The sunlight barely pierces the thick canopy overhead. With every step brings uncertainty. You sense you are always being watched. The predator watches patiently, looking for your weakness. The perspiration grips your body. The jungle floor is littered with corpses of others who did not head the warnings. You shutter at the thought of joining them. What can be done to escape this mighty predator? He has taken entire herds to extinction. He hunts indiscriminately. If he strikes he will draw blood and then continue to wipe out the herd. Will you see tomorrow? None of the animals in the jungle know who will be next.
I’m not talking about a wild animal in a South American jungle. I’m talking about the internet giant the Amazon Company. Like a fierce predator they choose industries to pounce upon and move to the world of extinction.
It started simple enough, 25 years ago, 30-year-old, Jeffrey Bezzos’ in a garage. Working on Wall Street he saw the dawning of the internet and knew he had to be a part of it. He would sell goods over the internet. After researching possible lines he decided on books. The rest is history, or should I say current events. Amazon now employees 97,000 employees and has annual revenues of $61.09 BILLION! How that for a success story. From a garage to a $61 billion in 25 years.
As in the jungle, Darwin’s law of only the strong survive as the weak die off. As Amazon grows stronger, with each new concept, the weak are meeting extinction. When is the last time you saw a big chain book store? Darwin. Amazon recently paid $13.7 million to buy Whole Foods. Are grocery stores moving to the history book extinct? In the past year we saw the demise of ToysRUs. ToysRUs? GONE? Another victim of the Amazon jungle.
My answer to any question regarding locating a product is “It’s on Amazon”. What can you not find there? They have ventured into every product category with wide varieties and in most cases very competitive pricing. They have music services for on-line audio streaming. Remember Peaches records and tapes? Survival of the fittest. At Peaches you paid $12 for an album to listen to one song. At Amazon you can choose the one song for .99, They are offering movies, remember the now extinct Block Busters? They even saw the predator approach but made the majority of their money on late fees and couldn’t give it up. So the predator struck.
Most recently the giant has been applying for pharmacy licenses across the nation. Mail order pharmacy, the Amazon way. They have backed off for now but as soon as the herd shows weakness they will be back to pounce. They are now partnering with service industries across the country. Add to cart, one click, my carpets are clean on Friday. They are testing restaurant delivery services in some cities. Are the very restaurants far behind?
With Prime you click and it shows up in two days and in some areas one day. Groceries are available, delivered in a couple of hours in some locations. Click your heels together twice, One Click and your dream arrives at your doors, and you don’t even need to click your heels if you don’t want to.
So where does it stop. When will the beast Amazon be full and not devouring new prey? Well….never. Amazon built their success on two things. High standards (two-day delivery, easy returns, fair prices ) and GROWTH. The key to Amazon is they get it right and then move on, quickly. Massive growth has been the key to their unbelievable success. They are experts at thinking outside of the box. Can you say UAV delivery? Nothing is considered impossible and everything is looked at. Regardless of what your company sells, you better not ignore Amazon or you might be the latest proof of Darwin’s Theory.