Amazon Action Plan

The Arrival of Amazon in Australia means Aussie Retailers need to Respond

Whether it be winter, or Amazon… it’s coming.

If you have been keeping up with Game of Thrones, and/or are an active participator in the internet, you will know that the former is already ‘here’, and the latter, well that it pretty much here now as well.

Initially it was expected that Amazon will hit Australian shores sometime during 2018, which is only a hop-skip-and-a-Christmas-party-or-two away. Although it seems that the Amazon Marketplace may be available to Australians by the end of week. The giant online retailer which sells a huge variety of, (correctly speaking), ‘pretty much everything’ at very low prices is set to make a significant mark in the Australian retail market. The US based mega-corporation has dominated every market that it has chosen to enter with its proposition of excelling in product service, speed and price.

For consumers like you and I, this is great. Although for local retailers, the entrance of a major disruptor in the market is cause for concern.

Let Concern turn to Action.

Yet all the concern in the world isn’t going to change the inevitable, therefore it is an important time for Australian retailers to pull up their socks and strategically consider the opportunities, as well as threats in the changing environment.

According to insights from Commbank, most retailers (78 per cent) don’t have a strategy in place to combat the global retail giant.

We believe that although the arrival of Amazon reveals a threat to local business it also provides an opportunity for retailers to think strategically, and differentiate to remain valuable to consumers.

After all, businesses must be competitive, and despite the arrival of Amazon bringing new challenges, local retailers that may have gotten used to their relative market share, must look outside the box to be relevant. Now is the time to act, to analyse, plan and implement in preparation for the future.

In a recent article from the Company Director – the magazine of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (November 17), Peter Birtles, CEO of Super Retail Group gave an interesting insight. In regard to the arrival of Amazon, Birtles said;

“We’ve got to remember that change in whatever form is coming. We need to think differently and we are going to have to respond. Change is the only Constant.”

He then went onto say that we therefore need to be asking the question:
“How can we do things better for the customer? We have to see it as an opportunity.”

Growth under Pressure

We agree, this is an opportunity. A seed is only able to grow when under pressure, likewise bricks and mortar retail stores must purposefully consider their next steps as the market ‘pressure’ builds. They must adapt and respond and, we believe, become better, otherwise they will be lost to irrelevance.

There are great examples from around the world were retailers have flourished under the market pressure that Amazon produces (some of which we will look at in this series). Although it doesn’t come about by accident. These companies have focused on key strengths and worked at their customer experience, giving consumers a reason to come and see them rather than purchase solely online.

Over the next couple of weeks at SparkBDM we will be talking about the arrival of Amazon, how the market will change and how local businesses can respond. This will include posts that cover topics and questions such as whether this may be an opportunity for your business, or whether it is a threat that you need to counter. How you can think strategically, develop a customer experience that keeps people coming back and differentiate yourself to succeed in the changing environment.

At SparkBDM we exist to help business people, do business better. Marketing isn’t just about bringing people to your brand, it’s about optimizing everything that you do to build a brand that performs. We want to help you have greater influence, and higher awareness in the market, and speak to a larger crowd of loyal customers and raging fans. Our difference is found in our focus on, and for people. Our passion is to see your people find purpose and meaning in everything that they do, creating memorable interactions with your clients, resulting in business growth and profit.

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