Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s soccer takes complete control in 3-1 win vs. DavidsonFlurry of late goals make it interesting, but UMass had control the whole time in 3-1 win -

September 25, 2017

Shaughnessy Naughton speaks on STEM professionals in politics -

September 25, 2017

ESPN author and journalist talks sports and mental health at UMass -

September 25, 2017

UMass men’s soccer remains unbeaten at home -

September 25, 2017

Minutewomen split Pennsylvania trip -

September 25, 2017

Kozlowski’s minutes limited for second straight game in loss versus Fordham -

September 25, 2017

Late penalty-kick goal not enough vs. Rams -

September 25, 2017

UMass football nearly upends Tennessee Saturday in 17-13 loss -

September 25, 2017

A conversation with the Pixies’ Joey Santiago -

September 25, 2017

The problem with peer mentors -

September 25, 2017

Jukebox the Ghost take Northampton by storm -

September 25, 2017

Let them eat cake -

September 24, 2017

Three weeks in, and two UMass fraternities under suspension -

September 23, 2017

UMPD crime alert informs campus of motor vehicle theft near Rudd Field Sept. 17 -

September 22, 2017

‘It’ has revitalized the modern monster movie -

September 21, 2017

UMass Republicans feel ostracized in political climate -

September 21, 2017

Irma hits Cuba, putting rain cloud over students’ study abroad plans -

September 21, 2017

UMass football travels to Tennessee for its first Power Five game of 2017 -

September 21, 2017

UMass women’s soccer looks ahead to Thursday matchup with Davidson -

September 21, 2017

Perussault and the Minutewomen are ready for the start of A-10 play -

September 21, 2017

Amazon dominates world market

(Collegian File Photo)

Recently, online superstore Amazon has been establishing itself as a strong contender in the competition for customers. Shoppers can’t resist the low prices, free shipping and returns and the quick buying process Amazon offers.

As a result, brick-and-mortar stores are suffering—and this may be just what the retail giant planned all along.

Amazon has been on the hunt for more businesses to take over, with the newest addition to its collection being Whole Foods. After finding less than satisfactory profits from its online grocery store, AmazonFresh, the company pursued a deal with Whole Foods. This buy allows Amazon  to become a major leader in the produce market, as well as increase its brick-and-mortar locations.

President Trump expressed his disapproval of Amazon’s actions via Twitter, stating:

“Amazon is doing great damage to tax paying retailers. Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt – many jobs being lost!” –@realDonaldTrump.

Indeed, lost jobs are a concern, as ecommerce is credited with putting department stores out of business. One hundred and eighty Sears and Kmart stores have closed their doors this year, and more locations are scheduled to follow suit in the near future. This past June, Sears reported 400 employee layoffs. The retailer also plans to start selling some of its products on Amazon, perhaps in an effort to stay relevant.

However, there are major draws to doing business online instead of in store. Labor costs decrease drastically, as there is no need for hourly sales associates. Ecommerce also eradicates the risk of financial losses due to product theft, along with expensive space rentals in shopping malls.

Not to mention the major appeal of convenience brought to customers by Amazon. Younger generation’s affliction for online shopping has steadily increased alongside social media and online usage in general. According to Forbes Magazine, millennials are actively changing the way online shopping is done both on the go and at home.

On the other hand, Amazon’s continued success will depend on consumers’ buying habits. Some research suggests ambiguity in millennials’ shopping habits, due to the fact that some prefer to shop at physical stores rather than on the internet. This is because of the desire to try clothing on or see other items in person to determine value.

And while shoppers do browse the aisles of stores, they often take out their phones and price check products against other vendors to find the best bargain. One go-to source for consumers is, you guessed it: Amazon.

If customers discover the same item, or even a similar one, on Amazon for a lower price, they will obviously opt for the cheapest one, which has recently generated some controversy as big name stores fight to compete with Amazon’s affordable prices. For all sakes and purposes Amazon is upping the ante.

An issue Amazon faces is complaints about quality. Not every vendor on the site is reputable or trustworthy, and customers have complained about receiving products that look nothing like their photos. Because Amazon is online, shoppers often do not have the option of viewing the product, aside from the often idealistic photos, before buying them.

This is another issue Amazon has set out to eradicate in their “try before you buy” initiative that applies to Prime members. According to CNN tech, Amazon members subscribed to their Prime service are able to try “three or more items” in their ‘Prime Wardrobe Box’ before they officially keep or purchase the items. This helps to eliminate some buyers’ discontent around disproportionate or disappointing final products.

At the end of the day, there’s no doubt about Amazon’s economic prowess and moves towards becoming somewhat of a monopolistic powerhouse in the current economy, much to some big department and grocery stores’ demise.

Tiffany Khu can be reached at tkhuu@umass.edu.

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