Amazon is trying to get you to buy less during coronaviruspandemic
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Amazon has taken a number of measures to do the opposite of what it has been doing for years by discouraging customers from ordering lots of goods through its platform. The e-commerce platform has seen an unprecedented surge in order volumes since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, putting an extreme amount of pressure on its warehouses and staff processing these orders.
Many of its biggest sale events of the years – such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day – have not been advertised online. Meanwhile, its July event known as Prime Day has been postponed indefinitely. It has also removed the widget showing recommendations based on what other shoppers were buying.
In a letter to shareholders today (16 April), Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos, said its staff were “working around the clock to get necessary supplies delivered”.
“The demand we are seeing for essential products has been and remains high. But unlike a predictable holiday surge, this spike occurred with little warning, creating major challenges for our suppliers and delivery network,” he said.
‘We don’t have the capacity’
An Amazon employee involved in the scale-back said to The Wall Street Journal: “We typically want to sell as much as we can, but our entire network is so full right now with just hand sanitisers and toilet paper that we don’t have the capacity to serve other demand.”
A number of weeks ago, one-day delivery using the company’s Prime service in Europe was postponed, while at one point it put a temporary hold on processing orders deemed unessential during a pandemic.
Amazon is now set to reverse this decision since it announced it had hired 100,000 additional workers and plans to hire a further 75,000. This included customer service roles in Ireland, although was limited to those with a fast enough internet connection.
Last month, Amazon advised staff globally to work from home, while offering those who contract the Covid-19 disease extended sick pay.
Despite efforts to try and limit the amount of goods its selling, The Guardian reported that Amazon customers are atill spending $11,000 every second during the crisis. Bezos’ personal wealth grew by $6.4bn on Tuesday (14 April) bringing his personal wealth to approximately $138bn.