With a market share of 44% of the American e-commerce market in 2017, the founder, chairman and CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, has dethroned Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, as one of the richest men in the world. This is not entirely surprising considering how fast his company has grown since it was founded in 1994 and was operating out of a small garage selling books. Today, it is the largest and most successful online retailer in the world with a revenue of $177.86 billion in 2017. He must be doing something right?!
There is certainly no doubt that Amazon has redefined the scope of both online and store-based retail. Bezos understands just how important logistic business processes are, and he makes sure his company is at the forefront of it every time. Whether it’s innovative delivery management and logistics solutions like introducing strategically placed parcel lockers, smart home delivery, Prime subscription program or constantly expanding their range of products, Amazon is a frontrunner in the e-commerce industry and a change-driver in the whole retail community.
“The Amazon Effect” and how it’s changing e-commerce and retail
Not just customers but businesses in other industries too are experiencing what experts call “The Amazon Effect”. Simply put, it refers to the changes in customer behavior and the retail industry in general due to the rising popularity of Amazon. With such excellent features that can guarantee customer experience – the ability to accurately predict the needs, simple click-to purchase, granular tracking of deliveries, flexible delivery and payment options, easy-to-use and powerful courier tools with advanced routing optimization to name a few – other online retailers are finding it difficult to compete. It is a huge challenge for them to compete only with traditional methods and not leverage modern digitalization technology.
Amazon accounts for almost half of all online retail sales in the U.S, and this would not be possible without their sophisticated logistics function. After all, their fast-paced growth is often mainly credited to their ability to ship faster and smoother in a cost-effective manner. Bezos has always invested in advanced logistics through the marriage of logistics and technology. For example, we often hear that that self-driving cars and drone deliveries are on the horizon.
So, judging from the path Amazon is taking by investing in future logistics solutions, it appears that e-commerce and technology will continue to complement each other as they always have. However, it cannot be denied that the e-commerce, Amazon in particular, is rapidly driving the global market towards a digital age, where consumers expect to be given royal treatment. People expect fast and often, free last mile delivery. They want to choose from a wide range of products at competitive prices and require flexible payment and delivery options.
Without technology, all the above-mentioned advantages of e-commerce retail would not be possible. It is to a large extent due to technology that online retailers can adopt a reliable and successful logistics business process. And as for Bezos and his company, “The Amazon Effect” will only grow more powerful globally over time.
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