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‘Trep On: “The Amazon Effect” and What That Means for the Future of Retail

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Photo from Amazon.com

If you don’t know the name, I suggest you get acquainted with it soon. It’s Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon and recently the richest man in the world, surpassing Bill Gates.

The days of brick and mortar retail experiences are seeing an end. The man power, money and hours that go into a physical location are a thing of the past thanks to online retailers.

Amazon is setting itself up to be your one stop shop for anything you may need, on demand. This, is what has recently been refered to as “The Amazon Effect.”

As technology continues to progress, it makes way for disruptive ideas that are being propelled by millenials.  What makes Amazon hyper successful ihas been the ability for the millenial market to infultrate other generations of shoppers and show them the usefulness and convience of 24/7, on demand shopping. Their inventory of goods is without rival, making it’s effect on retail far reaching, from apperal to groceries to applicances.

According to Millineal Marketing, “The Amazon Effect is the impact the digital marketplace has on the traditional business model regarding consumer expectations and the new competitive landscape. Consumers now expect their buyer journey to be entirely frictionless and immediate, regardless of the particular industry or product in question.”

So what does this, in turn, mean for other retail business? The future of retail will boil down to online shopping and e-commerce. Brick-and-mortar shops aren’t going away soon, but they are certainly should not be any rising business’ first priority. A lot of concentration is going into creating customer-friendly online stores and mimimizing the amount of commitment that goes into traditional shopping.

According to Shorr, a Packaging Company, “brick and mortar retail stores have seen foot traffic cut by about 50% between 2010 and 2013, from more than 30 billion visitors during the holiday season to 17.6 billion visitors. Similarly, new retail space openings have been extremely low compared to years past, down to 43.8 million square feet in 2012, compared to more than 300 million in 2000, 2005, 2006, and 2007. Finally, online sales increased at more than double the rate of brick and mortar sales during the 2014 holidays; in fact, Shorr saw a 35% increase in business with e-retailers during the 2014 peak holiday season.”

Retailers are going to have to find a way to keep their ecommerce games on par if they expect to see any growth in the coming holiday season. What are your thoughts on the growing trend of online retail?

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