Did You Hear the News About Amazon? No, Not the Amazon Kindle Fire.
While most of the fanfare surrounding Amazon this week was for the announcement of the the Amazon Kindle Fire, the company made another move that was more of a creep and less of a roar: yesterday’s launch of AmazonLocal Boston, yet another local deals marketplace.
By now, we all know the drill: Enter your e-mail address, open up the daily blast, find out the day’s discount (like today’s offer, a three-hour floral arranging class!). There’s also a Boston suburbia version of the site, which includes Burlington, Woburn, Wakefield and Bedford.
Amazon, which has had such a huge impact in shaping the way we do business online, waited until June 2011 to start getting into the local deals space. June 2011. (Groupon launched in November 2008.) Maybe that’s a good thing that Amazon didn’t jump too soon, or maybe the company really didn’t need to go in any earlier when, you know, daily deals weren’t exactly a dime a dozen.
But then why now? Especially in Boston and other large cities in the U.S., it’s hard not to feel overwhelmed by the volume of deals sites. Why would Amazon take the plunge with something that’s set up to be so lackluster? No word on how many email addresses they’ve gathered so far, but as of this morning, @AmazonLocalBOS had 42 Twitter followers, practically a crowded auditorium when you consider the followings of D.C. (36), Denver (29), Atlanta (24), and Phoenix (19), all of which launched the same time as Boston.
AmazonLocal Boston — and AmazonLocal Anywhere, for that matter — certainly could take off, but the overall timing of the launch doesn’t seem like it could be much worse.