When Jeff Bezos got in front of a national television audience on 60 Minutes the day before Cyber Monday to talk about delivery drones, many people passed it off as a publicity stunt to promote holiday sales. Basically, Amazon got free advertising to help boost sales right before one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
Regardless of whether or not you believe a small aircraft will someday deliver your products to consumers, make no mistake, Amazon dominates online retail. We’re publishing “The Amazon Playbook” early in the new year to examine some of the features and sales tactics that Amazon uses to convert shoppers.
The playbook covers on-site changes that you can make and doesn’t go into other competitive differentiators, such as the ability to change prices millions (that’s millions) of times a day, its “1-Click” trademark, and same-day delivery to select cities.
Then there’s the Kindle, Amazon’s e-reader turned tablet device that launched in 2007, followed by the Fire four years later. About 40% of Amazon customers have a Kindle and shoppers who own one of Amazon’s tablets and e-readers purchase more than 50% more from the retailer than those who don’t, according to new research from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners.
Traffic to Amazon.com from Kindle devices is a goldmine for the retailer, but only 1.47% of website traffic to leading ecommerce websites (not including Amazon) in Q3 2013 came from Kindle users. That’s down from 4.11% last year and is a tiny share of the 15% of all website traffic now coming from tablets,
While Amazon hopes to steer consumers away from purchasing competitive devices, I’m wondering if it would be better off trying a lot harder to sell more Kindles to the 100-plus million monthly visitors to Amazon.com. Amazon shouldn’t really care if it loses the battle against other tablet manufacturers when it comes to shoppers who don’t buy from them.
Winning the tablet war isn’t a good focus for Amazon. Like you, they should focus on relevance, recommending a Kindle to customers who complete an order on another device. Knowing that shoppers using Kindles spend a lot more with them, Amazon can afford to offer its device at a pretty nice discount and make it up on future purchases.