Amazon wakes up, smells coffee.

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Wake Up & Smell.JPGBack in 2013, Brad Stone published a book about Jeff Bezos and Amazon titled "The Everything Store."It won "business book of the year" awards from Forbes, the Washington Post, the Economist and Bloomberg, among others. You can buy a paperback copy (yes, on Amazon) for $11.21.

Indeed, Amazon may have started out by selling book,s but today it seems to be selling everything. Earlier this year it took its biggest bite yet, bidding nearly $14 billion for Whole Foods Market.

But what, in all its "everything," is its best-selling food item? You could do this as a bar bet because the answer is something of a surprise. Or not, if you stop to think about it.

It's coffee, which accounts for three of Amazon's best-selling food brands: San Francisco Bay Coffee, comes in at number one, Green Mountain Coffee is in the third spot, and Starbucks (remember them) is number five.

It's counter-intuitive, though, because San Francisco Bay Coffee doesn't have a particularly high profile. Ah, but wait: they're very big in social media--just click through to their website. They're in Costco, too. How did this upstart zip past Starbucks?

And here again the answer is that you don't have to build ten thousand (or even ten) stores to sell online. The CEO of One Click Retail, Spencer Millerberg, calls it "the democratization of retail."

He continues, "This ... allows ANY brand to compete, not just historically incumbent brands who captured the brick and mortar shelf."

And so it was that Millerberg's analysis discovered that Amazon's best-selling food item isn't the KIND bar (it came in second) or Gerber baby food (fourth place) but the San Francisco brand that opens its coffee shops at night so stray dogs have a place to sleep.

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This page contains a single entry by Cornichon published on August 4, 2017 12:00 PM.

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