For consumers, the holiday shopping season is the most wonderful time of year. Seasonal sales, twinkly lights and Santa’s for photo ops everywhere you turn.
For retailers, it’s the Hunger Games.
And this year, much like every year for the last 20, the tributes from district Amazon are not kidding around.
2017 newest innovation? Cutting the prices not just on the items that it sells directly – but also on the products of is third-party sellers on its website.
“Discount provided by Amazon” applies to products like board games, gadgets and other gifty goods that Amazon is especially interested in competing on, particularly against low price themed Walmart. The discount comes from Amazon coffers – the merchant will still collect full price, while Amazon can continue to compete at low price points.
“When Amazon provides a discount, customers get the products they want at a price they’ll love, and small businesses receive increased sales at their listed asking price,” an Amazon spokeswoman said in an emailed statement, noting that businesses can opt out at any time.
Some merchants, however, may not be fully into accepting Amazon’s putative largesse, given that a historical complaint against the U.S.’s largest e-Commerce marketplace is that it can devalue merchants’ and entire brands by overly discounting their items. The discount might incent consumers to buy – but it also conditions them to demand items at an unrealistically (or just undesirably) low cost.