Originally Posted by pickpackpockpuck
[Edit: misread your first sentence. oops.] You're right: if the price is lower and shipping is cheap and easy then nobody will care if Amazon is "cool" enough. Amazon is so big that they can sell cheaper than just about any competitor and offer things like free shipping. They'll probably have great SEO too, so if you go use your local B&M as a showroom and then google the product you're looking for, Amazon will likely be the first result you see, selling what you're after at a cheaper price than anyone else.
Hell, I have the Amazon app on my phone. I made a trip to a "Half Price Books" a few months ago. I went with the sole purpose of selling or hopefully trading some books. So I dropped my box off and then looked around. I hadn't been to one in forever and spent a good hour looking. I put the app to the test and it worked out great. Amazon was the same price OR LESS than Half Price Books. What's more they only paid cash for my books and gave me almost nothing. It's funny because going in I was like "how does this place stay in business" and then I saw the prices and what they give you for what you're selling and quickly figured it out.
Originally Posted by LA Guy
Designers are also worried about Amazon's image as an off-price/low price site, a little like a bazaar, and they've been having issues getting designers. The only real success so far has been their MyHabit flash sale site.
You also have to realize, to really comprehend the situation, how behind the curve luxury brands and retailers are in terms of understanding and using the digital landscape. A senior partner at the BSG even commented on how few luxury brand reps even understood how much (20%) of the total online retail Amazon controlled. Put it this way. Back in 2005 and 2006, I spent a lot of time trying to convince boutiques and brands that they absolutely needed an online presence. A site with collections and contact information and stockists, at very least, and with e-commerce, if possible (closest connection to the customer). Some brands are still now only testing the waters. A lot of them still see online things as a fad, a trend. This is in 2012, people.
Their shoe site, I can't for the life of me think of the name of it, has a TON of designers on it and rivals Zappos and Piperlime. Piperlime is a bit smaller than the other two, but Endless (that's the name) and Zappos are both big and Endless has some bigger name designers.
At the end of the day I think the small designers will stay away. You may see some collaborations here or there and even some buyouts, but I don't see some of them who actually post here on Styleforum joining forces with an Amazon.
I agree on the online presence. I keep telling my employees this when a store in town here closes. I'm either like "did you see their website" or "they didn't have an online presence." You really need to be in a big market to get away without one or have been in business for some time.