Amazon, the online retail giant, has just taken the next step forward to establish itself in the Israeli marketplace.
Amazon has officially launched its local delivery service on its platform for Israeli customers. Originally the retail site wished to launch its services in Hebrew to serve the population, but due to bureaucratic pressure to open before the Jewish holidays, the company decided to roll out their services in English for the time being.
Nevertheless, Israeli residents will be happy to see that prices are listed in shekels and that many popular products have the option to be delivered locally. Popular Israeli retailers have already joined the platform, such as cosmetics brand GA-DE, fashion retailers Crazy Line, 911 Fashion, Style River, Adika, Dynamica, Newpan, and skincare brand Sebocalm.
Amazon’s local delivery service allows Israelis to receive items ordered from local merchants either via standard shipping or within a shorter timeframe with expedited shipping.
Israeli vendors received an official announcement from Amazon shortly before the launch, “We are happy to let you know that the local delivery program has been launched on Amazon.com. Feel free to check in with offers of excellent value to Israeli customers. If you’ve planned marketing or public relations campaigns you can introduce them now.”
The next major step for the retail giant is to open local warehouses and logistics centers. As of now, there have been no official announcements on this front, but it will probably happen sometime in the future, according to E-Community founder Nir Zigdon.
“Amazon.com had in the past launched overseas operations in steps, beginning with offering local merchants an opportunity to sell on its marketplace – and ending with full-scale operations,” he said.
Amazon delivered a shock to the Israeli system when it announced back in April that it was entering the Israeli market.
Amazon ended 2018 with an operating profit of $12.4 billion, up 200% from 2017.
Amazon has made tremendous progress in the direction of local online trading in Israel in the last year and half. Only four months have passed since the company invited suppliers to take part in the local sellers program, according to the Globes web site.
Amazon began to recruit Hebrew translators at the corporate offices in Luxembourg in May of 2018. These are important offices from which Amazon manages its European operations. Two months later, in July last year, Amazon came out with a free delivery offer for orders above $80, to test how Israelis would respond to purchases that would incur VAT (the limit for VAT exemption was $70), according to the Globes report. The offer was a huge success.
After another month, Amazon published a survey in Hebrew for Israeli sellers on pricing methods and sales channels, and two months later senior Amazon executives came to Israel for meeting with local delivery companies.
The Jewish Voice previously reported that in May of this year, Jeff Bezos’ e-commerce giant already made its first endeavor in the region, entering the United Arab Emirates with a branded Arabic-language website. In May, Amazon also made its first approached towards the Israeli market, by sending out letters in Hebrew to potential sellers. Israel will be its second entry, which speaks well of the country, with such a small population (approximately 9 million).