Amazon isn’t the price king. It’s the trust king. And that trust was earned.
When everyone else was inflating shipping charges to give the illusion of lower prices, Amazon was charging actual shipping costs and passing its negotiated rates along to the customer instead of pocketing the difference.
When everyone else was charging restocking fees or making customers jump through hoops to return unwanted items, Amazon made it easy to return items through automated processes.
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Amazon is No. 1 because consumers choose them consistently. It has nothing to do with price or market size. The products on Amazon are often available elsewhere for less, and it’s just as easy to type in a different URL when you want to buy something.
As for their size, consider that total e-commerce sales are $1.5 trillion annually. Amazon makes about $100 billion. That means their share of all e-commerce revenue is only 6.6 percent. They’re far from a monopoly.
Link to the rest at Slate and thanks to Dana for the tip.