant someone going online and leaving feedback about it.
For example, if you are looking for a new plasma TV and know at least some specifics, you can search for items with the qualities you are looking for and in an instant see how many people like what the most, and even more importantly, see why. It makes making a decision that much easier. All this insight comes at a price though, as Newegg doesn't provide any type of learning environment. Their slogan "When you know, you Newegg." holds true as you have to know what you are looking for to fully appreciate the site.
There are often shipping discounts, and their service and order turnaround time are among the best out there. They've also recently expanded their product line, but their strength still lies in the electronics that have made them so successful. It's a worthwhile site to visit if for no other reason than to see what's hot and what's not. Who knows, you might even end up buying a new toaster.
(Welcome again to Joey, one of the finalists vying for a blogging position at the upcoming AT:Home Tech. Comment away.)