The problem is that a lot of young climbers are ised to using Amazon for everything and aren't aware of the problem.
In the climbing worls, "Amazon kills people" is a common mantra.
Oh, that one.
I thought AWS is fairly successful also for HN users.
They could run proper retail for B2B if they wanted as well.
I shudder to think what kind of “lessons” are being learned by all of those college grads that go work for Amazon.
Let's say you're selling Tickets to Ride on Marketplace (counterfeit products are common for board games). You send 100 copies to Amazon, now customers can buy those from you.
I also sell Ticket to Ride on Marketplace! But I'm a cheap bastard so I send 100 counterfeit copies from China, with lower quality (off-centered chips, cheap prints, etc.)
Instead of sending your copies to your customers, and my copies to my customers, they'll dump all of our copies all together and send a random copy to each customer.
That means that any customer can receive counterfeit copies. You can't even trust a given vendor, or Amazon, because all the copies are mixed up.
I guess some manager got his yearly bonus for lowering expenses to next bottom, and who cares about the future because f*k 'ya all.
It makes a lot of sense if everyone's on the up and up. That way you ship 20 units from Vendor A to NJ to cover the NYC metropolitan region for both vendor A and B.
Not at big deal as it was a cheap part - but it was the final straw.
NB I'm not anti Amazon by any means - I'm a long time Audible subscriber, use my Kindle pretty much every day and I pay for Prime Video. Wouldn't buy anything electrical from them again though.
In the US, retailers always said Amazon was cheating by avoiding sales tax. The real competitive advantage they have is avoiding all of the legal liability of the products being sold.
Here's some examples: https://youtu.be/8B12EfGArME
At some point you trust Amazon and don't care that Walmart might have a certain item $3.70 cheaper...win some, lose some is the rationale but "Amazon is cool"
Walmart at least tries. They don't succeed, but they've at least they try.
In countries with strong brand manufacturing interests, notably Italy and France, it can be very expensive if they catch you with that 50$ "Bolex" watch from Bangkok, or with fake LV gear. Fines can go into the 1000s of Euros.
They can't shield you from the disappointment of having been duped with a counterfeit, or the hassle of the resolution process itself.
You can search for foo bar on amazon.de, get some search results, one of them is from a seller in China for a product whose name whose name and function resembles foo bar. The photos may look good enough to tempt you but the text doesn't say that it is foo bar.
You and I have had very different experiences with Amazon. I am not sure where this sentiment is coming from, I have literally never seen "fake" products on there. I appreciate that there are obviously some bad actors on that site re-selling stuff, but I cannot say I have experienced them and I use Amazon a fair amount.
Do you have some examples?
and here's some from when Apple took them court for > 90% "Apple" products being fake: https://www.forbes.com/consent/?toURL=https://www.forbes.com...
I'll put it this way you'd be mad to buy something like medicine from Amazon...
If you want to sell something online you can do it in any number of places, and you can do it yourself (and fairly painlessly). If you want to buy something online, you can go to any number of retailers. You can get an Echo from Best Buy if you want, and you can get towels delivered from Walmart etc etc.
Ditto cloud computing, of course -- it's an incredibly competitive market.
Amazon does have large market impact and can (in a practical sense) exert market pressure. That's obviously a dangerous position for everyone to be in, but it's far from monopoly and it's also (afaik) well within the bounds of (American) law. As I understand things, US antitrust laws are all about abuse of market position, not just the existence of a dominant position.
* Amazon is operating in the marketplace model, not just in the conventional e-commerce model. This means their inventory can be MUCH BIGGER than anyone else's with FAR LOWER operating risks. This is what is worrying Grainger and others.
* Also worth noting that Amazon has more or less given up on product quality and instead, chosen to focus on Fulfillment and Supply Chain quality. With a marketplace model, that could lead to major headaches (while still giving the B2B buyer perfect delivery and a great price!).
Like Grainger, they used to be well-curated sub-sites where you could do your parametric sorting and filtering to drill down to "the" O-ring or other part you needed. But also like Grainger, they've fallen behind on their curatorial efforts and now it's more difficult to locate the right part among all the noise.
To supply a B2B part like an O-ring, you need to categorize it. You need to ask every. single. distributor. the same set of questions - composition, diameter, thickness, firmness, temperature rating, oil resistance, etc. Then allow your users to parametrically search and sort to drill down to the part(s) they need.
Digikey has this internalized - If you're building a web store, go to Digikey and pretend you're an electrical engineer. Find, say, a 22k surface-mount resistor in an 0603 package, 0.1W or greater, cut tape form factor, in stock, 5% tolerance. Boom, done. Now find that on Amazon. Allow a customer to come to your site with a list of requirements who wants to find a product on your site and try to make it as easy as it is on Digikey.
Ebay does not have parametric search internalized, nor does Craigslist - but they're much more seller-focused than Amazon. Grainger does not, and they're loosing business because of it. McMaster Carr curates their offering down to one distributor, which makes it really easy for me, but is a rather hamfisted way to solve the problem. Still, I'll always start my search for McMaster-supplied stuff on McMaster. Alibaba does not. Newegg used to, but they're losing the curation battle as they follow Amazon's model of 3rd-party distributors listing whatever they want whereever they want. Amazon does not have this internalized.
Amazon has been trying to have their cake and eat it too: They want to provide a curated section of their site that's easy for customers, and want to make it easy for sellers to sign up and list products. If you require each part to go through an onboarding process and fit somewhere in the hierarchy, you increase the friction massively for sellers. As a customer, I really wish that they would do so everywhere. If they want to just do this for the subset of customers that aren't willing to sort through the mess, but still allow vendors to come in droves with poor-quality categorization, it will still be hard to use and people will choose specialized distributors that are willing to do the work.