The CEO and Founder of Amazon Jeff Bezos, on 11th April 2018 published an annual letter for its shareholder, a norm followed by him every year since 1997 providing with all the in-depth selected details of Amazon’s business to its shareholders and a must read by many business professionals. A long essay on “high standards”, management advice, common sense and best- practices which worked best for Amazon and made it a success story.
Started its journey from scratch 24 years ago, the company sets a perfect example of never giving up and working on every given possibility even when you face a downfall. A name which holds the effective meaning of its existence and a logo which aims at serving customers at its best started its journey as an online bookstore and soon saw its first success hike within 2 months of its going on air. In 2002, Amazon launched Amazon Web Services and in the late of that very year almost went bankrupt and rebound its financial status in 2003 by making a profit of $400million. In 2007, Amazon family got a new addition when Bezos launched the Amazon Kindle.
The milestone Amazon created was launched 13 years from now on 2nd February 2005. Started as a paid subscription service, it enabled users to access streaming video, music and other benefits including 2-day delivery services and in 1 day for some areas too using Amazon Now membership. Started as just a paid membership services, as years went by it ventured deep into different specific areas of interests of the customers. Be it music (Prime Music), videos (Prime Video), reading (Prime Reading), pantry (Prime Pantry), Amazon Key and Amazon Air. Amazon went forward turned all the stones to discover every possibility to avail services to its customers using digital media and e-commerce.
On 2018, along with the annual share letter there was another special addition to the features of Amazon attaining a milestone. Jeff Bezos also announced that degree level students and anyone having an academic domain (e.g. .edu, .ac.uk etc.) in their email address can avail privileges including discounts on Prime Membership.
The journey of Amazon itself wasn’t a very smooth success but what made it worth was the belief that customers is everything, the views of their customers is a pioneer of many different ventures, he says, “One thing I love about customers is that they are divinely discontent. Their expectations are never static – they go up. It’s human nature. We didn’t ascend from our hunter-gatherer days by being satisfied. People have a voracious appetite for a better way, and yesterday’s ‘wow’ quickly becomes today’s ‘ordinary’. I see that cycle of improvement happening at a faster rate than ever before. It may be because customers have such easy access to more information than ever before – in only a few seconds and with a couple taps on their phones, customers can read reviews, compare prices from multiple retailers, see whether something’s in stock, find out how fast it will ship or be available for pick-up, and more. These examples are from retail, but I sense that the same customer empowerment phenomenon is happening broadly across everything we do at Amazon and most other industries as well. You cannot rest on your laurels in this world. Customers won’t have it.”
So how does Amazon stay on top and meet ever-rising customers expectations? Well, setting high standards and doing multiple things together, learning from failure is the mantras said and followed by the founder Jeff Bezos making Amazon and Amazon Prime India the biggest in the market.