Amazon’s reign as the largest Internet retailer is set to continue considering it took home 43 percent of all revenue from U.S. online retail sales in 2016.
As if that weren’t enough to leave competing retailers wide-eyed, the Seattle-based company’s sales, which include those from third-party sellers, also accounted for 53 percent of all online sales growth in the country, according to statistics from Slice Intelligence, a company that catalogues and analyzes online purchases.
E-commerce in the U.S. grew by 24 percent last year, and Slice expects the sector to account for at least 10 percent of all consumer sales in 2017. E-commerce reportedly accounted for slightly less than 8 percent of total sales in 2016.
While electronics, including its new Alexa-enabled devices, predictably accounted for a large portion of Amazon’s sales growth at 18 percent, the company is also making strides in apparel and accessories and health and beauty, which accounted for 12 percent and 10 percent of its sales, respectively.
Amazon’s dominance continued in spite of stiff competition from essentially every major retailer, and Slice accounted for its success, at least in part, to the company’s “obsessive focus on removing every pain point from the buying process.”
The clearest example of this is Amazon’s Prime subscription program, which includes free, two-day shipping, along with television and movie streaming and book borrowing for Kindle users.
Even without Prime, Slice found that Amazon’s average shipping time by December 2016 was a little more than three days. Other e-commerce retailers took closer to six days on average, while some, such as Wal-Mart, are still working to close that gap.
Amazon’s shipping times could get even faster over the next couple of years, as the company continues to spend on new shipping hubs and delivering packages by drone.
But Amazon’s focus on convenience that other retailers do not or cannot offer goes past shipping.
“Subscriptions, for instance, account for significant portions of certain categories,” Slice said of Amazon’s online sales dominance. “Similarly, dash buttons allow us to reorder at the click of a button. Our Echo devices allow us to make quick purchases while we wash the dishes.”