Why Retailers Won’t Go For Amazon Go
Prime Cut: Amazon Go, the e-tailer’s automatic checkout convenience store, has captured the imagination of media and apparently, Amazon itself, which is reportedly opening six more locations and is rumored to be bringing the concept to Whole Foods.
TWICE Take: With all the hubbub around Go, one would expect that legacy retailers are scrambling to develop their own cashier-less checkout systems, much as they did with two-day and same-day delivery. But according to store traffic and conversion analytics expert Mark Ryski, Amazon’s competitors ain’t taking the bait. The spend behind the technology was nothing short of a small fortune, he speculates — certainly more than the minimum wages of cashiers — and don’t get him started about shoplifting, which Amazon is seemingly prepared to take in stride.
See the full story at Total Retail.
Really Walmart? Really??
Prime Cut: It’s no secret that Walmart has spent billions in its pursuit of online parity with Amazon. But according to a new report, the discounter was willing to pay the ultimate price — its integrity — to convince shareholders that its investments are paying off.
TWICE Take: According to former business development director Tri Huyhn, the company inflated its third-party marketplace sales, overcharged its sellers, and failed to process returns in in order “to show meteoric growth” in its dot-com race against Amazon. What’s more, Huyhn claims in a whistleblower lawsuit that he was ultimately fired after alerting Walmart’s e-commerce star Marc Lore to the deception.
See the full story at TWICE.
Healthy, Wealthy And Wise
Prime Cut: As Amazon’s tentacles extend from e-commerce and Cloud services to space exploration and possibly banking, a new hire there suggests that the company is ready to take on health tech too.
TWICE Take: After throwing in its lot with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase in pursuit of better and more affordable healthcare for workers, Amazon has reportedly hired the FDA’s former chief health informatics officer Taha Kass-Hout, an expert in information technologies and digital health. His purported role: to possibly lead a skunkworks project aimed at giving consumers easier access to their medical records.
See the full story at CNBC.
10 Ways Amazon Is Going To Own Everything You Use (Click to Expand)
A Prime Way To Cut Spending
Prime Cut: Amazon still keeps its 13-year-old Prime platform close to the vest. But if independent research is to be believed — and the company’s massive investments in the membership program suggest it should — Prime’s approximately 90 million U.S. members spend an average of $1,300 a year on Amazon, more than double the $700 in annual purchases by non-members.
TWICE Take: Lending credence to Prime’s effectiveness is an anecdotal account on social media by one vavavoomvoom9. The Reddit user writes that his/her household’s online shopping bill was roughly cut in half after pulling the plug on Prime — not to mention the added benefit of a tidier, less-cluttered home. Added Ms. or Mr. V: “Just wondering how many people, like me, realized Prime is more costly than $99/year after they ended it.”
See the full story at MarketWatch.
There’s Method In His Madness
Prime Cut: Amazon now spends a purported $5 billion a year on original and licensed video content — one of its largest expenditures — with the forthcoming “Lord of the Rings” prequel series costing an estimated $500 million alone. Are they mad?
TWICE Take: Crazy as a fox says Reuters, which obtained internal documents showing that about 26 million Americans tune into Prime Video, a free-with-subscription perk that accounts for as much as a quarter of all Prime membership signups. As founder/CEO Jeff Bezos himself intimated at a 2016 technology conference, the content is used to convert viewers into shoppers and drive merchandise sales (see item above), as film and TV customers renew their subscriptions “at higher rates” than non-Prime streamers, he said.
See the full story at Reuters.
Amazon Quote Of The Week
“When we win a Golden Globe, it helps us sell more shoes.” — Amazon founder/CEO Jeff Bezos on the payout from Amazon Studios