Monday 22 February 2021

Amazon acquires Selz, a Shopify Competitor

The king of e-commerce, Amazon is stepping up their online game. Earlier this year in January, Amazon secretly acquired the e-commerce platfom, Selz, an Australian company that makes tools that enables businesses to easily launch their own online stores. This may have implications for the promotional products industry that sells branded merchandise on the web.

Last month, the Seattle-based company, which generated $386 billion in revenue in 2020 (a yearly increase of $100 billion) amid pandemic shutdowns and stay-at-home orders, acquired Sydney, Australia-based Selz. Selz is an e-commerce platform and Shopify competitor. Amazon didn’t publicize the purchase and declined to disclose details of the transaction, but Selz announced it in a brief post on its company blog.

“We have signed an agreement to be acquired by Amazon and are looking forward to working with them as we continue to build easy-to-use tools for entrepreneurs,” wrote Martin Rushe, CEO and founder of Selz. “Nothing is changing for our customers at this time, and we’ll be in touch with customers as and when we have further updates.”

Martin Rushe, CEO and Founder of Selz

In recent months, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has zeroed in on Shopify, an e-commerce enabler that has seen its business skyrocket during the pandemic, as a competitor as consumers have turned to online retailers for both essential and non-essential goods during the pandemic.

Shopify experienced 86% growth in 2020, in part because of a rise in online shopping that occurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Selz acquisition represents a move by Amazon to compete even more directly with Shopify’s business model.

Between 2006 and 2015, Amazon ran Amazon Webstore, a service that allowed vendors to operate Amazon-powered e-commerce stores from their websites. But since shuttering the service six years ago, Amazon’s third-party vendors – now numbering more than 2.5 million and accounting for over half of Amazon’s e-commerce revenue – have been limited to using the Amazon site to sell their wares.

That appears to be changing with the acquisition of Selz, which will allow e-commerce customers to embed an Amazon-powered e-commerce store directly on their website and in turn, help Amazon to further compete with Shopify, which allows online stores to be built into existing websites.

E-commerce gained fast momentum in 2020 as people shunned in-person shopping for digital solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Amazon has made other moves recently that may impact promotional industry, such as launching Made for You, a custom T-shirt service, and expanded its print-on-demand offerings through a deal with Kornit Digital, a manufacturer of DTG and textile printers based in Israel.

Keep up to date in the Promotional Products Industry

New Amazon Platform to offer Custom T-Shirts Services
Did you hear? Amazon just became a virtual tailor! They recently debuted a new service that enables users to order custom-fit T-shirts with personalised label, online.

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