Amazon Go: Bridging Mobile Apps and Storefronts

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Yesterday, Amazon announced Amazon Go, “a new kind of store with no checkout required”. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, you definitely should.

Traditionally, e-commerce and mobile applications are seen as alternatives or complements to the physical storefronts they serve. But Amazon Go is different – you can’t have one without the other. Think of a Zipcar like application. You can’t access the merchandise unless you have the app and an account established. And that merchandise is no longer in some warehouse ready to be shipped; its already in store.

What’s interesting with Amazon Go is that Amazon is committing to physical storefronts in a very competitive grocery industry. They are banking on the convenience factor (and their reputation) to really drive traffic and adoption. Is there anyone really more trusted with regards to e-commerce and m-commerce than Amazon?

Groceries are essentials that everyone needs. And this isn’t the first mobile application that has been used to help create convenience in this area. Peapod, Walmart, Instacart, etc. are all examples of companies with digital applications aimed at making shopping for groceries easier. In South Korea, the popular grocery chain, Tesco, has been leading the virtual supermarket industry for some time by allowing people to shop for groceries in popular places like subway stations by simply capturing QR codes on public billboards and advertisements.

But Amazon Go is different – this is a true marriage of both the physical world and m-commerce. Food is one of those goods that you want to see and touch before you buy, especially with proteins, produce, etc. Starbucks and Panera have made huge strides with their convenient order ahead applications and this convenient grab-and-go expeience in a grocery environment is worth monitoring as it could pave the way for a new retail experience for years to come.

Check out the Amazon Go video here:

Source: Amazon Go

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