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“Group my items into as few shipments as possible.” AKA, the end of retail.

“Group my items into as few shipments as possible.” AKA, the end of retail.

When you own or control every step in the process, you–and your customers–reap the benefits.

People outside of a closed system complain about how they don’t like a closed system. A closed system being something like Apple where one company creates and maintains the hardware, the software and pretty much everything else involved. Yep, you’re stuck with their products, but you know what? They work well together.

I just ordered a few products from Amazon. They were going to arrive on different days. One recent phenomenon is the theft of UPS packages from doorsteps. After my order was complete, I could check a box that let me, “Group my items into as few shipments as possible.”

Yes, I’m aiding the end of retail. But it’s hard not to. It’s so easy, fast, less expensive and I just ordered two items in five minutes that will be delivered to our destination later this week.

Is this all just about convenience?

Just like the shopping mall or the big box store helped to kill the smaller stores because you only had to drive to one place and load your car one time and get all of your shopping done. Now I don’t even need to drive anywhere. I can order my (awesome) Jarv NMotion Sport Wireless Bluetooth 4.0 Stereo Earbuds/Headphones with In-Line Microphone from the comfort of, OMG, my phone.

When you own all of the links in the chain, you reap the benefits of control. You can make things more efficient and effective. how many of the links do you own in your own processes? What’s out of your control and makes things more difficult?

What’s the downside of Amazon’s world domination?

I’ll never come face to face with a human again.

"Group my items into as few shipments as possible." AKA, the end of retail.

“Group my items into as few shipments as possible.” AKA, the end of retail.

We’re moving next week to a small town. Stores aren’t even open on Sundays. Many close at 6 during the week. Every 2 weeks there’s a late-night “shopping night.”The shock! The horror! There isn’t a box store or a mall. You go to the bakery for bread, the cheese shop for cheese and the open market for fruits and vegetables and there’s a guy who yells out that flowers are for sale after 4 pm if he still has a bunch left. Maybe I’ll talk to him and he’ll let me know what my wife might like. Maybe I’ll grab a beer at the cafe on the edge of the marketplace and strike up a conversation with someone else who isn’t at home ordering headphones from his phone but who is out there not enjoying efficiencies of market domination and supply chain perfection. Or I could stay home and order headphones from my screen. It’s up to me.

At least we (still) have that choice.


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