Amazon To Amazon Fresh…Is It A Step Too Far?

The amazing wonder that is Amazon…it really is a force to be reckoned with! However, I am not sure the founder, Jeff Bezos is that surprised with how the company is able to ebb and flow just like the river it was named after. One of the largest rivers in the world carries an unthinkable volume of water, as does this vast on-line retailer. The clue is very definitely in the name but if you look at the visual identity, not only does the arrow look like a smile it also links the A with the Z which implies a breadth of stuff on sale…a master plan!

Amazon started to realise it’s A to Z strategy when it broadened into furniture, toys, jewellery and clothing. Some would think that it could be too much of a leap for many companies, but Amazon seems to be able to do it and does so in what appears to be effortless style. It has the ability to use a formula of capitalising on networks with diverse businesses (local and global organisations) without compromising on the service to consumers. 

Amazon has become synonymous with a broad range of stuff, a very varied and big retail hub, as well as reliability and speedy service to your door (nearly) anywhere in the world .  So why is it a surprise to see Amazon go into food? I suppose if anyone will make it work, Amazon will, but…food retailing is very different to other consumer goods. Amazon has not dealt with anything that is perishable before, and although they have a reputation of speed and reliability, freshness is something they need to credibly deliver before they are truly successful. 

It is interesting how the Amazon food arm is named AmazonFresh, has a spring fresh green livery, and was set up in its founding city Seattle in 2007. Interestingly the AmazonFresh brand takes the Amazon parent into a more upmarket territory more akin to Waitrose in the UK. This is a little surprising as Amazon feels like it could easily occupy more of an everyday Morrisons grocery territory with minimal re-positioning, but they have chosen not to! Some would say Amazon have not made it easy for themselves; a re-positioning and a massive stretch all in one go. However, success is a wonderful thing and Bloomberg announced on 10th June 2013 that the service will be extended out to Los Angeles. AmazonFresh intend to hand-pick local businesses to sell products through the company and include produce such as fresh meat and seafood, cheese, spices, confectionery, ready meals and more. In fact customers can order from more than 500,000 Amazon items for a same day or early morning delivery – the Amazon formula at its best!

So whilst Amazon are working on developing their Fresh credentials, the rest of the world will be waiting with bated breath to see if AmazonFresh is so successful in the US that it will be rolled out for us all to enjoy. Is failure an option? I don’t think so!

A man delivering some shopping bags to a woman at her front door

 

Published 25th June 2013 by Shelly Greenway @ the Strategy Distillery