Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Thu Oct 24 2013 16:10:52

Amazon Third Quarter Sales Up 24 Percent

By: Ina Steiner

Sponsored Link

Amazon's conference call with analysts is at 5:00 pm EST today, here is the company's press release announcing third quarter 2013 earnings, you can view the full release with tables on the Amazon investor relations website.

Amazon.com Announces Third Quarter Sales up 24% to $17.09 Billion

SEATTLE--Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) today announced financial results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2013.

Operating cash flow increased 48% to $4.98 billion for the trailing twelve months, compared with $3.37 billion for the trailing twelve months ended September 30, 2012. Free cash flow decreased 63% to $388 million for the trailing twelve months, compared with $1.06 billion for the trailing twelve months ended September 30, 2012. Free cash flow for the trailing twelve months ended September 30, 2013 includes fourth quarter 2012 cash outflows for purchases of corporate office space and property in Seattle, Washington, of $1.4 billion.

Common shares outstanding plus shares underlying stock-based awards totaled 475 million on September 30, 2013, compared with 469 million one year ago.

Net sales increased 24% to $17.09 billion in the third quarter, compared with $13.81 billion in third quarter 2012. Excluding the $332 million unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales grew 26% compared with third quarter 2012.

Operating loss was $25 million in the third quarter, compared with an operating loss of $28 million in third quarter 2012. The unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter on operating loss was $7 million.

Net loss was $41 million in the third quarter, or $0.09 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $274 million, or $0.60 per diluted share, in third quarter 2012. The third quarter 2012 includes a loss of $169 million, or $0.37 per diluted share, related to our equity-method share of the losses reported by LivingSocial, primarily attributable to its impairment charge of certain assets, including goodwill.

“It’s been a busy few months—we launched a new Paperwhite and new Kindle Fires to positive reviews and surprised people with the revolutionary Mayday button—average Mayday response times are just 11 seconds!” said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “And that’s not all. In the last 90 days, our AWS team got back to work on a big government contract, we brought 8 million square feet of fulfillment center capacity online, deployed 1,382 Kiva robots in three FCs, provided a new venue for artists to reach customers, signed up millions of new Prime members, announced Kindle MatchBook, Login & Pay, and nine new original TV pilots, joined the Code.org coalition, acquired TenMarks—a company that helps kids with math, scored a win for customers who want to use Kindles on airplanes even during takeoff and landing (also, a big hat tip to Nick Bilton on that one), began hiring and training 70,000 new U.S. FC employees to help serve customers this holiday season, and saw the Kindle Million Club grow to include 14 KDP authors.”

Highlights
    Amazon introduced the third generation of Kindle Fire—the all-new Kindle Fire HDX. The new Kindle Fire HDX tablets combine groundbreaking hardware, the latest version of Fire OS, and exclusive new features and services like X-Ray for Music, Second Screen, Prime Instant Video downloads, and the revolutionary new Mayday button.

    The new Kindle Fire HDX family features stunning exclusive display with exceptional pixel density (323 ppi for 7”, 339 ppi for 8.9”), a powerful quad-core processor running at 2.2 GHz with over 3x the processing power compared to the previous generation, and a startlingly light design—at just 13.2 ounces, the 8.9” Kindle Fire HDX is the lightest large-screen tablet, 34% lighter than the previous generation.

    Amazon also introduced the new $139 Kindle Fire HD, with a slimmer and lighter design, HD display, high-performance processor, and dual speakers with Dolby Digital Plus audio.

    Kindle Fire HDX includes the new Mayday button, delivering revolutionary live tech support—one touch connects you to an Amazon expert who can guide you remotely through any feature—24x7, 365 days a year, and it’s free.

    Amazon introduced new enterprise and productivity features in Fire OS 3.0 “Mojito,”—the next generation of software and services that powers the Kindle Fire tablets—including encryption, secure Wi-Fi, a native VPN client, Kerberos support for Intranet access, integration with leading Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions, a new email client, built-in OfficeSuite support and wireless printing capabilities. These features will be available on the new Kindle Fire HD and Kindle Fire HDX.

    Amazon announced that the world’s best-selling e-reader—Kindle Paperwhite—is getting even better. The all-new Kindle Paperwhite features new display technology with higher contrast, the next generation built-in light, a faster processor, the latest touch technology, and exclusive new features designed from the ground up for readers, including Kindle Page Flip, Goodreads, Kindle FreeTime, Smart Lookup, Vocabulary Builder, and more.

    Amazon introduced Kindle MatchBook, a new benefit that gives customers the option to buy—for $2.99, $1.99, $0.99, or free—the Kindle edition of the print books they have purchased new from Amazon. Print purchases all the way back to 1995—when Amazon first opened its online bookstore—will qualify once a publisher enrolls a title in Kindle MatchBook.

    Amazon launched the Mexico Kindle Store, offering Mexican customers over 2 million titles, hundreds of thousands of which are exclusive, and more than 70,000 in Spanish. In addition, Amazon announced that Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite are now on sale locally in Mexico at Gandhi stores. For more details, visit www.amazon.com.mx.

    Building on a successful first round of pilots last April, Amazon announced it has given the green light for the production of six new pilots for kids, as well as three new half-hour pilots created by a mix of Oscar, Emmy and Tony-nominated writers. Customers will be invited to watch, provide feedback and help determine which pilots should be produced as series to air exclusively on Prime Instant Video and Amazon’s LOVEFiLM in the UK in 2014.

    Amazon launched Appstore Developer Select, a program for developers who optimize their apps and games for Amazon’s Appstore and Fire OS. Developers in the Appstore Developer Select program will receive a broad range of marketing and economic benefits that will help improve app discovery and increase sales even further. Appstore Developer Select apps receive premium placement in the Amazon Appstore, 500,000 ad impressions on the Amazon Mobile Ad Network, and automatic inclusion in the Amazon Appstore Coins Reward category. Customers will receive Amazon Coins when they purchase Appstore Developer Select apps, games, and in-app items. Developers in the program also receive credits equaling 25% off their first $2,000 in AWS services annually.

    Amazon released Login and Pay with Amazon, a new service that streamlines how customers transact with online merchants, allowing participating companies to empower customers to go from browsing to buying in just a few clicks using their Amazon account information.

    Amazon.com, Inc. announced the launch of Amazon Art, a marketplace that gives customers direct access to more than 40,000 works of fine art from over 150 galleries and dealers. The store is one of the largest online collections of original and limited edition artwork for purchase directly from galleries and dealers. The new store features easy-to-use discovery tools to help open the art world to customers and offers detailed information about the works of art from galleries of all sizes.

    Amazon is creating more than 70,000 full-time seasonal jobs across its U.S. fulfillment centers this holiday season in order to meet an increase in customer demand. In 2012, Amazon converted thousands of seasonal employees into regular, full-time roles after the holidays, and expects to do the same this year. On average, seasonal employees earn 94 percent of Amazon fulfillment center employee starting wages and are eligible for health care benefits.

    Amazon.com, Inc. acquired TenMarks, a company that is helping teachers and parents deliver innovative mathematics curriculum to students across the country.

    Since launching the marketplace website Amazon.in last quarter, Amazon has rapidly added more selection to serve customers in India with 10 new categories launched in less than 120 days—Kindle, Consumer Electronics, Mobile Phones & Accessories, Computers & Accessories, Toys, Baby, Personal and Health Care Appliances, Watches, Fashion Jewelry, and Home and Kitchen. With Amazon.in customers can shop with ease and confidence from over nine million books, over 130,000 products from hundreds of brands, and more than 1.9 million eBooks from a constantly expanding group of retailers.

    Amazon Web Services (AWS) introduced more than 15 new features and enhancements to its fully managed relational and NoSQL database services. Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) now supports Oracle Statspack performance diagnostics and has expanded MySQL support, including capabilities for zero downtime data migration. Enhancements to Amazon DynamoDB include new cross-region support, a local test tool, and location-based query capabilities.

    AWS continued to bolster its management services, making it easier to provision and manage more AWS resources with AWS CloudFormation and AWS OpsWorks, which both added support for Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). AWS also enhanced the AWS Console mobile app and introduced a new Command Line Interface.

    AWS continued to gain momentum in the public sector and now has more than 2,400 education institutions and 600 government agencies as customers, including recent new projects with customers such as the U.S. Federal Drug Administration.

Financial Guidance

The following forward-looking statements reflect Amazon.com’s expectations as of October 24, 2013, and are subject to substantial uncertainty. Our results are inherently unpredictable and may be materially affected by many factors, such as fluctuations in foreign exchange rates, changes in global economic conditions and consumer spending, world events, the rate of growth of the Internet and online commerce and the various factors detailed below.

Fourth Quarter 2013 Guidance
    Net sales are expected to be between $23.5 billion and $26.5 billion, or to grow between 10% and 25% compared with fourth quarter 2012.

    Operating income (loss) is expected to be between $(500) million and $500 million, compared to $405 million in fourth quarter 2012.

    This guidance includes approximately $350 million for stock-based compensation and amortization of intangible assets, and it assumes, among other things, that no additional business acquisitions, investments, restructurings, or legal settlements are concluded and that there are no further revisions to stock-based compensation estimates.

A conference call will be webcast live today at 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET, and will be available for at least three months at www.amazon.com/ir. This call will contain forward-looking statements and other material information regarding the Company’s financial and operating results.

UPDATE 10/25/13: See also "Amazon Has More Positive Outlook on Fourth Quarter than eBay" in today's Newsflash newsletter.




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This user has validated their user name. by: Captain Nemo

Thu Oct 24 16:27:39 2013

They lost less money last quarter than a year ago, but expect to lose a lot more next quarter ($500 million).  

But sales are up, and that's what counts.

(if it weren't for the stock market, Amazon would be bankrupt...)

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by: notfunanymore This user has validated their user name.

Thu Oct 24 16:40:57 2013

How's that sniffley cold now?  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Thu Oct 24 17:09:05 2013

"Amazon Third Quarter Sales Up 24 Percent"

Ho, Ho, Ho, it really is long past time for you to go ... http://bit.ly/YvxFEg

Perminate Link for Amazon Third Quarter Sales Up 24 Percent   Amazon Third Quarter Sales Up 24 Percent

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Thu Oct 24 19:14:31 2013

Memo to John Donahoe
CC: Wall Street Analysts
   eBay Investors

OK, so Amazon continues their healthy transactional sales growth while eBay is stuck in neutral and possibly slipping toward reverse.

No colds - no excuses for Amazon or Jeff Bezos.

No excuses for poor growth due to sequestration or Government shutdown...

People need to start taking a hard look and realize as sellers do that the constant changes have sellers and buyers turning away from eBay.

John Donahoe is in year 7 of a 3 year turn around plan that is not a plan, and clearly has had no positive effect on the marketplace.

With eBay purging round after round of sellers, removing gift cards from stores right before the holidays, eliminating transparency in the marketplace, and after having implemented a search engine that has been broken since day one, it is easy to observe that eBay's leadership simply has no answers and is incapable of realizing their efforts to date under John Donahoe are a complete and utter failure.

How badly does eBay have to fail before analysts start asking the tough questions about Donahoe's failed turn around plan?

How badly does eBay have to fail before investors realize the only ones making money owning eBay stock are the eBay executives who receive their shares for free?

Perhaps during his next "thinking day" John Donahoe will ponder the question... " Why are my decisions failing?".

The noise says it is because the changes he imposes downgrade the experience for both eBay buyers and sellers.

Maybe John Donahoe should start listening to the noise instead of the demons in his head.


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This user has validated their user name. by: ebayisajoke
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Thu Oct 24 21:04:23 2013

I remember when I used to call eBay's customer service just to ask them if they are better then Amazon, and record them, and they would say yes that their sales were better then Amazon's. eBay is a thing of the past.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Fri Oct 25 00:55:04 2013

@ ric

Succinct and insightful analysis as usual. And accurate as well!

Poor John Donahoe. Not wanting to be embarassed, he recently rather publicly asked Microsoft to remove his name from their alleged "short list" of CEO candidates knowing, of course, he had a snowball's chance in hell of getting that job.

His strategy for Q4 is to go on an acquisition binge so that numbers can be manipulated to hide substantial marketplace losses.

He certainly wouldn't want to even think about spending his stash of untaxed offshore cash on making desperately needed platform improvements and bringing back programming and customer service to the United States.

It should be obvious by now even to the most brainwashed analysts and ebay sellers that Donahoe and the rest ofhis team must go now and go now.

Incompetence, thy name is John Donahoe.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Fri Oct 25 02:20:42 2013

The only people making money on eBay are the eBay executives who receive gifted shares and coincidentally also dispense the cook book numbers that drives share prices.

The latest example of this occurred today when John Donahoe sold  off 250,000 gifted shares of eBay stock.

How much did he pocket for this handy little transaction? Only $13,025,000.00.

Source: http://tickerreport.com/banking-finance/38084/insider-selling-ebay-ceo
-unloads-250000-shares-of-stock-ebay/


This transaction demonstrates why the decision making process at eBay has failed both buyers and sellers and explains why eBay's marketplace can not grow transactional volume, and highlights why there needs to be a management change at eBay.

This CEO and his hand picked C-Level executive team will say and do anything to keep analysts speaking positively about eBay to drive up and maintain share values.

With their attention firmly focused on pulling the wool over Wall Streets eyes, decisions about day to day operations effecting buyers and sellers takes a back seat, and explains the ill conceived changes which roll out on a weekly basis.

eBay's management team does not care about what will increase marketplace transactional volume, their efforts are solely focused on what they can claim they did to impress Wall Street so they can continue to make themselves wealthier.

No one seems to question why, after 7 years of constant marketplace changes, eBay's transactional growth is so menial.

No one seems to question why after all the acquisitions eBay has made under John Donahoe eBay's numbers are not better.

I don't see Amazon imposing marketplace changes every week.

I don't see Amazon snapping up companies every few weeks either.

What I do see is Amazon reporting healthy double digit growth statistics without all the gimmicks, smoke and mirrors eBay relies on to continue to bamboozle Wall Street.






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by: Massachusets Howler This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 03:20:34 2013

I saw that Ric- looks like he bought (or was gifted??) 250K shares at @ $35 and sold at market the SAME DAY- October 21st (this last Monday).
If these were GIFTED shares he made 13 MILLION this week, plus his salary, if he bought them at around $35 he made $4,000,000 this week, and it is only THURSDAY night!

And all this JUST BEFORE Amazon reported- NOT a coincidence!

All that CASH squeezed out of the blood and sinew of mistreated abused small sellers (customers).

SEC?

Mass Howler

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by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 07:16:08 2013

I'm DELIGHTED to hear this. Amazon is my store for all media and non-unique merchandise. And they got here by customer service. I am leaving eBay for Etsy and Ruby Lane where my kind of inventory is welcome.

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by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 07:21:59 2013

Oh--and I don't agree that Donohoe is incompetent. His goal was to turn eBay around and make the stock go up. He did that. He's a short-timer, not a strategist, visionary, or even a builder. I can't see a company like Microsoft caring about that kind of talent. It might need a Steve Jobs.

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 08:57:33 2013

Once again, the facts prove what all sane individuals know about the state of the eBay vs Amazon battle in the marketplace.

eBay continues to be a marginal wannabe player, while Amazon charges ahead on all fronts.

Amazon already tried the same day service (lockers in Staples) it didnt work, so now eBay goes out and buys 2 companies to try it AGAIN on thier own - cause you know JD is MUCH smarter in JB ... NOT.

Amazon keeps making strategic partnerships, alliances with publisher, manufactorers and sellers.

Theres not a day that goes by when I DONT get 6 emails from Amazon making suggestions on what I could carry to increase my offerings, advise  on pricing, notifications of low stock, new categories and items that are hot - all I get from eBay is ... nothing - except dumb ideas from JD.

The facts speak for themselves. When TWICE (the leading publication in retailing for electronics) and Dealerscope the other retailing magazine routinely ignore to mention eBay but post articles in each issue about Amazon - theres a problem. Not only that, TWICE has a back page that prints stats on stocks - Amazons there - but NOT eBay.

No one wants to be associated  with them - and it shows. eBay is the girl you had no choice to date, not the girl you want to date.

Dont think for one second that the manufactorers on eBay come there because they want sales. They are simply there to thwart and stop other smaller sellers from selling their goods. Levis, Monster, Skullcandy etc all have excellent websites and a retail presence - they dont NEED eBay - thye just know that if they are on eBay - there will be less smaller sellers selling thier goods (and it works).

Sad, sad, sad .... maybe its time for another thinking day ... or 2 or 3 or 100 ...

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by: notfunanymore This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 09:47:08 2013

The only thing JD is good at, (well, not so good) is chasing Amazon. HEY! your not Amazon! your not a visionary, you're a follower, not a leader. Ebay needs a leader

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by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Fri Oct 25 10:40:22 2013

I'm so happy that I'm one of the ones helping Amazon to make money! Being disabled, I more and more buy on line and most of those purchases are through Amazon. My kids buy me presents via my Amazon wish list. I haven't bought on ebay in years nor do I have any intention of doing so again. I quit selling on ebay, but am building up my inventory on Amazon. Amazon rarely makes changes that affect our business (especially not in the negative). I realize that no company is perfect, but Amazon and Ecrater get my votes for sales venues and venues to shop on. I'm glad Amazon are going up and I'm happy to be one of their sellers that will help them to prosper.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Fri Oct 25 12:01:50 2013

Moonwishes writes: ''I'm so happy that I'm one of the ones helping Amazon to make money! Being disabled, I more and more buy on line and most of those purchases are through Amazon.''

I feel the same way, Moonwishes. --- It seems that JD didn't think things through when he decided that one of his priorities was to eliminate the rank-and-file sellers. He's getting his wish.

In doing so, he may be happy that he's ''cleaning-up'' eBay by getting rid of the ''flea-market'' atmosphere... but he obviously didn't consider the fact that eBay sellers are (were) LOYAL BUYERS too.

Profits *made* OFF-eBay, *stay* OFF-eBay! It's as simple as that.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen
Web Site

Fri Oct 25 12:14:05 2013

Oh, dear me, Amazon is up 8% to $358 this morning ... what is eBay’s price? $51 ...

The eBay shills can waffle on all they like about the merits or otherwise of either company, but it is not telling that the smart money on Wall Street is putting its money on Amazon?

Clearly, that same smart money on Wall Street considers eBay to be a "dog", and Donahoe to be a very poor dog handler ... http://bit.ly/YvxFEg

eBay / PayPal / Donahoe: Dead Men Walking ...

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by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 12:16:47 2013

Well heres another indication of how well its going for Amazon ... and NOT eBay. (JD should remove his financial results and not buyers feedback histories - he'd get farther!)

Published: Friday, 25 Oct 2013 10:18 AM ET

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101144066

Oct 25 (Reuters) - Shares of Amazon.com Inc jumped 10 percent at the opening on Friday after the company reported better-than-expected sales growth in North America and indicated strong momentum going into the U.S. holiday season.

At least 15 brokerages raised price targets on Amazon shares, to as much as $430, after the world's biggest online retailer company reported strong results for the third quarter.

The stock, which has already risen 32 percent this year, was trading at $364.40, up from its closing of $332.21 on the Nasdaq on Thursday before the results were announced.

"...We see consistent margin expansion, continuing through at least 2014, helping support Amazon's seemingly lofty valuation," said Benchmark analyst Daniel Kurnos, who has a price target of $400 on the stock.

In contrast, rival eBay Inc cited weak consumer confidence for its holiday quarter sales forecast that fell short of analyst expectations.

This has elevated Amazon to the status of a major tech company along with Apple Inc, Google Inc and Microsoft Corp.

So lets do a QUICK recap. eBay screws its sellers and the stock drops, Amazon helps thier sellers and the stock prices go UP. HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

Amazon rose $32.99 or 9.9 percent, to $365.21.

eBay fell $.51 or 1.0 percent, to $51.83.


Have another THINKING DAY ON ME JD !

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by: notfunanymore This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 12:27:31 2013

YTD Amazon is up 43.24% WOW.
YTD ebay is up, well, 0.31% bravo Johnny! You must be very proud

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by: csonnier This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 13:25:45 2013

Their sales may be up, but according to an article I read today, (http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/59616-Amazons-Loss-Leader-
Strategy-Results-in-No-Profits)their
profits are down for the second quarter in a row. As an FBA seller, I can tell you that part of amazon's losses come from within. Amazon is good at reimbursing FBA sellers for the blatant, extreme and constant theft by amazon employees within their fulfillment centers. It's not the money as much as it is the time and effort we put in to sending these items to amazon, just to have them never see the light of day or reach our customers due to theft. These items (we know because we own the UPCs on ours) end up for sale on other sales venues and amazon within days of us being reimbursed. We also have to constantly fight these thieves for using our photographs on other sales venues. It's an ongoing problem. These thieves then turn around and use amazon's free shipping to ship out the stolen merchandise to unaware buyers, so amazon loses twice... once to reimburse sellers, and again to pay shipping on stolen items.  Until amazon addresses their internal loss prevention issues, it will continue.

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by: JustTheFacts This user has validated their user name.

Fri Oct 25 13:57:01 2013

@Marie..Apology accepted.

ebay thinks that being like Amazon now would make them as successful as Amazon until they can have their ultimate goal of being a Corporate internet mall and believing they will be better than Amazon.

But here is what ebay and Amazon fail to realize.

Amazon is actually a very COLD sale, it is like buying from a warehouse where the ''seller'' can only be seen from a small sign on the ceiling, which of course most buyers never look up to see.

While this has an appeal to some, it is not real satisfying for many who like the HUMAN CONNECTION.  People like to buy from places they like and from people they like.  They like being able to interact with the staff and especially the owner of a business.  They do not like feel as just an account number or just a SALE.

And this is where ebay had the advantage over Amazon.  
On ebay the buyers were usually dealing with the owners, on Amazon they are totally disconnected.

I fully believe this is why Amazon has such a high rate of returns.  The buyers do not feel as though they are dealing with people but are just dealing with ROBOTS and buying from a WAREHOUSE. As a result they have no real connection to even the items they buy.  This is also why they are much more CRITICAL of everything they buy.  Why they take NO ownership or responsibility in the choices they make, so if they find even one tiny issue (real or imagined) with the item they give no thought in returning it, especially seeing that it costs them NOTHING to return it, even after they use and abuse it.

On ebay, at least in the PAST, they knew they were dealing with REAL PEOPLE.  This made them feel connected not just to the people or the owner but to the item. As a result they took more responsibility and paid more attention to what they were buying.

Of course as ebay continued to change this more and more, the people became more and more disconnected and took less and less responsibility to pay attention to what they were buying, and returns, complaints and criticism over minor things rapidly  increased. ebay has only increased the buyer-seller disconnect to the same levels as Amazon, and they now have higher and higher returns and buyer criticism for non issues even for issues they  KNEW before buying.

The changes ebay has been making over the last couple of weeks is in line with the total buyer-seller disconnect and ROBOT WAREHOUSE environment that is Amazon.

So, is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Well looking at Amazons sales report it looks as though it is very profitable, at least for Amazon.

Amazon reports a huge sales record and even ebay claims increased ''sales'' but how much of either of their ''SALES'' are really SALES?  How many of those SALES actually resulted in RETURNS and partial REFUNDS by the Sellers?  Can you really claim it as a ''sale''if it got cancelled out via an actual cancel or return?

If you sell a car and get a commission from the sale and the buyer cancels the sale, don't you LOSE your commission and doesn't your boss tell you it is NOT a sale.  You do not count it as income on your taxes.

ebay and Amazon report THEIR profits, but are their SELLERS making PROFITS?

If you also notice, the more ebay and Amazon increase the return and refund policies which includes the cost of shipping to and from, the more they create fees that are NOT refundable to the sellers even after they accept a return and refund.

So not only are sellers losing the sale, the cost of shipping both ways, the costs of packaging, the labor cost for shipping and restocking the order (if it is even re-sellable at all) but they are also losing the FEES they are charged for the order to ebay or Amazon.  Whats worse is that the return or cancelled item does not even have to even be a result of the seller doing anything wrong or there being anything wrong with the item. It is just a result of Amazon and ebay forcing unconditional returns at NO COST,CONCERN or RISK to he buyer, even for their own NEGLIGENCE.

ebay and Amazons response to this is, ''write it off as the cost of doing business.''  Although they do not feel the need to ''write off'' the fees they charge to sellers as a result of these policies.

Well a business can only write off so much before their COSTS are more than they are making. Thus making this nothing but a BIG BOYS game because the only ones who can sustain this ''cost of doing business'' model are the big boys, which brings us back to the assumption so many of us have been making for years, which is, the goal is to get RID of the small and medium sellers.

But, the question is, will people give up the choice of all HUMAN contact and connection when it comes to their buying, for the WAREHOUSE ROBOT buying, where they are nothing but a credit card or debit number, or will they tire of it and seek out alternatives where they are once again CONNECTED to the merchants?

It is like ordering out verses eating out.  Yes ordering out has its advantages but people get tired of it and want to eat out as well.  They want to be around people, they want atmosphere.  They want to interact with REAL PEOPLE.

Now that is not to say I do also enjoy jut making a purchase without any interaction with the merchant.  However, I do want to feel as though I am buying from a robot and from a cold warehouse where even I am nothing but warehouse SALE and not even a person.

I want it to be MY CHOICE to interact with the merchant or not and have the ability to do so.
If a venue, marketplace mall etc. places no real value on the actual merchant and sees them as just a commodity for venue profits, how much value do you think it places on the CUSTOMERS of the merchants?  I can assure you, the buyers are just $$$ signs, nothing more.  They too are not seen as PEOPLE.  The venue is just the LANDLORD of the building.

When buyers totally disconnect from the sellers, it is not long before the sellers disconnect from the buyers.  You see sellers as faceless robots, and sellers see you as just a credit or debit card number.

So, is emotionless, faceless, robotic warehousing style commerce the future?  If so Amazon is leading the way and ebay is trying hard to hitch a ride on its coat tails.

If so, then everyone can look forward to the only jobs they have are as WAREHOUSE personnel.  Where your only value as a worker is in how good you are at picking and packing orders.  Until of course actual ROBOTS replace you to fill the orders, which many companies are in the process of doing right now.  Just like CASHIERLESS checkouts in stores right now.

Are WE our own worst enemies?  Are we costing ourselves our own jobs?
Just take a GOOD look outside of ebay and Amazon and see that the answers to these questions are an ABSOLUTE YES!  Amazon and ebay are just helping to speed up the process.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Captain Nemo

Fri Oct 25 16:07:23 2013

@Justthefact - ''Well looking at Amazons sales report it looks as though it is very profitable, at least for Amazon.''

You really didn't read the report, did you.  Amazon did not make a profit.  They also didn't make a profit last year.  They could lose a cool $$Billion this year.

If Amazon were to stop growing at such a fast pace, let's say a more modest 15%, their stock price would  drop about 50%.

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