Amazon as a boring retailer putting a new coat of paint onto practices that have been around for ages: white labels, private labels, loss leaders, etc. – just took guts to make it work online with …

I sometimes think that if you could look in the safe behind Jeff Bezos’s desk, instead of the sports almanac from Back to the Future you’d find an Encyclopedia of Retail, written in maybe 1985. There would be Post-It notes on every page, and every one of those notes has been turned into a team or a product.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.ben-evans.com

WHY IT MATTERS: I’ve been playing around with retailers for 24 years trying to convince them to sell online via eCommerce. Most push back because of the cost, the tools, the change it requires in processes and people. It is much simpler and more reassuring to apply existing best practices (a coupon here, a discount there) and not change much. Short term, returns are better, profits remain, shareholders are happy and everyone gets their bonus. This short article reminds us that Amazon has not reinvented the wheel, just built it with a new kind of material.

Farid Mheir
farid@mheir.com