You need more than pricePosted: March 23, 2008
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a Mac fan. I like Apple products because they’re usually well thought out, elegant and easy to use. The iTunes Music Store is well thought out, elegant and easy to use. But I’ve noticed I dropped it in a heart beat when Amazon launched their Music store. Why?
I don’t find the Amazon site particularly more elegant. The helper app method to download albums works well but is prone to misfires. Yes, the price is a bit less than the iTunes store. But a buck here and there isn’t a big draw. The higher quality MP3 files is nice but frankly, I can’t year the difference with my crappy iPhone ear buds. There’s two big draws for me: 1) DRM free and 2) Amazon recommendations.
DRM free is an obvious attraction to consumers. But features not based on price or convenience aren’t so obvious and those are the ones that pull me back. One thing Jeff Bezos got right many years ago was customers need more reasons to return to your store than just price. I use Amazon a ton because of their reviews, wishlist and personalization features. I expect the price to be low. But it’s not my main factor for returning regularly.
It took that launch of the Amazon MP3 store for me to really understand my personal shopping behavior. Because it would take a lot to get me to use a non Apple product. The iTunes store has “listener’s also bought” feature like Amazon’s “customer who bought also bought.” But that’s about it. From a merchandising features perspective, there’s not a lot available.
Full disclosure, I do work for Amazon. But (I think) I shop just like anyone else. It would take something pretty major to pull me away from the Mac platform. Amazon did it with community and personalization. That was an interesting epiphany for me.