Close
 

Expert advice for Amazon's arrival

  • News
  • January 18, 2018
  • Sarah Dunn
Expert advice for Amazon's arrival

As part of a recent feature series on Amazon's Australian launch, our panel of retail experts -  Massey University’s Professor Jonathan Elms; Sell Global’s Hamish Conway and Retail X’s Juanita Neville-Te Rito – each offered detailed advice on how retailers should adapt their offering to be more resilient against the Amazon effect. 

We’ve compiled it into these handy bulletpoints.

  • Make sure you have a point of difference, whether that’s a unique product or a stand-out retail offer.
  • Have your own ecommerce platforms and keep them well-maintained.
  • Concentrate on customer experience. Make sure your physical stores are modern and fit for purpose, and invest in developments that will let you create an in-store experience that can’t be replicated online.
  • Staff training, particularly in customer services, is vital as it feeds into both your brand-building and the customer’s perception of your physical offering.
  • Build your direct marketing relationship with customers. This means developing and retaining a good understanding of your customers and what makes them tick.
  • Invest in integrated clicks and bricks strategies that connect your store and online platform seamlessly.
  • Engage directly with Amazon by setting up a marketplace shopfront, but only if you’re willing to take the project seriously and execute it competently. Those who don’t have the resources to research deeply and commit to the project are be better off not bothering.

But what do members of New Zealand's retail scene think of Amazon's potential arrival?

Booksellers NZ: Describing Kiwi booksellers as “looking nervously towards Australia”, the organisation called for shoppers to think local on NZ Bookshop Day, October 28.

“It is more important than ever to remember what you love about your local bookshop, and why it is you need it in your life,” urged chief executive Lincoln Gould.

Briscoe Group: In the homewares and sports gear retailer’s 2017 interim report for the period ending 30 July 2017, chair Rosanna Meo and group managing director Rod Duke linked the threat of Amazon to a general environment of competition:

“The competitive environment has remained intense. Some smaller retailers have gone into receivership; others are looking to divest non-core assets and focus on revitalising their primary retail businesses. Amazon’s expansion into Australia will ensure that retailing remains tough, and successful retailers will be those who continue to offer compelling propositions to their customers. We believe that our mix of retail and product brands, our low cost base and our ability to respond quickly to market changes positions us well as we move forward.”

Visa: When The Register spoke with Visa’s country manager for New Zealand and the South Pacific, Marty Kerr, in August, he had recently returned from a visit to Sydney. He confirmed that retailers there signaled concern about Amazon’s recent entry into Australia: “There’s a lot of nervousness about the unknown in the Australian market.”

Kerr himself was optimistic about the ability of Australian and New Zealand retailers to weather the storm of Amazon’s arrival. He sees price, fulfillment and a frictionless customer experience as Amazon’s key differentiators, “but they haven’t got a monopoly on it. No way.”
Customers seeking a transactional experience will come to Amazon, but some will want a more tailored, human kind of shopping interaction, Kerr predicted: “That’s a huge opportunity for New Zealand retailers.”

Trade Me: In an interview with NZ Retail, Trade Me chief executive Jon Macdonald credited Trade Me’s urgency towards growth and improvement to the imminent arrival of Amazon, but said being a local company which knows its customers well gave Trade Me an edge.

“I personally, and we collectively here, operate with a healthy degree of paranoia. I think it would be dangerous and eventually fatal for us to be complacent. Inherently that means there is a degree of worry, you need to maintain your urgency and I think Facebook and Amazon have been helpful in one sense; helping to galvanise everyone we have here in terms of the work we have got to get done.”

He also praised Amazon for its ability to grow online as a whole, both in New Zealand and overseas, noting that its arrival may not be without its benefits.

“It’s not going to be a scene out of Terminator Two, where Amazon arrives crushing all of our charred skulls into the ground. There is room for us all, and I’m very confident that we can continue to grow and succeed. Having that level of urgency is an important part of us being able to do that.”




This story originally appeared in NZ Retail magazine issue 753 December 2017 / January 2018.

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

 

First Looks: Inside the VIP Krispy Kreme opening

  • News
  • February 23, 2018
  • Courtney Devereux
First Looks: Inside the VIP Krispy Kreme opening

The Register was lucky enough to be invited to the VIP opening of Krispy Kreme’s first New Zealand store. The opening included a tour of the new distribution centre and even a make-your-own doughnut experience.

Read more
 
 

Junk and Disorderly pops up in Ponsonby Central

  • News
  • February 23, 2018
Junk and Disorderly pops up in Ponsonby Central

Junk and Disorderly is the latest pop-up installment to come to Ponsonby Central. The space is a showcase of some collected pieces by the owners who wish to share the message of the store – the art of doing what you love.

Read more
 
 
 
topics
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
Sisterhood
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...
 
 
 

Sneak a peek inside the February/March issue of NZ Retail magazine

  • News
  • February 23, 2018
  • The Register team
Sneak a peek inside the February/March issue of NZ Retail magazine

The latest issue of The Register's print magazine, NZ Retail, is winging its way to subscribers right now. This time, we focus on how poor waste minimisation is sending retailers slip-sliding away from consumers' good books; how to make Amazon work for you; new developments to watch across New Zealand; and retail's top five fastest-growing categories.

Read more
 
 
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise
The Register

editor@theregister.co.nz

Content marketing/advertising? Email anita@tangiblemedia.co.nz or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit

}