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Amazon Japan opens online shopping mall

   
1:44 am on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month Best Post Of The Month



Amazon Japan opens online shopping mall [asahi.com]

The Japanese arm of U.S. e-tailer Amazon.com Inc. on Tuesday opened a virtual shopping mall that allows third parties to set up shops on its Web site.

The move will intensify competition with existing shopping malls, such as Rakuten Inc.'s Rakuten Ichiba, the nation's largest online mall, and Yahoo Japan Corp.'s Yahoo! Shopping portal.

Amazon Japan KK had previously focused on selling directly to consumers online.

...

Initially, about 50 companies, including the Hibiya-Kadan flower shop chain and gift retailer Ring Bell Co., will open shops.

Amazon Japan will later extend the invitation to small businesses in local areas.

It's about thime that Amazon Japan got around to doing this. Other shopping portals have done very well in Japan.

3:19 am on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Hi Bill,
You always make the Headlines for these news. Do you think it would be a good idea to open a rakuten/amazon/yahoo shop in English and direct it toward the customers outside Japan. What would be the best way to handle the SEO aspect of this shop.

Any "wise words" from you would be truly appreciated.

8:51 am on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator bill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month Best Post Of The Month



My wisdom is limited today as it's almost Golden Week. ;)

You'd think that someone would have done this already. There are plenty of gaijin here with the talent to do something like that. I guess it would really depend on the goods available. Without the backing of one of the big-name brands it might be difficult to get merchants to sign up though.

We've talked about English SEO in Japan and Asia before, but not in quite some time. That might warrant its own thread though. However, I think that what you're suggesting is a shopping mall with Japanese products targeting the English speaking world in general, right?

10:02 am on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Would that be in any way connected to the AZ JP associates program?
7:07 pm on Apr 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator lifeinasia is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Do you think it would be a good idea to open a rakuten/amazon/yahoo shop in English and direct it toward the customers outside Japan.

Three issues to consider:

1) Size of the market
Is there really a big enough market to support this? Not just the buyers market (people outside Japan wanting to buy the probucts), but also the sellers market (sellers in Japan with the resources to target gaijin- see issues 2 & 3).

2) Language issue
How many of the people setting up Yahoo or Amazon shops have the English ability to make it work? Not just to translate the content on the site, but also handle orders and customer service.

3) International shipping costs
Once you add international shipping costs, it's very hard for most of the merchants to be competitive with stores offering similar products overseas.

[edited by: LifeinAsia at 7:09 pm (utc) on April 27, 2007]