85 – 90% of total worldwide purchases still occur offline. This is an area where many believe the world’s largest online retailer, Amazon, sees as a key area for future growth and a way to reach the holy grail of online retail – same day delivery of products, instant gratification.
Speculation is that Amazon’s plans in the real world would revolve around developing a range of hardware POS (Point – of – sale) solutions for small to medium businesses, giving Amazon access to a wave of new small brick-and-mortar sellers, not previously selling through Amazon due to logistical issues around time and resource to ship orders.
From here Amazon would look to deepen relationships with offline stores by developing software tools to help them keep track of in-store inventory with these stores becoming both customer pickup locations and hubs to support same-day delivery.
The cross over between the real and online worlds could take several formats, first the brick-and-mortar store could send inventory direct to Amazon.com to allow them to fulfil shipping, for others Amazon may give shoppers in the general area of the store other options to get their hands on the product on the same day, such paying for or simply reserving the product then collecting from the store or even have the goods delivered directly from the store on the same day.
Whatever Amazons plans are they are likely to once again be a game changer for the way the retail world works both online and off.