簡介：◎ slow burn 和燃燒有關嗎？
◎ 什麼是 take sb down a peg？
Amazon's Amazing Ascension
Seeing returns on investments in Amazon — the world's largest online store — used to be a slow burn, but those days have come and gone. In late May 2017, Amazon's stock surpassed US$1,000 a share. The online store's stock has risen approximately 40 percent since a year prior, which was more than double the 15 percent gain on the S&P 500 Index in the same period. Like Rome, however, the "store for everything" wasn't built in a day.
Amazon's business strategy involves setting its sights on a particular retail category and dominating it, as it has done with books, web services and consumer electronics. Amazon began as an online bookseller in 1994. Due to the internet being in its nascent years, Amazon was viewed as an underdog by already-established brick-and-mortar competitors like Barnes & Noble. Even though Amazon was initially underestimated, it gradually encroached on their shares of the bookselling market.
Analysts have pinpointed a statistical tipping point which portends Amazon's transformation into an industry boogeyman. Once online sales hit 20 percent of all purchases in a given retail category, consumers will then flood toward Amazon. This occurred in 2005, when Amazon allowed customers access to online versions of physical books they had already purchased through the Amazon Upgrade program. The company's 2007 release of the Kindle lowered the price of books by enabling users to download and read them electronically, which warped the book-selling industry and dissolved decades-old legacy retail competitors.
要從世界最大線上商店亞馬遜看到投資報酬，曾經是漫無止境的等待，但那些日子已成過往雲煙。2017年五月底，亞馬遜的每股股價超過一千美元。這家線上商店的股價自一年前已攀升近四十個百分點，是同期漲幅達 15% 的標普 500 指數的兩倍多。不過，一如羅馬，這家「什麼都賣的商店」也不是一天造成的。
亞馬遜的商業策略主要是把目標對準特定零售類別，然後在該類別中稱霸，就像它對書籍、網路服務與消費電子產品所做的。亞馬遜在 1994 年以線上書店起家。由於當時網路還在初期發展階段，所以邦諾書店這類地位早已穩固的實體競爭對手，都不把亞馬遜看在眼裡。儘管一開始被低估，亞馬遜卻逐步侵蝕那些實體書店在書市的占有率。
分析家指出一個統計數據上的臨界點，等同預告亞馬遜成為業界大魔王的時刻。一旦某個零售類別的線上銷售量達到所有購買量的 20%，消費者就會湧向亞馬遜。這個現象在 2005 年發生過，當時亞馬遜允許顧客透過亞馬遜升級方案取得所購實體書籍的線上版本。該公司在 2007 年推出的 Kindle 閱讀器藉由讓使用者能下載並閱讀電子書而降低書價，從此扭轉售書產業，擊垮了屹立數十年的傳統零售競爭對手。