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At Pandemic Christmas, US rivals aim to challenge Amazon under the tree

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November 20, 2020

Walmart Inc, Best Buy Co Inc, and hundreds of small retailers want to challenge Amazon.com Inc’s dominance as a seller of holiday gifts to homebound shoppers. Is strengthening.

The new service aims to remove some of the hassle from gifts. This feature allows consumers to buy gifts online and deliver them to recipients, for example, with retailers who handle receipts that do not display wrapping, personal messages, or gift prices. ..

Amazon rivals will spend millions of dollars cutting off online excellence, processing orders faster, expanding product catalogs, and in some cases offering free shipping and subscription services It was made. However, during the first holiday sale season when the coronavirus was widespread, attention was focused on the gifting of gifts, a battlefield that has been overlooked.

Consumers flocked to Wal-Mart and other retailers early in the pandemic when Amazon was sometimes late in delivering essentials, including toilet paper. Today, Amazon’s competitors are looking at another opportunity to gain market share.

“This is an area of ​​opportunity that small or large retailers can differentiate, given that most consumers will be shopping online this year,” said before establishing retail analytics startup Gradient. Bobby Figueroa, who worked in Amazon’s advertising retail department, said.

On October 28, Walmart.com added a “Gift” label to hundreds of thousands of US product pages, including toilet paper. This is a status that was not previously displayed until checkout. Gifted means that Wal-Mart can not only send gift receipts, but shoppers can customize their email greetings. We also hide the manufacturer’s packaging and ship it in a box.

Wal-Mart has already given up gifts since last year and increased its inventory of laptops, loungewear and exercise equipment before the holidays. For the first time, shoppers can specifically search only for gifted items.

In mid-October, BestBuy.com added the option of gift receipts with store receipts. We also allowed shoppers to arrange a best buy to email a congratulatory greeting to the gift recipient on the day the item was delivered.

This year, Estee Lauder Companies Inc will use startup SmartGift technology to give shoppers the option to designate cosmetics and other items as gifts and allow recipients to choose colors, sizes and scents before shipping. Added to 5 websites.

According to industry analyst Coresight Research, Americans will spend $ 160 billion this quarter on gifts, increasing the savings of skipping outings to celebrate Christmas and other New Year holidays by 5% from a year ago.

Adobe Inc’s e-commerce software unit, Magento, expects Americans to ship 67% more holiday gifts than they did a year ago and 18% more recipients as travel is restricted.

However, Coresight expects Amazon.com to capture 18% of gift purchases and 7.2% of total US retail sales, from 14% of gift purchases and 5.6% of total sales in 2019.

As the entire e-commerce industry thrives in a pandemic, Amazon maintains its advantage. Amazon product sales increased 32% through September this year, almost 2.5 times that of the same period last year.

As an early start to holiday shopping, we postponed the annual sales event “Prime Day” from July to October and just before the release of the annual guide for gift candidates. The guide, which includes a new section of items from small businesses and black-owned businesses, was the largest in Amazon history.

The company has long provided basic gift features. Shipping gift wrap costs a few dollars. You can print a free message of up to 240 characters per item on your black and white gift receipt. A year ago, we started offering email gift receipts for some items.

Mysterious sender

However, some consumers have the ability for Amazon to specify delivery dates and gift wrap colors, enter shipping addresses for recipients, and send gift messages via text, video, or physical cards. , I’m dissatisfied with not offering other options.

“Gifts at Amazon are completely broken,” said Lawrence Greenberg, 54, a financial planner in New Hope, Pennsylvania. He said that in the last three years four gift recipients have not noticed the printed gift message or will buy it elsewhere if possible after receiving it. Just last month, the client was confused for two weeks about who sent the cocktail glass until Greenberg asked.
Amazon said its gift feature remains popular.

Charlotte’s Jeff Jordan, 33, plans to ship items purchased from Amazon three times this month, wrap gifts and reship. He lost confidence in Amazon last year when he wrapped a gadget for his parents in a gray plastic sleeve with a small gift tag and a bunch of tissue paper.

Amazon apologized and refunded, but Jordan said, “I learned his lesson.”

© Thomson Reuters 2020 All rights reserved.

At Pandemic Christmas, US rivals aim to challenge Amazon under the tree

Source link At Pandemic Christmas, US rivals aim to challenge Amazon under the tree

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