Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has joined the sporting goods industry, as now its is set to retail sporting goods through its new affiliate website Afterschool.com. The web page, which is expected to be accessible through Amazon’s main site, will be launched soon, and will include benefits offered by the main site such as, free shipping for items costing more than $49, as well as delivery periods of 1-2 days.
A couple of weeks ago, there were some media reports that suggested Amazon’s Quidsi unit was set to launch the site sometime in fall, and indeed this has come to pass, with the impending launch set to take place very soon. The new site will participate in Teen Sports and activities for kids, with the target age group being from high singles to low teens, notes Credit Suisse Group Inc. (NYSE:CS) research analysts, Gary Balter, Simeon Gutman, CFA, and Seth Sigman.
The new site will provide the the targeted customers with gear finders and shopping checklists, which will help the buyers identify their preferred items with ease. The site will include over 50,000 products, ranging from sports equipment to ballet slippers, and even art supplies. And just in case the buyers are in need of any help, there is a 24/7 customer care support, ready to serve, just like in many online stores.
Credit Suisse research analysts maintain that the ultimate challenge for the new site will be brand access, adding that the headline risk has the potential to face a short-term overhang. The analysts also express that the category industry, in which the new site will be based, has a low e-commerce penetration, and also presents a challenge facing many vendors who sell their products directly.
This throws in the question of how valuable Afterschool.com could be to Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), and whether it offers a realistic stream of income to the e-commerce giant. The analysts conclude that the site’s impact is more dependent on the time, if it ever comes, when Afterschool.com gets access to the major specialty brands.
In conclusion, Amazon’s e-commerce muscle is being put to the test here, as it tries something different from what it has been offering to its customers since time memorial. If the company can capitalize on its success and replicate the same in the new venture, then Afterschool.com could be the next thing in e-commerce.
However, the limited customer base, who in the past have shown a clear preference to direct purchase of the various products, could be a major predicament; but Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) can also rely on the changing shopping trends, as the digital world begins to take the lead, with a big charge from globalization.
At the time of this writing, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) was trading at $247.93 per share, up $1.71, or 0.69% increase, from the previous close.