If you’re in e-commerce or you’re a retailer, you keep a close eye on Amazon. After all, they’re the elephant in the e-commerce industry aren’t they? That’s why we regularly report on their latest moves from online shopping trends, new product launches and acquisitions to logistics, drones and the latest in their plans for more bricks and mortar stores. Today’s post has more Amazon news you can use.
Amazon’s Prime Now same-day delivery service now reaches 34% of the US population and offers one-hour delivery for $7.99 and free within two hours. Now, with more than 1850 fashion products for sale, the company has plans to become a force in fashion merchandise. Amazon’s Echo and Tap products reveal plans to go full speed into the IoT market. The launch of the wi-fi enabled Brita Infinity Pitcher alerts owners when they need a new filter and adds another IoT product to the ever-smarter home. Amazon China, already the 5th largest online retailer, added more than 2 million new products to its online inventory.
In India, Amazon announced plans to open more than a dozen “women’s-only” delivery hubs across the country to include more women in its operations. Amazon led online retailers in customer satisfaction but its overall rating declined slightly. Amazon Marketplace sellers are capitalizing on the popularity of Amazon’s Prime Service and using Fulfillment by Amazon services to stay competitive. In Europe, retailers such as Sainsbury’s, Bol.com and French Casino move quickly to compete with Amazon EU.
Amazon’s Prime Now delivery service quickly pulls in users
Over the past 15 months Amazon.com Inc. has rolled out Prime Now delivery to consumers in 24 US metropolitan areas accounting for about 34% of the population. Prime members in those locales are quickly adopting the service, which delivers orders in an hour or less for $7.99, or for free in two hours or less.
The results of Cowen & Co.’s monthly Cowen Consumer Internet Survey finds 25% of Prime customers made a Prime Now purchase in January, with 24% of those users saying they make Prime Now purchases weekly. 1,250 Prime subscribers took the investment group’s survey.
Only Amazon Prime subscribers can place orders through the Prime Now mobile app. Prime Now ordering is not accessible from Amazon.com, and the SKUs available for Prime Now delivery vary by location, from about 15,000 to 40,000. In some markets, Prime customers can buy groceries from local merchants or get restaurant food delivered via Prime Now. Via internetretailer.com
Browsing through Amazon’s new private-label clothing lines
Amazon.com Inc. over the last eight months rolled out a series of Amazon-owned private-label apparel brands. The lines follow through on plans previously hinted at by Amazon executives, and represent a way for Amazon to become a bigger force in apparel, a segment where it’s been limited by the reluctance of some higher-end fashion brands to sell to Amazon.
KeyBanc Capital Markets analyst Edward Yruma identified the brands in a research note released earlier this week based on his research. Amazon has not commented or confirmed the brands directly, but Internet Retailer located trademark applications filed by Amazon Technologies Inc. for six of the seven brands dating to March 2015. Amazon did not respond to inquiries.
The brands, product types and number of products live today are: Franklin & Freeman (men’s shoes, 180 products); Franklin Tailored (men’s suits, ties and accessories, 250 products), James & Erin (women’s casual apparel, including a James & Erin Plus line, 200 products), Lark & Ro (women’s dresses and blouses, 171 products), North Eleven (women’s accessories and outerwear, 38 products), Scout & Ro (children’s apparel, 108 products), and Society New York (women’s clothing, handbags and accessories, including a plus-sized line, 891 products). Some product listings for the Lark & Ro brand say they were added as early as June. The other brands were added in August, based on product listing dates displayed on product pages. Via internetretailer.co
Amazon adds the $130 Amazon Tap and the $90 Echo Dot to the Echo family
Amazon’s voice-operated command center Echo produces something close to modern-day magic within our homes: Get the latest news, order a pizza, turn off the lights or find out who killed Bruce Wayne’s parents in fewer than 1,200 milliseconds.
The Echo has received more than 33,000 Amazon reviews at a nearly five-star rating since launching in late 2014 and was one of the best-selling items going for more than $100 over the holidays. Amazon has not released sales figures for Echo, but its rise in popularity and the ability to build upon and integrate with the companion Alexa API have moved the Echo front and center as a must-have device for the smart home.
Amazon is now introducing two new members to the Echo family with slightly different uses in hopes of achieving a similar reaction: Amazon Tap is a portable version of the original Echo, and Echo Dot is a tiny, hockey-puck-sized version that includes a built-in line-out connector to hook into your choice of speaker. Via techcrunch.co
Brita, Amazon Team Up to Introduce First Smart Pitcher
People buy a Brita system because they want to get cleaner, great-tasting water from any tap. But in the chaos of life, it can be easy to forget to keep that filter up-to-date. Now, Brita and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) have teamed up to make keeping that Brita filter fresh virtually.
The new Wi-Fi-enabled Brita Infinity pitcher is equipped with a built-in counter that tracks the amount of water that passes through the pitcher’s filter. The pitcher itself will automatically order a new filter through Amazon Dash Replenishment when the old filter nears its capacity. This new connected pitcher with Amazon Dash Replenishment gives Brita owners exactly what they want – a new Brita filter on their doorstep at the time they need it. Via businesswire.com
Amazon China expands its selection to 10 million imported items
Amazon China, the China division of Amazon.com Inc., announced this week a significant expansion in the selection of imported goods it offers online on the section of Amazon.cn called Haiwaigou, which means “buy from overseas” in Chinese. Amazon said it had added more than 2 million products in February, bringing the total selection on Haiwaigou to 10 million.
The Haiwaigou section of Amazon.cn makes it easier for Chinese consumers to purchase products from Amazon’s U.S. site as it translates the product pages into Chinese and offers such local payment options as Alipay, a service backed by China e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.
Among the products introduced last month are items from such designer brands as Ivanka Trump and Isaac Mizrahi. In order to sell through Haiwaigou on Amazon.cn, U.S. merchants need to enable the “ship to China” option when they set up the product listing on Amazon’s U.S. site, according to Amazon. Via internetretailer.com
Amazon India Announces ‘Women only’ Delivery Hubs
It is the International Women’s day on 8th March this year, and what can be a better occasion than this for Amazon to embrace the hard-working women of our country. Amazon India has announced the launch of ‘Women only’ delivery centres, starting from Trivandrum. Subsequent hubs will be opened in Chennai and Kochi. As the name also suggests, the delivery stations will be managed and run by women completely, through their service partners of course.
Women will also be delivering packages in a radius of about 2-3 km from the hub. We hope this increases a little to accommodate a larger circumference in bigger cities like Chennai when the service arrives there. Via trak.in
Amazon again leads in shopper satisfaction, though its rating slips
Shoppers were less pleased with retailers during the 2015 holiday season than they were a year earlier. But they remained better pleased with online than store-based retailers, and No. 1 e-retailer Amazon.com Inc. again led in overall satisfaction. That’s according the recently released American Customer Satisfaction Index Retail Report 2015. Known as the ACSI, the report finds that on a scale of 0 to 100, Internet retail remains ahead of the other retail categories, despite a dip in the average e-retail score to 80 from 82 the previous year.
Among the six categories covered by the ACSI all scores dropped, with the exception of gas stations where lower fuel prices brought higher customer satisfaction. ACSI tracked and scored the following six retail categories: department and discount stores (which achieved a customer satisfaction rating of 74), gas stations (75), drugstores (73), specialty retail stores (77), supermarkets (73) and online retail (80). Via internetretailer.com
Marketplace sellers piggyback on Amazon Prime’s popularity
Amazon Prime is helping Amazon in more ways than just creating shopper loyalty—it’s also pushing more retail sellers on Amazon’s Marketplace to use Fulfillment by Amazon. With that service, Marketplace sellers pay Amazon to store inventory and pick, pack and ship orders. When marketplace merchants use Fulfillment by Amazon, their products become eligible for Prime two-day free shipping.
37.8% of the value of goods sold on Amazon’s marketplace by ChannelAdvisor Corp. clients was handled through Fulfillment by Amazon in January, up a fifth from 32.9% a year ago. ChannelAdvisor, which helps retailers sell on multiple marketplaces, produces monthly reports that compare merchant clients’ sales through online marketplaces and marketing channels, including tAmazon.com Inc., eBay Inc. and Google Shopping. The percentage of goods sold on Amazon that was handled through Fulfillment by Amazon is the highest it has been in January since ChannelAdvisor began tracking Amazon metrics in June 2013. In January 2013 and 2014, 32% of sales on Amazon were shipped using Fulfillment by Amazon.
“Our data indicates that more retailers are adopting Fulfillment by Amazon for shipping and handling to stay in front of the Prime consumer,” Scot Wingo, executive chairman of ChannelAdvisor, says. “If you’re not using FBA, you’re likely losing share.” Via internetretailer.com
Europe’s food retailers take bolder moves to fight Amazon
As Amazon encroaches on supermarket territory, traditional European retailers are taking bigger steps to fight the U.S. ecommerce giant by offering more non-food products and using extensive store networks as delivery hubs.
Persistent food price deflation across Europe helped trigger Britain’s Sainsbury’s bid for home products retailer Argos. That follows Dutch chain Ahold’s purchase of leading ecommerce site Bol.com in 2012 and French Casino’s decision to take full control of e-commerce retailer Cdiscount in 2011.
Sainsbury’s hopes that using its stores as pick-up points for a wider range of goods will boost profitability. Ahold and Casino have both achieved more sales volume through their stores by encouraging customers to pick up non-food orders at their supermarkets. Ahold’s online sales grew more than 30 percent in the fourth quarter while Cdiscount customers can collect goods from 2,500 Casino stores. Via reuters.com
Retail is rolling – online and off-line for Amazon
So that’s how things are rolling in retail and ecommerce with Amazon this week. Stay tuned for future updates and sign up above to get a morning news summary every Monday-Friday from Cashback Industry News.