Tag Archives: shopping

Amazon Go – The New Corner Grocery Store


Amazon is taking on another new aspect of the retail industry – the corner grocery store. Ok, it’s not exactly the corner store, but it is a store where consumers walk in, grab what they need, and then leave without going through any checkout lines. Yep, that’s right – no lines, no checkouts, and no registers.

The 1,800 square foot concept store in Seattle uses an Amazon Go app combined with technology the company calls “Just Walk Out.” Whatever item the customer picks up is automatically entered into a virtual shopping cart. If he changes his mind – no problem, the item is deleted from the virtual cart automatically when it is placed back on the shelf. When he leaves the store, the cart is added up and the amount is placed on his Amazon account with the receipt is sent directly to the app.

The store is currently only open to Amazon employees, but the company plans to open the store to the public early this year.

Amazon Go gives new meaning to the phrase “grab and go.” What’s in your basket?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss product positioning and perceptual maps.
  2. Show the video of Amazon Go store in Seattle:


  1. Review key aspects of developing a product positioning map, including determining the axis labels for positioning.
  2. Review Amazon Go. What companies and stores are competitors?
  3. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a positioning map for Amazon Go.
  4. Have each team draw their map on the board.
  5. Debrief exercise.

Source: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, other news sources    


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Amazon.com in India


Amazon launched its Web site in India in 2013, but faced some significant problems. Notably, roughly 67% of the country’s billion-person population lives in remote rural areas with little infrastructure services. In India, only 35% of the population has Internet access and the country is still a cash-based economy, making it hard for e-commerce companies to gain traction. India also has a strong foreign direct investment policy that restricts foreign retailers from selling directly to consumers online.

To get its business rolling, Amazon needed to get local sellers to sell their products online. Again, a difficult task when so few people and companies in India are online. To gain suppliers and merchants, the company took a unique marketing approach and developed “Amazon Chai Cart” – a fleet of three-wheeled vehicles that served as mobile tea carts. Using this approach, the carts traveled more than 9,400 miles of streets in 31 cities. They served 37,200 cups of tea and signed up 10,000 new sellers of merchandise.

But it still needed to do more in order to make shipping easy and efficient. To do that, Amazon opened more than 20 warehouses and partnered with local companies for delivery. These, plus other initiatives, have helped Amazon India to become the country’s largest online store, carrying 80 million products from 120,000 merchants.

It might not be fast, easy, or cheap to open operations in another country. First, you have to listen and learn. Then, you can act.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the methods for companies to open operations in another country.
  2. Discuss with students how companies such as Amazon could open operations in foreign countries. What are some of the difficulties these companies face?
  3. Show Amazon’s site that is focused on gaining sellers in India: https://services.amazon.in/services/sell-on-amazon/benefits.html/ref=az_footer_soa?ld=AWRGINSOAfooter
  4. Show Amazon’s chai tea cart: https://services.amazon.in/services/sell-on-amazon/benefits.html/ref=az_footer_soa?ld=AWRGINSOAfooter
  5. Also show videos: Buying (ad) –

https://youtu.be/cJdTop6VZao and Make in India –


  1. Finally, discuss how these lessons could be applied to opening other foreign markets.

Source: Brandchannel.com   

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Red Wing Shoes Adapt to Women


While there are certainly brands and products that are only targeted at one gender, these brands might be missing a big opportunity to bridge the gender divide. And we don’t mean the “pink it and shrink it” approach to market products to women. Companies have to understand the female shoppers’ needs and wants, and make sure to build unique products for them.

One company that is taking a more female-centric approach is Red Wing Shoe Company in Minnesota. It worked out its $300+ boots were being purchased by women, not large boys, and took action. A big clue was the surge in small shoe sizes, followed by a big uptick in social media postings.

After discovering that women account for roughly 10% of its Men’s Heritage collection sales, the company took note and began to restructure products for a female consumer. While certain models are identical to the men’s products, other new styles are distinctly for women. Materials used have also shifted as the company reconstructed models to account for the difference sizes and weights of women, particularly when breaking in new boots.

These boots are made for stomping.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
1. Discuss the differences between marketing clothing to men versus women.
2. What products/companies have been successful at adapting their products to both genders? What accounts for this success?
3. Show the company’s site: http://www.redwingshoes.com/
4. Discuss the site. Does it account for women shoppers?
5. What changes should the company make to market to women on the Web site?
Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune

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