More delivery innovation, more customisation features, more merchants over a $1m

Uber style map tracker

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Amazon is slowly rolling out a map tracker in the US, This feature gives you a real-time map of your Amazon package delivery as it is in transit, letting you watch a dot on the screen similar to monitoring and incoming Uber driver. It appeals to those Amazon Prime members who obsess about when their parcel is set to arrive. It's also handy as it allows you to pop out for an errand by showing how many stops or deliveries the driver will take before you.

Amazon continues to evolve the ways customers can track their deliveries. Recently these have included taking photos of your front door to alert you when your package has been delivered and Amazon Key, which uses Amazon’s Cloud Cam and smart lock to monitor couriers dropping off deliveries inside your home. Just as retailers start to catch up, Amazon takes another leap forward.

Amazon Custom launches in the UK

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Amazon Custom enables millions of shoppers to customise their products through drop-down lists. Sellers can list products with customisation options available and consumers can select the customisation details required at the point of purchase. You can add text, images or preset customisations for a product e.g. the colour and position of diamonds in a ring. 

By simplifying the customisation process, Amazon is opening up the market for more brands to use customisation alongside variants in their product catalogue. This could be an opportunity to increase sales and average revenue per person. Which items in your catalogue could be customised?

Find out more here: https://services.amazon.co.uk/amazoncustom.html/ref=ac_uk_svs_da_home

The little guys get bigger

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Third-party merchants that sell goods on Amazon are riding high on Amazon’s success — at least for now. This year, 19 percent of Amazon merchants brought in more than $1 million in sales. That’s up from 10 percent in 2017.

These merchants play another important role: They supply Amazon with an almost limitless assortment of goods that make it 'The Everything Store'. Infact, more than half of all items sold on Amazon last quarter came from third-party businesses. This volume accounted for $9.3 billion in revenue, up from $6.4m on the previous quarter last year.

Given the importance of Amazon sellers to their business, I think merchants are safe on the platform for a while yet. And it's good to see them growing in size and value in the face of stiff competition from vendors and Amazon's own brands.