Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) appears unstoppable as it innovates, using technology as a fulcrum to deliver ‘everything under the sun’ to its buyers. The latest being the free two-hour daily utilities delivery around Manhattan.
However, the ecommerce giant’s juggernaut does have roadblocks ahead, thanks to the upheaval brought on by newer technology.
These roadblocks which are boxing-in Amazon are the smaller-sized, localized phone-based (such as apps) service providers, working closely with suburban stores and centres to meet online buyer needs, almost within the hour.
Postmates, Instacart Brigade
As start-ups Postmates, who are retail-industry’s Uber-like delivery service, leveraging phones to network with local shops/retailers and deliver apparel to toothpaste and food in over 18 cities, thus far. Their native logistical advantage with courier networks is more efficient and takes lesser turnaround as compared to Amazon’s two-day deliveries.
Postmates co-founder Bastian Lehmann, says that the focus for them is to build services that are un-like Amazon.
Another start-up in this sector is Instacart found by ex-Amazon logistician Apoorva Mehta, to deliver groceries networking with large and small supermarkets.
Google Express is another hugely successful service, which is undercutting Amazon’s reach.
However, for Amazon, the delivery service is only the tip of the iceberg that all it is not well, with the diversified online retailer.
Not only is the Kindle flagship mobile yet to shape-up in mobile ecommerce, it continues to struggle with its deals with book publishers.
Books Deal: Under the Lens
In October it signed on Simon& Schuster of CBS Corp’s , where the latter is allowed to set e-books prices, though Amazon retains the right to discount titles when dynamics require the ecommerce lower prices for better volume sales.
Of the deals thus far, the deal with SCA’s Hachette Book Group has helped the industry draw improved guidelines for all stakeholders of the book industry.
Therefore, for Amazon, the writing in pretty much on the wall: diversification comes at a price. Further, it will have to contend with Anti-Amazon brigade that is smoother, faster – typical of startups – who will dominate the peripheral online commerce segments.