What Did Amazon Do This Week? - 21-05-2023 [+35 LINKS]
AMAZON IS DOING A GOOGLE
Amazon began saying the magic words this week, ‘generative AI’ when the company announced new Alexa devices and its intent to slam everyone’s favourite new tool into their online shopping portal. The move is a direct response to Google, which is adding a big shot of generative AI directly into the arm of its search capabilities. A move that would likely hurt Amazon.
Why? The pair both want to be where you start your shopping journey, so they compete for mindshare, but equally, both rely on each other for traffic and, so far at least, are careful not to be too aggressive towards each other. To put the relationship into some context, according to Similarweb, Amazon receives about 28.58% of its traffic from Google, or put another way, Google is by far Amazon’s biggest referrer of traffic. Google’s latest moves could threaten the Google juice that flows to Amazon so Amazon needs to make sure it’s as sticky as possible.
Popping generative AI into Amazon isn’t an easy project, thanks to the billions of products involved for hundreds of millions of users. The move is one that Amazon cannot afford to mess up or leave to Google to gain a foothold. Amazon is already recruiting talent in advanced Machine Learning positions that list “AI-first initiative to re-architect” search and “reimagining Amazon Search with an interactive conversational experience”.
Don’t let anyone tell you Amazon is fresh to generative AI or has it sewn up, either. Adding generative AI into search is a big deal beyond changing the user experience. Generative AI is the next level and moves away from typing in a few words, scanning a bar code, or taking an image of a product to find similar items for sale—all Amazon staples. Amazon has been in the AI business for +20 years, and don’t forget the recently announced Bedrock. Amazon has the tools and capabilities it needs now and, in many ways, is on the bleeding edge of AI in other areas. What will Amazon use AI for? Ads. What could it use it for? Health. Is it the top dog in town? No. Generative AI is a challenge and a threat to Amazon. Still, they have the money and capabilities to go hard and remain in the top space, but they (like competitors) are not from things like immune from regulation and public opinion.
WANT TO INNOVATE LIKE AMAZON? Order your copy of the second volume of ‘Disruptive Technologies’ now!
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to What Did Amazon Do This Week? to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.