amazon promotion

How Mom and Pop Retail Shops React to Amazon Promo

I posted about the promo Amazon was doing here, earlier this week.

And I read something interesting in a fairly local newspaper about how Doylestown, PA, mom and pop retails shops are reacting to the Amazon promo. Here’s the lnk. I find the reactions interesting, especially because I did ALL my holiday shopping online this year.

One shop owner said this:

Ellen Mager, owner of the children’s bookstore, Booktenders’ Secret Garden, isn’t planning to let anyone send information to Amazon from her store.

“It’s disgraceful, and if anybody comes into my store and tries to do it, they’re getting bounced,” she said. She added that she would first ask people to stop and then request they leave if they do not comply.

Mager said it would be a slap in the face if a customer tried using Price Check to send information to Amazon. That’s “paying somebody to hurt somebody else,” she said.

As a preemptive strike, Mager said she also plans to put a sign on her front door saying, “Due to past incidents, this is a no cell phone zone.”

Personally, I wouldn’t be brazen enough…nor do I have the time…to hop from shop to shop in Doylestown to check prices this way and send info to Amazon. When I shop in small towns like Doylestown, I do it because I enjoy the experience, not because I’m trying to put them out of business. When I want something on Amazon, I simply click on over to Amazon.com, on my computer, tablet, or iPhone, and order what I want directly from the web site.

But if I were to go shopping in Doylestown, and a shop owner told me I wasn’t allowed to bring my cell phone in, I’d be insulted and I’d leave. And I wouldn’t go back again.

And if I were a shop owner and I found out amazon were selling something far cheaper than I was, I’d lower my prices damn fast. In other words, instead of hanging out a sign that reads “no cell phone zone,” my sign would read, “we compete with all Internet prices. Come in and talk to us.”

I’d also be looking into ways to build my business online, because the Interwebs are not going to disappear. More people like me are going to do all their shopping online. And that’s a fact you can’t blame on Amazon.

Amazon News

I think this is interesting. Amazon bought a list of high quality children’s books and it’s making news everywhere on the Interwebs.

Amazon also decided to run a new promotion for the holidays, where they want readers to go to bookshops, choose books they might be inclinced to purchase, and scan the bar code with an Amazon app in order to receive five bucks off an amazon purchase. The title of this post reads: “Amazon Will Pay Shoppers $5 to Walk Out of Stores Empty-Handed.”

I’m not sure exactly how this promo works. But you can read all about it here. And you can check out the actual Amazon promotion here.

So far, in all the publishing blog posts I’ve read about this promotion, I’m only one of a select few who is actually linking to Amazon and letting readers know about the promotion. The rest have all been tongue in cheek posts, with sardonic remarks that sound a lot like sour grapes from people who haven’t been paying attention to what readers want.

Like them or not, aside from all the issues, Amazon has been, and remains to be, on top of their market and they seem to know what they are doing. And when people in publishing were laughing at the possibility of a digital market not longer than five years ago, Amazon was gearing up with technology and ready to go.

And you can’t fault someone for being right. You also can’t fault them for having a little fun when they are right.