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Amazon News – September 2020

My blog is one year old! 🎉 It’s been exactly a year since I started writing a recap of news about Amazon each month. So much has happened in the last year, and almost all of it was unforeseeable and unplannable.
Throughout this crazy time, the blog has been an anchor in my life and one of my favorite things to do. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I love finding new info, analyzing trends, and writing here.
We have reached this year’s last quarter. The one awaited by all Amazon sellers. The most interesting/busy/crazy/profitable (?) months of the year.

And this year, according to Google predictions 75% of consumers will do their shopping online!

>> How the pandemic may affect holiday shopping, ThinkwithGoogle

While Black Friday and Cyber Monday are known as key online shopping days in the last quarter of the year, Amazon Prime Day, planned for October 13-14, is expected to be equally important. The date was set for the quarter’s start to encourage buyers to start their holiday shopping early. Several parameters were considered in choosing the date: warehouse backups, shipping delays due to the number of orders, and the US elections (November 3rd) that will hold the public attention. Previous election years showed a change in the public’s mood, and significantly fewer purchases are made during these events – CNBC).
Every month, Amazon provides us with interesting news. Still, this month we have a few incredibly exciting things: a new platform for luxury items, the launching of 13 new devices (!), badges for environmentally friendly products, and a surprising new platform for workshops, courses, and virtual tours.

So before we enter the craziest and best part of the year, let’s take a look at what happened on Amazon in September 2020:

1. As usual, let’s start with the most searched terms on Amazon during September 2020: Face masks come up first. The work from home trend continues with desks, chairs, and computers. The iPhone 11 case holds its position and two newcomers: Halloween decorations – relevant for this time of year, and an interesting new entry: Blue Light Glasses. A new search-term referring to glasses that supposedly block the blue light of digital screens.

Amazon

2. Covid 19 updates – In September, Amazon published an update on testing among its employees and stated that 19,000 of them were found positive for Covid. 😷 And that’s not counting contract and third party workers. That means 1.44% of Amazon’s and Whole Foods’ reported 1.37 million employees. 😲 Amazon says that the pace of spreading among its workers is 42% lower than that of the general population. It continues to test employees regularly to make sure they are well and can perform safely.

>> Amazon says more than 19,000 workers got Covid-19, CNBC

>> Update on COVID-19 Testing, Amazon

3. Amazon introduces a new palm scanner called Amazon One that connects your handprint to your credit card details to allow customers not to stand in line to pay. This biometric technology allows walking into a store and paying with literally the wave of your hand. The payment will be automatically taken from a credit card. The launch will take place in two Cashierless Go stores in Seattle, and the aim is to spread the use of this technology in more stores and sell it to other companies.

>> Amazon will now let you pay with your palm in its stores, Recode

>> Amazon unveils a way to pay with just your hand in stores, CNBC

Amazon

4. Amazon launches a new platform for luxury items – by invite only! The first designer to launch his store and fall-winter 2020 collection is Oscar de la Renta. The platform is built as a Store in Store to allow each brand to express its individuality. It also provides interactive 360 views of the products that you can see on different sizes and skin tones. Right now, the platform is available on mobile only to US Prime clients with an invitation. This is an opportunity for designers who, until now, relied solely on retail chains to reach their audience in a new way.
>> www.amazon.com/LuxuryStores.

>> Amazon Announces New Shopping Experience, “Luxury Stores”, Business Wire

Amazon

5. Amazon Hardware – the yearly event took place in September and introduced no less than 13 new devices!

I’ll focus on those I liked best. If you want to see the full event, look at the link at the end of this paragraph.

* The craziest device, IMO, is the Amazon Ring – a security camera mounted on a drone. The drone is activated when there are signs of a break-in or suspicious noises and flies to the relevant part of your home to film what’s going on. The product will be available in 2021. Take a look at the video to see how it works (it’s mind-blowing!):

>> Amazon’s newest Ring device is a flying security camera drone, cnbc

* In addition to the home security system, Amazon introduced an exciting cooperation with Tesla in the form of vehicle safety cameras.

New models of the Echo Dot come designed especially for kids with features and abilities targeted for them. Link to the product: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B084J4MJCK

* Amazon Echo Show – a speaker with a built-in 10inch screen and a built-in camera that focuses on you while you move around. Just the right thing for video calls.

* Echo speakers in a new round design with improved reaction time to Alexa cues and more improvements.

* Amazon Luna – important news for gamers! Amazon is launching a cloud-based game service based on the AWS infrastructure. Also included is a direct connection to Twitch.

>> Cloud gaming battle heats up as Amazon enters the ring to take on Microsoft and Google, CNBC

Amazon Luna

Watch the full event here:

https://youtu.be/zSE1Ya_xOoY

>> Amazon announced 13 new devices — here’s everything you need to know about the new Echo, Ring, Eero, and more, Business Insider >> Here’s everything Amazon just announced at its big hardware event, cnbc


6. Amazon Climate Pledge Friendly Certifications – If you have an environmentally friendly product or prefer to shop for eco products – this may interest you:Products approved by Amazon to be Climate Pledge Friendly are marked on the platform and include extra information on sustainability posted to a dedicated page.

Getting Amazon’s certification is excellent for marketing, sets your product apart, and helps customers looking for certified eco-friendly products.

Want to find out whether you qualify for the badge? Go to the second link:
>> Amazon launches “Climate Pledge Friendly” program, Amazon
>> We are inviting brands to participate in Climate Pledge Friendly

https://youtu.be/I8Y9yS_C32A

7. Meet Amazon Explore. Starting today, you don’t have to sell products to sell money on Amazon. You can also offer workshops, online courses, or virtual tours of exciting locations. Amazon is launching a new platform (in Beta right now, and an excellent opportunity to be first on the boat, if this is what you do).

You can already find various experiences at attractive prices on the platform, such as a tour of a mansion in Lima (Peru), a bagel baking class, an online tour of a wild animal sanctuary in Costa Rica, and more.

I’m not sure how this interesting initiative fits in Amazon’s various activities, but we will probably find out soon.
>> Amazon Explore

I hope you enjoyed and found interest in this summary. If you have friends or co-workers that this blog can interest, inspire or help in business, feel free to share and pass on the content to expand their knowledge on the subject.
If you also want to receive the Amazon News monthly summary by email (coming out once a month), feel free to sign up here at the bottom of the post, and the next monthly summary will reach you directly by email.

Wishing you a happy Prime Day
Meirav

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