With Amazon entering the Australian market, Appliances Online founder, John Winning, says the company isn’t too fussed. In fact, he says he welcomes it. It all comes down to having a solid business model, according to the CEO.
One week ago Amazon finally broke its silence about its Australian plans, and confirmed it will be rolling out its online emporium locally over the next few years, which will be the e-commerce giant’s first full-fledged retail offering in the southern hemisphere.
Amazon has made promises of cheaper prices to Australian consumers, as well as faster delivery times and access to a greater range of products, which will include groceries, and yes appliances!
Last month, The New York Times reported that Amazon is also exploring ways to sell appliances and furniture, two merchandise categories that traditionally consumers are more reluctant to buy online.
I’m not going to lie – if I were an online appliance retailer in Australia, I’d be on guard. But Appliances Online’s chief executive John Winning says it’s quite the contrary. Either that, or he’s playing his cards close to his chest.
Winning says that it’s only those retailers who have existing problems with their business models that need to be concerned with Amazon’s announcement to launch its full suite of services in Australia. In fact, he says he welcomes their arrival.
“We welcome Amazon’s entry into the Australian market. I think the only retailers that need to be concerned are those that have a problem with their existing business model.”
Australian owned and operated Appliances Online prides itself on its strong customer service offering and says it’s focused on delivering a world class shopping experience, and to do that, a healthy dose of competition never hurts I guess.
“Our mission is to provide the best shopping experience in the world and to do that you need to stack up against the best. At Appliances Online, we never worry too much about what the competition is doing. Instead, we prefer to look internally and to our customers to make sure we are providing a service that they truly want.”
“Our business model focuses on providing the best customer experience at every touch point, which means giving the most competitive price possible, having a great website and providing an unbelievable delivery service,” he explains.
Amazon’s size is what gives it a leg up, but size isn’t necessarily conducive to a retailer’s success, according to Winning.
“Amazon may be hunting for large-scale warehouses but the size of a business isn’t the only contributing factor to its success. A great team with local knowledge, unique customer experience and happy returning customers are more likely to see a business succeed. This is what Australian retailers should be focusing on.”
When I first heard that Amazon was ramping up its appliances offering, and then I discovered they’re coming here, naturally, as an industry editor I try and put myself in the shoes of the retailer: JB Hi-Fi, The Good Guys and Harvey Norman, but no moreso than pureplay Appliances Online. It will be interesting to see how these companies will stack up against the competition and whether they will thrive or take a nose dive.