The greatest Amazon trends of 2018

The greatest Amazon trends of 2018

Last year, Jeff Bezose’s marketplace had its most successful year yet, and it is expected that this year Amazon will grow in both; turnover and market value. This will result in innovation which should be of particular interest to the retailers in this gigantic marketplace. Here are some of the main trends, predictions and news. How does selling on Amazon look like in 2018?

Amazon in numbers:

  • Amazon, the largest online marketplace in the world, exceeded $ 170 billion in 2017, confirming the leading role of global e-commerce. In the last two years, Amazon has almost doubled in size and is the world’s number one in terms of turnover (in terms of sales, Amazon is number two behind Alibaba Group).
  • Amazon operates in the USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, China, India, the Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and Mexico and it sells to 200 countries worldwide. Amazon has warehouses in more than 100 countries.
  • The most sold goods in 2017 were Books and Movies (increase of 61% from last year), Electronics (54%), House and Garden (44%), Cosmetics and Personal Care (44%).
  • What are the main characteristics of the consumers? Consumers tend to be brief and concise when searching for products. Nearly half access the page from mobile device. When skimming through search results, a total of 42 % of users do not move past the first page. More than three quarters (76 %) of Amazon users use Amazon full-text search to search for goods, only minimum comes from Google search. 59 % of users read the description before purchasing, 39 % read the description only occasionally. Nine out of ten shoppers would not buy a product with rating of three or less stars (source).

And what steps can we expect AMAZON to take in 2018?

1. Expanding to other countries and competing with Alibaba

Amazon consolidates its preferential position in the global e-commerce market and this year it will challenge the competing Alibaba, but also FlipKart, MercadoLibre as well as other e-commerce players. We have seen in the past that wherever Amazon sees opportunity, there it heads. This year’s big fight is about India, where Amazon’s growth is two-thirds faster than the one of its rivals – Chinese Alibaba and local Flipkart and Snapdeal. Just before Christmas, with possible intention to make locals cringe in the most hectic period of the year, Amazon entered the Australian continent.

Mexico is also considered to become a promising player. The attractiveness of the market with more than 600 million inhabitants could not have long escaped Amazon. At present, Amazon Mexico is the largest local retailer. The big news from Amazon which was announced in October last year is Brazil. The strategic move of Amazon now allows for the sale of electronics via Brazil to all of Latin America. In 2018, Amazon is looking for a large warehouse in the vicinity of Sao Paulo, where it plans on securing its entry to the continent.

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2. Logistic upgrades. Will there be drones?

Could we get the delivery in couple of hours from making the order in the near future? Will Amazon deliver the goods via drones? It is all possible and Amazon is one of those companies to dabble the transport by drones.

“Fast delivery is one of Amazon’s main competitive advantages, and it’s goal is the same day delivery in all of the countries,” says Amazon expert Jeremy Biron from Forecastly. The same day delivery already works in some of Amazon’s warehouses.

In 2018, we expect more emphasis on Amazon’s own logistics services (at the expense of services such as FedEx and UPS, which are now part of the sophisticated Amazon structure).

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3. Amazon Prime challenges Netflix

Amazon Prime service became the flagship of Amazon. Imagine one year VIP subscription service which includes next day delivery free of charge as well as premium entry to Amazon’s database of latest books and movies. This Netflix alternative is used by 90 million subscribers in the US only, and in 2018 Amazon is focusing on supporting this service in India, Australia and other emerging markets. “In 2017, more members joined the Amazon Prime than any other year before, all over the world. Newly, among others, from the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Singapore. Together, we have distributed more than 5 billion products,” said former Amazon Prime VP Greg Greeley.

4. Virtual Alexa aka voice ordering

Alexa, Amazon’s Virtual Assistant, is a clever round device equipped with seven microphones. It searches for information and can interconnect with more than 4,000 household appliances and other digital tools. Jeff Bezos himself is betting on Alexa as Amazon’s black horse. “The 2017 Forecast for Innovation and Sales has not only been met, the end result exceeded our expectations. Now, we are getting to the next step, when other companies are connecting their technologies to Alexa.”

Alexa makes the very experience of shopping on Amazon revolutionary. You can do a voice search, add to a cart and even make an order, all of those talking to the device. Alexa tells you where your order is and when will it arrive. You can also ask Alexa about discounts which are being regularly updated. Interest in Alexa, which is still being developed by Amazon, is ever increasing. Only during the Christmas season tens of millions were sold. “People order another Alexa by talking to Alexa,” joked CNBC broadcasters.

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5. Better Cell Phone Shopping Experience

The number of mobile shoppers (41% in 2017) will soon go over 50 %. Most of Amazon’s mobile purchases go through the Amazon mobile app, which is the most popular phone app at the age group of 20-34 years. That is why Amazon has decided to improve the customer’s journey. Retailers will be able to optimize templates and texts on their mobile interface to provide mobile users with a better experience (which will most likely result in purchases).

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6. Amazon The Advertising Giant

Selling on Amazon is an enormous opportunity. “On average, eshop revenues from marketplaces will bring 10-20 % more sales from new customers,” says Jiri Cerny from EXPANDO global. The company helps online stores expand their businesses abroad, especially through Amazon. To make it a little more difficult for the online stores, Amazon keeps its own algorithm for displaying search results. “Amazon’s advertising options are limited, and although they will be expanding, you have to know how to act as a retailer on Amazon for Amazon to favor you,” says Jiri, who consults online businesses how to increase sales on Amazon. You will know immediately that Amazon pushed you up in the search results – just check your daily increase in orders.

Around globe, it is spent almost $ 200 million a year on Amazon’s PPC campaigns. Retailers’ ever increasing interest in becoming more visible online will result in Amazon becoming more of an advertising giant. The forerunner can be ‘Headline Search Ads’, which will display your merchandise above search results based on keyword relevance.

Bottom line is that Amazon is already doing a lot of things in 2018, including news that concerns sellers in Australia. We will report more on the EXPANDO blog on a regular basis.

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