Amazon tests shipment of customised sample packs

US e-commerce giant Amazon is testing the shipment of customised samples for partner brands, a new opportunity to further tap its massive audience and the data it has accumulated on its myriad customers.


A Maybelline sample pack delivered last year by Amazon - @Silly_Marrii/Twitter

According to the Axios website, cosmetics label Maybelline and coffee brand Folgers were some of the first Amazon partners to participate in this new marketing initiative. Target consumers are selected via machine-learning tools. Since last spring, Amazon has reportedly tested various delivery methods, but for the time being it hasn’t disclosed any detail on them. However, pictures posted by various customers on social media show that the Amazon logo features prominently on the packaging.

Amazon has long since positioned itself as a key partner for multinational brands, on the strength of the over 100 million customers who subscribe to its Prime service, which offers free next-day delivery and access to Amazon Video, the e-commerce giant’s Netflix-style movie and TV series catalogue. The trove of personal data collected by Amazon on its customers reportedly enables the site’s targeted online advertising to contribute to the group's revenue to the tune of $5 billion per year, and is leading some brands to drop Google Ads.

Amazon has ambitious plans for the fashion category, and in 2017 it generated $177.9 billion in sales, equivalent to a 31% rise, and $3 billion in net profits. With $160.5 billion in sales in the first nine months of 2018, the group posted a 36% growth, and is estimating a 10% to 20% rise in the year’s last quarter, whose figures will be published soon. 
 

Translated by Nicola Mira

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