retail news in context, analysis with attitude

BloomReach is out with a new study concluding that "a rapidly growing number of consumers now go directly to Amazon when they are shopping for products online ... The portion of straight-to-Amazon shoppers, 44 percent, outstrips the percentage who turn to search engines (34 percent) and significantly eclipses the portion who rely on specific retailers’ sites (21 percent)."

The study goes on to say that "Amazon’s piece of the online shopping pie is impressive, but more impressive is the growth in the share of e-commerce search that the Seattle behemoth commands. Just three years ago, Forrester Research put the percentage of shoppers who went directly to Amazon when hunting for products online at 30 percent."

BloomReach reports that "75 percent of consumers said Amazon does the best job of personalizing the shopping experience," that by a 2-1 margin, consumer said "they don’t understand why their favorite retailers don’t offer the same kind of dead-on, personalized experience that the big search engines do," and that just "44 percent of digital retailers see Amazon as their primary threat."

And, the report concludes, "Taken together, BloomReach’s study presents an alarming picture to digital retailers that aren’t named Amazon. But they also point to a path forward; a path paved with creating a relevant, personalized and pleasant experience for shoppers, across all their devices and in brick and mortar stores."
KC's View:
This is the point that I've been trying to make for a while, albeit without specific research to back me up. (I'm more a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of guy. I always say, when people occasionally try to describe me as a futurist, that I'm actually just a decent guesser.)

Amazon's broadest strategic imperative is to make itself the first, best choice for almost everything ... and these numbers suggest that it is succeeding.

As for the personalization issue ... I'd refer you to yesterday's "Innovation Conversation" segment, which you can read here.

For competitors, there is a path forward ... but it ain't gonna be easy.