Gemma Spence, PHD Global Business

Gemma Spence, PHD Global Business

For over a year people have speculated when the global eCommerce giant Amazon would launch its platform in Sweden. First, it was rumoured that the launch would take place on Black Friday on 23 November, but according to Di Digital, the launch will be delayed.

Gemma Spence, Global Head of eCommerce at PHD, has experienced how Amazon’s entry has shaped eCommerce in many other parts of the world. Her experience confirms that Amazon’s establishment will undoubtedly be tough on Swedish trade.

Spence predicts that Amazon will launch in Sweden in a relatively small way, focusing first on Amazon.com and the retail sector. The Prime streaming service will not be included initially.

“Amazon spends a lot of time understanding consumers, logistics and opportunities to offer services before launching in a new market. They will not do everything – but they will do a few things incredibly well,” says Spence.

How has Amazon’s establishment affected other markets in the world?
“Amazon sets the bar incredibly high for other e-commerce operators,” Spence continues. “Their entire platform is created to make the buying experience as smooth as possible. As consumers, we are people of habit, making it easy for other players to adopt the buying experience that Amazon has created and to which we have become accustomed.”

What is usually the biggest challenge for other players when Amazon enters a market?
“Many of our customers want to sell on Amazon, because it’s a brilliant way to scale up and build a brand,” Spence shares. “However, due to the volatility of the market, some find that they do not have control over where a product sold on Amazon is on its way, who it is heading for and how the product is priced. It risks eroding your margins and your value for money. Therefore, we also see that some customers move away from Amazon. The key to being one step ahead is to sell both directly and indirectly.”

How is Amazon going to change the Swedish market?
“Amazon will undoubtedly change how the eCommerce market works in Sweden,” says Spence, “as they will set a standard that other players need to adjust to. We have seen this clearly in other markets.”

Here are 5 tips from Spence to get ready for Amazon’s launch in Sweden:

  • Think about your brand and business goals. What is it you want to achieve by selling on Amazon? Is it about affordability, whether to make a profit, is it about growth or is it about brand variables such as market share?
  • Make sure you have the hygiene factors in place. It does not matter if you sell directly or indirectly, but be sure to have things such as stock, pricing and logistics in place. Also make sure that you have good content ready, which is adapted to Amazon’s algorithms.
  • Be selective – you can’t do everything.
  • When making campaigns, make sure that it is reflected in the digital environment.
  • Strengthen your position with specific audiences through relevant content.

Read the original article in Swedish on Dagens Media.