Amazon Decides to Shut “Webstore” Down
In an Amazon forum last week, users attempted to confirm that Amazon plans do do away with Webstore, its e-commerce platform with which businesses can manage their online stores. Many Webstore retailers didn’t understand why Amazon would shut it down. They were so skeptical when Amazon contacted them with the news that they took to the forum to make sure others had received the same message, which was not released to any blogs or news outlets. The lack of PR added to the skepticism and confusion. Many users were disappointed, but there is a silver lining to the story. Webstore users will have until June of 2016 to find a new solution to their e-commerce needs. That’s a little over a year. Still, some retailers expressed frustration after spending time and effort switching to Webstore only to be notified that they would need to try something else.
EBay decided to shut down its competing service, Magento Go, last summer. Services like Shopify and Squarespace have penetrated the e-commerce solutions market effectively since that time and even earlier. The decisions by eBay and Amazon appear to indicate that they want to focus on their traditional business models, or perhaps new offerings. Amazon recently opened a storefront at Alibaba’s Tmall, with with it competes. Alibaba has easily obtained Chinese market share, against Amazon and eBay, since it began in 1999. Amazon has also begun to push users towards “Login and Pay with Amazon”, which it prefers over Flexible Payments Service, its old payment solution.
The golden age of e-commerce is over. In this new era, we’ve welcomed disruptors into the market, changed how we pay, watched foreign e-commerce companies become giants, and even debated the legitimacy of Bitcoin. We can expect more changes and more competition ahead.
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