German shoppers love Amazon. Fifty-seven percent of German internet users name Amazon as their preferred e-commerce site, and Germany is Amazon’s second largest market after the U.S. Amazon has scored points with German shoppers because of its delivery service and UX for search. Amazon plans to improve its fulfillment offerings with centers in Berlin and the Frankfurt airport, part of a larger plan to bring Amazon Prime Now to the city.
Amazon is also focusing on attracting beauty shoppers with content-rich pages featuring video tutorials, a blog, and five vloggers that consistently post recommendations, favorite products and beauty tips. And unlike in the U.S. and the U.K., beauty brands in Germany – even prestige ones – embrace Amazon. Twenty-seven percent of brands in L2’s Digital IQ Index: Beauty Germany officially list their products on Amazon and 23% have made them available on Pantry.
But not all is smooth sailing for Amazon. German warehouse workers are not tolerating brand’s infamous work culture. Last December, labor union Verdi lead a strike in six of the nine warehouses in Germany right before Christmas as part of an ongoing dispute over pay and conditions. And L2’s Digital IQ Index: Beauty Germany finds that the supply of products in lower in Amazon Germany than in other markets, hindering potential revenues from Beauty shoppers. Forty-four percent of products for brands in L2’s Beauty Germany Index are labeled low-stock, and an additional 10% are only available at a later date or from third-party sellers. A full 12% of beauty products are not available on Amazon.de despite appearing in search results.
Amazon’s supply issue extends to the highest performers. Alessandro International had the highest percentage of available products followed by Maybelline New York, Nivea, and L’Oréal Paris. Yet, availability hovers around 50% of products for these brands, indicating how all brands are affected by Amazon’s product shortage. Also, this is not good news for brands hoping to avoid the gray market as consumers are directed to third-party sellers when Amazon has run out of a product.
It looks like Amazon is enjoying popularity among German consumers and beauty brands, but must improve supply and availability to best use this opportunity.