I remember the day, and it wasn’t that long ago in all honesty, when Amazon was nothing more than an online bookshop. Since then they have grown exponentially into somewhat of an online department store selling everything from books to clothes, PC’s, Televisions, they even have their own Amazon MP3 Download Store to compete against the Apple iTunes store. Pretty much anything you want within reason you can get from Amazon. Heck, they even launched Javari earlier this year their dedicated shoe shop. Who would have thought it? Well, now they’re taking another step into the unknown with their online grocery shopping service.
The Amazon Grocery Store not a new website, more a subsection of the current site at Amazon.co.uk. Under the heading ‘Grocery & Gourmet’ Amazon are clearly attempting to portray themselves as a quality grocery outlet, not like your local cheap, bargain store (not naming names). The prices certainly reflect this as well with hot chocolate setting you back an extortionate £12.99. Either this is some feeble, pretentious attempt at rivalling some of the more exclusive food stores, or it really is the top banana so to speak.
The site itself is supposedly still in beta, though I think it is clear that that is merely an excuse in case of a failure. The site is there to be used by the public and features a huge variety of groceries from all the major brands such as Walkers, Kenco and Cadbury Krafts.
The section is laid out in an identical fashion to the rest of the site as you would expect so users familiar with Amazon should have no issues getting to grips with ordering shopping. Plus, Amazon offer unlimited next day delivery for £49 a year. Seems like a fair deal to me considering how much is being delivered compared the ludicrous prices of some deliveries of CD’s or DVD’s from various places (again, not naming names) – although obviously some might say that price is a little harsh given you can get free Amazon SuperSaver delivery over £5.
So is it wise for Amazon, still a small time online book retailers at heart, to go head on into such a congested market place? Is it just a step too far for one of the worlds largest e-commerce companies? It’s not just in store that the likes of Tesco dominate with an increasing number of people turning to the web to order their groceries in this hectic day and age where people have no time for wandering up and down aisle after aisle.
There have been various examples in the past where companies have simply tried to achieve beyond their means. A prime example in recent months has to be Woolworths. Standing strong for the best part of a century dealing in the bits and bobs, the conveniences, tried to take on the superstores and ultimately, tragically collapsed with a whimper, although they have now been resurrected as an online business.
For the sake of myself and the millions of other Amazon shoppers, let’s hope Amazon’s latest offering or grocery products is successful as competitor into this market which has such a good track record with customer service, must surely be a good thing.
What do you think to Amazon’s Grocery Store? Will you be trying them out for your grocery shopping? It certainly beats walking down to the shops in the worst of the British weather that we sometimes get!