Miya Knights, Co-author, Amazon: “Shaping the Future of Retail”

 In Retail Store

The Amazon Experience

What TCG stakeholders should learn …

Miya Knights, Co-Author of a to be published book on Amazon is delivering a presentation at the summit entitled, “What TCG stakeholders should learn from Amazon”. We asked her to give us a little foretaste of what we’ll be hearing…

My presentation will examine the huge impact of Amazon on the retail industry, and the TCG sector, in particular. This is because the reasons for Amazon’s success are emblematic of several technology-enabled drivers. I will outline these drivers because they are precisely those that traditional retail and manufacturing models fail to accommodate: namely related to customer engagement, ecommerce and digital ecosystem development, supply chain strategy & seamless fulfilment, and what this all means for the store of the future.

Are there things Amazon could learn from some of the retailers present?

Of course, yes. I believe retailers, and manufacturers too, could learn a lot from each other, just as traditional bricks and mortar operators can learn from online- only pureplay specialists and vice versa.

Amazon’s acquisition this year of Whole Foods is evidence of this, proving that even it recognises the importance of having a physical retail presence. There are certain customer-facing and operational advantages the retail store has over online that it needs if it is to sustain its current rate of growth.

This is why the concept of “omnichannel” retailing has retained its relevance for so long, beyond being just a buzzword – it captures the fact that consumers do not see channels, they are “channel blind”. Whether it is online or instore, customers only see the product or service, its brand and the retailer selling it. So, retailers have an advantage over Amazon in understanding the efficiencies of scale that can be gained from managing a multichannel supply chain to serve omnichannel customers.

What will be the key “take-aways” from your talk?

Your question about Amazon learning from the retailers that attend the event is very apt here. The TCG retailers and manufacturers that attend my talk will hopefully learn a lot more about Amazon’s retail strategy through an examination of its strategic ambitions, and successes and failures, as well as how to apply the same thinking where relevant to their own businesses. This will also help highlight those areas where Amazon’s ambitions are most likely to impact their own business strategies into the future, as well as how they can and should respond in shaping their digital transformation strategies now.

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