Some of us still remember a time when Amazon was just a bookstore. That was actually . . . wait for it . . . 16 years ago. Now there's almost nothing they DON'T sell. But check out a list of ten things that still AREN'T available.
1. Guns. Amazon sells gun safes, and also air guns, BB guns, and paint guns. But real guns are too hard to ship through the Postal Service.
2. Liquor. Amazon sells some wines, directly to preapproved sellers. But for ordinary customers, it's too hard to verify a person's age online.
3. Real estate. There are websites that act like virtual agents for people who want to sell real estate. But it's useless to do the transaction online, when the buyer has to be there to see the property anyway.
4. Pets. Probably we'll never see pets sold online, because shipping is so hard on the animals. Animal welfare associations are against it, and no one really wants to be the first one to try it.
5. Cars. It seems to work on eBay. But most people still want to see a car in person and test drive it before they buy it.
6. Fuel. Again, the shipping would be an obstacle. But lots of places sell gas gift cards online, and Amazon doesn't even do that.
7. Lottery tickets. So far, only one state sells lottery tickets online, and you have to be a resident. Amazon bans the sale of both lottery tickets and slot machines.
8. Tobacco. Same as with liquor, it's hard to verify the buyer's age. But Amazon does sell just about everything else you could use for smoking, including cigarette papers and hookahs.
9. Prescription glasses. Amazon sells frames, but not the glasses. You have to go to a site like EyeBuyDirect.com.
10. Secondhand clothes. Amazon seems to be missing out here. eBay and plenty of other sites sell used clothes, or allow people to sell them. It seems like a thing that would do well on Amazon Marketplace, but for now it's not allowed.