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Amazon Australia has announced it will trial a soft launch of its Australian Marketplace services this week.
It has been reported that Amazon plans to start an internal trial period with a number of pre-selected sellers, starting at 2pm AEDT tomorrow (Thursday, November 22). The online giant has not revealed how many sellers will be part of the test.
Australia manager of Amazon.com.au, Rocco Braeuniger, announced earlier in November that the Australian launch would happen ‘before Christmas’.
Thousands of Australians have already signed up for the Amazon Marketplace initiative and some retail experts have warned that the company’s expansion into Australia could have a severe impact on the retail landscape.
Kristen Buik, Business Advisor at Altitude Advisory, said there was a cautious optimism within small retailers that Amazon Australia was a good thing for the market.
“There is a definite perception that Amazon’s move into Australia brings new opportunities for small retailers but it’s only those who are willing to embrace the benefits that will make a success of it.
“It’s obviously very natural for there to be concern about what this will mean for businesses but, in a sense, it’s just another change that successful businesses will deal with.
“Whether that change is the launch of a new competitor or a change in customer habits, it doesn’t really matter. The crucial thing is that business owners find ways to deal with them, and the best ones will.”
Speaking to Business News Australia, Head of global e-commerce solutions provider SAP Hybris, Stuart O’Neill, said: “Amazon’s launch marks a major shake-up for Australian retailers.
“But there is an upside. Not only does it represent a new, digital outlet for small retailers to reach their audiences, but it will hopefully increase the focus on customer experience across the entire retail industry.”
“Smart retailers know success in this market is achieved by focusing their efforts on their customers not their competition. A recent SAP survey revealed clear demand from Australian consumers for high-quality, seamless and personalised experiences across online and physical stores.”
Phillip Cross, Royce Cross Agencies
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