About the Book
Despite hearing Brad talk about his book on various podcasts a few years ago and the fantastic insights he gave back then, a small part of me thought Jeff might have smoothed off the edges in the final edit.
I couldn’t have been more wrong!
The Everything Store is a fabulous, no-holds-barred dive into Amazon’s impressive rise from a small, online retailer into the pioneering technology giant that we see today.
Chock full of business wisdom and investigative journalism, Brad has pulled together one of my favourite business books of the last few years.
Here are some of my favourite passages…
- “‘The rest of our marketing dollars we pour into reducing prices. Our marketing strategy is our pricing strategy, which is everyday low pricing.'” Chapter 4 – Milliravi
- “There are two kinds of retailers: there are those folks who work to figure out how to charge more, and there are companies that work to figure out how to charge less, and we are going to be the second, full-stop…” Chapter 4 – Milliravi
- “It is of course unknowable whether the unusual circumstances of his birth helped to create that fecund entrepreneurial mix of intelligence, ambition, and a relentless need to prove himself. Two other technology icons, Steve Jobs and Larry Ellison, were adopted, and the experience is thought by some to have given each a powerful motivation to succeed.” Chapter 5 – Rocket Boy
- “The comment [about Steve Job’s mistake at pricing the iPhone so high] reflected his distinctive business philosophy. Bezos believed that high margins justified rivals’ investments in research and development and attracted more competition, while low margins attracted customers and were more defensible. (He was partly right about the iPhone; its sizable profits did indeed attract a deluge of competition, starting with smartphones running Google’s Android operating system. But the pioneering smartphone is also a fantastically lucrative product for Apple and its shareholders in a way that AWS has not been, at least so far.)” – Chapter 7 – A technology company, not a retailer
- “… advertising at Amazon is a highly profitable side business that helps subsidize free shipping and low prices and funds some of the company’s expensive long-term projects, like building its own hardware.” Chapter 11 – The Kingdom of the Question Mark
The Everything Store has helped shed light on a company that is in clear view and yet largely operates in the shadows.
It’s a fantastic piece of work and one I’m sure I’ll be turning to time and time again.