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Amazon Reports Best Holiday Season Yet

     
6:32 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Amazon Reports Best Holiday Season Yet [reuters.com]
Online retailer Amazon.com Inc on Friday reported its best holiday sales season yet, even as sales and traffic at U.S. store chains were the weakest in decades, sending its shares up nearly 4 percent.

Analysts have pointed to Amazon as a rare bright spot in this year's holiday shopping season due to its scale and flexibility, as retailers try to outdo each other with deep discounts to lure consumers during a recession.

Online sales were also helped by winter storms that hit large sections of the United States on the last major shopping weekend before Christmas.

Some bright cheer in the retail sector, eh!

7:57 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I was doing some research today on a variety of topics and Google had Amazon parked in the first five on every search. Is it a wonder with all that free (maybe) advertising they would come out ahead. Smells almost like a bank bailout.
8:01 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I had dinner over the holidays with an Amazon employee. We spoke in general terms, but what he did tell me pointed to a pretty dynamic company. They're apparently very focussed on monetizing everything and also very focussed on watching the bottom line for everything. A lot of large companies seem to have a lot of waste, I got the impression that the 'waste' expenditures at amazon were probably in line with what you'd expect from a small tighly run company instead of a large company.

In other words, they may be doing well because they're sharp.

8:06 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I used them for gift cards for my mods, and for a new (refurb) for my parents.

Amazon is easy to use and good prices. Glad to hear they are doing well.

8:15 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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That's an awful lot of free advertising for Amazon, in the natural results, to overlook whether it be earned or not. If too many key players in the online world go downhill Google knows their fate is tied to them. It takes one hand to wash the other.

[edited by: lorax at 5:19 pm (utc) on Dec. 31, 2008]
[edit reason] fixed character [/edit]

9:03 pm on Dec 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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That's an awful lot of free advertising for Amazon, in the natural results,

Only if you consider good SEO to be free, or even cheap. In many ways they pay a lot to rank where they do: affiliates, offering incentives for customers to write content, PR stunts, etc etc. I'd be astonished if that list doesn't include a few talented in-house SEOs.

I can't help feeling that the collapse of Woolworths and Zavvi in the UK is directly related to their inability to compete in online sales with companies like Amazon.

[edited by: lorax at 5:19 pm (utc) on Dec. 31, 2008]
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12:17 am on Dec 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I can't help feeling that the collapse of Woolworths and Zavvi in the UK is directly related to their inability to compete in online sales with companies like Amazon.

Many smaller entities are falling prey to companies like Amazon. I've been watching the History Channel lately and they just had a Biography on WalMart. That WalMart is one small/medium sized business eating machine.

Amazon is the same. Retailers just need to capitalize on where Amazon may fail.

2:00 am on Dec 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Niche stores actually do better when a walmart moves in near them, or so I've rad.

I wouldn't take on either walmart or amazon as 'general' specialists. But take them on in a niche? In a heartbeat. Amazon simply can't be the top of their class against a bookstore that specializes in romance novels only, or sci-fi novels, and so on. If you know one niche really really well, you can compete against them in your niche. (I've competed against them successfully in the past by knowing the idiosyncracies of my niche.)

Same goes for the web. Don't need everybody, just a little slice of it :).

4:47 pm on Dec 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I can only dream of having 6.3 million orders in one day.

"Imma get on this TV momma!"

6:54 pm on Dec 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

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From the same article...
However, the company gave no financial details regarding the sales, such as how its margins fared with the discounts seen across the retail sector.

So all we know is that they shipped a ton of product.

Without profit/loss/margin numbers it carries a lot less weight.

Maybe all they're saying is that they lost more money than ever this holiday season, who knows?

Might not be anything to really brag about.

 

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