The overall holiday sales numbers for brick and mortar stores are not in yet, but are projected to be a couple of percent lower than last year. This is not good news for the stores — or our economy.
However, contrast that to Amazon, the world’s largest Internet retailer, which reported record holiday sales this year. Consider (according to bloomberg.com) that for Amazon:
- 6.3 million items were ordered on its peak day (Dec. 15)
- 5.6 million items were shipped on its peak day
- 99 percent of goods arrived in time to meet holiday deadlines
Amazon is likely a harbinger for all Internet retailers. Amazon’s success is not to imply that all online retail sites set record sales numbers this holiday season, or even surpassed last year, but it certainly does suggest a trend.
I am a case in point. For my Christmas shopping (as well as my non-Christmas buying) in the past month or so, I purchased much more online than from physical stores. These online excursions included multiple purchases from several Websites; unfortunately, not all of them worked out to my satisfaction or met my expectations — for a few of them, I’m still waiting for problems to be resolved.
Amazon, however, is a consistent, notable exception, having provided me with ease of use, accurate deliveries, and quick shipments — on multiple orders. I recommend them to people looking to buy books (and other products) and also hold them up as an example for other online stores to emulate.
Amazon.com is showing us the future today.
Wordsmith Peter DeHaan is a magazine publisher by day and a writer by night. Visit peterdehaan.com to receive his newsletter, read his blog, or connect on social media.