Online Retail’s Holy Grail: Instant Gratification

There’s been a lot of speculation lately about Amazon‘s desire to offer same-day delivery. Amazon Fresh already offers same- or next-day delivery of groceries and other in-stock items to the Seattle area. And Amazon Prime promises two-day delivery of a wide range of items to almost anywhere in the US.

Soon, Amazon will begin collecting sales tax in many states. While some saw this as a competitive disadvantage, it will actually open the door to Amazon building warehouses in those states, notes the E-Commerce Times. Which, in turn, will speed up Amazon’s distribution network.

Is Same-Day Fast Enough?

Instant gratification is one of the last remaining advantages brick-and-mortar retailers have over Amazon. And the little guys should be nervous, according to analysts.

“Shopping is a category where instant gratification is very important,” Rich Hanley of Quinnipiac University told the E-Commerce Times. “If [Amazon adds] same day shipping to that mix, well, it would be nothing less than the Holy Grail of retail.”

The Fight against Goliath

Jim Post, a professor of strategy and policy at Boston University School of Management, agrees that local retailers have reason to fear Amazon offering same-day delivery. He likened it to a David vs. Goliath fight.

But the little guys still have a fighting chance… if they can figure out how to nail customer service.

“The vulnerability of each retailer will be different, and to fight back, they will have to figure out how to offer their customers what Amazon can’t,” Post said.

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