Amazon is supposedly about to launch a new program that melds Internet retail with established dealerships, making it easier for customers to install their parts purchased online.
According to a bit on Youmotorcycle.com, Amazon is just days away from rolling out a new plan that will allow customers to have online parts purchases shipped to a partnering dealership. Buy your tires on Amazon, and all you’ve got to do is drop your bike off at a dealership, then pick it up when the work is done.
Amazon is supposedly doing this to make the Internet shopping experience more convenient for customers, so they don’t have to lug spare tires or other parts all around town. It’s also convenient for online shoppers who may not have the time, skills, workspace or tools to install stuff bought online.
The program is supposed to be available in Canada (along with the UK, Australia and the US). But, we haven’t heard of any Canadian dealerships signing on yet. And, we don’t know what sort of dealerships Amazon is looking for, mega-stores selling multiple lines of bikes and other powersports equipment, or small independent operations with an emphasis on shop services. Whichever it is, Amazon will need reliably third-party connections to make it happen. Customers will be reluctant to use this service if Amazon’s partners prove unreliable.
While this sounds like a bit of a wild stab, it’s not that crazy an idea. Other online retailers have similar arrangements in place for automotive tires, and Amazon is also working on an idea like this for car parts as well. And it might be an answer to the question: What’s next for dealerships? With parts and accessories sales in a slump due to pressure from online retail, maybe the future for dealerships is installation and service.