Amazon has radically changed the online retailing landscape. The company that started in a garage and was happy to earn $20,000 per week has achieved unprecedented success after more than 20 years in business. Amazon today has more than 150,000 full-time employees and annual revenue approaching $100 billion.
Largely because of Amazon’s influence, online retailing has exploded, giving rise to many online stores and marketplaces. Amazon has changed the way people shop and sell, revolutionizing standard practices that have been the hallmark of retail business for many years.
Amazon has shaped the online shopping experience and delivery process. Shopping used to require customers to go from one website to another, searching for the best deals. Amazon has been transformed into a one-stop-shop where customers can find anything at the best price, and rush deliver their order with the click of a button.
Before Amazon, people were engaged in catalog shopping. Orders were placed, and the product was mailed to the buyer, with the process taking days or weeks to finish. Amazon has revolutionized the system. Orders placed online can now be delivered as early as the following day – even same day in some cities. This was made possible by the strategic establishment of different fulfillment centers around the country. Instead of a product shipping across the country from New York City to a small town in Utah, it can now ship from the nearest fulfillment center within the state or a neighboring state.
Online sellers used to process and ship their own products, which could take several days. The system has been drastically changed by Amazon’s fulfillment centers, too, where retailers send their products for processing and shipping by Amazon employees… or robots.
Amazon has also been influential in reshaping the country’s business acumen. A number of industries have sprung up to teach people the techniques of online selling through Internet marketing shows and Amazon marketplace workshops, including our own PROSPER Show.