Amazon Attacks Australia | Future of Retail

Retail is changing

The landscape of retail is going through big changes. Online shopping and tap-and-go are evolving the arena quicker than some bricks and mortar stores can keep up. And now Amazon are looking to ‘invade’ Australia.

It’s a case of innovate or die. But really the only people who need to be afraid are Gerry Harvey and his cohorts.

Australian Market

Australian consumers are known for being first adopters. Take McCafe for example. Australia was the first country to trial the concept and now they are all over the world. As consumers we are open to change, but want it done our way.

We like to know who we are dealing with. We don’t like generic. Starbucks found this out in a big way, and their empire of a coffee shop on every corner fell apart. The Starbucks model was every coffee is the same. They wanted to tell us how to drink coffee, and in this country, that doesn’t work. We don’t like being told how to consume. And they failed.

Will Amazon succeed in Australia?

The short answer is yes of course they will. The investment they are putting behind their launch is going to undoubtedly be unmatched by any other launch seen here before. They will shake up the retail space.

Here in Australia, for retailers that have been lacking in innovation, and taking their customers for a long ride, they are right to be scared. Electrical retailers such as JB-Hifi, Harvey Norman, everday supermarkets like Coles and Woolworths, they are prime targets for being turned upside down very quickly. How can they respond now? Well only time will tell, but the clock has been ticking and it’s now very late in the day.

Amazon has 50% of all ecommerce in the USA, and a big chunk of the worldwide market. In Australia business has been historically slow to innovate on the ecommerce marketplace. Harvey Norman’s complaints about online shopping ruining Australian businesses speaks volumes for that.

Amazon’s Plan

So what is Amazon planning and will it work? As well as their online component Amazon are planning physical stores in Australia. Plus they are looking at setting up food shopping, Amazon Go, where you shop and leave without going through a check out. They are taking on Coles and Woolworths and Aldi and Costco to some extent. Will these four be able to innovate and survive?

Amazon’s innovation is going to blow some retailers out of the water.


The Amazon Platform- Prime, Prime Now and Prime fresh are all platforms Amazon will serve up to Australians. They will collect price points on all everything they plan to sell, which is almost everything, and give a 30% discount.


They plan to launch in September 2017.

How will Australian retailers cope?

The Australian retail model includes incredible customer experiences offline and online so after the initial seismic opening, it should be business as usual. Those who continuously innovate and go beyond for their customers will still be in business once the Amazon brand lands in Australia.

And what happens after Amazon?

That’s a big question. Right now we are in the midst of an extraordinary revolution where Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality is about to bring us immersive experiences to almost every part of our lives.

Our retail experience is going to be predictive, and we will be able to ‘model’ items we wish to purchase prior to buying. You will be able to see what a couch will look like in your lounge room, or a hat looks like on your head, all through augmented reality. So how huge an impact is Amazon going to have on the retail landscape in light of this?

Want to know more?

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Byline: Chris Riddell is a Global Futurist and Keynote Speaker, inspiring individuals and businesses to get ready for tomorrow. He is an expert commentator about media, technology & emerging digital trends. You can get in touch the old fashioned way by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.