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12/06/2018

Best Digital Brands 2018 : #1 AMAZON.COM

This year, the Best Digital Brand competition was updated with some additional touchpoints and one very important KPI: sales activation on the digital level. And Amazon is the undisputed number one in this discipline.

In less than 25 years’ time, Amazon.com has earned its founder Jeff Bezos

a fortune. He is the world’s richest man, with 117.5 billion USD to his name. The brand has also become the benchmark for e-commerce. It’s a global and therefore Belgian success, even though the chain does not (yet) have a.be version. This dominance can be explained by various factors. The most important one undoubtedly is the scope of the experience, starting with the website. But there’s more. “Seventy-five percent of the respondents say that they recently saw, read,

or heard something about Amazon”, according to GfK. “This is the highest score for all the brands combined. Even more impressive, the brand had the best score for seven of the eight elements that define the Brand Potential Index.” Is Amazon.com the most digital brand?

A victim of its success

“Look closer and you will see that it is obviously the brand’s website/online shop has the highest reach of all the experiences”, according to the analysis of the GfK specialists. “It’s followed by online purchases and social networks, which tie in more seamlessly with the advertising you see on Facebook than with the follow-up of the Amazon page.”

In other words, Amazon.com does not have many competitors in terms of scope, and this is plainly obvious. The platform could up its game however in terms of impact and perception of the experience. “While still above average - the brand scores 46% for the impression of the experience on consumers -, Amazon.com’s score is still much lower than the 78% several other brands scored, including Toyota, Philips, Miele or Hoegaarden and Côte d’Or.”

While it’s a disappointing result on the score card of a first-class student, it can be easily explained. “This rather weak score is related to the number of experiences Amazon.com offers its consumers, and which other brands will never be able to achieve because of the nature of their products”, according to GfK. “Such a high number of experiences will logically also increase the risk of less positive or less remarkable experiences. Moreover, we should not forget that consumers will always be more critical of Amazon.com than smaller players. They will always have higher expectations.”

Not such an obvious award

While it makes sense that a pure player will have an arm’s length lead, Amazon’s first place in the Best Brands category is far from a given. The evidence: the presence of Ikea, Proximus, Decathlon or Samsung in the top 10. “Amazon made it into first place in spite of something that could be a major obstacle for being elected best digital brand. To date it still has no Belgian website”, says GfK. “All the previous Best Brands, in any category, have always capitalised on their local presence. Just think of

Coca-Cola and its local production plants and its presence in many Belgian

activities. Or Colruyt, the exemplary success story of a Belgian family company.”

This success is also apparent in the brand’s ranking on the list of Best Corporate Brands.

“In Belgium, the number of e-commerce shops - and we mean pure players in this case - increased by 18% compared with 2016”, GfK concludes. “But most of the shops employ less than five people. These are complementary activities. Moreover, these new players only have a minimal chance of success, as 13% of them fail to develop a profitable activity each year. Amazon.com thus dominates the Belgian market, a sector of more than 3,000 online shops. Their new depot, just 40 km from the Belgian border, will give our market a new boost. Does that presage the arrival of a specific depot for the BeNeLux countries?”

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