Amazon is good for consumers

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The retail market is bringing in over $3.6 trillion worldwide, consumers are becoming more willing to spend their money and in turn becoming more demanding than ever. With e-commerce growing so rapidly one major question is: where are consumers going to spend their money? One dominating retail company comes to mind: Amazon.

According to a video in a 2016 Forbes article, half of all online product searches start on Amazon. Within five years on fifth of the retail market will shift  online, and “Amazon is on track to capture two-thirds of that share.” Amazon seems to be moving towards controlling the way we shop. This may be daunting for some–to have one company regulating the majority of our purchases–but in reality will end up being more convenient and accommodating to the consumer.  

Geoffrey Fowler of the Washington Post notes the fascination we have with Amazon is less financial and more psychological. “Prime membership makes [him] feel confident [he] can flick open the Amazon app and, in less than two minutes, find a good-enough version of what [he] need[s] and have it headed [his] way.” Others agree. Amazon subscriptions increased by 60 million between 2014 and 2016. Fowler also mentions that the cost of buying on Amazon can be more expensive than other competitors, yet consumers continue to go to Amazon out of habit and trust of the company’s policies.

With the major growth in e-commerce some are concerned about the decrease of jobs in retail. A New York Times article explained how (over the last fourteen years) e-commerce jobs do not replace the loss of department store jobs. Despite this, e-commerce jobs are growing more rapidly than any other type. As far as what Amazon is doing to help replenish jobs for these workers, a 2017 Time Magazine article remarks that Amazon has created over 113,500 new-hire jobs in 12 months. The article explains that “if Amazon were a U.S. state, it would rank fourth in terms of job creation.”

Some people may be concerned about Amazon’s seemingly effortless rise to the top, whether that be due to job growth, market diversity, or other reasons, but in my eyes the company has given consumers every reason to trust it. After all, prices on healthy everyday options in Whole Foods went down after Amazon bought the company, Amazon provides a market platform for small businesses, and Amazon’s website describes how the company works closely with organizations that aim to benefit the environment, job growth and sustainability. Whether or not you personally identify with Amazon’s convenience and efficiency, the company is undoubtedly on track to becoming one of the world’s primary retail providers.